Climate and the Spotless Sun

Not by Fire but by Ice

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Discover What Killed the Dinosaurs . . . and Why it Could Soon Kill Us

 
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Climate and the Spotless Sun
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By Andrew C. Revkin
3 Oct 08 - The sun has been strangely unblemished this year. On more than 200 days so far this year, no sunspots were spotted. That makes the sun blanker this year than in any year since 1954, when it was spotless for 241 days. . . .

In another sign of solar quiescence, scientists reported last month that the solar wind, a rush of charged particles continually spewed from the sun at a million miles an hour, had diminished to its lowest level in 50 years. . . .

Some wonder if this could be the start of an extended period of solar indolence that would more than offset the warming effect of human-made carbon dioxide emissions. From the middle of the 17th century to the early 18th, a period known as the Maunder Minimum, sunspots were extremely rare, and the reduced activity coincided with lower temperatures in what is known as the Little Ice Age.

The IPCC and other climate-research groups have largely rejected the hypothesis that variations in the sun’s behavior could have played a big role in warming since 1950.

But the sun has been the focus of a persistent chorus including some scientists and groups and individuals opposed to restrictions on greenhouse-gas.

See entire article with many links:
http://newsbusters.org/node/13731
http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/03/climate-and-the-spotless-sun/?ei=5070&emc=eta1
 


 


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