Scientists have been studying solar influences on the climate for more than 5,000 years.
Chinese imperial astronomers kept detailed sunspot records. They noticed that more sunspots meant warmer weather. In 1801, the celebrated astronomer William Herschel (discoverer of the planet Uranus) observed that when there were fewer spots, the price of wheat soared. He surmised that less light and heat from the sun resulted in reduced harvests.
Earlier last month, professor Richard Muller of the University of California-Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature (BEST) project announced that in the project’s newly constructed global land temperature record, “no component that matches solar activity” was related to temperature. Instead, Mr. Muller said carbon dioxide controlled temperature.
Could it really be true that solar radiation — which supplies Earth with the energy that drives our climate and which, when it has varied, has caused the climate to shift over the ages — is no longer the principal influence on climate change?