I’ve been saying this all along…the sun is the Big Kahuna of climate change on earth. CO2 effects pale in comparison to the effects of the sun. I’ll have more on this in part 3 of my series on 2006’s Record setting temperature year.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The brightening and dimming of the sun may account for a 1,500-year cycle of cooling and warming on parts of the Earth, a study of ice in the North Atlantic suggests.
Researchers found that a very slight difference in the amount of solar energy reaching the Earth can have a powerful chilling effect on the climate: ice builds up in lands bordering the North Atlantic, the average temperature drops in Europe and North America.
see the full story here from USATODAY
This goes hand in hand with another study by the University of Main Climate Change Center as reported by SPACEREF
And just in case that’s not enough light reading for you, here is a study from Harvard that talks about “Chaos” and the sunspot cycle.
Part of the abstract is quite telling: “…by examining 1500 years of sunspot, geomagnetic, and auroral activity cycles. Sub-harmonics were found of the fundamental solar cycle period during the years preceding the Maunder minimum and loss of phase of the subharmonic on emergence from it. These phenomena are indicative of chaos. They indicate that the solar dynamo is chaotic and is operating in a region close to the transition between period doubling and chaos.”
Translation: The sun can easily tip from one state to another, with resultant changes in solar output.