Please consider donating to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar to the right. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.
The chief of CERN has prohibited its scientists from drawing any conclusions from a major experiment that appears to prove that solar activity and the resulting ebb and flow of cosmic rays has a direct effect on the climate.
First, the results described provide strong evidence that the sun is a much more important component in climate change than any climate model has previously predicted. These results could help explain the Little Ice Age, which took place around 1700 at exactly the same time the sun became very quiet and stopped producing sunspots for decades. They could explain the Medieval Warm Period around 1000 AD, when cosmic ray activity declined (which also suggests the sun become more active) and the earth apparently warmed. And they might very well even explain the recent cooling during the past decade, which also took place during a period of solar inactivity and a comparable increase in cosmic ray activity.
In all these cases, the available data up to now had failed to explain how the sun could effect the climate. Its measured variability in brightness has never been sufficient to cause the measured temperature changes. That cosmic rays themselves might add to this effect, increasing or decreasing cloud cover and thus helping to respectively cool or warm the earth, is a significant finding. If confirmed, these results will be a major step towards allowing scientists to predict the sun’s importance to climate change.
Second, and more importantly, it is highly unprecedented and completely unjustified for anyone in the field of science to forbid a scientist to speak out about the conclusions they draw from the results of their experiment. For the head of CERN to try to censor these scientists is despicable, and should be condemned loudly and in the strongest terms possible.
Sadly, this is not the first time this kind of censorship has happened. Any time in recent years there are scientific results that might blast a hole in the theory that CO2 is the sole cause of climate change there are strong political efforts to silence those results. As noted in the article, it appears that
“It’s OK to enter ‘the highly political arena of the climate change debate’ provided your results endorse man-made warming, but not if they support Svensmark’s heresy that the Sun alters the climate by influencing the cosmic ray influx and cloud formation.”
If science and our society is going to function properly, this has got to stop. The only thing that matters is the truth and the actual data. To put political concerns first only destroys the reputation of science.