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Oct 18, 2006 9:32 pm


Alternative Theory



Steven Milloy who publishes the website junkscience.com has an excellent column in today's Washington Times which brings much needed attention to work by Danish researchers Henrik Svensmark and Eigil Friis-Christensen. The the study’s results, which were published by the prestigious Proceedings of the Royal Society A, provide solid experimental evidence supporting their theory concerning the relationship between global temperatures and cosmic rays.

As Milloy describes it the two scientists “hypothesized that cosmic rays from space influence the Earth's climate by effecting cloud formation in the lower atmosphere. Their hypothesis was based on a strong correlation between levels of cosmic radiation and cloud cover -- that is, the greater the cosmic radiation, the greater the cloud cover. Clouds cool the Earth's climate by reflecting about 20 percent of incoming solar radiation back into space. The hypothesis was potentially significant because during the 20th century, the influx of cosmic rays was reduced by a doubling of the Sun's magnetic field, which shields the Earth from cosmic rays. According to the hypothesis, then, less cosmic radiation would mean less cloud formation and, ultimately, warmer temperatures -- precisely what was observed during the 20th century.”

The policy implications of Svensmark and Friis-Christensen’s research are tremendous, however, as Milloy observes so far the mainstream media seems to be profoundly uninterested.


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