The Sun , as you already probably know, has spots on it, amazingly called sunspots. These spots are areas of magnetic activity and are used as a measure to show how “active” the Sun is.
“So what” I hear scoffing , and I can see the cornflacks hitting the computer screen of many a ready who is probably wondering why they should carry on reading this.
Well, it is important, as the Sun’s magnetic field shields us from the space rays which come from other stars. The Earth’s magnetic field also shields us from the radiation from the Sun and alll the other stars out there. But when the Sun’ magnetic field decreases, when the sun spot level drops, then we get “bathed” in more of this cosimc radiation, as the Sun doesn’t protect us so much, and so more of this “comic radiation” or Cosmic rays” hit us.
Cosmic rays have many effects, they cause mutations in DNA and probably have an effect on the Earth’s natural radioactive substances, even perhaps causing a small uptick in the natural rock cycle, with perhaps more volcanic and techtonic activity (this pper https://www.researchgate.net/publication/234022172_Explosive_volcanic_eruptions_triggered_by_cosmic_rays_Volcano_as_a_bubble_chamber). They may interct with our atmosphere and cause more clouds, and scientists think that one star that exploded caused a gamma ray blast that caused an extinction event ( Well, Wikipedia for what its worth says so!)
People have long used methods for investigating the sun, and of course recorded weather and climate. Humans have worship and feared the sun and ancient chinese records go back at least 2000 years, and stone monuments from the brnze age seem to indicate that the Sun had a large importance as far back as 5000 years ago.
So the sun has an influence on whathappens on Earth, and we could discuss what the extent of that is.
I’m all for a cleaner, greaner planet, and think we pollute too much with plastics and rubbish, and would like to see more public transport used, and even electric cars, if we could square the old problem of produing and storing green electricity(enough of it anyway) to meet modern developmental needs. And , even if I’m not so sure that “science is ever settled” I’ll probably have to “tow the line” on “green house gases and anthropogenic emmisions” as otherwise , like past scientists , I’llb e forced to confess my sins.
Bad science is no scientific debate! When we refuse to consider all eventualities. When we speak from “mount stupid”
Big think predicts tht the sun will lose a whopping 7%in about 30 years https://bigthink.com/news/the-solar-minimum-is-coming-in-about-30-years-what-will-it-do
So In solar minimums, we can see that wheat prices increased, and the sun set food prices in the Middle ages according to a rather old paper from 2003 in Nature
But , this effect is probably eliminated in the modern trading world.
But a failure of rice or wheat could cause problems.With half the world’s population in asian countries, and with a reliance on staple foods, we could struggle to feed people should a really big volcano explode of if the sun should slump into a funk from hell.
Well, i shall watch ans see. There isn’t much anyone can do about any of it, and the sun ill shine on, like a crazy diamond.