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To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of recent research developments in physics relating to the influence of the sun on cloud formation and global temperatures; and how these will inform their policy on climate change.
While changes in solar output may have contributed to some of the observed warming during the early 20th century, there is scientific consensus that they cannot explain the recent strong rise in global average temperature.
The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) fund a significant amount of research at the Met Office Hadley Centre on the attribution of climate change, as part of the wider Integrated Climate Programme. Their research confirms that recent climate change cannot be attributed to solar variations. Also, there is no evidence that cosmic ray variations have played any role in causing recent warming, through their effect on cloud cover.
Both DECC and Defra specialists maintain strong links with the scientific community and follow developments relevant to climate change closely to ensure that policy is based on the best available science.