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Scientists believe that a change in the distance between the Earth and the Sun will cause climate change.
Our planet has a slightly elliptical orbit, meaning it does not orbit the sun in a circle. On average, the distance from Earth to our star is 150 million km. But due to the oval orbit of our planet, this distance is constantly changing throughout the year – from 147 million km to 152 million km. And at the same time, the average distance from the Earth to the Sun is still increasing, that is, our planet is moving away from the star, and this will eventually lead to climate change. To the question: “Is it worth worrying about this already?”, An astronomer from the University of California, USA, answers in an article for Live Science.
Astronomer Brian DiGiorgio of the University of California at Santa Cruz believes that the average distance from the Earth to the Sun is gradually increasing. This is due to the fact that the Sun is slowly losing its mass, as well as to the mutual gravitational influence of two cosmic bodies on each other.
“Our Sun, according to forecasts, has about 5 billion years left to live, but the time will come when our star will begin to slowly die and before that the Sun will lose about 0.1% of its mass. Although this does not seem much, this figure is comparable to the mass of Jupiter , which is 318 times heavier than the Earth,” says DiGiorgio.
According to the scientist, the Sun has already begun to lose its mass, and the force of gravity of the Sun is weakening, which means that the Earth is moving away from our star by about 6 cm per year.
“But don't worry about it yet, it's still too little distance,” says DiGiorgio.
According to the scientist, the gradual separation of the planet from the Sun will further affect the climate on Earth. This is due to the fact that the amount of sunlight will gradually decrease.
“Although the amount of light will decrease, it will not happen so quickly, it will take millions of years. But the Sun will change on its own as it evolves and every 1 billion years it will increase its brightness. This will lead to the fact that too much heat will be enter the planet and all the water may disappear. Long before the Sun ends its life path, the Earth will become uninhabitable, “says DiGiorgio.
At the end of its evolution, the Sun will turn into a huge red star. Some scientists believe that the Sun will increase in size so much that it will easily swallow Mercury, Venus and the Earth. But other scientists believe that our planet can still survive and continue its orbit.
“Even if the Earth survives, there is no chance that people can survive on it. The Earth will turn into a boiling hot ball,” says DiGiorgio.
Scientists' wildest predictions suggest that even if humanity survives in 5 billion years, it will have to somehow move the planet around the orbit of Saturn in order for it to remain habitable.
“This is a very fantastic solution, but everything may be possible, maybe the technologies of the future will make it possible. Although the easiest thing would be to leave the Earth or leave our solar system altogether,” says DiGiorgio.
As already wrote Focus, the Earth began to rotate faster around its axis. A new record has recently been set. Whether it will continue to increase its speed or slow down, the opinions of scientists differ.