Climatic Change

, Volume 122, Issue 1, pp 257-269

First online:

Anthropogenic and natural causes of climate change

  • David I. SternAffiliated withCrawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University Email author 
  • , Robert K. KaufmannAffiliated withDepartment of Earth and Environment, Boston University

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We test for causality between radiative forcing and temperature using multivariate time series models and Granger causality tests that are robust to the non-stationary (trending) nature of global climate data. We find that both natural and anthropogenic forcings cause temperature change and also that temperature causes greenhouse gas concentration changes. Although the effects of greenhouse gases and volcanic forcing are robust across model specifications, we cannot detect any effect of black carbon on temperature, the effect of changes in solar irradiance is weak, and the effect of anthropogenic sulfate aerosols may be only around half that usually attributed to them.