Henrik Svensmark

Henrik Svensmark

​Henrik Svensmark


  • Ph.D., Physics Laboratory I, Technical University of Denmark, (September, 1987).
  • Master of Science in Engineering (Cand. Polyt), Physics Laboratory I, The Technical University of Denmark, (February, 1985).

Source: [1]


Henrik Svensmark is a physicist at the Danish National Space Center in Copenhagen. Svensmark has studied the effects of cosmic rays on cloud formation and presented a hypotheses that global warming is caused by solar radiation.

Svensmark appeared in a documentary titled “The Cloud Mystery” to illustrate his position, and has also shared his research at the Heartland Institute's International Conference on Climate Change.

Henrik Svensmark is director of the Centre for Sun-Climate Research at the Danish Space Research Institute (DSRI). Previously, Dr. Svensmark was head of the Sunclimate group at DSRI. He has held post doctoral positions in physics at University California Berkeley, Nordic Institute of Theoretical Physics, and the Niels Bohr Institute. [2]

Stance on Climate Change

“In fact global warming has stopped and a cooling is beginning. No climate model has predicted a cooling of the Earth – quite the contrary. And this means that the projections of future climate are unreliable.” [3]

According to Lawrence Solomon, “Dr. Svensmark has never disputed the existence of greenhouse gases and the greenhouse effect. To the contrary, he believes that an understanding of the sun's role is needed to learn the full story, and thus determine man's role. Not only does no climate model today consider the effect of cosmic particles, but even clouds are too poorly understood to be incorporated into any serious climate model. [2]

Key Quotes

“During the last 100 years cosmic rays became scarcer because unusually vigorous action by the Sun batted away many of them. Fewer cosmic rays meant fewer clouds—and a warmer world. [4]

Key Deeds

September, 2013

Svensmark published a paper in 2013 with preliminary evidence suggesting that cosmic rays could seed cloud formation, which if true, would indicate that they can influence global temperatures.  In an interview with Environmental Research Web, Svensmark claimed that cosmic rays could “play a major role in the warming.”  However, because solar activity has been flat and even slightly declining over the past 60 years, if cosmic rays had an influence on global temperatures, it would be a slight cooling influence over that timeframe.

February, 2012

Svensmark is listed as a “guest author” of Die kalte Sonne, or “The Cold Sun.” [5]

The book's main authors – REpower Systems CEO Fritz Vahrenholt and Geologist Sebastian Lüning – claim that there is no climate catastrophe because “global warming over the past 150 years is part of a natural cycle that is characterized primarily by the sun.” [6]

Other “guest authors” include climate skeptics Nir Shaviv, Nicola Scafetta, and Werner Weber.

According to some sources, the book contains numerous fallacies. According to an article published by Zeit Online (translated here), these fallacies include the book's claims that the Earth has not warmed since 1998, that the Hockey Stick graph was a hoax, that only the sun is to blame for global warming, that the IPCC has manipulated climate science, and that we are entering a period of global cooling due to solar inactivity.

December, 2010

Svensmark was a speaker (PDF) at the “3rd International Energy and Climate Conference” which appears to have been sponsored by the skeptical European organization EIKE (Europäisches Institut für Klima und Energie/European Institute for Climate and Energy).

Other skeptic speakers included Fred Singer, Bob Carter, Ian Plimer, Nir Shaviv, and Jan Veizer. Organizers included the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT). [7]

December, 2009

Svensmark was a speaker at the Copenhagen Climate Challenge conference.

According to the conference program, released by Tom Harris's International Climate Science Coalition (Tom Harris was also at the conference to introduce the “Challenge”):

“The controversy surrounding Anthropogenic Climate Change is just beginning - there is clearly no known consensus among climate scientists about this rapidly evolving field. We therefore invite the media, politicians and policy makers to give a fair hearing to the views of the renowned expert 'climate realists' speaking at this conference.” [12]

Other speakers included prominent skeptics such as Nils-Axel Mörner, Cliff Ollier, Ian Plimer, S Fred Singer, and Lord Christopher Monckton. Press contacts were listed for representatives of Climate Sense and ICSC.


Appeared in a documentary film titled “The Cloud Mystery,” where he presented findings that may be sufficient as a reason to “re-evaluate the causes of global warming.” Here is a clip from the film.

Some of the experts appearing in the film include astronomer Nir Shaviv, and geologist Ján Veizer. Svensmark's concludes that “Natural events in our Galaxy and on the manic-depressive Sun decide whether the Earth’s cloud cover is letting the Sun heat or cool the surface of the Earth.”

Svensmark's theory has been debated by the scientific community. A 2003 paper (PDF) critiqued Svensmark's theory and suggested that his data does not support a correlation between cosmic rays and global temperature changes. [8]

Svensmark replied (PDF) to the paper, stating that “…nowhere in Peter Laut’s (PL) paper has he been able to explain, where physical data have been handled incorrectly, how the character of my papers are misleading, or where my work does not live up to scientific standards.” [9]

January 5, 2007

Svensmark was the subject of an article written as part of a series called “The Deniers” written by climate change skeptic Lawrence Solomon [2]

He has since been quoted by others, including fellow skeptic Nigel Calder, as having provided evidence to disprove “the global warming scare.” [10]



Sample publications include:

  • The Cloud Mystery” [film]. Produced by Lars Oxfeldt Mortensen, premiering January 2008 on Danish TV 2.
  • Henrik Svensmark, Jens Olaf P. Pedersen, Nigel D. Marsh, Martin B. Enghoff & Ulrik I. Uggerhøj (2007). “Experimental evidence for the role of ions in particle nucleation under atmospheric conditions” (PDF). Proceedings of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 463 (2078): 385–396.
  • Henrik Svensmark (2007). “Astronomy & Geophysics Cosmoclimatology: a new theory emerges” (PDF). Astronomy & Geophysics, 48 (1): 1.18–1.24.
  • Henrik Svensmark, Torsten Bondo and Jacob Svensmark (2009). “Cosmic Ray Decreases Affect Atmospheric Aerosols and Clouds” (PDF). Geophysical Research Letters, 36: L15101.
  • M.B. Enghoff, J. O. Pepke Pedersen, U. I. Uggerhøj, S. M. Paling, and H. Svensmark (2011). “Aerosol nucleation induced by a high energy particle beam” (PDF). Geophysical Research Letters, 38: L09805.


  1. Henrik Svensmark” (CV), The 33rd International Geological Congress. Accessed February, 2012. Archived with WebCite, February 18, 2012.

  2. Lawrence Solomon. “The sun moves climate change,” The National Post, January 5, 2007.

  3. Henrik Svensmark. “Mens Solen sover.” Jyllands-Posten, September 9, 2009. Reposted and translated by Watts Up With That, September 10, 2009.

  4. The Chilling Stars: A New Theory of Climate Change, Totem Books, 2007.

  5. Die Autoren,” kaltesonne.de. Accessed February, 2012.

  6. Stefan Schmitt and Christian Tenbrock. “Kälte aus dem All?”, Zeit Online, January 27, 2012.

  7. “3rd INTERNATIONAL ENERGY AND CLIMATE CONFERENCE” (PDF), EIKE - Europäisches Institut für Klima und Energie. Accessed February, 2012.

  8. Peter Laut. “Solar activity and terrestrial climate: an analysis of some purported correlations” (PDF), Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics Vol. 65 (February, 2003), 8001 - 812.

  9. Henrik Svensmark. “Comments on Peter Laut’s paper: 'Solar Activity and terrestrial climate: an analysis of some purported correlations', Journal of Atmospheric and Solar- Terrestrial Physics 65 (2003) 801—812” (PDF). Retrieved February, 2012, from server at DTU Space Institut for Rumforskning og-teknologi.

  10. An experiment that hints we are wrong on climate change,” TimesOnline, February 11, 2007. Archived June 15, 2008.

  11. Staff,” Center for Sun-Climate Research. Accessed February, 2012.

  12. COPENHAGEN CLIMATE CHALLENGE CONFERENCE,” International Climate Science Coalition. Accessed February, 2012.