The amount of energy the sun puts out varies, and when it does climate change happened before and will happen again.
Scientists at the University of Hawaii's Institute for Astronomy are working to understand these solar variations with hopes of one day predicting them and the climate change they bring.
"We know that in the past, the sun influenced climate in a big way," said Jeff Kuhn an astronomer with the UH Institute for Astronomy.
Playing a big role -- the amount of sunspots, or dark spots, on the sun.
Scientists know an increase in sunspots brings an increase in global temperature, and vice versa.
You would think it would be the other way around. But, areas surrounding these dark spots are brighter, therefore, hotter than the sun's average.
The number of sunspots dropped dramatically, in the 1,600s, causing temperatures on Earth to drop a little more than a degree.
"You could ice skate over the Dutch canals and you can't do that anymore," said Kuhn. "It's because the climate -- the winter was harsh and it affected the economy. It affected agriculture in real ways."
That's why scientists say it's so important to study the sun -- which is a boiling pot of gas and energy fueled by magnetism.
"And that magnetism changes and somehow it controls," said Kuhn. "And it's like a valve that regulates the amount of energy that the sun produces that eventually strikes the Earth."