Climate Change

Climate Basics

Why does the Earth’s orbit change from circular to elliptical over time?

Like all the planets in our solar system, our world is subjected to the gravitational tugs of not only the Sun, but all the other planets as well. We know that our Moon causes tides and other gravitational effects that we can see every day, but Earth’s orbit is also influenced by the gas giants Jupiter and Saturn. These planets are big enough to pull Earth’s orbit out of shape as they circle the Sun; then the Sun’s gravity eventually pulls it back again in an extremely slow tug of war.


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