Not quite yet, but as everyone else is wishing happy New Years that seems covered. On the 3rd (usually at least) of January we are closest to the sun. That the calendar year starts near then is coincidence. Due to orbital variations (Milankovitch cycles), our date of closest approach varies through the calendar year. This is the longitude of perihelion.
Back with the simplest climate model posts we looked some at how our distance to the sun could affect the global mean temperature. In honor of our passage, a project to see how much difference our being 0.0167 astronomical units closer to the sun than normal (i.e., we'll be at 0.9833 AU instead of the average 1.0000) would make. At least, would make if the assumptions of the simplest model were all true.
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