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Encyclopedia > Climate change
Atmospheric sciences [cat.]
Meteorology [cat.]
weather [cat.]
tropical cyclones [cat.]
Climatology [cat.]
climate [cat.]
climate change [cat.]

Portal Atmospheric Sciences
Portal Weather
Variations in CO2, temperature and dust from the Vostok ice core over the last 450,000 years
Variations in CO2, temperature and dust from the Vostok ice core over the last 450,000 years

Climate change refers to the variation in the Earth's global climate or in regional climates over time. It describes changes in the variability or average state of the atmosphere over time scales ranging from decades to millions of years. These changes can be caused by processes internal to the Earth, external forces (e.g. variations in sunlight intensity) and, more recently, human activities. Atmospheric sciences is an umbrella term for the study of the atmosphere, its processes, the effects other systems have on the atmosphere, and the effects of the atmosphere on these other systems. ... // Meteorology (from Greek: μετέωρον, meteoron, high in the sky; and λόγος, logos, knowledge) is the interdisciplinary scientific study of the atmosphere that focuses on weather processes and forecasting. ... For the geological process, see Weathering or Erosion. ... Cyclone Catarina, a rare South Atlantic tropical cyclone viewed from the International Space Station on March 26, 2004 Hurricane and Typhoon redirect here. ... Climatology is the study of climate, scientifically defined as weather conditions averaged over a period of time,[1] and is a branch of the atmospheric sciences. ... Graph of Vostok CO2/T/dust from Petit 1999 paper. ... Graph of Vostok CO2/T/dust from Petit 1999 paper. ... Vostok, Antarctica is a Russian research station located near the Geomagnetic South Pole (see South Pole), at the center of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet. ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ... This article is about Earth as a planet. ...


In recent usage, especially in the context of environmental policy, the term "climate change" often refers to changes in modern climate which according to the IPCC are 90-95% likely to have been in part caused by human action. Consequently the term anthropogenic climate change is frequently adopted; this phenomenon is also referred to in the mainstream media as global warming. In some cases, the term is also used with a presumption of human causation, as in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The UNFCCC uses "climate variability" for non-human caused variations.[1] Environmental policy is any (course of) action delibaretely taken (or not taken) to manage human activities with a view to prevent, reduce or mitigate harmful effects on nature and natural resources, and ensuring that man-made changes to the environment do not have harmful effects on humans [1]. // It is... IPCC is science authority for the UNFCCC The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established in 1988 by two United Nations organizations, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to assess the risk of human-induced climate change. The Panel is open to all... Look up anthropogenic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ... UN and U.N. redirect here. ... The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is an international environmental treaty produced at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), informally known as the Earth Summit, held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. ...


For information on temperature measurements over various periods, and the data sources available, see temperature record. For attribution of climate change over the past century, see attribution of recent climate change. The temperature record shows the fluctuations of the temperature of the atmosphere and the oceans through various spans of time. ... Attribution of recent climate change is the effort to scientifically ascertain mechanisms responsible for relatively recent changes observed in the Earths climate. ...

Contents

Climate change factors

Climate changes reflect variations within the Earth's atmosphere, processes in other parts of the Earth such as oceans and ice caps, and the effects of human activity. The external factors that can shape climate are often called climate forcings and include such processes as variations in solar radiation, the Earth's orbit, and greenhouse gas concentrations. The cryosphere, derived from the Greek word kryos for frost or icy cold, is the term which collectively describes the portions of the Earth’s surface where water is in solid form, including sea ice, lake ice, river ice, snow cover, glaciers, ice caps and ice sheets, and frozen ground... Note: This Wikipedia article is a work in progress. ... Solar irradiance spectrum at top of atmosphere. ... Two bodies with a slight difference in mass orbiting around a common barycenter. ... Top: Increasing atmospheric CO2 levels as measured in the atmosphere and ice cores. ...


Variations within the Earth's climate

Weather is the day-to-day state of the atmosphere, and is a chaotic non-linear dynamical system. On the other hand, climate — the average state of weather — is fairly stable and predictable. Climate includes the average temperature, amount of precipitation, days of sunlight, and other variables that might be measured at any given site. However, there are also changes within the Earth's environment that can affect the climate. For other uses, see Chaos (disambiguation). ... The Lorenz attractor is an example of a non-linear dynamical system. ...


Glaciation

Percentage of advancing glaciers in the Alps in the last 80 years
Percentage of advancing glaciers in the Alps in the last 80 years

Glaciers are recognized as one of the most sensitive indicators of climate change, advancing substantially during climate cooling (e.g., the Little Ice Age) and retreating during climate warming on moderate time scales. Glaciers grow and collapse, both contributing to natural variability and greatly amplifying externally-forced changes. For the last century, however, glaciers have been unable to regenerate enough ice during the winters to make up for the ice lost during the summer months (see glacier retreat). Image File history File links Download high resolution version (911x621, 71 KB) Summary Glacier terminus in the alps (Pelto: www. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (911x621, 71 KB) Summary Glacier terminus in the alps (Pelto: www. ... This article is about the geological formation. ... The Little Ice Age (LIA) was a period of cooling occurring after a warmer era known as the Medieval climate optimum. ... A century (From the Latin cent, one hundred) is one hundred consecutive years. ... This article is about water ice. ... A view down the Whitechuck Glacier in North Cascades National Park in 1973 The same view as seen in 2006, where this branch of glacier retreated 1. ...


The most significant climate processes of the last several million years are the glacial and interglacial cycles of the present ice age. Though shaped by orbital variations, the internal responses involving continental ice sheets and 130 m sea-level change certainly played a key role in deciding what climate response would be observed in most regions. Other changes, including Heinrich events, Dansgaard–Oeschger events and the Younger Dryas show the potential for glacial variations to influence climate even in the absence of specific orbital changes. Glaciation, often called an ice age, is a geological phenomenon in which massive ice sheets form in the Arctic and Antarctic and advance toward the equator. ... Variations in CO2, temperature and dust from the Vostok ice core over the last 400 000 years For the animated movie, see Ice Age (movie). ... Milankovitch cycles are the collective effect of changes in the Earths movements upon its climate, named after Serbian civil engineer and mathematician Milutin Milanković. The eccentricity, axial tilt, and precession of the Earths orbit vary in several patterns, resulting in 100,000 year ice age cycles of the... Continental may refer to: The adjective of continent, such as in continental Europe, continental breakfast, or continental climate, or Continental Glacier; The culture of the continental nation states of Europe, inasmuch as it contrasts with the culture of Anglo-Saxon England; The Lincoln Continental, a car made by Lincoln division... An indication of the timing of Heinrich events during the last glacial Heinrich events, named for paleoclimatologist Hartmut Heinrich, are abrupt episodes during the last glacial. ... Temperature proxy from four ice cores for the last 140 kyr, showing D-O events in the NH but not the SH Dansgaard-Oeschger events are rapid climate fluctuations during and at the end of the last ice age. ... Three temperature records, the GRIP one clearly showing the Younger Dryas event at around 11 kyr BP The Younger Dryas stadial, named after the alpine / tundra wildflower Dryas octopetala, and also referred to as the Big Freeze [1], was a brief (approximately 1300 ± 70 years [1]) cold climate period following...


Ocean variability

A schematic of modern thermohaline circulation
A schematic of modern thermohaline circulation

On the scale of decades, climate changes can also result from interaction of the atmosphere and oceans. Many climate fluctuations, the best known being the El Niño Southern oscillation but also including the Pacific decadal oscillation, the North Atlantic oscillation, and Arctic oscillation, owe their existence at least in part to different ways that heat can be stored in the oceans and move between different reservoirs. On longer time scales ocean processes such as thermohaline circulation play a key role in redistributing heat, and can dramatically affect climate. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Chart of ocean surface temperature anomaly [°C] during the last strong El Niño in December 1997 ENSO (El Niño-Southern Oscillation) is a global coupled ocean-atmosphere phenomenon. ... The Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) is a pattern of Pacific climate variability that shifts phases on at least inter-decadal time scale, usually about 20 to 30 years. ... The North Atlantic oscillation (NAO) is a complex climatic phenomenon in the North Atlantic Ocean (especially associated with fluctuations of climate between Iceland and the Azores). ... The Arctic oscillation (AO) is the dominant pattern of non-seasonal sea-level pressure (SLP) variations north of 20N, and it is characterized by SLP anomalies of one sign in the Arctic and anomalies of opposite sign centered about 37-45N. The North Atlantic oscillation (NAO) is a close relative... A simplified summary of the path of the Thermohaline Circulation. ...


The memory of climate

More generally, most forms of internal variability in the climate system can be recognized as a form of hysteresis, meaning that the current state of climate reflects not only the inputs, but also the history of how it got there. For example, a decade of dry conditions may cause lakes to shrink, plains to dry up and deserts to expand. In turn, these conditions may lead to less rainfall in the following years. In short, climate change can be a self-perpetuating process because different aspects of the environment respond at different rates and in different ways to the fluctuations that inevitably occur. A system with hysteresis exhibits path-dependence, or rate-independent memory. Consider a deterministic system with no hysteresis and no dynamics. ...


Non-climate factors driving climate change

Greenhouse gases

Main article: Greenhouse gas
Carbon dioxide variations during the last 500 million years
Carbon dioxide variations during the last 500 million years

Current studies indicate that radiative forcing by greenhouse gases is the primary cause of global warming. Greenhouse gases are also important in understanding Earth's climate history. According to these studies, the greenhouse effect, which is the warming produced as greenhouse gases trap heat, plays a key role in regulating Earth's temperature. Top: Increasing atmospheric CO2 levels as measured in the atmosphere and ice cores. ... Image File history File links Phanerozoic_Carbon_Dioxide. ... Image File history File links Phanerozoic_Carbon_Dioxide. ... Attribution of recent climate change is the effort to scientifically ascertain mechanisms responsible for relatively recent changes observed in the Earths climate. ... The generalised concept of radiative forcing in climate science is any change in the radiation (heat) entering the climate system or changes in radiatively active gases. ... Top: Increasing atmospheric CO2 levels as measured in the atmosphere and ice cores. ... Wikinews has related news: Scientists warn thawing Siberia may trigger global meltdown A schematic representation of the exchanges of energy between outer space, the Earths atmosphere, and the Earth surface. ...


Over the last 600 million years, carbon dioxide concentrations have varied from perhaps >5000 ppm to less than 200 ppm, due primarily to the effect of geological processes and biological innovations. It has been argued by Veizer et al., 1999, that variations in greenhouse gas concentrations over tens of millions of years have not been well correlated to climate change, with plate tectonics perhaps playing a more dominant role. More recently Royer et al.[2] have used the CO2-climate correlation to derive a value for the climate sensitivity. There are several examples of rapid changes in the concentrations of greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere that do appear to correlate to strong warming, including the Paleocene–Eocene thermal maximum, the Permian–Triassic extinction event, and the end of the Varangian snowball earth event. Carbon dioxide is a chemical compound composed of two oxygen atoms covalently bonded to a single carbon atom. ... Parts-per notation is a measure of concentration that is used where low levels of concentration are significant. ... Parts-per notation is a measure of concentration that is used where low levels of concentration are significant. ... In IPCC reports, equilibrium climate sensitivity refers to the equilibrium change in global mean surface temperature following a doubling of the atmospheric (equivalent) CO2 concentration. ... Air redirects here. ... Climate change during the last 65 million years. ... The Permian-Triassic (P-T or PT) extinction event, sometimes informally called the Great Dying, was an extinction event that occurred approximately 251 million years ago (mya), forming the boundary between the Permian and Triassic geologic periods. ... One computer simulation of conditions during the Snowball Earth period. ...


During the modern era, the naturally rising carbon dioxide levels are implicated as the primary cause of global warming since 1950. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), 2007, the atmospheric concentration of CO2 in 2005 was 379ppm³ compared to the pre-industrial levels of 280ppm³. Thermodynamics and Le Chatelier's principle explain the characteristics of the dynamic equilibrium of a gas in solution such as the vast amount of CO2 held in solution in the world's oceans moving into and returning from the atmosphere. These principals can be observed as bubbles which rise in a pot of water heated on a stove, or in a glass of cold beer allowed to sit at room temperature; gases dissolved in liquids are released under certain circumstances. Carbon dioxide is a chemical compound composed of two oxygen atoms covalently bonded to a single carbon atom. ... Attribution of recent climate change is the effort to scientifically ascertain mechanisms responsible for relatively recent changes observed in the Earths climate. ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ... Thermodynamics (from the Greek θερμη, therme, meaning heat and δυναμις, dynamis, meaning power) is a branch of physics that studies the effects of changes in temperature, pressure, and volume on physical systems at the macroscopic scale by analyzing the collective motion of their particles using statistics. ... In chemistry, Le Chateliers principle, also called the Le Chatelier-Braun principle, can be used to predict the effect of a change in conditions on a chemical equilibrium. ...


Plate tectonics

On the longest time scales, plate tectonics will reposition continents, shape oceans, build and tear down mountains and generally serve to define the stage upon which climate exists. More recently, plate motions have been implicated in the intensification of the present ice age when, approximately 3 million years ago, the North and South American plates collided to form the Isthmus of Panama and shut off direct mixing between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The tectonic plates of the world were mapped in the second half of the 20th century. ... Animated, colour-coded map showing the various continents. ... Animated map exhibiting the worlds oceanic waters. ... For other uses, see Mountain (disambiguation). ... Variations in CO2, temperature and dust from the Vostok ice core over the last 400 000 years For the animated movie, see Ice Age (movie). ... The Isthmus of Panama. ... The Atlantic Ocean is Earths second-largest ocean, covering approximately one_fifth of its surface. ... For other meanings of Pacific, see Pacific (disambiguation). ...


Solar variation

Variations in solar activity during the last several centuries based on observations of sunspots and beryllium isotopes.
Variations in solar activity during the last several centuries based on observations of sunspots and beryllium isotopes.

The sun is the ultimate source of essentially all heat in the climate system. The energy output of the sun, which is converted to heat at the Earth's surface, is an integral part of shaping the Earth's climate. On the longest time scales, the sun itself is getting brighter with higher energy output; as it continues its main sequence, this slow change or evolution affects the Earth's atmosphere. Early in Earth's history, it is thought to have been too cold to support liquid water at the Earth's surface, leading to what is known as the Faint young sun paradox. Description This figure shows two different proxies of solar activity during the last several hundred years. ... Description This figure shows two different proxies of solar activity during the last several hundred years. ... For other uses, see Sunspot (disambiguation). ... General Name, symbol, number beryllium, Be, 4 Chemical series alkaline earth metals Group, period, block 2, 2, s Appearance white-gray metallic Standard atomic weight 9. ... Sol redirects here. ... Hertzsprung-Russell diagram The main sequence of the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram is the curve where the majority of stars are located in this diagram. ... Geological time put in a diagram called a geological clock, showing the relative lengths of the eons of the Earths history. ... The faint young sun paradox describes the apparent contradiction between observations of liquid water early in Earths history and the astrophysical expectation that the suns output would be only 70% as intense during that epoch as it is during the modern epoch. ...


On more modern time scales, there are also a variety of forms of solar variation, including the 11-year solar cycle and longer-term modulations. However, the 11-year sunspot cycle does not manifest itself clearly in the climatological data. Solar intensity variations are considered to have been influential in triggering the Little Ice Age, and for some of the warming observed from 1900 to 1950. The cyclical nature of the sun's energy output is not yet fully understood; it differs from the very slow change that is happening within the sun as it ages and evolves. 400 year history of sunspot numbers. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Schwabe-Wolf cycle. ... The Little Ice Age (LIA) was a period of cooling occurring after a warmer era known as the Medieval climate optimum. ...


Orbital variations

In their effect on climate, orbital variations are in some sense an extension of solar variability, because slight variations in the Earth's orbit lead to changes in the distribution and abundance of sunlight reaching the Earth's surface. Such orbital variations, known as Milankovitch cycles, are a highly predictable consequence of basic physics due to the mutual interactions of the Earth, its moon, and the other planets. These variations are considered the driving factors underlying the glacial and interglacial cycles of the present ice age. Subtler variations are also present, such as the repeated advance and retreat of the Sahara desert in response to orbital precession. Two bodies with a slight difference in mass orbiting around a common barycenter. ... Milankovitch cycles are the collective effect of changes in the Earths movements upon its climate, named after Serbian civil engineer and mathematician Milutin Milanković. The eccentricity, axial tilt, and precession of the Earths orbit vary in several patterns, resulting in 100,000 year ice age cycles of the...


Volcanism

A single eruption of the kind that occurs several times per century can affect climate, causing cooling for a period of a few years. For example, the eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991 affected climate substantially. Huge eruptions, known as large igneous provinces, occur only a few times every hundred million years, but can reshape climate for millions of years and cause mass extinctions. Initially, scientists thought that the dust emitted into the atmosphere from large volcanic eruptions was responsible for the cooling by partially blocking the transmission of solar radiation to the Earth's surface. However, measurements indicate that most of the dust thrown in the atmosphere returns to the Earth's surface within six months. Cleveland Volcano in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska photographed from the International Space Station For other uses, see Volcano (disambiguation). ... Mount Pinatubo is an active stratovolcano located on the island of Luzon in the Philippines, at the intersection of the borders of the provinces of Zambales, Tarlac, and Pampanga. ... Large Igneous provinces (LIPS) were originally defined by Coffin and Eldholm (1992) as areas of Earths surface that contain very large volumes of magmatic rocks (typically basalt but including rhyolites) erupted over extremely short geological time intervals of a few million years or less. ... An extinction event (also extinction-level event, ELE) is a period in time when a large number of species die out. ... Solar irradiance spectrum at top of atmosphere. ...


Volcanoes are also part of the extended carbon cycle. Over very long (geological) time periods, they release carbon dioxide from the earth's interior, counteracting the uptake by sedimentary rocks and other geological carbon sinks. However, this contribution is insignificant compared to the current anthropogenic emissions. The US Geological Survey estimates that human activities generate more than 130 times the amount of carbon dioxide emitted by volcanoes.[3] For the thermonuclear reaction involving carbon that helps power stars, see CNO cycle. ... The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is a scientific agency of the United States government. ...

Image File history File links Climate_Change_Attribution. ... Image File history File links Climate_Change_Attribution. ... Attribution of recent climate change is the effort to scientifically ascertain mechanisms responsible for relatively recent changes observed in the Earths climate. ...

Human influences on climate change

Anthropogenic factors are acts by humans that change the environment and influence climate. Various theories of human-induced climate change have been debated for many years. In the late 1800s, the Rain follows the plow theory had many adherents in the western United States. Rain follows the plow is the conventional name for a now-debunked theory of climatology that was popular throughout the American West during the late 19th century. ...


The biggest factor of present concern is the increase in CO2 levels due to emissions from fossil fuel combustion, followed by aerosols (particulate matter in the atmosphere) which exerts a cooling effect and cement manufacture. Other factors, including land use, ozone depletion, animal agriculture[4] and deforestation also affect climate. Fossil fuels or mineral fuels are fossil source fuels, this is, hydrocarbons found within the top layer of the earth’s crust. ... Particulates, alternatively referred to as particulate matter (PM), aerosols or fine particles, are tiny particles of solid or liquid suspended in a gas. ... For other uses, see Cement (disambiguation). ... Global monthly average total ozone amount Ozone depletion describes two distinct, but related observations: a slow, steady decline of about 4 percent per decade in the total amount of ozone in Earths stratosphere since around 1980; and a much larger, but seasonal, decrease in stratospheric ozone over Earths...


Fossil fuels

Carbon dioxide variations over the last 400,000 years, showing a rise since the industrial revolution.

Beginning with the industrial revolution in the 1850s and accelerating ever since, the human consumption of fossil fuels has elevated CO2 levels from a concentration of ~280 ppm to more than 380 ppm today. These increases are projected to reach more than 560 ppm before the end of the 21st century. It is known that carbon dioxide levels are substantially higher now than at any time in the last 750,000 years.[5] Along with rising methane levels, these changes are anticipated to cause an increase of 1.4–5.6 °C between 1990 and 2100 (see global warming). Image File history File links Carbon_Dioxide_400kyr. ... Image File history File links Carbon_Dioxide_400kyr. ... A Watt steam engine, the steam engine that propelled the Industrial Revolution in Britain and the world. ... Methane is a chemical compound with the molecular formula . ... For other uses, see Celsius (disambiguation). ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ...


Aerosols

Anthropogenic aerosols, particularly sulphate aerosols from fossil fuel combustion, are believed to exert a cooling influence; see graph.[6] This, together with natural variability, is believed to account for the relative "plateau" in the graph of 20th century temperatures in the middle of the century.


Cement manufacture

Cement manufacturing is the third largest cause of man-made carbon dioxide emissions. While fossil fuel combustion and deforestation each produce significantly more carbon dioxide (CO2), cement-making is responsible for approximately 2.5% of total worldwide emissions from industrial sources (energy plus manufacturing sectors).[7]


Land use

Prior to widespread fossil fuel use, humanity's largest effect on local climate is likely to have resulted from land use. Irrigation, deforestation, and agriculture fundamentally change the environment. For example, they change the amount of water going into and out of a given location. They also may change the local albedo by influencing the ground cover and altering the amount of sunlight that is absorbed. For example, there is evidence to suggest that the climate of Greece and other Mediterranean countries was permanently changed by widespread deforestation between 700 BC and 1 AD (the wood being used for shipbuilding, construction and fuel), with the result that the modern climate in the region is significantly hotter and drier, and the species of trees that were used for shipbuilding in the ancient world can no longer be found in the area. Land use is the pattern of construction and activity land is used for. ... Irrigation is the artificial application of water to the soil usually for assisting in growing crops. ... This article is about the process of deforestation in the environment. ... For other uses, see Albedo (disambiguation). ...


A controversial hypothesis by William Ruddiman called the early anthropocene hypothesis[8] suggests that the rise of agriculture and the accompanying deforestation led to the increases in carbon dioxide and methane during the period 5000–8000 years ago. These increases, which reversed previous declines, may have been responsible for delaying the onset of the next glacial period, according to Ruddimann's overdue-glaciation hypothesis. William F. Ruddiman is a palaeoclimatologist and Professor Emeritus at the university of Virginia. ... The early anthropocene hypothesis (sometimes called Early Anthropogenic) is a theory proposed by William Ruddiman. ... The overdue-glaciation hypothesis is a theory proposed by William Ruddiman that the end of the current interglacial warm period is already overdue; that is, according to astronomical models that have successfully characterized the pattern of past glaciations due to variations in the earths orbit known as Milankovitch cycles...


In modern times, a 2007 Jet Propulsion Laboratory study [9] found that the average temperature of California has risen about 2 degrees over the past 50 years, with a much higher increase in urban areas. The change was attributed mostly to extensive human development of the landscape. For the singer/songwriter, see Jon Peter Lewis. ... This article is about the U.S. state. ...


Livestock

According to a 2006 United Nations report, Livestock's Long Shadow, livestock is responsible for 18% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions as measured in CO2 equivalents. This however includes land usage change, meaning deforestation in order to create grazing land. In the Amazon, 70% of deforestation is to make way for grazing land, so this is the major factor in the 2006 UN FAO report, which was the first agricultural report to include land usage change into the radiative forcing of livestock. In addition to CO2 emissions, livestock produces 65% of human-induced nitrous oxide (which has 296 times the global warming potential of CO2) and 37% of human-induced methane (which has 23 times the global warming potential of CO2).[10] Livestocks Long Shadow - Environmental Issues and Options is a United Nations report, released by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) on 29 November 2006,[1] that aims to assess the full impact of the livestock sector on environmental problems, along with potential technical and policy...


Interplay of factors

If a certain forcing (for example, solar variation) acts to change the climate, then there may be mechanisms that act to amplify or reduce the effects. These are called positive and negative feedbacks. As far as is known, the climate system is generally stable with respect to these feedbacks: positive feedbacks do not "run away". Part of the reason for this is the existence of a powerful negative feedback between temperature and emitted radiation: radiation increases as the fourth power of absolute temperature. Positive feedback is a feedback system in which the system responds to the perturbation in the same direction as the perturbation (It is sometimes referred to as cumulative causation). ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


However, a number of important positive feedbacks do exist. The glacial and interglacial cycles of the present ice age provide an important example. It is believed that orbital variations provide the timing for the growth and retreat of ice sheets. However, the ice sheets themselves reflect sunlight back into space and hence promote cooling and their own growth, known as the ice-albedo feedback. Further, falling sea levels and expanding ice decrease plant growth and indirectly lead to declines in carbon dioxide and methane. This leads to further cooling.


Similarly, rising temperatures caused, for example, by anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases could lead to retreating snow lines, revealing darker ground underneath, and consequently result in more absorption of sunlight.


Water vapor, methane, and carbon dioxide can also act as significant positive feedbacks, their levels rising in response to a warming trend, thereby accelerating that trend. Water vapor acts strictly as a feedback (excepting small amounts in the stratosphere), unlike the other major greenhouse gases, which can also act as forcings.


More complex feedbacks involve the possibility of changing circulation patterns in the ocean or atmosphere. For example, a significant concern in the modern case is that melting glacial ice from Greenland will interfere with sinking waters in the North Atlantic and inhibit thermohaline circulation. This could affect the Gulf Stream and the distribution of heat to Europe and the east coast of the United States. For the album by Ocean Colour Scene, see North Atlantic Drift (album) The Gulf Stream is orange and yellow in this representation of water temperatures of the Atlantic. ... For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ...


Other potential feedbacks are not well understood and may either inhibit or promote warming. For example, it is unclear whether rising temperatures promote or inhibit vegetative growth, which could in turn draw down either more or less carbon dioxide. Similarly, increasing temperatures may lead to either more or less cloud cover.[11] Since on balance cloud cover has a strong cooling effect, any change to the abundance of clouds also affects climate.[12] For other uses, see Cloud (disambiguation). ... Cloud cover (also known as cloudiness, cloudage or cloud amount) refers to the fraction of the sky obscured by clouds when observed from a particular location. ...


In all, it seems likely that overall climate feedbacks are negative, as systems with overall positive feedback are highly unstable.[citation needed]


Monitoring the current status of climate

Scientists use "Indicator time series" that represent the many aspects of climate and ecosystem status. The time history provides a historical context. Current status of the climate is also monitored with climate indices.[13][14][15][16]


Evidence for climatic change

Evidence for climatic change is taken from a variety of sources that can be used to reconstruct past climates. Most of the evidence is indirect—climatic changes are inferred from changes in indicators that reflect climate, such as vegetation, dendrochronology, ice cores, sea level change, and glacial retreat. The growth rings of an unknown tree species, at Bristol Zoo, England Pinus taeda Cross section showing annual rings, Cheraw, South Carolina Pine stump showing growth rings Dendrochronology or tree-ring dating is the method of scientific dating based on the analysis of tree-ring growth patterns. ... Ice Core sample taken from drill. ... Schematic of sea level (black) and rate of change (blue) over the last 25 kyr There are multiple complex factors may influence sea level change. ... Grinnell Glacier in Glacier National Park (US) showing recession since 1850 of 1. ...


Pollen analysis

Also known as palynology, is used to infer the geographical distribution of plant species, which vary under different climate conditions. Different groups of plants have pollen with distinctive shapes and surface textures, and since the outer surface of pollen is composed of a very resilient material, they resist decay. Changes in the type of pollen found in different sedimentation levels in lakes, bogs or river deltas indicate changes in plant communities; which are dependent on climate conditions. Pollen under microscope Palynology is the science that studies contemporary and fossil palynomorphs, including pollen, spores, dinoflagellate cysts, acritarchs, chitinozoans and scolecodonts, together with particulate organic matter (POM) and kerogen found in sedimentary rocks and sediments. ... SEM image of pollen grains from a variety of common plants: sunflower (Helianthus annuus), morning glory (Ipomoea purpurea), prairie hollyhock (Sidalcea malviflora), oriental lily (Lilium auratum), evening primrose (Oenothera fruticosa), and castor bean (Ricinus communis). ...


Beetles

Remains of beetles are common in freshwater and land sediments. Different species of beetles tend to be found under different climatic conditions. Knowledge of the present climatic range of the different species, and the age of the sediments in which remains are found, allows past climatic conditions to be inferred.[citation needed] For other uses, see Beetle (disambiguation). ...


Glacial geology

Advancing glaciers leave behind moraines and other features that often have datable material in them, recording the time when a glacier advanced and deposited a feature. Similarly, the lack of glacier cover can be identified by the presence of datable soil or volcanic tephra horizons. Glaciers are considered one of the most sensitive climate indicators by the IPCC, and their recent observed variations provide a global signal of climate change. See Retreat of glaciers since 1850. IPCC is science authority for the UNFCCC The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established in 1988 by two United Nations organizations, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to assess the risk of human-induced climate change. The Panel is open to all... A view down the Whitechuck Glacier in North Cascades National Park in 1973 The same view as seen in 2006, where this branch of glacier retreated 1. ...


Historical records

Historical records include cave paintings, depth of grave digging in Greenland, diaries, documentary evidence of events (such as 'frost fairs' on the Thames) and evidence of areas of vine cultivation. Daily weather reports have been kept since 1873, and the Royal Society has encouraged the collection of data since the seventeenth century. Parish records are often a good source of climate data. The Frost Fair of 1814 by Luke Clenell. ... Several places exist with the name Thames, and the word is also used as part of several brand and company names Most famous is the River Thames in England, on which the city of London stands Other Thames Rivers There is a Thames River in Canada There is a Thames... For other uses, see Royal Society (disambiguation). ...


Examples of climate change

Climate change has continued throughout the entire history of Earth. The field of paleoclimatology has provided information of climate change in the ancient past, supplementing modern observations of climate. Paleoclimatology is the study of climate change taken on the scale of the entire history of the Earth. ...

  1. Climate of the deep past
  2. Climate of the last 500 million years
  3. Climate of recent glaciations
  4. Recent climate

The faint young sun paradox describes the apparent contradiction between observations of liquid water early in Earths history and the astrophysical expectation that the suns output would be only 70% as intense during that epoch as it is during the modern epoch. ... One computer simulation of conditions during the Snowball Earth period. ... The Oxygen Catastrophe was a massive environmental change believed to have happened during the Siderian period at the beginning of the Paleoproterozoic era. ... Description This figure shows the long-term evolution of oxygen isotope ratios during the Phanerozoic eon as measured in fossils, reported by Veizer et al. ... Climate change during the last 65 million years. ... The Permo-Carboniferous refers to the time period including the latter parts of the Carboniferous and early part of the Permian period. ... Variations in CO2, temperature and dust from the Vostok ice core over the last 400 000 years For the animated movie, see Ice Age (movie). ... Temperature proxy from three ice cores for the last 140 kyr, showing D-O events in the NH but not the SH Dansgaard-Oeschger events are rapid climate fluctuations during and at the end of the last ice age. ... Three temperature records, the GRIP one clearly showing the Younger Dryas event at around 11 kyr BP The Younger Dryas stadial, named after the alpine / tundra wildflower Dryas octopetala, and also referred to as the Big Freeze [1], was a brief (approximately 1300 ± 70 years [1]) cold climate period following... Description Expanded record of temperature change since the end of the last glacial period Extended record of climate change during the last 5 Myr This figure shows the Antarctic temperature changes during the last several glacial/interglacial cycles of the present ice age and a comparison to changes in global... The Holocene Climate Optimum was a warm period during roughly the interval 7,000 to 5,000 years B.P.. This event has also been known by many other names, including: Hypisthermal, Altithermal, Climatic Optimum, Holocene Optimum, Holocene Thermal Maximum, and Holocene Megathermal. ... The Medieval Warm Period (MWP) or Medieval Climate Optimum theorizes that there was a time of unusually warm climate in the North Atlantic region, lasting from about the tenth century to about the fourteenth century. ... The Little Ice Age (LIA) was a period of cooling occurring after a warmer era known as the Medieval climate optimum. ... Development of global average temperatures during the last thousand years. ... The temperature record of the past 1000 years describes the reconstruction of temperature for the last 1000 years on the Northern Hemisphere. ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ... Hardiness Zone Migration refers to the geographical shifts observed in argicultural hardiness zones as a result of prolonged climate change or global warming. ...

Climate change and economics

There has been a debate about how climate change could affect the world economy. An October 29, 2006 report by former Chief Economist and Senior Vice-President of the World Bank Nicholas Stern states that climate change could affect growth, which could be cut by one-fifth unless drastic action is taken. (Report's stark warning on climate) As recent estimates of the rate of global warming have increased, so have the financial estimates of the damage costs. ... The world economy can be evaluated in various ways, depending on the model used, and this valuation can then be represented in various ways (for example, in 2006 US dollars). ... is the 302nd day of the year (303rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The position of World Bank Chief Economist is one of the most influential in economics. ... The World Bank logo The World Bank (the Bank) is a part of the World Bank Group (WBG), is a bank that makes loans to developing countries for development programs with the stated goal of reducing poverty. ... Nicholas Stern Sir Nicholas Stern, FBA (born 22 April 1946) is a British economist and academic. ... World GDP/capita changed very little for most of human history before the industrial revolution. ...


Political advisor Frank Luntz recommended the Bush Administration adopt the term "Climate Change" in preference to global warming. Frank I. Luntz (born February 23, 1962) is a corporate and political consultant and pollster who has worked most notably with the Republican Party in the United States. ... The Bush administration includes President George W. Bush, Vice President Richard Cheney, Bushs Cabinet, and other select officials and advisors. ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ...

  • High and Dry: John Howard, climate change and the selling of Australia’s future by Guy Pearse

Climate change in popular culture

The issue of climate change has entered popular culture since the late 20th century. Science historian Naomi Oreskes has noted that "there's a huge disconnect between what professional scientists have studied and learned in the last 30 years, and what is out there in the popular culture".[17] An academic study done by Sheldon Ungar contrasts the relatively rapid acceptance of ozone depletion as reflected in popular culture with the much slower acceptance of the scientific consensus on global warming.[18] Climate change in popular culture The issue of climate change, its possible effects, and related human-environment interaction have entered popular culture since the late 20th century. ... Naomi Oreskes is an Associate Professor, History Department and Program in Science Studies at the University of California San Diego. ...


Climate Change and biodiversity

Some of the most immediate effects of recent climate change are becoming apparent through affects on biodiversity. The life cycles of many wild plants and animals are closely linked to the passing of the seasons; climatic changes can lead to interdependent pairs of species (e.g. a wild flower and its pollinating insect) losing synchronization, if, for example, one has a cycle dependent on day length and the other on temperature or precipitation. In principle, at least, this could lead to extinctions or changes in the distribution and abundance of species. One phenomenon is the movement of species northwards in Europe. A recent study by Butterfly Conservation in the UK,[19], has shown that relative common species with a southerly distribution have moved north, whilst scarce upland species have become rarer and lost territory towards the south. This picture has been mirrored across several invertebrate groups. Drier summers could lead to more periods of drought[20], potentially affecting many species of animal and plant. For example, in the UK during the drought year of 2006 significant numbers of trees died or showed die back on light sandy soils. In Australia, since the early 90s, tens of thousands of flying foxes (Pteropus) have died as a direct results of extreme heat. Wetter, milder winters might affect temperate mammals or insects by preventing them hibernating or entering torpor during periods when food is scarce. One predicted change is the ascendancy of 'weedy' or opportunistic species at the expense of scarcer species with narrower or more specialized ecological requirements. One example could be the expanses of bluebell seen in many woodlands in the UK. These have an early growing and flowering season before competing weeds can develop and the tree canopy closes. Milder winters can allow weeds to overwinter as adult plants or germinate sooner, whilst trees leaf earlier, reducing the length of the window for bluebells to complete their life cycle. Organisations such as Wildlife Trust, World Wide Fund for Nature, Birdlife International and the Audubon Society are actively monitoring and research the effects of climate change on biodiversity. They also advance policies in areas such as landscape scale conservation to promote adaptation to climate change. A more detailed review of these issues can be found here. Rainforests are among the most biodiverse ecosystems on earth Biodiversity is the variation of taxonomic life forms within a given ecosystem, biome or for the entire Earth. ... Butterfly Conservation is an insect conservation organization in the United Kingdom. ... Species Pteropus admiralitatum Pteropus aldabrensis Pteropus alecto Pteropus anetianus Pteropus aruensis Pteropus banakrisi Pteropus brunneus Pteropus caniceps Pteropus capistratus Pteropus chrysoproctus Pteropus cognatus Pteropus dasymallus Pteropus faunulus Pteropus fundatus Pteropus giganteus Pteropus gilliardorum Pteropus griseus Pteropus howensis Pteropus hypomelanus Pteropus insularis Pteropus intermedius Pteropus keyensis Pteropus leucopterus Pteropus livingstonii Pteropus... Bluebell can refer to: Several species of flowering plant: Common Bluebell (Hyacinthoides non-scripta) Spanish Bluebell (Hyacinthoides hispanica) The Harebell (Campanula rotundifolia) is often called Bluebell in Scotland Virginia Bluebell (Mertensia virginica) Bluebell wood, a wood with many Common Bluebells flowering in spring Bluebell, Dublin, a suburb of Dublin in... The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) is an international non-governmental organization for the conservation, research and restoration of the natural environment, formerly named the World Wildlife Fund, which remains its official name in the United States and Canada. ... BirdLife International is the international conservation organization working to protect the world’s birds and their habitats. ... The National Audubon Society is an American non-profit environmental organization dedicated to nature conservancy. ... Landscape scale conservation is a concept that has arisen, primarily in the UK since the mid-1990s in response to both the challenges of climate change and a perceived excessive focus on site based conservation. ... For other uses, see Adaptation (disambiguation). ...


See also

Energy Portal
Ecology Portal
Wikinews
Wikinews has related news:

Image File history File links Portal. ... Image File history File links Portal. ... Climate flips between two modes of operation. ... Alternative propulsion is a term used frequently for power train concepts differing to the standard internal combustion engine concept used in gasoline- or diesel-fueled vehicles. ... Global carbon dioxide emissions 1800–2000 Global average surface temperature 1850 to 2006 Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change: A Scientific Symposium on Stabilisation of Greenhouse Gases was a 2005 international conference that redefined the link between atmospheric greenhouse gas concentration, and the 2°C (3. ... Carbonfund. ... The issue of human-caused, or anthropogenic, climate change (global warming) is becoming a central focus of the Green movement. ... The Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) was created by the U.S. government in February, 2002 to address unresolved questions regarding climate change and global warming. ... Climate models use quantitative methods to simulate the interactions of the atmosphere, oceans, land surface, and ice. ... Mars has a reasonably well studied climate, starting in earnest with the Viking program in 1975 and continuing with such probes as the highly successful Mars Global Surveyor. ... Development criticism refers to far-reaching criticisms of modernization and its central aspects : modern technology, industrialization, capitalism and economic globalization . ... As recent estimates of the rate of global warming have increased, so have the financial estimates of the damage costs. ... The net impact of global warming so far has been modest, but near-future effects are likely to become significantly negative, with large-scale extreme impacts possible by the end of the century. ... Emission standards are requirements that set specific limits to the amount of pollutants that can be released into the environment. ... Energie-Cités is the Association of European local authorities promoting local sustainable energy policy. ... The Environmental Change Network (ECN) was established in 1992 by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) to monitor long-term environmental change and its effects on ecosystems at a series of sites throughout Great Britain and Northern Ireland. ... Fuel efficiency, in its basic sense, is the same as thermal efficiency, meaning the efficiency of a process that converts energy contained in a carrier fuel into energy or work. ... Global dimming is the gradual reduction in the amount of global direct irradiance at the Earths surface that was observed for several decades after the start of systematic measurements in 1950s. ... The Global Observation Research Initiative in Alpine Environments (GLORIA) involves a set of pristine sites set aside and monitored to observe the migration of plant species due to climate change. ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ... The global warming controversy is a dispute regarding the nature and consequences of global warming. ... A green vehicle is a vehicle that is considered to be more environmentally friendly than traditional all-petroleum internal combustion engine vehicles (APICEVs). ... IPCC is the science authority for the UNFCCC The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established in 1988 by two United Nations organizations, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), to evaluate the risk of climate change brought on by humans, based mainly on... International environmental law is the body of international law that concerns the protection of the global environment. ... It has been suggested that Ocean Nourishment be merged into this article or section. ... Kyoto Protocol Opened for signature December 11, 1997 in Kyoto, Japan Entered into force February 16, 2005. ... A low-carbon economy is an economy in which carbon dioxide emissions from the use of carbon based fuels (coal, oil and gas) are significantly reduced. ... A low-carbon economy is a hypothetical future economy in which the use of carbon based fuels and carbon dioxide emissions from burning fuels are significantly reduced. ... A conceptual outline for the program The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) is a research program that focuses on ecosystem changes over the course of decades, and projecting those changes into the future. ... Global carbon dioxide emissions 1800–2000 Global average surface temperature 1850 to 2006 Mitigation of global warming involves taking actions aimed at reducing the extent of global warming. ... While these two men dig in Alaska to study soil, the hard permafrost requires the use of a jackhammer In geology, permafrost or permafrost soil is soil at or below the freezing point of water (0 °C or 32 °F) for two or more years. ... Renewable energy effectively utilizes natural resources such as sunlight, wind, tides and geothermal heat, which are naturally replenished. ... Sea level measurements from 23 long tide gauge records in geologically stable environments show a rise of around 20 centimeters per century (2 mm/year). ... The timeline of environmental events is a historical account of events that have shaped humanitys perspective on the environment. ... Members of the Western Regional Climate Action Initiative (green). ... Image File history File links WikiNews-Logo. ... Wikinews is a free-content news source and a project of the Wikimedia Foundation. ...

References

  • Emanuel, K. A. (2005) Increasing destructiveness of tropical cyclones over the past 30 years., Nature, 436; 686-688 ftp://texmex.mit.edu/pub/emanuel/PAPERS/NATURE03906.pdfPDF
  • IPCC. (2007) Climate change 2007: the physical science basis (summary for policy makers), IPCC.
  • Jones, C. Climate Change: Facts and Impacts [online]. Available from: What effects are we seeing now and what is still to come?
  • Miller, C. and Edwards, P. N. (ed.)(2001) Changing the Atmosphere: Expert Knowledge and Environmental Governance, MIT Press
  • Ruddiman, W. F. (2003) The anthropogenic greenhouse era began thousands of years ago, Climate Change 61 (3): 261-293
  • Ruddiman, W. F. (2005) Plows, Plagues and Petroleum: How Humans Took Control of Climate, Princeton University Press
  • Ruddiman, W. F., Vavrus, S. J. and Kutzbach, J. E. (2005) A test of the overdue-glaciation hypothesis, Quaternary Science Review, 24:11
  • Schmidt, G. A., Shindel, D. T. and Harder, S. (2004) A note of the relationship between ice core methane concentrations and insolation GRL v31 L23206
  • Welbergen, J. A., Klose, S. M., Markus, N. & Eby, P. 2007 Climate change and the effects of temperature extremes on Australian flying-foxes. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, (in press) doi: 10/1098/rspb.2007/1385

“PDF” redirects here. ...

Notes

  1. ^ http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/518.htm
  2. ^ http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v446/n7135/full/nature05699.html
  3. ^ Volcanic gases are the driving force of eruptions
  4. ^ www.virtualcentre.org
  5. ^ Deep ice tells long climate story Amos, Jonathan BBC September 2006
  6. ^ IPCC TAR SPM figure 3
  7. ^ Why cement-making produces carbon dioxide
  8. ^ Debate over the Early Anthropogenic Hypothesis RealClimate December 2005
  9. ^ California Warming Attributed to Growth by Mandalit del Barco. Day to Day, National Public Radio. 30 Mar 2007.
  10. ^ www.virtualcentre.org
  11. ^ http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/271.htm
  12. ^ For additional discussion of feedbacks relevant to ongoing climate change, see http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/260.htm
  13. ^ Arctic Change Indicators
  14. ^ Bering Sea Climate and Ecosystem Indicators
  15. ^ How scientists study climate change: Some important research concepts used by scientists to study climate variations
  16. ^ UK Marine Climate Change Impacts Partnership, Annual Report Card of current knowledge
  17. ^ The truth about global warming Doughton, Sandi Seattle Times October 2005
  18. ^ Knowledge, ignorance and the popular culture: Climate change versus the ozone hole Ungar, Sheldon Public Understanding of Science, Vol. 9, No. 3, 297-312 (2000) © 2000 SAGE Publications
  19. ^ the state of britain's butterflies 2007 Butterfly Conservation
  20. ^ Australian Drought and Climate Change, retrieved on June 7th 2007.

For other uses, see September (disambiguation). ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Look up December in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Mandalit Del Barco is a general assignment reporter for National Public Radio (NPR) born in Lima, Peru. ... Day to Day is a one-hour weekday American radio newsmagazine distributed by National Public Radio (NPR), and produced by NPR in collaboration with Slate. ... NPR redirects here. ... For other uses, see October (disambiguation). ... Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

Public administrations and organizations

  • US EPA climate change and global warming website
  • UN Climate Change Website.
  • The UN Climate Change Secretariat
  • United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP): Climate Change Page
  • Introduction to climate change: Lecture notes for meteorologists (WMO)
  • European Union page about Climate Change.

The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) is an intergovernmental organization with a membership of 187 Member States and Territories. ...

Other links

  • Congressional Research Service reports on climate change
  • The Pew Center on Global Climate Change
  • [1]PDF (4.82 MiB) Understanding and Responding to Climate Change, An Overview from the National Academy of Sciences
  • Climate Change - An Information Statement of the American Meteorological Society, updated Feb. 2007.
  • Summary of the Impacts of Climate Change from The Nature Conservancy
  • Climate change and global warming - WWF (conservation organization).
  • Impacts of a Warming Arctic: Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (2004) by the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment
  • CBC Digital Archives - Turning Up The Heat: Four Decades of Climate Change

“PDF” redirects here. ... MiB redirects here. ... President Harding and the National Academy of Sciences at the White House, Washington, DC, April 1921 The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is a corporation in the United States whose members serve pro bono as advisers to the nation on science, engineering, and medicine. ... This article is about the US organization called The Nature Conservancy. ... WWF, the global environment conservation organization, was constituted and registered in 1961 pursuant to Sections 80 et seq. ... The Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (ACIA) is a study describing the ongoing climate change in the Arctic and its consequences: rising temperatures, loss of sea ice, unprecedented melting of the Greenland ice sheet, and many impacts on ecosystems, animals, and people. ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ... The temperature record shows the fluctuations of the temperature of the atmosphere and the oceans through various spans of time. ... Instrumental global surface temperature measurements; see also [http://www. ... Comparison of ground based (blue) and satellite based (red: UAH; green: RSS) records of temperature variations since 1979. ... The temperature record of the past 1000 years describes the reconstruction of temperature for the last 1000 years on the Northern Hemisphere. ... The website of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration contains detailed data of the annual land and ocean temperature since 1880. ... This article is devoted to temperature changes in Earths environment as determined from geologic evidence on multi-million to billion (109) year time scales. ... Aviation contributes to global warming in a number of ways, the most significant of which is the combustion of kerosene (a fossil fuel) in flight. ... Carbon dioxide is a chemical compound composed of two oxygen atoms covalently bonded to a single carbon atom. ... In IPCC reports, equilibrium climate sensitivity refers to the equilibrium change in global mean surface temperature following a doubling of the atmospheric (equivalent) CO2 concentration. ... Global dimming is the gradual reduction in the amount of global direct irradiance at the Earths surface that was observed for several decades after the start of systematic measurements in 1950s. ... Global warming potential (GWP) is a measure of how much a given mass of greenhouse gas is estimated to contribute to global warming. ... Wikinews has related news: Scientists warn thawing Siberia may trigger global meltdown A schematic representation of the exchanges of energy between outer space, the Earths atmosphere, and the Earth surface. ... Top: Increasing atmospheric CO2 levels as measured in the atmosphere and ice cores. ... The Keeling Curve is a graph measuring the increase in the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere since 1958. ... Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) is a term often used in climate change topics. ... Tokyo, a case of Urban Heat Island. ... Cloud forcing (sometimes described as cloud radiative forcing) is the difference between the radiation budget components for average cloud conditions and cloud-free conditions. ... A glaciation (a created composite term meaning Glacial Period, referring to the Period or Era of, as well as the process of High Glacial Activity), often called an ice age, is a geological phenomenon in which massive ice sheets form in the Arctic and Antarctic and advance toward the equator. ... Global cooling in general can refer to a cooling of the Earth. ... Chart of ocean surface temperature anomaly [°C] during the last strong El Niño in December 1997 El Niño and La Niña (also written in English as El Nino and La Nina) are major temperature fluctuations in surface waters of the tropical Eastern Pacific Ocean. ... Milankovitch cycles are the collective effect of changes in the Earths movements upon its climate, named after Serbian civil engineer and mathematician Milutin Milanković. The eccentricity, axial tilt, and precession of the Earths orbit vary in several patterns, resulting in 100,000 year ice age cycles of the... The tectonic plates of the world were mapped in the second half of the 20th century. ... The generalised concept of radiative forcing in climate science is any change in the radiation (heat) entering the climate system or changes in radiatively active gases. ... 400 year history of sunspot numbers. ... Cleveland Volcano in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska photographed from the International Space Station For other uses, see Volcano (disambiguation). ... National and international science academies and professional societies have assessed the current scientific opinion on climate change, in particular recent global warming. ... Climate models use quantitative methods to simulate the interactions of the atmosphere, oceans, land surface, and ice. ... General Circulation Models (GCMs) are a class of computer-driven models for weather forecasting and predicting climate change, where they are commonly called Global Climate Models. ... The politics of global warming looks at the current political issues relating to global warming, as well as the historical rise of global warming as a political issue. ... The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is an international environmental treaty produced at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), informally known as the Earth Summit, held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. ... IPCC is the science authority for the UNFCCC The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established in 1988 by two United Nations organizations, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), to evaluate the risk of climate change brought on by humans, based mainly on... The global warming controversy is a dispute regarding the nature and consequences of global warming. ... This article lists scientists and former scientists who have stated disagreement with one or more of the principal conclusions of the mainstream scientific assessment of global warming. ... This article is being considered for deletion in accordance with Wikipedias deletion policy. ... The net impact of global warming so far has been modest, but near-future effects are likely to become significantly negative, with large-scale extreme impacts possible by the end of the century. ... Sea level measurements from 23 long tide gauge records in geologically stable environments show a rise of around 20 centimeters per century (2 mm/year). ... A view down the Whitechuck Glacier in North Cascades National Park in 1973 The same view as seen in 2006, where this branch of glacier retreated 1. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... The National Assessment on Climate Change (NACC) was a massive multidisciplinary effort to study and portray in regional detail the potential effects of human-induced global warming on the United States. ... As recent estimates of the rate of global warming have increased, so have the financial estimates of the damage costs. ... Shutdown or slowdown of the thermohaline circulation is a possible effect of global warming. ... An extinction event (also extinction-level event, ELE) is a period in time when a large number of species die out. ... Global monthly average total ozone amount Ozone depletion describes two distinct, but related observations: a slow, steady decline of about 4 percent per decade in the total amount of ozone in Earths stratosphere since around 1980; and a much larger, but seasonal, decrease in stratospheric ozone over Earths... Change in sea surface pH caused by anthropogenic CO2 between the 1700s and the 1990s Ocean acidification is the name given to the ongoing decrease in the pH of the Earths oceans, caused by their uptake of anthropogenic carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. ... For other uses, see Wildfire (disambiguation). ... Global carbon dioxide emissions 1800–2000 Global average surface temperature 1850 to 2006 Mitigation of global warming involves taking actions aimed at reducing the extent of global warming. ... Kyoto Protocol Opened for signature December 11, 1997 in Kyoto, Japan Entered into force February 16, 2005. ... CDM directs here. ... Joint implementation (JI) is an arrangement under the Kyoto Protocol allowing industrialised countries with a greenhouse gas reduction commitment (so-called Annex 1 countries) to invest in emission reducing projects in another industrialised country as an alternative to emission reductions in their own countries. ... The United Kingdoms Climate Change Programme was launched in November 2000 by the British government in response to its commitment agreed at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). ... The European Climate Change Programme (ECCP) was launched in June 2000 by the European Unions European Commission. ... Emissions trading (or cap and trade) is an administrative approach used to control pollution by providing economic incentives for achieving reductions in the emissions of pollutants. ... Emissions trading schemes (also known as ‘cap and trade’ schemes) are one of the policy instruments available for reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases. ... A carbon tax is a tax on energy sources which emit carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. ... Until recently, most carbon offsets were commonly done by planting trees. ... This article deals with carbon credits for international trading. ... A carbon dioxide (CO2) sink is a carbon reservoir that is increasing in size, and is the opposite of a carbon dioxide source. The main natural sinks are (1) the oceans and (2) plants and other organisms that use photosynthesis to remove carbon from the atmosphere by incorporating it into... For the physical concepts, see conservation of energy and energy efficiency. ... Efficient energy use, sometimes simply called energy efficiency, is using less energy to provide the same level of energy service. ... Renewable energy effectively utilizes natural resources such as sunlight, wind, tides and geothermal heat, which are naturally replenished. ... Renewable energy commercialization involves three generations of technologies dating back more than 100 years. ... // Renewable energy development covers the advancement, capacity growth, and use of renewable energy sources by humans. ... The soft energy path is an energy use and development strategy delineated and promoted by some energy experts and activists, such as Amory Lovins and Tom Bender; in Canada, David Suzuki has been a very prominent (if less specialized) proponent. ... The G8 Climate Change Roundtable was formed in January 2005 at the World Economic Forum in Davos. ... The issue of human-caused, or anthropogenic, climate change (global warming) is becoming a central focus of the Green movement. ... Adaptation to global warming covers all actions aimed at reducing the negative effects of global warming. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
High-Level Event on Climate Change, United Nations Headquarters, New York, 24 September 2007 (662 words)
The high-level event — which takes place one day before the opening of the UN General Assembly’s annual General Debate — is aimed at securing political commitment and building momentum for the UN Climate Change Conference in Bali where negotiations about a new international climate agreement should start.
The effects of climate change are being felt already, according to the Panel.
Climate change will hit the poorest and most vulnerable the hardest, according to the IPCC, but it will affect everyone.
Climate Change 101: Understanding and Responding to Global Climate Change: The Pew Center on Global Climate Change (385 words)
In an effort to inform the climate change dialogue, The Pew Center on Global Climate Change and the Pew Center on the States have developed a series of brief reports entitled Climate Change 101: Understanding and Responding to Global Climate Change.
The science is clear: climate change is happening, and it is linked directly to human activity.
Climate change is a global problem requiring a global solution.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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