Climate change is a change in the statistical distribution of weather patterns when that change lasts for an extended period of time (i.e., decades to millions of years). A change in global or regional climate patterns, in particular a change apparent from the mid to late 20th century onwards and attributed largely to the increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide produced by the use of fossil fuels is climate change. Climate change may refer to a change in average weather conditions, or in the time variation of weather around longer-term average conditions (i.e., more or fewer extreme weather events). Factors that cause climate change can be divided into two categories - those related to natural processes and those related to human activity.Climate change is caused by factors such as biotic processes, variations in solar radiation received by Earth, plate tectonics, and volcanic eruptions as natural causes. Certain human activities have also been identified as significant causes of recent climate change, often referred to as “global warming“.
The Earth’s climate can be affected by natural factors that are external to the climate system, such as changes in volcanic activity, solar output, and the Earth’s orbit around the Sun. Of these, the two factors relevant on timescales of contemporary climate change are changes in volcanic activity and changes in solar radiation. In terms of the Earth’s energy balance, these factors primarily influence the amount of incoming energy. Volcanic eruptions are episodic and have relatively short-term effects on climate. Changes in solar irradiance have contributed to climate trends over the past century but since the Industrial Revolution, the effect of additions of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere has been about ten times that of changes in the Sun’s output.
Climate change can also be caused by human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels and the conversion of land for forestry and agriculture. Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, these human influences on the climate system have increased substantially. In addition to other environmental impacts, these activities change the land surface and emit various substances to the atmosphere. These in turn can influence both the amount of incoming energy and the amount of outgoing energy and can have both warming and cooling effects on the climate. The dominant product of fossil fuel combustion is carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas. The overall effect of human activities since the Industrial Revolution has been a warming effect, driven primarily by emissions of carbon dioxide and enhanced by emissions of other greenhouse gases.
The build-up of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere has led to an enhancement of the natural greenhouse effect. It is this human-induced enhancement of the greenhouse effect that is of concern because ongoing emissions of greenhouse gases have the potential to warm the planet to levels that have never been experienced in the history of human civilization. Such climate change could have far-reaching and/or unpredictable environmental, social, and economic consequences.
We’ve seen that the scientific data shows that the world’s climate and weather patterns are changing, and that this spells disaster for many people in the world, and will impact all of us.This is why climate change adaptation is inevitable.
Adaptation is the adjustments that society or ecosystems make to limit negative effects of climate change. It can also include taking advantage of opportunities that a changing climate provides.
- Adaptation can include actions by individuals like you and communities, from you planting more drought-resistant crops to a city ensuring that new coastal infrastructure can accommodate future sea level rise.
- Many in the world have already begun taking action to adapt to climate change.
- Together, adaptation coupled with actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, are needed to address projected climate.Join Us now…Take Action and Go Green!
The causes of climate change can be divided into two categories, human and natural causes