Global Warming

Only available on StudyMode
  • Download(s) : 81
  • Published : April 10, 2013
Open Document
Text Preview
gGlobal Warming

Jump to: navigation, search

Global mean surface temperature anomaly 1850 to 2006 relative to 1961–1990| Mean surface temperature anomalies during the period 1995 to 2004 with respect to the average temperatures from 1940 to 1980| Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earth's near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. The global average air temperature near the Earth's surface rose 0.74 ± 0.18 °C (1.33 ± 0.32 °F) during the last 100 years. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes, "most of the observed increase in globally averaged temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations"[1] via the greenhouse effect. Natural phenomena such as solar variation combined with volcanoes have probably had a small warming effect from pre-industrial times to 1950, but a small cooling effect since 1950.[2][3] These basic conclusions have been endorsed by at least 30 scientific societies and academies of science, including all of the national academies of science of the major industrialized countries. The American Association of Petroleum Geologists is the only scientific society that officially rejects these conclusions.[4][5] A few individual scientists disagree with some of the main conclusions of the IPCC.[6] Climate models referenced by the IPCC project that global surface temperatures are likely to increase by 1.1 to 6.4 °C (2.0 to 11.5 °F) between 1990 and 2100.[1] The range of values results from the use of differing scenarios of future greenhouse gas emissions as well as models with differing climate sensitivity. Although most studies focus on the period up to 2100, warming and sea level rise are expected to continue for more than a millennium even if greenhouse gas levels are stabilized.[1] This reflects the large heat capacity of the oceans. An increase in global temperatures is expected to cause other changes, including sea level rise, increased intensity of extreme weather events, and changes in the amount and pattern of precipitation. Other effects include changes in agricultural yields, glacier retreat, species extinctions and increases in the ranges of disease vectors. Remaining scientific uncertainties include the exact degree of climate change expected in the future, and how changes will vary from region to region around the globe. There is ongoing political and public debate on a world scale regarding what, if any, action should be taken to reduce or reverse future warming or to adapt to its expected consequences. Most national governments have signed and ratified the Kyoto Protocol, aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions. -------------------------------------------------

-------------------------------------------------

-------------------------------------------------
Terminology

The term "global warming" is a specific example of the broader term climate change, which can also refer to global cooling. In common usage the term refers to recent warming and implies a human influence.[7] The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) uses the term "climate change" for human-caused change, and "climate variability" for other changes.[8] The term "anthropogenic climate change" is sometimes used when focusing on human-induced changes. -------------------------------------------------

-------------------------------------------------
Causes

Carbon dioxide during the last 400,000 years and (inset above) the rapid rise since the Industrial Revolution; changes in the Earth's orbit around the Sun, known as Milankovitch cycles, are believed to be the pacemaker of the 100,000 year ice age cycle. Main articles: Attribution of recent climate change and scientific opinion on climate change Earth's climate changes in response to external forcing, including variations in its orbit around the sun (orbital...
tracking img