Question: What are the factors that affect climate change?
Causes of climate change
The earth's climate is dynamic and always changing through a natural cycle. What the world is more worried about is that the changes that are occurring today have been speeded up because of man's activities. These changes are being studied by scientists all over the world who are finding evidence from tree rings, pollen samples, ice cores, and sea sediments. The causes of climate change can be divided into two categories - those that are due to natural causes and those that are created by man.
There are a number of natural factors responsible for climate change. Some of the more prominent ones are continental drift, volcanoes, ocean currents, the earth's tilt, and comets and meteorites. Let's look at them in a little detail.
The Industrial Revolution in the 19th century saw the large-scale use of fossil fuels for industrial activities. These industries created jobs and over the years, people moved from rural areas to the cities. This trend is continuing even today. More and more land that was covered with vegetation has been cleared to make way for houses. Natural resources are being used extensively for construction, industries, transport, and consumption. Consumerism (our increasing want for material things) has increased by leaps and bounds, creating mountains of waste. Also, our population has increased to an incredible extent.
All this has contributed to a rise in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Fossil fuels such as oil, coal and natural gas supply most of the energy needed to run vehicles generate electricity for industries, households, etc. The energy sector is responsible for about ¾ of the carbon dioxide emissions, 1/5 of the methane emissions and a large quantity of nitrous oxide. It also produces nitrogen oxides (NOx) and carbon monoxide (CO) which are not greenhouse gases but do have an influence