The Science is now Clear & Compelling
The risk to us all is that human activities are increasing; the load we are putting on the atmosphere is getting worse each year, not better. The science has shown that it is already too late to avoid the part of climate change that we have caused; now we have to try to at least slow it down, and we have to learn to live in a warming world.
The science is extensive, and very clear. The overall picture of Climate Change:
- Air and Sea temperatures are both rising; they have done so for a long time, and this will accelerate
- Since 1970, 90% of the earth's warming has occurred in the oceans
- Scientists are now over 90% sure that man's activities are playing a role in global warming
- The biggest factor in global warming is CO2 production from fossil fuels, cement production, and land use
- Computer models have become much more sophisticated. The same modeling techniques are used when scientists do other work in medicine, modeling nuclear explosions, and so on.
- Warming temperatures will melt glaciers, the poles, and the ice of greenland resulting is rising sea levels.
- Many species will be displaced or go extinct
- Deserts will increase in size, particularly in Africa and Australia
- Not all effects will be bad - as the poles melt, this will free up new, usable land.
- Poor nations will suffer most; richer nations care less because their extensive resources maintain their quality of life.
- Extreme weather events will become more common, in a warmer world
- Some island communities will find their homeland completely disappears
- Food scarcity will become more common
- The public is largely unaware of the science; scientists need to do a better job of educating others
To get a more detailed understanding of climate change, read the Wikipedia articles on Global Warming and a second article, on Climate Change.
There is a lot that you can do to help the climate. Improving your diet to eat more plants and less meat will reduce the effect of agriculture on climate change; it takes a lot of to raise animals for meat consumption. Making your home more energy efficient, driving less and using public transportation helps - or get out your bike and get some exercise too! Contact your legislators and urge more action on Climate Change. Join online initiatives that can help the environment. Start a web page, start your own local group to improve your city and local governments. We can each make a big difference!