Evidence of climate change abounds everywhere, in the sky, on the ground, in the oceans, and everywhere in between. Over the last century, billions of pieces of evidence have accumulated in scientific archives.
Scientists and satellites have painstakingly collected this evidence, with global networks of ground-based thermometers, satellites, buoys, and weather balloons, and hundreds of observation instruments. The accumulated evidence of recent climate change demonstrates warming rates that surpass the rate of natural climate fluctuations. Evidence of this evidence comes from a number of sources.
Evidence of global warming can be found in the global warming hiatus, currently seen as a large and lingering puzzle. According to the National Academy of Sciences, a research group that publishes popular scientific journals, “warming of the Earth has been slow and steady over the last century, unlike the recent 20-year period that is the result of human emissions of carbon dioxide, methane, and other greenhouse gases.”
A research team led by Pennsylvania State University researcher James S. McLaughlin determined that the slowdown in global warming is “uneven,” with some regions experiencing increases in temperature while others have experienced decreases. “The results of our study provide the first evidence of a global warming hiatus,” said Dr. McLaughlin. “The rate of change is not uniform across the globe.”
Evidence of global warming has been recorded in the form of variations in temperature, precipitation, cloud cover, land temperatures, and trends in wind patterns over the last century.
Over the last several decades, the earth has exhibited an unusually long and extreme version of an interannual cycle known as the El Nino; the same conditions that occur every four to seven years. During these periods, there have been many years with abnormally high temperatures in some parts of the planet, while other areas have seen extremely low temperatures. Since the start of the industrial era in the late nineteenth century, there has been an apparent increase in the greenhouse gas emissions that are contributing to climate change.
- Evidence of climate change can be found around the world in a number of ways. Rapid melting of ice at the poles, glacier retreats, increased frequency and severity of summer season precipitation, and the retreat of tropical forest zones are all linked to warming.
- Evidence of climate change can also be found in the distribution of rainfall over different geographic regions. For instance, while the western part of North America has been increasing in precipitation since the mid twentieth century, the eastern part of the continent has experienced a decrease in precipitation over the same time period.
- There are now fewer places in the United States where it is possible to get two days of rain during the winter.
Evidence of climate change can also be found in how the United States and other countries are managing the ecosystems they live in. For example, some parts of the country have experienced decreases in the quantity and size of wild bird species due to warming temperatures. Wildfires are another of the consequences of climate change that are playing a large role in affecting the habitats of birds. In the US, record high temperatures combined with drought have caused some forests to become so thin that they are no longer able to provide much protection for the birds that are living within them.
Evidence of climate change is also being revealed by the increase in greenhouse gas emissions that are being produced by human activities. These emissions are one of the largest contributors to global warming. The increase in greenhouse gas emissions is the largest contributors to climate change and this increase has been steadily increasing in recent years.
One of the results of evidence of climate change is the threat of global warming becoming a very serious problem. Evidence of climate change and the threat it represents to human life and the ecosystems on which we depend for food make it critical that steps be taken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Many governments around the world are beginning to work together to address this issue in a serious way. This is not possible, however, unless there is a major change in how we produce energy.
Many businesses are aware of the evidence of climate change and how it is changing the ecosystems in which they exist. For example, ice fishing has come under increased scrutiny in the past few years because of evidence of global warming. It has been linked to decreasing sea ice and to the shrinking of the arctic sea-ice pack. Polar bears have been known to suffer in areas of global warming.
Arctic foxes have also been negatively affected. All evidence of climate change and the associated threat it represents makes it clear that the time for urgent action is now.
The Effects of Climate Change on Humans
Climate change is arguably one of the most important current environmental issues today. It is one that shows no sign of abating despite the fact that most people live in areas that are characterized by climate extremes. Climate change encompasses both the global warming caused by human greenhouse gas emissions and the ensuing large-scale fluctuations in climate patterns worldwide.
While natural variability such as El Nino and other climate extremes can occur regularly, climate change is considered to be a consequence of human influences due to the widespread use of fossil fuels and the increasing sophistication of the pollution processes associated with this use.
Most climate experts agree that the burning of fossil fuels has resulted in a rapid increase in Earth’s temperature. While it may not have set the level of warming at dangerous levels yet, the accumulating heat within the Earth’s atmosphere will certainly continue to do so. The result of all this? Warmer water temperatures, more intense rainstorms and increased incidence of tropical cyclones.
One of the most serious effects of climate change is glacier retreat. Over the last 50 years, there have been a number of major ice advances in several areas around the world. In some places, glaciers have melted completely. This has led to floods and massive flooding which has devastated regions and communities.
Even though this has occurred in the developed world, it is a very real problem for the developing world where most people live in poverty.
One of the major ramifications of climate change is ocean acidification. This can have a far-reaching and far-lasting impact on ocean life. As a result, coral reefs are threatened by a number of different forms of marine algae. One of the primary culprits is a form of plankton known as algal blooms. As the blooms grow, the food source for these creatures is reduced, and so they will seek to feed on tiny shells in the water.
Rapid climate change can cause droughts and water shortages. This is expected to be one of the worst impacts of climate change. Areas that are already struggling with food scarcity will be even less able to meet their basic needs. In many parts of the developing world, water shortages have led to outbreaks of water-borne diseases such as cholera and typhoid fever.
Extreme weather events, including heat waves, storms, and floods, can also have a devastating impact on global warming. Recent examples include the Russian winter, which took place in 2021, the California drought, which were the worst drought in history, and the Japan tsunami, which may become the largest natural disaster to hit the earth in over half a century. While the frequency and intensity of these events may not occur regularly, they can increase in severity and consequently threaten human survival.
One of the most dangerous consequences of climate change is glacier retreat. Rapid melting can speed up the rate of sea level rise, and at the same time, reduce the natural cushion that the Earth provides against climate change. This will aggravate environmental issues, as more water is available for rivers and lakes to feed wildlife and reduce flooding. Glacier retreat and sea level rise will also intensify poverty and environmental stress around the world.
How can we stop climate change? The key is to act now before it is too late. The Earth has lived in the way that it is today for billions of years and will not survive the long-term effects of climate change unless we change our ways today. We must make a major effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prepare for the consequences that climate change will bring us.
Some organizations are starting to take this seriously, creating policies and technology to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while educating the public about climate change and its effects. We can act now and help the planet and future generations to heal itself from the damage climate change will have in the future.