What is climate change? Warming of the climate system. The global...

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What is climate change? Warming of the climate system. The global average temperature has risen approximately 1 degree C over the past 100 years, which has been most pronounced during the past 30 years. The atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration has increased by almost 40 percent since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. Greenhouse gases are now a major contributor to climate change. Climate change is the warming of the climate system. The volcanic eruptions of Mount Pinatubo in 1991 and Mount Tambora in 1815 caused large increases in temperature for years to follow, eventually lowering global temperatures temporarily. How is global warming affected by natural changes in the Earth's climate? Atmospheric rivers in the United States are forming in winter as winds off the Pacific push warm air into the dry air that normally makes up the US West. This causes an increase in rainfall across the state, flooding roadways and causing power outages. The increased atmospheric river activity was the result of a warming ocean and is predicted to increase as the climate warms. How can global warming be halted? Can global warming be stopped? There are currently hundreds of government and academic teams around the world dedicated to developing and testing new ways to cool the Earth's climate. If the goal is to avoid the worst consequences of climate change, research into this and many other areas of climate science must continue. Recent and projected levels of global warming of 1.5 degrees C or higher will bring significant consequences and possibly even the end of civilization. Scientists from the United States and the United Kingdom determined that stopping global warming would require staving off about 33 billion tons of carbon dioxide per year. In 2015, there were roughly 2,000 cases of heat-related deaths around the world each year. If such figures remained constant, the average global temperature would reach about 7 degrees C higher. The report of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) "Climate Change 2015: The Physical Science Basis" estimated the frequency of heatwaves by century's end, both in terms of the number of events and their severity, will be 3 to 10 times as high as today and 1 to 4 times as common in North America and Europe. Types of climate science models model how our climate operates, or "model the Earth." NASA defines climate models as "an abstract mathematical representation of the relationships between variables and environment of interest in the atmosphere, in the ocean, in space, and in the biosphere," including weather, climate, and ecosystems. For example, some models predict trends in climate over years or decades. However, climate scientists must calculate many quantities in climate models and use equations to solve them. How much should we trust climate models? For example, why are some of the models less accurate than others? Models vary considerably in accuracy. Some models predict the rate of global warming will not change at all. Others predict that warming will increase. As new research continues to show changes to climate, many of these models are being improved. Sometimes, the models predict increases in global warming even when, based on observations, it is not clear why there has been a change in the climate. How can a model that fails to predict climate be useful? A model that accurately predicts global warming in all of its forms would tell us the way our planet is being affected by the rising levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which may affect climate and weather. The ability to predict the Earth's climate is a key piece of climate science. Ultimately, climate models must be proven through experiments with natural phenomena to show they are producing accurate predictions. A lot of money is being poured into researching climate models.



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