UNDESTANDING CLIMATE CHANGE

DEFINITIONS:

United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC): Climate change means a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.

Wikipedia: Climate change is a long-term change in the statistical distribution of weather patterns over periods of time that range from decades to millions of years. It may be a change in the average weather conditions or a change in the distribution of weather events with respect to an average, for example, greater or fewer extreme weather events. Climate change may be limited to a specific region, or may occur across the whole Earth.

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC): Refers to shifts in the mean state of the climate or in its variability, persisting for an extended period (decades or longer). Climate change may be due to natural changes or to persistent anthropogenic changes in the composition of the atmosphere or in land use.

Climate change is caused by greenhouse gasses (GHGs), which enhance the greenhouse properties of the earth’s atmosphere. These gasses allow solar radiation from the sun to travel through the atmosphere but prevent the reflected heat from escaping back into space. This causes the earth’s temperature to rise. They are gaseous constituents of the atmosphere, both natural and anthropogenic, that absorbs and re-emits infrared radiation.

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