The Science Behind Global Warming and Climate Change
At The Climate Change Journal we are not here to debate the fact that the earth is warming. That truly is settled science. If you are a visitor with doubts, that is understandable given the amount of time and money being spent by those who have reasons to want to block solutions. There are many other places for you to get information about global warming and climate change, so we thought we would just present some of the more compelling evidence here.
Temperature Anomalies Tied to Global Warming
Here is a chart of the average combined air and sea temperatures across the globe in the past 130 years:
The chart shows clearly that warm anomalies are becoming much more common in a sustained, measurable, and irrefutable way.
Arctic Ice Extent and Global Warming
If you want another scientifically quantifiable piece of evidence, look no further than the melting season in the arctic. While deniers of global warming will point to wintertime and a lack of major changes in the icepack when it is the coldest season, you only need to wait a few months to see the amazing difference. During the “melting season” sea ice has been disappearing faster than any previous years, with every subsequent year showing a faster decline. The sea ice extent is incredibly measurable – you just take a photo of the region from above and literally measure the square footage of ice on the same date in subsequent years. We’re not talking about a minimal effect of climate change either – in 2012 sea ice was up to a million of square kilometres less than the year before in mid spring.
The reason why sea ice is disappearing so fast in the arctic and creating such irrefutable changes are likely that the ice itself during winter in thinner – something that areal pictures do not measure. Also, there is an effect called melt ponds which basically create an acceleration through forming of ponds that warm up and grow – think of swiss cheese where the holes are filled with something warm, melting the surrounding area. Of course merely the fact that global warming is happening also is increasing melting during spring.
Other Scientific Facts Related to Climate Change
If these facts above are not convincing, here are some facts:
- Global sea level have risen almost 7 inches in the past hundred years, but the rate that sea levels have risen in just the past ten years is double that of the last hundred years
- The 20 warmest years on record have occurred since 1981, and 10 of the last 12 years have been among the warmest ever. And for those who blame natural cycles of the sun, there was actually a solar minimum cycle in 2007-2009 that would ordinarily have kept temperatures down.
- Our oceans have warmed a third of a degree in the last 40 years – a huge amount of warming over such a large area.
- Glaciers are retreating, Arctic, Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have decreased in mass. For example, Antarctica lost about 36 cubic miles of ice between 2002 and 2005.
- Finally, there have been a record number of extreme weather events in the U.S. over the past decade
Global warming and climate change are settled science, but the fact that the debate rages on is testament to the power and strength of corporate PR and the psychology of denial among some groups.