What is climate change?

Our planet is rapidly changing, and it’s not for the better [2]. Take a look at the graph [2].

Earth’s average temperature has increased by about 1.1°C since pre-industrial times [2] (1850-1900 [3]).

This doesn’t sound like much – you feel bigger changes in temperature just moving from the sunlight into the shade [4]. Temperature varies by much more than 1°C at different times of day, and from place to place [5]. But the small change in average global temperature has dramatic effects on the climate as a whole [1].

Importantly, temperatures have risen by much more in many places [6].

Take a look at the map (swipe!).It shows how the January to June 2019 temperatures compared to the 1981-2010 average [7]. Whilst some parts of the Earth were cooler, most were warmer, with places such as Siberia being 4-5°C hotter [7].


[1] https://library.wmo.int/doc_num.php?explnum_id=9936 Within report see especially: Extreme Events

[2] https://library.wmo.int/doc_num.php?explnum_id=9936 Within report see: Temperature

[3] https://www.ipcc.ch/sr15/chapter/chapter-1/ See: Executive summary, introduction, paragraph 2

[4] https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/2461361.pdf Within paper see: Table 1, sun versus shade, maximum change in Tb
[5] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378112714005313 Within paper see: Highlights

[6] https://neo.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/view.php?datasetId=GISS_TA_M See: Map showing temperature anomalies vary between months and between parts of the Earth

[7] https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/201906 See: Temperature, January–June 2019 Blended Land and Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies in degrees Celsius

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