Climate change: what is it? An extremely basic manual

 

Global temperatures are rising due to human activity, and among the effects are stronger heatwaves and rising sea levels. Although experts contend that immediate action can prevent the worst effects of climate change, things are likely to get worse over the next several decades. The long-term change in Earth’s average temperatures and weather patterns is known as climate change. The average global temperature over the past ten years has been higher than it was in the late 1800s. It is now established that over the 12-month period between February 2023 and January 2024, global warming topped 1.5C. That came after 2023 was dubbed the warmest year ever recorded.

El Niño, a natural weather phenomenon, along with human-caused climate change, drove the temperature increase. Throughout Earth’s history, the climate has changed, and natural elements like El Niño can have a brief impact on the weather, as demonstrated in 2023. However, the UN’s climate panel, the IPCC, claims that natural factors are unable to account for the exceptionally rapid warming observed in the previous century. According to the IPCC, human activity is primarily to blame for this long-term climate change since fossil fuels like coal, oil, and gas are widely used in industry, houses, and transportation.

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is the primary greenhouse gas released by the burning of fossil fuels. As a result, more energy is trapped in the atmosphere close to Earth’s surface, warming the globe. Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, when people began consuming vast amounts of fossil fuels, the atmosphere’s CO2 content has increased by almost 50%. The unique chemical fingerprint of CO2 emitted during the burning of fossil fuels is consistent with the sort of CO2 that is becoming more and more prevalent in the atmosphere.

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