Earth's climate is always changing - from The Middle Ages and the “Little Ice Age” to the modern warming that has been going on since 1850. Fluctuating temperatures are normal for a living planet. The sun's irregular patterns and other natural forces are major sources of climate change. And what about human influences?

 [After setting your car on fire] Listen, your car's temperature has changed before.

Human activity affects weather, climate, and the environment. Some human activity is harmless, but much human activity degrades the environment. While the environment can absorb some abuse without long-term effects, much harmful human activity exceeds the environment's ability to recover. The most significant way that humans damage the environment is by emitting harmful chemicals into the air and water. This activity has wide-ranging results, such as increasing the temperature of the planet, lowering the quality of the air we breathe, and killing forests and aquatic animals.

The theory behind global warming has been understood by climatologists since at least the 1980s, but only in the new millennium, with an apparent tipping point in 2005, has the mounting empirical evidence convinced people and growing sections of business that human actions do influence climate and that it is warming the planet. Other influences also exist and how much each contributes remains a debate. Not getting into that debate, does not mean we ignore the (unintended) effects our actions (and inactions) are having.

Environmental effects of our actions include air pollution and smog, acid rain, and ozone depletion. Each of these have multiple effects and there is mounting evidence that they result in increased impact on the environment over the last few years. The search for solutions to these environmental problems has brought some results, including research on alternative energy sources.

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2019/02/21 12:32 · Beauty

We tend to think of climate - as opposed to weather - as something unchanging, yet humanity has been at the mercy of climate change for its entire existence, with at least eight glacial episodes in the past 730,000 years. Our ancestors adapted to the universal but irregular global warming since the end of the last great Ice Age, around 10,000 years ago, with dazzling opportunism.

Scientists warn the sun will 'go to sleep' in 2030 and could cause temperatures to plummet. Is it a major factor, or will it just slow down the warming trend?

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Direct combination of interpreted geological temperature records is not necessarily valid, nor is their combination with other more recent temperature records, which may use different definitions. Nevertheless, an overall perspective is useful even when imprecise. In this view time is plotted backwards from the present. It is scaled linear in five separate segments, expanding by about an order of magnitude at each vertical break. Temperatures in the left-hand panel are very approximate, and best viewed as a qualitative indication only.

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2019/02/17 11:15 · Beauty