Climate Change vs Global Warming

March 6, 2009 at 10:03 pm | Posted in Climate, Climate Change | Leave a comment
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PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE

Can we have an informed debate on Global Warming? The terms Global Warming and Climate change are bandied around in the press all the time, the problem is that most journalists don’t understand that they are two totally different things.

Climate Change refers to cyclic changes in long term weather conditions in a region. Basically, what that means is that if area A warms, it means that area B may cool. A great example in long term climate change is the Sahara Desert. About 8-10,000 years ago there was a North African Monsoon. That meant that the Sahara wasn’t a desert, the whole of North Africa ranged from.Jungle to Savannah,with very few areas that were very dry. Then the monsoon failed as the weather patterns moved North. Why did the patterns move North? Because the ice of the last ice age melted.

Global Warming on the other hand is what it says it says it is, an increase in temperature across the WHOLE planet. Global Warming could be caused by several things, increases in Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere, an increase in Total Solar Irradiance (TSI), or a decrease in albedo of the planet. If you look at the average world temperature since 2000, there has been no Global Warming, however, in the same period, Australia and California in the US have both suffered exceptional droughts, Southern Spain is in a similar position as hot dry air encroaches from Africa.

While These areas have warmed and dried, other areas have cooled.

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