What is Climate Change?

Climate change is when over a long-term period you can see alterations of temperature and typical weather patterns. There are increasing extreme weather conditions with heavier rains, more flooding, stronger winds and bushfires. These changes are occurring all over the world. The cause of current climate change is predominantly from human activity, including the burning fossil fuels (i.e. natural gas, oil, and coal). Burning these materials releases what are called greenhouse gases (ie carbon dioxide and methane) into Earth’s atmosphere.

Greenhouse gases occur naturally and are essential to the survival of humans and all of other living things because they keep some of the sun’s warmth from reflecting back into space, making temperatures liveable. But after more than a century and a half of industrialization, large-scale deforestation, and commercial agriculture, the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere have risen to record levels not seen in the past three million years. As populations, economies and standards of living grow, so does the cumulative level of greenhouse gas (GHGs) emissions.

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