Global warming impact

Global warming impact comes from a rise in global temperatures that are due to a net increase in the energy retained buy the earth’s atmosphere and oceans.

More energy in the system makes it more dynamic, more unpredictable and, on average, warmer.

The global climate models predict that even with modest warming across the world there will be

  • changes to rainfall patterns
  • more extreme severe weather
  • longer, more intense heat waves
  • shifts to the timing and duration of seasons
  • sea level rise

These are the direct environmental effects of more energy in the climate system.

The global warming impact will be the consequences of these changes to environmental conditions for agriculture, water availability, risk and lifestyles.

The intensity of the impact will vary from place to place but are likely to include

In turn these direct effects will have secondary impacts, the knock-on consequences of disturbance.

Biodiversity loss is one of the significant ones.

A simple enough change in energy dynamics has many direct and knock-on consequences that will impact agriculture, forestry and rural economies and rattle the natural world.

Some predictions from the climate scientists are that these consequences will be significant with as little as a 2 degree Celsius rise in average global temperature.

Hence we have been searching for and implementing solutions for global warming with greenhouse gas emission reduction the main target.

the conundrum

Given the consequences on our economic systems it is not surprising that our response has been to try and stop global warming impact.

That we should do this through the control of greenhouse gas emissions is more curious. The idea is that if we reduce emissions then the greenhouse effect will be lessened and warming will slow, or even reverse. With less warming we can carry on with business as usual.

This is a big call.

We imagine that we have the ability to keep the earth’s huge atmosphere-ocean system in balance.

Knocking the system is one thing. Balancing it is something else.

We will end up like the conjurer who tries the spinning plates trick only to move ever more frantically to keep all the plates from falling.

Much better to settle for at least some of the climate change effect and figure out ways to cope with them. Especially as feeding and supporting 7 billion people is already a far more immediate challenge.

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