Climate change is scientific fact; it is real and poses a clear and present danger not only to the United States but to the entire world. Its effects on our domestic agriculture, infrastructure, economy and public health necessitate straightforward analysis and understanding.
THE FACTS ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE
Climate change is a significant and lasting change in the distribution of weather patterns over periods of time ranging from decades to millions of years. What differentiates today’s climate is the fact that the Earth is warming at a faster rate than ever before and humans have played a major role in the change.
The projected increase of up to 11˚F over the next century would dramatically alter the stable climate in which human civilization developed. Consider that the difference between today’s climate and the ice age, when massive glaciers covered the northern hemisphere, was a mere 9˚F.
Carbon dioxide is one of multiple greenhouse gases (GHGs) which trap heat in the atmosphere. These gases are necessary for sustaining life on earth because they trap energy from the sun. The greenhouse effect is the process by which the earth retains heat.
While carbon dioxide (CO2) levels have varied over time, there is compelling evidence that the current trends are both unprecedented and man-made.
This rise in temperature corresponds directly with a global surge in CO2 emissions beginning during the Industrial Revolution. Levels are up almost 40% since then, from approximately 285 ppm in the late 1800s to over 396 parts per million (ppm) in August 2012. CO2 levels have been rising at an average annual rate of about 2.0 ppm per year over the past decade. Read More »