climate change

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  • Climate Change
    • Evidence
      • shrinking glaciers/ melting ice.
        • thinned by 65% since 1975. All time low in 2014.
        • may disappear by 2035.
      • Sea Level Rise
        • Ice melting adds fresh water. Thermal expansion: warm ocean expand in volume.
        • low-lying island: Maldives danger of flood.
      • Seasonal changes
        • Tree flowering and bird migration advancing
        • Bird nesting is earlier then in the 1970s
    • Natural Causes
      • Orbital changes:  three distinct cycles
        • Eccentricity: every 100 000 years, circular to mildly elliptical and back
        • Axial tilt:every 41 000 years, moves back and forth 21.5 and 24.5 degrees
        • Precession: 26 000 years axis wobbles, one extreme to the other
      • Solar Activity: sunspots are short-term regions of reduced temp. 11 years they increase from min to max
      • Volcanic activity: ash blocks sun, reduce temp, short-term.
        • Sulphur Dioxide: converts to droplets act like mirrors reflect solar radiation into space. long-term reduce temp.
    • Human Causes
      • Greenhouse gases: trap heat that would have escaped, short-wave radiation from sun
        • carbon dioxide increase: burning fossil fuels, transports, farming. deforestation: by burning methane: farm livestock, rice farming, sewage treatment, landfill, coal mines, natural gas pipelines.
      • Global impacts: reduced crop yields & water supplies, heat-related illness, flood risk, changing ecosystems, extreme weather, strong tropical storms, desertification
    • Management
      • fossil fuels: 87% carbon emissions: hydroelectric, nuclear power solar wind tides sustainable low carbon
        • UK aims to produce 15% of energy from renewable sources by 2020
      • Carbon capture: captures carbon produced by fossil fuels, compressed, piped & injected underground, long-term storage
      • Planting trees: plantations are more efficient than natural forests.
      • International agreements: Paris agreement 2015, limit temps to 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels
    • Adapting
      • Agricultural: new irrigation systems, drought resistance strains of crops, water harvesting, shade trees, cropping patterns
      • reducing SLR; sea walls and sandbags, raised buildings on stilts, artificial islands, can be relocated, coastal mangrove forests, tangled roots trap sediment


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