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Flashcards in Climate change Deck (23):

Climate change

Is any significant change in the Earth's climate over a long period. The climate is constantly changes.


Ice and Sediment Cores

Ice sheets are made up of layer of ice. One layer is formed each year.
-scientists drill into ice to get long cores
-analyzing the gases trapped, they can tell the temperature


Tree rings

As tree grows, it forms a new ring each year. The rings are thicker in warm and wet conditions. Therefore, the ring can tell us what climate was there.


Pollen Analysis

Pollen from plants gets preserved in sediment.
-scientists identify the date of preserved pollen to show which species were living that time
-every plant needs different conditions for live
-this shows climate conditions


Orbital changes

The path of Earth's orbit affects the amount of solar radiation the Earth receives. Changes in the Earth's orbit can cause warmer or colder climate.


Volcanic activity

Volcanic eruptions eject large quantities of material into the atmosphere. Particulates reflect the sun rays and cause that Earth's surface cools. It also release CO2, but not enough to cause global warming.


Solar output

The Sun's output of energy is not constant. It changes in cycles. Periods when solar output is reduced can cause that Earth's surface become cooler.


The greenhouse effect

is where greenhouse gases(carbon dioxide, methane) absorb outgoing heat, so less heat is lost to space. It is essential for keeping the planet warm.


Burning fossil fuels

Carbon dioxide is released into atmosphere when fossil fuels are burnt.



Farming of livestock produces a lot of methane. Also rice paddies, since flooded fields emit methane.


Cement production

Cement is made of limestone, which contains carbon. When cement is produced, lots of CO2 is released.



Plants remove CO2 from the atmosphere. By burning trees, the CO2 is released back to the atmosphere.


Environmental effects of global warming

-the melting of ice sheets causes sea levels rise
-sea ice shrinks, leading to loss of polar habitats
-rising sea levels causes that coastal erosion will increase. More land is lost
-Some species are declining due to warming e.g. coral reefs
-precipitation patterns are changing, can cause less rain


Effects of global warming on people

-more deaths due to higher temperatures
-more areas will become dry and hot, impossible to inhabit
-coastal areas flooded, massive migration and overcrowding some areas
-some areas struggle to supply enough water for their people
-farming is affected-crops have suffered e.g. maize crops have got smaller due to warming
-lower crop yields could increases starvation in lower latitudes
-weather is getting more extreme. More money needs to be spend on protection and reduction.


Mitigation strategies

aim to reduce the causes of climate change


Carbon capture

Carbon capture and storage is a new technology to reduce the levels of CO2 in the atmosphere. This involves capturing and storing carbon dioxide in safe places such as deep underground.


Planting trees

Increases the amount of carbon dioxide that is absorbed by trees.


Alternative energy production

Replacing fossil fuels with nuclear power and renewable energy. Wind farms, tidal power projects, nuclear power plants


International agreement

From 1997 most countries in the world agreed to cut greenhouse emissions by singing agreement Kyoto Protocol


Adaptations strategies

responding to changes caused by global warming


Changing agriculture systems

Changing temperature and precipitation will affect the productivity of existing systems. This may involve planting plant in new areas. Biotechnology can be used to create more resistant crops


Managing water supply

Dry areas are predicted to become even more drier, so people need to use water resources more efficiently.
-water meters can be installed in homes to discourage people form using a lot of water
-rainwater can be collected and waste water recycled


Coping with raising sea level

-physical defences such as flood barriers are being build
-building floating houses