Unformatted text preview: Global and Regional
Department of Geography Proof of Global
Warming Weather vs. Climate
Columbia, South Carolina • Weather: Short term (daily to weekly) atmospheric
conditions we experience. • Climate: Long term average weather conditions
(seasonal- Humid subtropical climate (Cfa).
Daily mean temperature in Columbia: 44°F in January; 81°F in July.
Summer temperatures are hot
Average annual rainfall is 48.3 (1971–2000), no marked dry season 1 Theories of climate change
• Continents drifting over polar regions
• Volcanic activity blocking out the sun
• Solar variability
• Changes in ocean circulation
• Changes in shape of Earth’s orbit
• Variations in the tilt of Earth’s axis
• Human loading of GHGs into the atmosphere
• Land cover change affects albedo Types of Climate Variability and Change
• Cyclical •Sudden Change • Upward Trend •Random variability Types of Climate Change http://www.gseis.ucla.edu/courses/ed230a2/notes/zgraph4.gif; http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/images/fig2-32s.gif 2 1.4°F 57.2 °F Emissions and concentrations 3 Is the Earth Warming? Surface Temperature
Red Bars: Average Annual Temp.
Red Line: 5 year moving average Proxy Data
ex: Tree Ring Analysis
Sediment Cores Red Line – Instrumental Record
Blue Line – Proxy Data
Grey – Error bars Source: IPCC Global T changes What do we know about
the ice sheets? Elevation-change rate
(cm/year), 1992-2003 Source: Davis et al, 2005 Science 4 Greenland Source: Abdalati, W., and K. Steffen, 2001. J. Geophys. Res., 106(D24), 33,983–33,988.
Updated at: http://cires.colorado.edu/science/groups/steffen/greenland/melt2005/ Human and Anthropogenic
forcings What do we know about
change? 5 What do we know
change? from 1980-1999 avg. °C Meehl et al., 2005. Science What don’t we know about future
The probability of future emissions scenarios. Meehl et al., 2005. Science What will future greenhouse
gas emissions be like?
• Standard of living
• Energy efficiency
• Carbon intensity of
fuels 6 Why Should South Carolinians Care? • Local decisions and actions have global consequences.
• In a global economy, economic impacts elsewhere can affect SC. Observed Sea Level Rise Observed SLR 7 SLR US Stoltz and Gill 2005 What are projections for 21st century
for different scenarios Temperature change
(relative to 1980-1999) Sea-level rise without ice
sheet or glacier melting
Meehl et al., 2005. Science Are We Impacting Future Generations?
Sea Level Rise: 2 meters 24 of XX 8 Are We Impacting Future Generations?
Sea Level Rise: 4 meters 4 meter SLR 25 of XX Sea Level Rise Charleston County, South Carolina 80% of the coastal wetlands could be lost Impacts
• Coastal Erosion
Salt Water Intrusion
Enhanced Storm Surge
Loss of Wetlands Jensen et al. 1993 Kettle (2006) Popular Culture and Media 9 Commitment What do we know about
ocean heat uptake? Annual ocean
heat uptake Source: Levitus, S., J. Antonov, and T. Boyer, 2005. Geophysical Research Letters Earth's heat balance components (1022 J), 1955–1998 Energy Budget Source: Levitus, S., J. Antonov, and T. Boyer, 2005. Geophysical Research Letters 10 Are We Impacting Future Generations?
Sea Level Rise: 6 meters 6 meter SLR 11 ...
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