05 February 2007

IPCC says we're warming

One of the big news stories Friday was the release of The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 4th Assessement Report from Working Group 1 "Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis". The IPCC consists of scientists from all around the world.

Highlights include the statements:

  • "Global atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide have increased markedly as a result of human activities since 1750 and now far exceed pre-industrial values determined from ice cores spanning many thousands of years.... The global increases in carbon dioxide concentrations are due primarily to fossil fuel use and land-use change, while those of methane and nitrous oxide are primarily due to agriculture...."
  • "The understanding of anthropogenic warming and cooling influences on climate has improved since the Third Assessment Report (TAR), leading to very high confidence that the globally averaged net effect of human activities since 1750 has been one of warming...."
  • "Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, as is now evident from observations of increases in global average air and ocean temperatures, widespread melting of snow and ice, and rising global mean sea level...."
  • "At continental, regional, and ocean basin scales, numerous long-term changes in climate have been observed. These include changes in Arctic temperatures and ice, widespread changes in precipitation amounts, ocean salinity,wind patterns and aspects of extreme weather including droughts, heavy precipitation, heat waves and the intensity of tropical cyclones...."

I could go on and on, but I won't. What this means is according to scientific data global warming is real and it is caused by humans. What this means for writers is you better take it into account if you're writing about the future.

No comments: