GLOBAL WARMING: CAUSES AND MEASUREMENTS

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GLOBAL
WARMING: CAUSES
AND
MEASUREMENTS
The
atmosphere has
four distinct
zones of
contrasting
temperature.
Wavelengths of Light
Carbon Cycle
Gas levels
measured
from ice
cores in the
north and
south pole
areas
Annual Mean Temperature Anomalies 1901-2003
NASA:
Changes in
physical and
biological
systems and
surface temps
1970-2004
Note greater
changes over
land than
oceans.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration's (NOAA) 2005 State of
the Climate Report
•Since 1880, the average surface temperature has
warmed by about 1.5 ºF.
•Since the mid 1970s, the average surface
temperature has warmed about 1 ºF.
•The 6 warmest years since 1880 have been:
1998, 2002, 2003, 2005 (warmest), 2006, 2009.
•http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/on_demand_video.html?param=http://anon.nasa-global.edgesuite.net/anon.nasaglobal/ccvideos/GSFC_20100121_GlobalTempAvg.asx&_id=221087&_title=Global%20Temperature%20Increase&_tnimage=418330_m
ain_1_418330mainenus_2008temp100x75.jpg
NASA:
Changes in
temperature,
sea level and
Northern
Hemisphere
snow cover
2005 Temperature Anomalies
Hottest Year on Record
Observed changes in climate and their effects
1. In land ecosystems, earlier spring events and
shifts in plant and animal ranges.
2. earlier spring planting of crops, and
3. increased disturbance of forests due to fires and
pests
4. Impacts to human health, such as heat-related
mortality
5. changes in infectious disease vectors (insects +
animals)
6. allergenic pollen in Northern Hemisphere high
and mid-latitudes
Costs of catastrophic weather events have
shown a rapid upward trend in recent decades.
Global warming harbinger
Droughts and fires
Scorched Earth:
impacts and implications of the
1998 fire disaster in North and
Central America.
Mexico
Worst fire season ever, 1998.
1.25 million acres burned during a
severe drought. Smoke reaching
Texas triggered a statewide
health alert.
Eastern USA
Driest growing season on record,
1999 in 4 states. The period from April-July
1999 was the driest in 105 years
of record-keeping in New Jersey,
Delaware, Maryland, and Rhode
Island.
Agricultural disaster areas
were declared in fifteen states,
with losses in West Virginia alone
expected to exceed $80 million.
Reference: NOAA, 1999.
Following the Atlantic hurricane
season of 2005, which set a record
with 27 named storms, a great
deal of attention has focused on
the relationship between
hurricanes and global warming.
Destructiveness Increases Quickly with Sea Temperature
The graph above shows the first statistical estimate of the
impact of global warming on Atlantic hurricanes in the years
2002--2004. N. Atlantic sea temperatures have risen by 0.5° C
Data show Greenland and Antartica lost
36 - 60 cubic miles of ice/ year 2002-2006
Flowing meltwater
from the Greenland
ice sheet
Since 1978 annual
average Arctic sea
ice extent has
shrunk by 2.1 to
3.3% per decade,
with larger
decreases in
summer of 5.0 to
9.8% per decade.
Glaciers are retreating almost everywhere around
the world — including in the Alps, Himalayas,
Andes, Rockies, Alaska and Africa.12
The disappearing snowcap of Mt Kilimanjaro, from space.
Photographs 1913 (left) and 2005 (right). Shepard
Glacier in Glacier NP, Montana.
There were 150 glaciers in 1850, but
today only 27 persist.
Carbon Dioxide contributes about 2/3 of Global Warming Gases
CO2 Emissions by Country
CO2 Emissions Comparing 1st and 3rd World Countries
CO2 Emissions by Source: Coal burning = #1, Cars = #2
US citizens use more energy than all others
US energy use by type of energy
Global Warming Potentials:
Different Gases Absorb Sun Energy More, OR Remain in
the Atmosphere Longer, Adding to the Greenhouse Effect.