Global warming is the observed increase of the Earth’s average air and ocean temperatures since the Industrial Revolution, around the turn of the 18th century. The total temperature increase from 1850 to 2005 is 0.76°C (IPCC, 2007). Although projections vary, it is estimated that atmospheric temperatures could increase by between 1.4°C and 5.8°C by 2100. But what’s causing this warming? Why is it such an important issue? And how should our global society approach it?
There are two aspects to resolving global warming and associated climate changes. Firstly, mitigation actions are needed if we are to slow or limit temperature increases: emissions must be reduced to stabilize the concentration of atmospheric GHGs, and then reduced over time.
References: IPCC, 2007: Summary for Policymakers. 2007. In Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Solomon, S., D. Qin, M. Manning, Z. Chen, M. Marquis, K.B. Averyt, M. Tignor and H.L. Miller, Eds. Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press.