It frustrates me to no end when people refuse to believe that climate change exists. There is such an overwhelming amount of evidence that proves its existence and the necessity of stopping the trend before it is too late. I recently read an article detailing several different forms of evidence to support climate change. Before I get into that though, I’d like to discuss the reason current fluctuations in climate are different from the fluctuations in climate that have occurred throughout history. As the article I linked below explains, large climate changes in the past occurred over tens of years not thousands and the current increasing change that has been happening for thousands of years shows a gradual warming that is not simply a small scale fluctuation of the past. In addition, past fluctuations are due to slight differences in the position of Earth, which affects the amount of solar energy received. Those differences haven’t changed and certainly wouldn’t be able to change enough to account for the differences in climate we are currently experiencing. Therefore, climate change is definitely happening and the only explanation is human related activities since climate fluctuations are clearly distinct from past ones.
Of the immense evidence provided in the article I have linked below, the most compelling is sea level rise, temperature rise, glacial retreat, decreased densities of ice sheets, and ocean acidification. The sea level has risen 17 inches in the last century, which is an especially striking number when one considers the fact that it only grew about half of that in the prior century. The temperature has risen as well with significant increases occurring from the 1880s. The past 12 years have seen ten of the warmest years in history to be exact despite the fact that the net solar output declining in the 2000s. The fact that solar output, which is the cause of past climate fluctuations, has been decreasing and temperatures still continue to rise, proves climate change is occurring and due to something other than natural causes. This leaves humans as the root of the problem. Further evidence is visible in retreating glaciers in all areas of the world as well as the decreasing ice sheets. In fact, Greenland ice sheets decreased by 150 to 250 cubic kilometers per year from 2002 to 2006. The rate of shrinking ice sheets has only increased. Ocean acidification is a direct result of human activities that emit more carbon into the atmosphere as ocean acidification has risen 30 percent since the Industrial Revolution. The Industrial Revolution increased the amount of carbon emitted by humans immensely and the increased acidification of the ocean can only be attributed to the event. The saddest truth about this ocean acidification is that as the ocean becomes more acidic, it absorbs even more carbon. The fact that our effect on climate change is allowing the ocean to store more carbon and yet we produce enough carbon to still cause massive climate change is ridiculous. We are far outpacing the amount of natural climate regulation that exists in the ocean and we are the root cause of the temperature fluctuation. People need to stop arguing about if climate change is happening and start making changes to mitigate it.