Climate Change Essay

571 WordsNov 2, 20103 Pages
Climate Change is a change in the statistical distribution of weather over periods of time that range from millions of years to decades. It can be limited to a specific section on the Earth or across the entire surface of the Earth. Climate forcings are factors that can shape climate. These include such processes as deviations in the Earth's orbit, variations in solar radiation, changes in greenhouse gas concentrations, continental drift, and mountain-building. Oceans and ice caps respond slowly to climate forcing because of their large mass. The motion of tectonic plates reconfigures global land and ocean areas and generates topography over millions of years. Global and local patterns of climate and atmosphere-ocean circulation can be affected by this. The geometry of the oceans is determined by the position of the continents. This therefore influences patterns of ocean circulation. The locations of the seas are important in controlling the transfer of heat and moisture across the globe This therefore is important for determining global climate. The size of continents is important due to the stabilizing effect of the oceans on temperature. Yearly temperature variations are generally lower in coastal areas than they are inland. A larger supercontinent will have more area where climate is strongly seasonal than will several smaller continents and/or island arcs. Over about 4 billion years, the atmospheric composition will change and the energy output of the sun increased. The luminosity of the sun will continue to increase and will be the sun's ultimate death as it becomes a red giant and then a white dwarf. This will have huge effects on climate. The red giant phase could possibly ending life on Earth. Variations in Earth's orbit lead to changes in the amount of sunlight reaching the Earth's surface and how it is distributed across the globe. The amount of

More about Climate Change Essay

Open Document