POLB81H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 10: Climate Sensitivity, Individual And Political Action On Climate Change, Water Vapor

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POLB81 Lecture 10 March 18th 2013
April 11th 11-12:30 MW160 Exam Review Session
Final Exam April 17th 2-5pm, GYM
Global governance Forum
o This teen is suing the state of Alaska because climate change threatens his home.
By Sarah Laskow (www.grist.org)
o This is an instance of:
Transnationalism: The Oregon’s Our Children’s Trust is an NGO working
on climate change to push the government to do something. But this
NGO is not transnational because the sub-national government is being
sued. The question is whether it’s linked to other international
organizations. It’s just very different than the transnationalism we use to
talk about which is global NGO influencing global institutions.
Global and Local Connection (Theme) Here you have a very local
response to the most global of issue.
What kind of problem climate change is?
Last Global Issue of Term: Climate Change
o We’re adding a complicated factor. We’re adding in the element of natural
environment which is natural environmental science.
o Environmental science is sophisticated and it doesn’t tell us what to do in climate
change. It adds the uncertainty in climate change.
o There are multiple ways that different actors can see climate change in different
Global Climate Change Nature and Scope
o Science Scope: They all interconnect in some way.
Greenhouse Effect the picture on the slide. Solar radiation comes from
the sun and hits the earth that warms up the air. The radiation hits the
atmosphere. Most of this radiation bounces off the planet but some of
this radiation is absorbed in the atmosphere much like greenhouse holds
in heat. Our atmosphere keeps the earth warm which is a very good
thing. It keeps the earth warmer such that we wouldn’t be a cold dead
planet. Greenhouse effect keeps the life on Earth.
Greenhouse Gases Six main gases: Water Vapor, Carbon dioxide co2,
CH4 Methane, CFCs, Nitrous Oxide. These gases absorb info-red
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radiation. Water vapor CO2 and CH4 are natural occurring. CFCs/HFC, and
nitrous oxide are entirely human made.
What is global warming? Since the industrial revolution
concentration of the human made gases like Methane are burnt
which makes carbon dioxide. We mostly got rid of CFC/HFCs.
Industrial Revolution Humanity brings these gases to our planet
which has increased. Everything has to do with do fossil fuels. We
already experienced .7 degrees of warming. Climate scientist tie
human induce human made gases to a warming atmosphere.
These are the effects of global warming.
Climate Change transform seasons. (Global Warming) Northern
Europe can experience an ice age. The Guelph stream’s warm
water hits the coast of England which keeps Northern Europe
much warmer. Scientist is worried that the Guelph stream going
to shut down. Melting of glacier that flows into the Guelph stream
would alter the Guelph stream making the Northern Europe cold.
Rapid change in climate change, broad changes, Global warming
doesn’t mean that it’s going to get warmer. We had really big
storms this last winter because you expect larger storms
sometimes unusual times. Oceans are getting more acidic.
Global Warming- It’s the result of concentration which could come from
natural causes.
Climate change- The effects on what we’re feeling.
There are uncertainties. It’s getting bad very quickly. 90 percent of
climate scientist adhere that we have anti-phonetic climate change that is
Since 2007, People saying climate change is happening faster and the
actual observation. The climate is that we tend to be on the high side of
these predictions. Our knowledge has increased significantly and its not
getting better.
2011, Natural research in the US looked at what we could expect: 2 to 11
degrees Fahrenheit are already observed. 2012, 6 degrees of warming.
Political consensus: we should hold climate change to 2 degree Celsius
that way we can avoid the worst impacts of climate change. It’s bad and
its getting worst. There are inherent uncertainties that we don’t know.
The graph on the slide says that the climate change was going down but
then there’s a spike on climate change.
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