While in the polarized politics of the US, climate change is still debated, the science is in: With the same degree of certainty that we know gravity exists, we know as a fact that humans are affecting weather. Without passing judgment as to weather it is good or bad, we know that human activity is affecting the makeup of the atmosphere, and also know that this is what determines our weather.
Climate change should be an important issue to people regardless of what political party they vote for or where they live. The earth’s climate affects everyone. The only reason this issue is still debated is because politics have muddled the science.
Our economies are based on people consuming. But that consumption in the last century is coming at a price: climates shifting outside of their natural cycle. This science is new, and this leads people to believe that it is still in the realm of theory. While different models disagree about the extent that climate change as influenced by humans is happening, it would take a tainted understanding to believe that this is merely just a theory. Since the 1990s data on man caused emissions have begun to not only show this fact, but also to indicate that this state of affairs could lead to hypothetically tragic results for not just specific countries, but the whole earth (Masters, 2013).
Virtually all scientists qualified to comment on the issue agree that it is fact, not theory or fiction that the earth’s atmospheric makeup is being changed by human emissions. Climatologists study global weather patters and since the 1990s, have had sufficient information to show this. (Masters, 2013).
The report, Abrupt Climate Change: Inevitable Surprises, breaks down not only the underlying cause, but also the consequence that cause could likely carry with it.
It could lead to coastline changes because of melting of the polar icecaps. This is a clear example of where working together as a world is necessary to solve it (USGS Newsroom, 2013).
Here is the data that gives us a rationale for calling Climate Change a fact rather than a theory. In 2002 The National Academy of Sciences published a 244-page report called Abrupt Climate Change: Inevitable Surprises. This report contained more than 500 references and written by more than 50 of the utmost experts on climate. As shown in the report, historical climate can be deduced via ice in the polar ice caps. The National Science Foundation in 1989 did $25 million study in which they drilled 2 miles into the ice caps to amass a history of the earth’s climatic for the previous 110,000 years (Masters, 1). While this data showed that in the last 100,000 the Earth’s climate had varied more considerably than scientists had initially believed, and also that there is a correlation between human industrial activity and changes to the climate (Hollingsworth, 2013).
Human activity affects climate. This has to be understood as a fact. It could of course be argued the extent that humans do affect climate, and whether or not current behavior and consumption habits should change. As the atmosphere affects climate and humans affect the makeup of the atmosphere, this leads to a fact that human activity is changing climate in much the same way that dripping juice in a pool changes the water’s makeup. One juice box would go unnoticed in a large pool, but it would still be a fact that a small change had occurred.
"An Introduction to Climate Change." Climate Change Facts. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Nov. 2013. <http://www.nrdc.org/globalwarming/climatebasics.asp>.
Hollingsworth, David. "USGS Newsroom."USGS Release: Human Activities Produce More Carbon Dioxide Emissions Than Do Volcanoes (6/14/2011 11:30:00 AM). N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Nov. 2013. <http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=2827&from=rss_home#.UojuUGTwKb8>
"USGS Newsroom." USGS Release: Human Activities Produce More Carbon Dioxide Emissions Than Do Volcanoes (6/14/2011 11:30:00 AM). N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Nov. 2013. <http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=2827&from=rss_home#.UojuUGTwKb8>.