Hot summer days with high temperatures constantly break the previous year’s records. Storms become increasingly unpredictable and intense. These are all phenomena of extreme weather, which has become more and more frequent in recent years.

So what is the actual reason behind these phenomena? Let’s find out in this article.

Objective causes: Natural climate change

The Earth’s climate has constantly changed throughout history. In fact, most of these climate changes are attributed to very small variations in Earth’s orbit that changing the amount of solar energy our planet receives. In addition, changes in solar activity, the Earth’s orbit, position and size of the continents, sea circulation, and air current all affect the planet’s climate, causing extreme weather phenomena such as storms, floods, droughts, etc.

However, natural climate change plays only a very small part of the impact on the current series of extreme weather events and the increase of global warming.

Subjective causes: Human factors and production activities

According to NASA figures, the current warming trend is of particular significance because most of it is extremely likely (greater than 95% probability) to be the result of human activities since the mid-20th century and proceeding at an unprecedented rate millennium. Since the 2nd Industrial Revolution took place in the 20th century, a series of industries such as chemicals, oil, steel, and electricity have flourished. Industrial areas have sprung up everywhere, which increased CO2 emissions and other greenhouse gases from human activities.

There is more scientific evidence that has shown the existence of a relationship between global warming and increasing concentrations of CO2 and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, especially in the industrial era. Millions of years before the Industrial Revolution, the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere remained stable at about 170 to 280 parts per million (ppm). At present, this number has grown much higher and is predicted to continue to increase at an even faster pace, along with human industrial development. The rapid increase of CO2 concentration in the atmosphere from human activities has caused the Earth’s average temperature to rise faster. This speeds up the process of climate change and makes this matter more extreme.

What extreme weather events is climate change causing?

Climate change is increasing the volatility and extreme weather. All continents worldwide face and fight extreme weather phenomena such as floods, droughts, heatwaves, blizzards.., etc.

According to the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) forecast, the world will have to experience more intense rainy seasons in summer, more severe blizzards in winter, and more extreme droughts, and the heat waves are also more powerful.

In addition to extreme weather events, climate change is also creating changes in temperatures across the planet. Under global warming, the increase in temperature affects other climate system components of the Earth. When the planet’s surface temperature rises, it will promote water evaporation, increase the humidity in the air leading to an increase in precipitation, and change the atmospheric circulation in each region. Rising temperatures also cause melting ice in the polar regions and in the high mountains, which results in sea-level rise, increases in coastal erosion, flooding, and loss of mangroves. Melting ice also reduces the average albedo of the Earth’s surface to solar radiation, increasing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, thereby accelerating global warming.  

 

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