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Interactive Look at Top 11 Indicators of a Warming World

By Climate Central

Climate scientists are 95 percent certain that the greenhouse gas emissions from human activities are causing the climate to change. From 1901-2012, temperatures have risen 1.6°F. While this temperature change is the most commonly cited climate change indicator, there are numerous others that also show what climate change looks like. They range from rising seas to melting glaciers and ice sheets to changing ecosystems. In the above graphic, you can view 11 of these indicators and see how they’ve changed as the Earth has warmed.

These indicators are discussed in-depth in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report, the first part of which will be released Sept. 27. The reports, which come out every five to six years, provide a comprehensive snapshot of how the planet is changing. While there are questions about the direction the IPCC should go after this release, the indicators discussed in the report clearly showcase how the planet is changing.

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By Dave (Basking Ridge, NJ 07920)
on September 26th, 2013

Nice graphic. There are certainly plenty of indicators of climate change beyond that of global average surface temperature, which seems to be getting a somewhat lopsided amount of attention recently. One particular indicator that I am a little surprised to see omitted from the list here though is the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events all around the world. I know this is a shade more contentious and something that ardent deniers will tend to argue over like a dog with the proverbial bone. However, it is another important prediction of climate science and unlike the noted indicators which are described by baseline changes, this is instead by definition a trend in the seriously nasty stuff. As such I would argue that for the average human being it is the most unwelcome sting of current climate change. Contentious or not, I think it should be included in the list.

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