Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: April 25, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963893 | Print ISBN: 9781412958783 | Online ISBN: 9781412963893| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Climate Change, Effects
CLIMATE CHANGE IS commonly used to describe any systematic alteration or statistically significant variation in either the average state of the climate elements such as precipitation, temperature, winds, or pressure; or in its variability, sustained over a finite time period (decades or longer). It can be referred to as the long-term change in global weather patterns, associated especially with increases in temperature, precipitation, and storm activity. These inconsistencies in climate systems are a potential consequence of the greenhouse effect by greenhouse gases (GHGs). Examples of greenhouse gases include: carbon dioxide (CO 2 ), methane (CH 4 ), dinitrogen monoxide or nitrous oxide (N 2 O), halocarbon gases such as trichlorofluorocarbon (CFQ 3 ) and dichloroflurocarbon (CF 2 C1 2 ), water (H 2 O), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), and sulfur hexafluoride (SF 6 ). The atmospheric concentrations of these gases have been increasing, due to anthropogenic activities. Climate change is attributed directly ...