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Title: Climate Change: The Physical Basis and Latest Results

Abstract

The 2007 Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes: "Warming in the climate system is unequivocal." Without the contribution of Physics to climate science over many decades, such a statement would not have been possible. Experimental physics enables us to read climate archives such as polar ice cores and so provides the context for the current changes. For example, today the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, the second most important greenhouse gas, is 28% higher than any time during the last 800,000 years. Classical fluid mechanics and numerical mathematics are the basis of climate models from which estimates of future climate change are obtained. But major instabilities and surprises in the Earth System are still unknown. These are also to be considered when the climatic consequences of proposals for geo-engineering are estimated. Only Physics will permit us to further improve our understanding in order to provide the foundation for policy decisions facing the global climate change challenge.

Authors:
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1026330
Resource Type:
Multimedia
Country of Publication:
CERN
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; 71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; CLIMATE CHANGE; GLOBAL WARMING; PHYSICS

Citation Formats

Stocker, Thomas. Climate Change: The Physical Basis and Latest Results. CERN: N. p., 2009. Web.
Stocker, Thomas. Climate Change: The Physical Basis and Latest Results. CERN.
Stocker, Thomas. Wed . "Climate Change: The Physical Basis and Latest Results". CERN. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1026330.
@article{osti_1026330,
title = {Climate Change: The Physical Basis and Latest Results},
author = {Stocker, Thomas},
abstractNote = {The 2007 Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes: "Warming in the climate system is unequivocal." Without the contribution of Physics to climate science over many decades, such a statement would not have been possible. Experimental physics enables us to read climate archives such as polar ice cores and so provides the context for the current changes. For example, today the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, the second most important greenhouse gas, is 28% higher than any time during the last 800,000 years. Classical fluid mechanics and numerical mathematics are the basis of climate models from which estimates of future climate change are obtained. But major instabilities and surprises in the Earth System are still unknown. These are also to be considered when the climatic consequences of proposals for geo-engineering are estimated. Only Physics will permit us to further improve our understanding in order to provide the foundation for policy decisions facing the global climate change challenge.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {CERN},
year = {2009},
month = {9}
}

Multimedia:

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