Friday, 2 September 2016

Humans kickstarted climate change 200 years ago, study finds

 AUGUST 25, 2016

by Chuck Bednar

While most experts seem to agree that human activity played a major role in bringing about climate change, the consensus has been that this is a fairly recent trend, but that is not the case at all, according to new research published in Wednesday’s edition of the journal Nature.

In fact, people have been doing things that contribute to global warming for nearly two centuries, Nerilie Abram, an associate professor from the Australian National University (ANU) School of Earth Sciences, and her colleagues discovered during the course of their research.

“It was an extraordinary finding,” Abram, who is also part of the Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science, said Thursday in a statement. “It was one of those moments where science really surprised us. But the results were clear. The climate warming we are witnessing today started about 180 years ago.”

According to the study authors, the evidence suggests that the first evidence of global warming can be traced back to the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, and signs of its impact first appear in the Earth's oceans around the 1830s – far earlier than scientists previously thought, and contrary to the assumption that warming was not an issue until the 20th century.

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