Ask Dr. Global Change
How do human activities affect global climate?
Last updated 25 April 2000
Originally answered 25 April 2000
Could you please describe some of the important lines of evidence that support the idea that human activities are affecting global climates? what are some of these human activities?
For a good introduction to the causes and impacts of global change, take a look at the online publication “Common Questions about Climate Change” that was published in 1997 by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
There is a section of this publication covering human activites contributing to climate change, and how we know that the increase in atmospheric levels of greenhouse gases is due to human activity.
The US National Academy of Sciences published “Climate Change Science: An Analysis of Some Key Questions” in the summer of 2001.
Another source you might want to look at is the “Questions and Answers” box on the USGCRP Educational Resources page.
Highlights of recent and planned research on Human Contributions and Responses to global environmental change are addressed in the chapter on Decision-Support Resources Development and Related Research on Human Contributions and Responses of Our Changing Planet: The U.S. Climate Change Science Program for Fiscal Year 2006.