The evidence for rapid, human-lead climate change is compelling. Earth has always had natural cycles of warming and cooling, but since the mid-20th century, the rate of warming is proceeding at an alarming rate. Greenhouse gasses released through the burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil, gas) create a layer around the earth, trapping heat within the atmosphere. This heat creates more extreme and unpredictable weather. Greenhouse gas levels throughout history provide evidence that atmospheric CO2 levels have been increasing dramatically since the industrial revolution due to the widespread burning of fossil fuels.
Consequences of Climate Change
Climate Change & Extreme Weather Hazards
RCP stands for 'Representative Concentration Pathway'. The RCPs make predictions of how concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere will change in the future as a result of human activities.
The numerical values of the RCPs (2.6, 4.5, 6.0 and 8.5) refer to the greenhouse gas concentrations in 2100. RCP 8.5 is often considered the "Business As Usual" pathway consistent with the current trajectory of global emissions. RCP 8.5 leads to greater global temperature increases, which results in greater physical impacts.
Some of our data sources
Other academic resources:
- Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Trieste, Italy
- Adapt NSW, NSW Government Office of Environment and Heritage, Australia
- Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre, Hobart, Australia
- Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science and Climate Change Research Centre, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
- School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia