We are already experiencing changes in climate. And we all need to do something about it.
But how much do you know about climate change?
Test your knowledge with these questions.
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1. What is climate change?
Climate change is the change in the average weather –temperature, precipitation and wind– over a over period of time, usually 30 years. Although weather can change in just a few hours, the climate takes longer to change.
2. Why is the climate changing?
The climate is changing due to increasing GHG emissions from energy, mainly generated by burning fossil fuels. Also contributing are deforestation and wildfires, as well as agricultural production, including rice cultivation and livestock production.
3. What GHG contributes the most to climate change?
Carbon dioxide (CO2) accounts for about 76% of all GHG emissions: 65% due to fossil fuel burning to generate energy and 11% due to land use changes, such as deforestation, land-use management, agriculture, forest fires, among others.
4. What U.S. state has suffered the most devastating and costly impacts of climate change in the last decade?
Texas suffered 54 extreme weather events influenced by human-induced climate change in the last decade: 39 severe storms, one hurricane, 4 major flooding, as well as 6 droughts and 4 wildfires. These events caused $307 billion in economic losses in Texas, according to NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI)
5. What does an increase in global temperature of 2ºC (3.6ºF) above pre-industrial times mean?
An increase in global temperature of 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times means that the risks and negative impacts of climate change would increase rapidly. That is why the Paris Agreement's goal is to hold ‘the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.’
6. How much has global temperature already increased above pre-industrial times?
Global average temperature was about 1.1ºC above pre-industrial times in 2019, according to the World Meteorological Organization
7. When could global temperature reach 1.5ºC (2.7ºF) above pre-industrial times?
Global average temperature could reach 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times by 2030, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report on 1.5 Degrees.
8. When could global temperature reach 2ºC (3.6ºF) above pre-industrial times?
Global average temperature could reach 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times by 2050, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, as reflected in our report The Truth About Climate Change.
Holding global temperature increase to below 2ºC will only be possible if all countries contribute to reducing CO2 emissions.
9. What is a major weakness of the Paris Agreement?
The Paris Agreement establishes a ‘pledge and review’ system, based on pledges to combat climate change submitted by all countries –the Nationally Determined Contributions—to be reviewed every five years. These pledges are voluntary, some pledges will continue to increase GHG emissions (such as China and India) and almost 70% of the pledges are partially or totally conditional to international finance, technology and capacity building for their implementation.
10. Is there anything I can do to slow climate change?
There are lots of things I can do everyday to slow climate change. I can make smarter energy choices to use less energy and use it more efficiently. I can also demand increase climate action from my government.
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