Aussies Living Simply

Impacts of climate change

Home Forums SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES Global warming and climate change Impacts of climate change

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 70 total)
  • Author
  • #254441

    From the Australian Governments Dept. of Climate Change

    Impacts of climate change

    Climate change is one of the greatest social, economic and environmental challenges of our time. Human activity is causing the climate to change.

    How will I be affected?

    It is difficult to precisely predict what the impacts of climate change will be, as they vary with each region. Best estimates are that by 2030 Australia will face:

    a further 1ºC of warming in temperatures

    up to 20 per cent more months of drought

    up to 25 per cent increase in days of very high or extreme fire danger

    increases in storm surges and severe weather events.

    Australia is very vulnerable to the effects of climate change. We are already the driest inhabited continent on earth, heavily exposed to the dangers of extreme heat and drought. We are home to many globally important and vulnerable ecological systems. Australians are overwhelmingly coastal dwellers. Our industries and urban centres face ongoing water limitations. Our economy, including food production and agriculture, is under threat.

    The longer we wait to act on climate change, the more it will cost and the worse its effects will be.

    From the UK Met Office

    Increases of more than two degrees will have huge impacts on the world.

    Here is a nifty map from the UK Met Office, you need to spend some time with it to work it out, if you;lre interested. It estimates the effects of a 4 degree change by 2030.

    Last figures I read seem to indicate we were on track for a 4 degree world wide average increase. That equates to nearly 7 degree increase for inland Australia, according to the map :ohmy: Nice place to grow the nations crops :unsure:


    I’m watching a very interesting video at Guy McPherson’s Nature Bats Last blog. His predictions are on the high side, according to my research, but not out of the ballpark. Although his conclusions are alarming and should be treated with caution, I think what he says is very interesting. In essence, his proposition is that rapid economic collapse, caused by Peak Oil, is the only hope we have of saving our planet.

    It is worth reading the comments posted after the video, to gauge other people’s reactions to it. As I said, I think it is on the alarmist side of reality, but I am by no means certain of that. I found it interesting. Your mileage may vary.


    wow, thats not far off…


    For those interested in the subject, I recommend Spencer Weart’s The Discovery of Global Warming – A History. It is very readable for those of us lacking a scientific backgound, but it also has scholarly references for those who want to dig deeper.


    Heartily second the recommendation of The Discovery of Global Warming. It’s available as a paper book too, but I think the Web version is terrific because you can immediately follow up on questions you might have.

    trandto did you mean you’ve seen suggestions of a 4deg C rise in global average temperature by 2030? Where was that? It’s much faster than anything I’ve seen. Thanks.



    Here is an interesting article following the link between Australian climate denialism and the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA), a radical right-wing think tank. Here is one of the links from that story, in clickable form, that shines even more light on the good ol’ boys at IPA.

    Deliberate misinformation and denialism is a healthy industry in Oz. Remember the tobacco industry misinformation about smoking and lung cancer? It’s the same tune on a new fiddle.

    IPA staff and researchers get a regular gig on The Drum, both on-line and on TV. Treat what they say with due caution.


    Here is some sobering reading: Report: Global Warming Doubles Extreme Coastal Flood Risk Across U.S., Seas Projected to Rise a Foot by 2050. It would be interesting to see a similar analysis of the vulnerability of coastal communities here in Oz. The alarm bells are ringing, but is anyone listening?


    And just when you thought it was safe to stop hiding under the bed:

    Asian Development Bank Says Climate Migration Poses Growing Threat


    O.E.C.D. Warns of Ever-Higher Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    Sleep well, kiddies …


    My first time checking out this thread (I think :blush: ). Some interesting reading on those links OB, thanks. :tup:

    There are so many changes in so many areas of life these days. Something sure is causing disruption to our weather patterns and these are so strong they have a, to my mind, definite ripples on the pond effect. :shrug:

    More folk than ever are being displaced by disastrous weather. :hug:

    I have a question which is probably embarrassingly simplistic; if the oceans rise 12 inches, what actual height will that mean at the coasts? What I mean is, if the entire ocean mass rises by 12 inches in height, does that give a higher than 12 inches rise at all coast lines? :blush:



    Bobbee post=340616 wrote: Something sure is causing disruption to our weather patterns

    Global Warming (GW) theory predicts that we will see more frequent weather extremes, although it is impossible to point to a particular weather event and say it was caused by global warming. GW refers to climate, which is the long term (30 year plus) average of weather patterns. We know, by observed measurements, that our emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) are trapping more heat in the atmosphere and the oceans and we know, by measurements and historical records, that this is changing the climate.

    A hotter atmosphere draws up more water vapour from land and sea, worsening droughts and providing water for more precipitation, worsening floods. More heat in the air and the oceans also melts more ice in glaciers, ice sheets and polar caps. These effects are pretty obvious and certainly match what we are seeing around the world.

    Bobbee post=340616 wrote: if the entire ocean mass rises by 12 inches in height, does that give a higher than 12 inches rise at all coast lines?

    That’s a very good question and the answer surprised me. It turns out that sea level rise (SLR) is not even across the oceans, due to the effects of trade winds blowing surface water in a particular direction, currents piling water up in some locations and even the gravitational attraction of land masses. A simple example is the difference in the sea levels at each end of the Panama Canal: Not commonly known is the fact that the two oceans have different sea levels, and different levels of high tide. At the entrance to the Panama Canal, the Pacific Ocean can rise as much as 20 feet, but 45 miles away, the difference between high tide and low in the Atlantic is just three feet.

    So, the best answer to your example of a 12″ rise is that this might be an average for the whole globe, but different locations may see different amounts. Skeptical Science has an interesting post on the subject of SLR.

    For some late breaking news on SLR, look at New Research Lowers Past Estimates of Sea-Level Rise.

    This video, by Canada’s Pacific Institute, summarises some of our existing knowledge and the effects of warming we can already see.

    hth 🙂


    Thanks owlbrudder. :tup:

    I’m enjoying that Skeptical Science link, it’s a beauty. :tup:



    I have not followed all that you have said about climate change but I personally do believe that there are changes taking place.

    When I was in primary school it was not uncommon in the winter for us to be able to skate on the ice that had formed on the puddles overnight. In that area today the night time temperatures do not get low enough for the puddles to form enough ice to skate on and have not done so for over 20 years.

    Another indicator is grape vines. The same variety of grape vines have been grown in some parts of the world for many hundreds of years and today their maturing dates are as many as 44 days earlier than they were 30 years ago. Trees and vines ripen according to the weather (climate), if it alters so do the trees and vines alter their ripening times.

    Here in Australia the grape harvest in the Sunraysia area on some varieties is now several days earlier than it was some ten years ago.

    Whether you believe in climate change or not there are changes taking place, why, I will leave that up to those with more knowledge about it than I.

    You made mention about glaciers melting during the past 6000 years, I am not sure where you were going with that but in South America today there are glaciers melting to such a degree that several are no longer able to supply people living downstream with enough water. This is the first time in recorded history these glaciers have receded to virtually being non existent.


    When we talk about recorded history we probably go back about a thousand years or so but it must be remembered that the earth does have and has had heating and cooling cycles since its inception.

    Under the ice cap on Antarctica there are the remains of rain forests and there is also underground coal seams which means that there was once a thriving forest there.

    For every argument you want to put up about climate change, global warming or whatever you want to call it there will be another argument for the opposite.

    In the northern hemisphere the levels of carbon in the atmosphere rise in the colder months and drop in the warmer months. This is mainly due to the vegetation growth slowing in the winter and the increased use of heating fuels while in the summer the vegetation kicks back into gear absorbing more carbon from the atmosphere and the reduced use of fuels for heating. In the southern hemisphere the carbon rises in the colder months are not as sever because the population density is not the same.

    I remember not so long ago when there were many who said that it was scientifically proven that no cancers were caused by smoking cigarettes, a bit different today with the opposite being proven.


    As a moderator (who may still be required to lock the thread if it gets out of hand), I should say I’m with the climate-change is happening party.

    The way I see it, the scientific foundations which puts planes in the air, rockets into space, gives us radio astronomy and the micro-wave is the same science that reveals to us the variations in the climate over hundreds of thousands of years. To my mind, by disbelieving in that science, you may as well say flying, electricity and the internal combustion engine are all myths.

    Yes, there are those who will take advantage of both sides and try to make money or gain out of it, but that in itself doesn’t dismiss the evidence (I feel). (and yes, you may ask what evidence – I’m not about to throw up a dozen or so links to prove it. That’s been tried and tried in many other similar threads – all to no avail.) People will believe or not. That is the way we are. We all have our own level of scepticism and gullibility. Fords or Holden? Same-sex marriages or Hetero? What flavour of religion do you prefer (surely they can’t all be right, nor can they all be wrong?) Labour or Liberal or Greens? Republic or Commonwealth?

    Whether we be the little man, or those with big bucks – we will all pay in the end. (unfortunately, it’s the little guy who can’t afford it).

    Oh and as for saving the planet: Earth doesn’t need saving – we do. Earth will be around for a few more billions of years after we fall and become part of the next batch of fossil fuel. :blink:


Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 70 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.