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Climate Models and Clean Energy

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by

Shayon Banerjee

on 13 June 2013

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Transcript of Climate Models and Clean Energy

photo credit Nasa / Goddard Space Flight Center / Reto Stöckli
By Shayon and Kevin
10.1 Climate Models
and Clean Energy

Affects upon the climate systems
The way society and human technologies develop will affect earth’s climate.
Climate systems depend on the following criteria:

- The water and carbon cycles.

- Positive and negative loops, this includes the albedo effect.

- Concentrations of Greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

- Ocean currents.
Creating future climate scenarios.
The numerous variables in the change of climate!
With there being so many variables involved with the change in the climate systems scientists who study this cannot be certain on how quickly earth’s climate will react to changes in greenhouse gases. They have already discovered that the rate at which living matter and the ocean undergo absorption of things is slower than previously understood. This tells us that the concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide could increase at a faster speed then we expect, this is including our emission being the same.
The choices people make do matter!
The main reason why predicting future climate is so difficult for scientist is that they do not know what choices people will be making.
Climate projections
A climate projection is a scientific forecast of future climate based on observations and computer models. They are made by complex computer models. The models are known as climate models. They consider future changes that will affect greenhouse gas production.
Climate scenarios
The future greenhouse gas emissions are unknowable, but scientists can establish what climate will probably be like under specific conditions. Assumptions about future human behavior know as scenarios are made. An example of a scenario is ( if Humans continue to use fossil fuels at the same rate as today). For each scenario scientist will create climate models to make projections on the changes put upon the climate under those circumstances.
Human activities play a great role in the contribution in climate change by enforcing changes upon the Earth's atmosphere in the amounts of greenhouse gases, aerosols which are small particles, and cloudiness. The largest known contribution comes from the burning of fossil fuels, which releases carbon dioxide gas to the atmosphere.
A
Albedo effect
The water cycle
The carbon cycle
To produce future climate scenarios, scientists examine the following:

- How fast will world’s population increase?
- What energy sources will we use in the following 10 years, 50 years, and 100 years?
- What type of technology will we be using in the next 10 years, 50 years, and 100 years.
Scientists have made a trend for greenhouse gases
Scientist that study climate have made projections for many scenarios and have seen the trend that scenarios with higher greenhouse gas emissions result in larger temperature increase then scenarios with lower emissions.
The most common clean energy sources.
Most common used examples of Clean energies are biomass, hydroelectricity, biofuels, nuclear power, geothermal energy, wind power and solar power . With the rising cost and decreasing availability of non-renewable fossil fuels, renewable energy is receiving a lot of attention.
Biofuels:
Biofuels use plant-based fuels to make energy.

Biomass :
Resources of biomass include trees, food crops, algae, by products of forestry and agriculture, also Methane fumes from landfills. They provide fuel and also products that are normally made from non-renewable fossil fuels, for example production of plastic, insulation and fabric.

Nuclear power:
Splitting the nuclei of atoms creates Nuclear power. They do not produce greenhouse gases, however they do produce radioactive waste, this is causing another set of problems.
Biofuels and biomass
Water or Hydroelectricity:

The energy of moving water turns turbines into power generating tools that produce electricity.
This clean energy is the largest producer of electricity in the United States. Hydroelectric power plants have the ability to transmit electricity over great distances.
Hydroelectricity

Energy that comes from heat (thermal energy) from the Earth it used to heat homes as well as buildings. Large utility companies use geothermal reservoirs to drive generators and make electricity. Residential heat pumps use the ground temperature of the Earth for heating and cooling in homes.
Geothermal Energy
Wind power
Generators are powered by wind causing wind turbines to turn, electricity is produced. Wind is simply moving air formed by the sun heating Earth’s surface. As long as the sun is shinning, the wind remains an infinite, renewable source of clean energy. It is a clean energy as wind turbine produce no emissions.

Solar power
The absorption of radiation from the sun is done by solar panels; it is then converted into electricity. The Sun’s radiation can also be used to heat water. The sun has been producing energy in the form of heat and light since the Earth was formed. Solar energy is a type of clean energy that does not produce emission and not often harmful to the environment.
Wind and solar power
Stopping all fossil fuels will not prevent climate change from entirely stopping. Due to the greenhouse gasses that have already been added to the atmosphere, the earth will continue to warm over the following centuries. But by switching from fossil fuels to clean energy, the most serious consequences of climate change could be prevented.
Some of theses serious consequences include the following:
-The raise of the ocean level
-Up to half of earth's species may face extinction.
-Increase in extreme weather (Heat waves, floods, droughts)
The stoppage of fossil fuels?
Climate data is being used by many individuals and companies. Below is an example of a climate data user:

Farmers depend on the weather and climate for their economic success. It lets them know about the right timing for planting, irrigation, and harvesting. They depend on short-term weather for day to day decisions like irrigation. Longer-term climate projections of soil moisture, precipitation and temperature will help farmers decide what type of crops to grow in the future.
Climate data is not only used by scientists.
Full transcript