The Maths of Climate Change | Summary and Q&A

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November 22, 2018
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Gresham College
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The Maths of Climate Change

TL;DR

Mathematics plays a crucial role in climate modeling, which helps us predict and understand the effects of climate change.

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Key Insights

  • 🏑 Climate modeling is critical in understanding and predicting the impact of climate change, but it is a challenging and uncertain field due to limited data and complex Earth systems.
  • 💁 Different models, such as Earth System models and Global Climate models, are used to evaluate climate change scenarios and provide valuable information to policymakers.
  • 🤢 Indicators such as rising temperatures, decreasing Arctic sea ice, more extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and increased atmospheric carbon dioxide all point towards significant climate change.

Transcript

so climate change is without question a very controversial subject I doubt if everybody in this room has the same view on climate change as everybody else unlike most areas of mathematics when I do climate change work I come into contact with all sorts of different people including American politicians so it is important and it is a meeting point o... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: Why is climate modeling considered hard and uncertain?

Climate modeling faces challenges due to limited data and uncertainties in Earth's systems. It is difficult to predict long-term climate changes and the way different factors interact with each other.

Q: How do climate models help policymakers?

Climate models provide insights on the impact of climate change on various aspects such as the economy, agriculture, and energy. Policymakers rely on these models to make informed decisions regarding climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies.

Q: What are some indicators of climate change?

Rising global temperatures, decreasing Arctic sea ice coverage, increasing extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are some key indicators of climate change.

Q: How is mathematics used in climate modeling?

Mathematics is the foundation of climate modeling, as it helps formulate the equations that describe the laws of physics governing the Earth's systems. Climate models use these equations to simulate and predict future climate scenarios.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Climate change is a highly controversial subject, but it is important to bring together scientists, mathematicians, and policymakers to address this global issue.

  • Climate modeling is a difficult and uncertain task due to limited data and complexities in Earth's systems, but mathematics can help make predictions about the future.

  • Earth System models and Global Climate models are used to understand climate change by examining factors such as the atmosphere, oceans, and human behavior.

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