Tags: climate change vs global warming

Climate Change vs. Global Warming: Nuances Between the Two

By    |   Sunday, 23 Nov 2014 05:48 PM

While people often use the terms “climate change” and “global warming” interchangeably, nuances exist between the two, both scientifically and in terms of public perception.

The more specific phrase "global warming" refers to the long-term warming of the Earth, which NASA said has seen global temperatures rise consistently since 1880. The Earth’s average surface temperature since then has increased by 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit, which is 0.8 degrees Celsius, NASA reported.

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Warming was caused mainly by people burning fossil fuels and putting out heat-trapping gases into the air.

The broader term “climate change” encompasses global warming but refers to the broader range of changes that are happening to the planet as a result of that warming, according to NASA.

“These include rising sea levels, shrinking mountain glaciers, accelerating ice melt in Greenland, Antarctica and the Arctic, and shifts in flower/plant blooming times,” the definition says.

A national Yale study released in May 2014 indicated it also found a nuance between the phrases in terms of public perception.

The study concluded Americans care more deeply when the phrase “global warming” is used, while 'climate change’ leaves them relatively cold,” The Guardian reported.

Americans were 13 percent more likely to say global warming was a bad thing, The Guardian reported.

“The term ‘global warming’ resonates far more powerfully, triggering images of ice melt, extreme weather and catastrophe," according to The Guardian. "Mention ‘climate change,’ however, and many Americans begin to disengage, the researchers found.”

Still, scientists generally prefer the term “climate change” because that encompasses effects other than global warming, such as variances in rainfall patterns, melting glaciers, and rising sea levels, according to National Public Radio.

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While people often use the terms “climate change” and “global warming” interchangeably, nuances exist between the two, both scientifically and in terms of public perception.
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2014-48-23
Sunday, 23 Nov 2014 05:48 PM
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