A Short Guide to the Science of Climate Change

London - The Royal Society,
the UK’s national academy of science, has today launched a new
short guide to the science of climate change. 

The guide has been written to summarise the evidence and to
clarify the levels of confidence associated with the current
scientific understanding of climate change.  It makes clear
what is well-known and established about the climate system, what
is widely agreed but with some debate about details, and what is
still not well understood.

Climate change: a summary of the
describes how and why the earth is currently
warming, and explains the wide range of independent measurements
and observations which underpin this understanding. It shows that
there is strong evidence that over the last half century, the
earth’s warming has been caused largely by human

It also explains the uncertainty involved in predicting the size
of future temperature increases. There are many potentially serious
consequences of climate change, so that important decisions need to
be made.

The guide concludes that, as in many other areas, policy choices
will have to be made in the absence of perfect knowledge, but that
the scientific evidence is an essential part of public reasoning in
this complex and challenging area.

John Pethica, Vice-President of the Royal Society and Chair of
the working group that wrote the document said: “Climate change is
an important issue affecting everyone. Much of the public debate on
climate change is polarised at present, which can make it difficult
to get a good overview of the science. This guide explains where
the science is clear and established, and also where it is less
certain. It is not a simple guide, as this is not a simple
issue.  This summary has been produced for all who want to
understand the full range of the scientific evidence.”

The guide has been prepared by leading international scientists,
mostly drawn from the Fellowship of the Society, and it is based on
very extensive published scientific work.  The working group
drew on input from a wide range of experts and the document was
reviewed by both Fellows and others with a broad range of relevant
expertise and experience.

title=”The guide is available for download here”>The guide is
available for download here

Source: royalsociety.org

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