Important Climate Change Terms
This describes the total of all weather occurring over a period of years in a given place. It is the average weather condition of that place. Climate tells us what it’s usually like in the place where you live.
For example, some countries like Cameroon, Ghana and Liberia are all in the tropical wet region of Africa. They have a very sunny, hot and wet climate all year round. However, there may be very different day-to-day weather conditions in each village or town in these countries.
Weather is all around us. Weather may be one of the first things you notice when you wake up. Weather describes whatever is happening outdoors in a given place at a given time. It can change a lot within a very short time. For example, It can be windy at night, rainy in the morning, hot and sunny at noontime, and even back to windy before sunset. It includes daily changes in rainfall, temperature and wind in a given location.
Greenhouse is also another word you should know about. Have you ever seen a greenhouse? In some countries, people build a small glass house to plant crops in it. It is built to keep the sun's heat from escaping from the glasshouses.
In a way, the earth is like a glasshouse. The earth has some very important gasses in the atmosphere that keeps us warm.
Some of these gases are water vapour, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and methane.
When the sun heats the earth, these gases keep the heat on the earth's surface. Without these gases, heat would escape back into space and Earth’s average temperature would be about 60°F colder.
Did you know that Methane (a greenhouse gas) is produced when vegetation is burned, digested or rotted with no oxygen present. Garbage dumps, rice paddies, and grazing cows and other livestock release lots of methane
Have you ever got into a car that has been left in the sun with all windows closed? The trapped heat is a good example of the greenhouse effect.