FILE – In this May 9, 1989 file photo, Dr. James Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, testifies before a Senate Transportation subcommittee on Capitol Hill in Washington, D. C., a year after his history-making testimony and tell the world that the global warming is here and it might get worse. (AP Photo/Dennis Cook, File)
We were warned. On June 23, 1988, a balmy day in Washington, James Hansen told the U.S. Congress and the world that the warming of the earth was not approaching — it had already arrived.
The testimony of the top of the NASA scientist, said Rice University historian Douglas Brinkley, was “the opening salvo of the age of climate change.”
Thirty years later, it is clear that Hansen and other doomsayers were right. But the change is so stunning that it is easy to lose sight of the effects of large and small — some obvious, others less conspicuous.
The earth is noticeably warmer, stormier and more extreme. Polar regions have lost billions of tons of ice to the sea level are raised by the billions of gallons of water. Many more forest fires rage.
More than 30 years — the period of time climate scientists often use in their studies in order to minimize of course, variations of the annual temperature warms up to 0.54 degrees Celsius, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. And the temperature in the United States is gone and even more — almost 0.85 degrees.
“The biggest change over the past 30 years, that the biggest part of my life, is that we are no longer just thinking about the future,” said Kathie Dello, a climate scientist at Oregon State University in Corvallis. “Climate change is here, now, and it hits us hard from all sides.”
Warming of the earth is not just global, it’s all local. According to the Associated Press statistical analysis of 30 years of weather, ice, fire, ocean, biological, and other data, each one of the 344 climate divisions in the Lower forty-eight states — NOAA groups of municipalities with similar weather has warmed up considerably, so each of 188 cities surveyed.
The effects are being felt in the cities of Atlantic City, New Jersey, where the average annual temperature has increased 1.4 degrees in the past 30 years, to Yakima, Washington, where the thermometer ran a little more. In the middle, Des Moines, Iowa, warmed by 1.5 degrees since 1988.
South-central Colorado, the climate department, just outside of Salida, has warmed 1.2 degrees on average since 1988, among the hottest divisions in the contiguous United States.
When she was a little girl, 30 years ago, winery marketing chief Jessica Shook used for cross-country ski of her Salida front door in the winter. It was cold and there was a lot of snow. Now, she has to drive about 80 miles to the snow, that is not on mountain tops, ” she said.
“T-shirt weather in January, that never happen when I was a child,” Ms Shook said.
When Buel Mattix bought his heating and cooling company 15 years ago in Salida, he had maybe four air conditioning jobs per year. Now he has a waiting list of 10 to 15 air conditioning jobs long and can not get to all of them.
And then there is the effect of forest fires. Veteran Salida firefighter Mike Sugaski to think that a fire of 10,000 hectares in size. Now he fights fires 10 times as large.
“You kind of keep saying” How can they get much worse?’ But they do,” said Sugaski, who rode his mountain bike on which usually ski slopes in January of this year.
In fact, forest fires in the United States now consume more than twice the area they did 30 years ago.
The statistics tracking climate change since 1988, almost numb. North America and Europe have warmed by about 1.1 degrees — more than any other continent. The Northern Hemisphere has warmed more than the Southern part of the land faster than the ocean. In the United States, the temperature rises, were the most visible in the night and in the summer and the autumn. The heat increased at a higher rate in the North than the South.
Since 1988, daily heat records broken are more than 2.3 million times at weather stations across the country a half a million times more than cold records were broken.
Doreen Pollack fled the Chicago cold for Phoenix more than two decades ago, but in the past 30 years the night of the summer, the heat is increased to almost 1.8 degrees. She said: if the power goes out, unbearable, adding: “Be careful what you ask for.”
The Gap interviewed more than 50 scientists, who confirmed the depth and the spread of the warming of the earth.
Clara Deser, climate analysis director of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, said that in dealing with the 30-year periods in smaller regions than continents or the world as a whole, it would be wise not to say that the global warming is man-made. Her studies show that in some places in North America — although it is not the most natural and weather variability could account for as much as half of the local warming of the earth.
But if you look at the world as a whole, especially since the 1970s, almost all of the warming is man-made, said Zeke Hausfather of the independent scientific group the Berkeley Earth. Without additional carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, he said, the Earth would be a little bit of cooling from a weakening of the sun.
Numerous scientific studies and government reports calculate that greenhouse gases in the large image for more than 90 percent of the post-industrial Earth, the warming of the earth.
“It would be centuries to a millennium to reach that kind of change with natural causes. This, in that context, is a staggering pace,” said Kim Cobb, a climate scientist at Georgia Tech in Atlanta.
Since the 1800s scientists have shown that certain gases in the Earth’s atmosphere trap heat from the sun like a blanket. Human activities such as the burning of coal, oil and gasoline are releasing more of these gases in the atmosphere, in particular carbon dioxide. The U.S. and international science reports say that more than 90 percent of the warming that has happened since 1950 is man-made.
Others warned that what seems to be a small increase in the temperature should not be taken lightly.
“One or two degrees may not sound like much, but increasing your thermostat by just that amount will have a noticeable effect on your comfort,” said Deke Arndt, NOAA’s climate monitoring chief in Asheville, North Carolina, which has been heated almost to 0.98 degrees in 30 years.
Arndt said average temperatures don’t tell the whole story: “It is the extremes that these changes bring.” The nation’s extreme weather — flood-inducing downpours, longer droughts, heat waves and bitter cold and snow has doubled in 30 years, according to a federal index.
The north-East of the extreme precipitation is more than doubled. Brockton, Massachusetts, had only one day with at least four inches of rain from 1957 to 1988, but a dozen of them in the 30 years since, according to NOAA records.
Ellicott City, Maryland, had just had her second thousand-year flood in a little less than two years. And the summer is the name Atlantic storms? On average, the first form now, almost a month earlier than in 1988, according to the University of Miami hurricane researcher Brian McNoldy.
The 14 most expensive hurricanes in Us history, adjusted for inflation, have hit since 1988, that is both the growing development of coastal areas and a span, which is also the most intense Atlantic storms on record.
“The collective damage caused by Atlantic hurricanes in 2017 accounted for more than half of the total budget of our Ministry of Defence,” said MIT’s Kerry Emanuel.
Climate scientists point to the north Pole as the place where climate change is most noticeable with dramatic sea-ice loss, melting of the Greenland ice sheet, retreating glaciers and the thawing of the permafrost. The Arctic is two times as quickly warmed up as the rest of the world.
The disappearance of 50 years faster than scientists predicted, said Michael Mann, a climate scientist at Pennsylvania State University.
“There is a new Arctic because the Arctic Ocean is now navigable” at times in the summer, says Mark Serreze, director of the National Snow and Ice Data Center.
The vast majority of glaciers all over the world a lot smaller. A NASA satellite that measures changes in the gravity calculated that the Earth’s glaciers lost 279 billion tons of ice — about 67 billion litres of water — from 2002 to 2017.
In 1986, the Begich Boggs visitor center in Alaska’s Chugach National Forest open for the mark of the Portage glacier. But the glacier continues to shrink.
“You definitely can’t see from the visitor center, and you have not in the past 15 years,” says climatologist Brian Brettschneider of the University of Alaska Fairbanks.
The ice sheets in Greenland and West Antarctica have also wizened, the melting of about 455 billion tonnes of ice into the water, according to the NASA satellite. That is enough to get out of the state of Georgia in the water almost three metres deep. And it is enough — in combination with all the other melting of the ice — for the increase of the level of the seas. General, NASA satellites have shown three inches of sea-level rise (75 mm) in the past 25 years.
With more than 70 percent of the Earth covered by oceans, a 3-inch increase means about 6500 cubic miles (27,150 cubic km) of additional water. That is enough for the entire United States with water of about three meters deep. It is an appropriate metaphor for climate change, say scientists: We are in the deep, and still deeper.
“Thirty years ago, we can see it coming like a train in the distance,” NOAA’s Arndt said. “The train is in our living room.”
This story was previously published in the news.com.au.