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Global Climate Change – Evidence, Causes, and Effects
The purpose of this activity is to see the causes and effects of climate change. We will also look
at the evidence that has been collected over the years that support it. Use the NASA climate change
website that is on my website under the links for online assignments link.
Click on the vital signs link and answer these questions and then answer the questions for each section
Carbon dioxide
1. How much has the CO2 concentration increased since 2006?
2. What is the CO2 concentration today compared to the highest CO2 levels in the last 400,000
3. What are the units of measurement for CO2 concentration?
4. What are 4 ways that CO2 is released into the atmosphere?
Global Temperature
5. How much higher is the surface temperature in 2014 than in 1880?
6. When have most of the warmest 10 years occurred? What year was the warmest on record?
Arctic Sea Ice Minimum
7. How much Arctic Sea Ice has been lost since 1980?
8. At what rate is sea ice declining?
9. Describe what you see in the animation as you drag the slider at the bottom right.
Land Ice
10. How much ice does Antarctica lose each year?
11. How much ice does the Greenland ice sheet lose each year?
Sea Level
12. How much has sea level risen since 1870? How much since 1994?
13. What two factors affect sea level rise?
Part 2 – Evidence
Click on the evidence link and answer the questions that follow.
14. How has the earth’s climate changed in the last 650,000 years?
16. What is the most likely cause of Earth’s warming climate today?
17. What percentage of scientists think that this warming is caused by
human activities?
18. Briefly describe each of these evidences of Earth’s warming climate:
a. Warming oceans
b. Glacial Retreat
c. Extreme Events
d. Ocean Acidification
e. Decreased snow cover
Mastery Check Questions:
1. How have humans affected Earth’s climate?
2. How will climate change affect our environment?
3. Draw three pictures showing how earth’s orbit and axis
change over time.
4. How does volcanic activity affect climate?
15. What caused these natural changes in climate?
Part 3 – Causes
Click on the Causes link and answer the following:
19. What do most scientists agree is causing the Earth’s climate to warm?
20. What are 5 greenhouse gases?
21. What is something humans do to increase each of these greenhouse gases?
a. Carbon dioxide
b. Methane
c. Nitrous oxide
d. CFCs
22. In the past, the sun has changed how much energy it is putting out. This is called solar
irradiance. Why do scientists not think that this is what is causing the warming of Earth?
Part 4 – Effects
Click on the effects link and answer the following questions.
23. What are 4 observable effects already seen by climate change?
24. Some areas will be hurt by climate change while others will benefit. What will be the net result
of climate change? (will it hurt more or benefit more)
Part 5 – Quiz
Go back to my website and click on the link that says “warm up quiz”. Write your answers below as you
take the quiz.
1. The six hottest years occurred during the last _________ years.
2. No place on earth is colder than it was 100 years ago. True/False
3. Which of the following gases do not trap heat?
4. As average global temperature rises ________________________________________.
5. Where have some of the strongest and earliest impacts of global warming occurred?
6. Compared to other greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide is the most effective at trapping heat near
the surface of the earth. True/False
7. Some kinds of pollution in the atmosphere can act to cool the planet by reducing the amount of
solar radiation that reaches the Earth’s surface. True/False
8. Earth has been warmer in the past than it is today. True/False When was it?
9. If you took away the atmosphere’s natural greenhouse effect, and everything else stayed the
same, Earth’s temperature would be ___________.
10. How do scientist collect evidence about climate?
Part 6 – Natural causes of Climate Change:
Find and research the following 4 natural causes of climate change (not caused by humans). Then draw
a picture of each of those and describe it below. (Hint, google rates of plate tectonics and climate
change, and Milankovich cycles)
1. Eccentricity of Earth’s Orbit
2. Obliquity of Earth’s Axis
3. Precession of Earth’s Axis
4. Rates of Plate Tectonics