Photo Credit: Nathan Kensinger / Curbed New York
The changing climate on Earth is something everyone is currently experiencing whether they like it or not. This type of shift refers to a change in climate or temperature in a specific region. It could also be a change in Earth’s overall temperature. Earth’s climate has always been constantly shifting. More geographically specific, here in New York City climate change is ongoing.
Climate change can be affected by many factors. This can include human disturbances. Humans use massive amounts of energy daily, and even hourly. Scientist this can range from driving your car to simply cooking or reheating food in the microwave. Before the power can reach into people’s homes it is produced by burning fossil fuels like oil, gas, and coal. By burning these fuels, the gas heats the air up and over time cause climates to change. Climate change can also be affected by events outside of man’s control. For example, a shift in the orbit of Earth from the sun, the sun can release more or less energy into space, or even when a volcano erupts there can be atmospheric change that can lead to climate change. All of these factors play a role in causing Earth’s climate to change over time and will continue to cause the climate to change on Earth and New York City.
Currently in the New York region, there have been several types of climate change. First, New York City has experienced a shift in temperature. The national average temperature has risen 2.4 degrees Fahrenheit since 1970 and winter warming exceeding 4.4 degrees Fahrenheit. This increase has occurred in the entire state. Secondly, precipitation cycles have increased rapidly in NYC. Since 1990 precipitation has risen every year and is expected to rise in a shorter period. We receive more precipitation in the winter than in the summer seasons. Also, the precipitation that has occurred is more heavy rain events than previously observed. Thirdly, the sea levels along the coast of New York are rising. They have risen more than one foot since 1990. This is almost twice the observed global rate per decade. Finally, some natural occurrences have been causing climate change. This includes a shift in the seasons. Compared to a couple decades ago, spring has begun a week earlier. By spring starting earlier than usual, this is a clear sign that the Earth is warming up; temperatures are increasing. Thus with temperatures increasing, during the winter season there is less snow cover. Snow covering allows the Earth to naturally cool down.
As you can see, these are just a few contributing factors that are causing climate change not only in NYC, but on the Earth. In the future higher temperature increases could potentially cause bodies of water to dry up, start forest fires, or even cause more fossil fuels to be burned because people would need energy to cool their homes and huge apartment and office buildings in the city. More rain in the future can cause flooding. Climate change is constantly developing. We may not have total control over it but we can still help prevent it.