## IPCC 2021 – Comparing Arctic and Global temperatures – using Excel

According to the IPCC report for Policymakers “It is very likely that the Arctic has warmed at more than twice the global rate over the past 50 years1.

You are going to test this statement to see if it is true.

### Resources

Arctic and global temperatures data spreadsheet

Tutorial: Using Formula in Excel

Tutorial: Creating Line Graphs in Excel

1. Contrast the results of your averages and the range for global air temperatures and those in the Arctic
2. Using the Change over time value in your table consider oif the statement “It is very likely that the Arctic has warmed at more than twice the global rate over the past 50 years” is true.
1. Complete the graph above which shows data on Global and Arctic temperature change from 1900 to 2020;
• Add a title to the graph
• Draw a curved line of best fit between the data shown for the start of each decade for the Global data
• Draw a curved line of best fit between the data shown for the start of each decade for the Arctic data
• Try to predict the future! Continue your line of best fit for both Global and Arctic lines on until 2100. To do so follow the recent tend and try to project that into the future.
• What could change the future? Think about government policies relating to climate change and the future.

### Why is the Arctic warming faster that the rest of the globe?

Place the following information into a logical sequence to explain why the Arctic is warming faster that the global average:

### Sources

1. IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.3461. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)
2. Ecochard, K., 2021. NASA – What’s causing the poles to warm faster than the rest of Earth?. [online] Nasa.gov. Available at: https://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/warmingpoles.html Accessed 29 November 2021.
3. The annual mean global and Arctic  temperature time series are provided by Dr. Muyin Wang. Values are the weighted average of all the non-missing, grid-box anomalies plus the absolute temperature. They are based on the monthly  global gridded data (5×5 grid box ) and the absolute temperature,   that has been developed by the Climatic Research Unit (University of East Angliaand NCAS) jointly with the Hadley Centre (UK Met Office).

## IPCC 2021 – Comparing Arctic and Global temperatures

According to the IPCC report for Policymakers “It is very likely that the Arctic has warmed at more than twice the global rate over the past 50 years1.

You are going to test this statement to see if it is true.

1. Contrast the results of your averages and the range for global air temperatures and those in the Arctic
2. Using the Change over time value in your table consider oif the statement “It is very likely that the Arctic has warmed at more than twice the global rate over the past 50 years” is true.
1. Complete the graph above which shows data on Global and Arctic temperature change from 1900 to 2020;
• Add a title to the graph
• Draw a curved line of best fit between the data shown for the start of each decade for the Global data
• Draw a curved line of best fit between the data shown for the start of each decade for the Arctic data
• Try to predict the future! Continue your line of best fit for both Global and Arctic lines on until 2100. To do so follow the recent tend and try to project that into the future.
• What could change the future? Think about government policies relating to climate change and the future.

### Why is the Arctic warming faster that the rest of the globe?

Place the following information into a logical sequence to explain why the Arctic is warming faster that the global average:

### Sources

1. IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.3461. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)
2. Ecochard, K., 2021. NASA – What’s causing the poles to warm faster than the rest of Earth?. [online] Nasa.gov. Available at: https://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/warmingpoles.html Accessed 29 November 2021.
3. The annual mean global and Arctic  temperature time series are provided by Dr. Muyin Wang. Values are the weighted average of all the non-missing, grid-box anomalies plus the absolute temperature. They are based on the monthly  global gridded data (5×5 grid box ) and the absolute temperature,   that has been developed by the Climatic Research Unit (University of East Angliaand NCAS) jointly with the Hadley Centre (UK Met Office).

## IPCC 2021 – Impacts of Polar Climate Change

According to the IPCC report for Policymakers “Human influence is very likely the main driver of the global retreat of glaciers since the 1990s and the decrease in Arctic sea ice area between 1979–1988 and 2010–2019 (about 40% in September and about 10% in March). There has been no significant trend in Antarctic sea ice area from 1979 to 2020 due to regionally opposing trends and large internal variability. Human influence very likely contributed to the decrease in Northern Hemisphere spring snow cover since 1950. It is very likely that human influence has contributed to the observed surface melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet over the past two decades, but there is only limited evidence, with medium agreement, of human influence on the Antarctic Ice Sheet mass loss.”1

## The Impacts of climate change in Polar regions

Read page 2 of the polar regions fact sheet from the IPCC2.

Produce a spider diagram of all the suggested impacts that are predicted to occur in the Arctic and the Antarctic. Around those impacts suggest some of the negative consequences for humankind.

Sources

1. IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.10. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)
2. IPCC.ch. 2021. Regional fact sheet – Polar Regions. [online] Available at: https://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar6/wg1/downloads/factsheets/IPCC_AR6_WGI_Regional_Fact_Sheet_Polar_regions.pdf [Accessed 28 November 2021].

## IPCC 2021 – Changing Polar Climate

According to the IPCC report for Policymakers “Human influence is very likely the main driver of the global retreat of glaciers since the 1990s and the decrease in Arctic sea ice area between 1979–1988 and 2010–2019 (about 40% in September and about 10% in March). There has been no significant trend in Antarctic sea ice area from 1979 to 2020 due to regionally opposing trends and large internal variability. Human influence very likely contributed to the decrease in Northern Hemisphere spring snow cover since 1950. It is very likely that human influence has contributed to the observed surface melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet over the past two decades, but there is only limited evidence, with medium agreement, of human influence on the Antarctic Ice Sheet mass loss.”1

The Arctic is largely sea ice with some parts of countries intruding

Sea ice typically covers about 14 to 16 million km2 in late winter in the Arctic

https://www.nasa.gov/audience/forstudents/k-4/stories/nasa-knows/what-is-antarctica-k4.html

Antarctica is a CONTINENT with land mass under the ice, mountains, and volcanoes.

Antarctica is 14 million km2 PLUS 17 to 20 million km2 of sea ice in the Antarctic Southern Ocean in winter.

1. Using your knowledge of global warming explain why the four changes described above have occurred.

*Losing mass – this means that more ice melts than is gained via snowfall in a given year.

1. Change two above suggests that there will be more precipitation (snowfall and rainfall) in Arctic and Antarctic regions. Complete the futures exercise below to consider what this change could mean for those regions.
• What possible futures are there for the Arctic and Antarctic with increased precipitation?
• What probable futures are there for the Arctic and Antarctic with increased precipitation?
• What preferable futures exist for these regions? Here you might want to consider the key role these regions play in regulating our global climate.

Changes to the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet.

The graphic below shows Greenland Ice Sheet cumulative mass changes in gigatonnes (recently observed and projected by models under SSP1-2.6 and SSP5-8.5 scenarios) and equivalent sea level change (in metres). Maps show recent elevation changes (metres/year).

• SSP1-2.6: Global CO2 emissions are cut severely, but not as fast, reaching net-zero after 2050. Temperatures stabilize around 1.8°C higher by the end of the century.
• SSP5-8.5: Current CO2 emissions levels roughly double by 2050. The global economy grows quickly, but this growth is fuelled by exploiting fossil fuels and energy-intensive lifestyles. By 2100, the average global temperature is a scorching 4.4°C higher.
Source: IPCC2
1. Using the graphs on ice mass change complete the table below.

SIMPLE TABLE

A gigaton is a billion tonnes. It is roughly equivalent to the mass all of the living mammals other than humans on earth.

1. Which of the two areas, Greenland or Antarctica, will be most affected by climate change in 2100? Use data from the two graphs and maps to justify your view.

### Projected climate changes in the Polar regions

Look carefully at the graphic below, it shows projected changes in the future (SSP5-8.5 scenario) in mean annual temperature and total precipitation at 2°C global warming compared to 1850–1900 for the Arctic (left) and Antarctic (right).

#### Temperature

1. What is the projected change for Greenland (G)?
2. What is the projected change for Lapland (L)?
3. What is the projected change for Siberia (S)?
4. Which parts of the Arctic will suffer the most from temperature changes under the IPCC’s most extreme climate change scenario?
5. What is the projected temperature change for the Antarctic Peninsula (P)?
6. What is the projected temperature change at Vostok (V)?

#### Precipitation

1. What is the projected change for Greenland?
2. What is the projected change for Lapland?
3. What is the projected change for Siberia?
4. Which parts of the Arctic will suffer the most from precipitation changes under the IPCC’s most extreme climate change scenario?
5. What is the projected precipitation change for the Antarctic peninsula?
6. What is the projected precipitation change at Vostok?
7. Which areas are likely to suffer the most change, the oceans or the land masses?
8. Conduct research online, why is it significant for ice melting that the oceans warm? (e.g. https://www.worldwildlife.org/pages/why-are-glaciers-and-sea-ice-melting)

### Extension

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) – run the simulation at this website https://sealevel.nasa.gov/vesl/web/sea-level/slr-antarctica/.
Describe the changes that take place to try to explain them.

### Sources

• IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.10. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)
• ch. 2021. Regional fact sheet – Polar Regions. [online] Available at: https://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar6/wg1/downloads/factsheets/IPCC_AR6_WGI_Regional_Fact_Sheet_Polar_regions.pdf [Accessed 28 November 2021].

## IPCC 2021 – Evidence for Past Climate Change

According to the IPCC report for Policymakers “In 2019, atmospheric CO2 concentrations were higher than at any time in at least 2 million years, and concentrations of CH4 and N2O were higher than at any time in at least 800,000 years. Since 1750, increases in CO2 (47%) and CH4 (156%) concentrations far exceed, and increases in N2O (23%) are similar to, the natural multi-millennial changes between glacial and interglacial periods over at least the past 800,000 years.”1

Source:IPCC1

To gather information about the climate scientists need to use a wide range of sources. As can be seen on the graphic opposite, from 1800 onwards scientists can rely upon observations collected by various instruments. However to really understand climate change we need to examine longer term patterns going back thousands two hundreds of thousands of years. The evidence that we have for these can be taken for various sources as can be seen on graph B showing paleoclimatic sources of evidence. Paleoclimate is just a way of saying climate from the geological past.

Select one of the sources of instrumental observations and one of the paleoclimatic evidence and conduct some research into it.

Complete the tables to evaluate the methods of showing climate change.

### Paleoclimate Evidence

Sources
1. IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P10. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)

## IPCC 2021 – The Evidence for Climate Change

Climate stripes Image source: Show your stripes2

The text below is simplified from FAQ3.1 of the IPCC’s 2021 WG1 report1.

### How do we Know Humans are Responsible for Climate Change?

The dominant role of humans in driving recent climate change is clear. This conclusion is based on a synthesis (mixture) of information from multiple lines of evidence, including direct observations of recent changes in Earth’s climate; analyses of tree rings, ice cores, and other long-term records documenting how the climate has changed in the past; and computer simulations based on the fundamental physics that govern the climate system.

### Climate is influenced by a range of factors

There are two main natural drivers of variations in climate on timescales of decades to centuries.

1. The first is variations in the Sun’s activity, which alter the amount of incoming energy from the sun.
2. The second is large volcanic eruptions, which increase the number of small particles (aerosols) in the upper atmosphere that reflect sunlight and cool the surface—an effect that can last for several years.

The main human drivers of climate change are increases in the atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases and of aerosols from burning fossil fuels, land use change (e.g. deforestation) and other sources. The greenhouse gases absorb infrared radiation (heat) near the surface, warming the climate. Aerosols, like those produced naturally by volcanoes, on average cool the climate by increasing the reflection of sunlight.

### Evidence for human activity causing recent change.

Multiple lines of evidence demonstrate that human drivers are the main cause of recent climate change. The current rates of increase of the concentration of the major greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide) are unprecedented over at least the last 800,000 years.

### Climate models

The basic physics underlying the warming effect of greenhouse gases on the climate has been understood for more than a century, and our current understanding has been used to develop the latest generation climate models.

They include a representation of the ocean, atmosphere, sea ice, land and vegetation and the main processes important in driving climate and climate change.

Source:IPCC3

Results consistently show that such climate models can only reproduce the observed warming  when including the effects of human activities, in particular the increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases.

These climate models show a dominant warming effect of greenhouse gas increases, which has been partly offset by the cooling effect of increases in atmospheric aerosols.

By contrast, simulations that include only natural processes such as variations in the activity of the Sun and emissions from large volcanoes are not able to reproduce the observed warming.

The fact that simulations including only natural processes show much smaller temperature increases indicates that natural processes alone cannot explain the strong rate of warming observed.

### Extra evidence

An additional line of evidence for the role of humans in driving climate change comes from comparing the rate of warming observed over recent decades with that which occurred prior to human influence on climate. Evidence from tree rings and other paleoclimate records shows that the rate of increase of global surface temperature observed over the past fifty years exceeded that which occurred in any previous 50-year period over the past 2000 years.

Taken together, this evidence shows that humans are the dominant cause of observed global warming over recent decades.

## Humans and climate change – comprehension exercise

Using the article make a list of all of the evidence that is available for proving what is responsible for climate change.

1. What are the natural drivers of climate change?
2. What are the main human drivers of climate change?
3. What is a climate model and how do they work?
4. Using graph a, make two statements about the recent warming in the context of:
• i) the last 2000 years
• ii) the last 100,000 years?
5. Using graph b which situation from the climate models matches the observed temperature change?
6. What do the results of the climate models show when trying to explain why temperatures have increased in recent decades?
7. What other evidence is there to support that shown by the climate models?
8. What should governments and policymakers do to respond to this evidence?

### Sources

1. ipcc.ch. 2021. AR6 WGI Report Frequently Asked Questions. [online] Available at: https://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar6/wg1/downloads/faqs/IPCC_AR6_WGI_FAQs.pdf [Accessed 28 November 2021]. P. 14
2. Analytics, M., 2021. Show Your Stripes. [online] Showyourstripes.info. Available at: https://showyourstripes.info/s/globe [Accessed 28 November 2021].
3. IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.8.  Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)

## IPCC 2021 – Changing Climate Zones

According to the IPCC report for Policymakers “Changes in the land biosphere since 1970 are consistent with global warming: climate zones have shifted poleward in both hemispheres, and the growing season has on average lengthened by up to two days per decade since the 1950s North of the Tropic of Cancer1

1. Complete the table below on the positives and negatives of the changes described above

Summary of changes to the Biosphere from the report2

• Warming contributed to an overall spring advancement in the Northern Hemisphere.
• There are increases in the length of the thermal growing season over much of the land surface since at least the mid-20th century. The thermal growing season is the length of time in a calendar year when temperatures are warm enough for agricultural activity.
• Over the Northern Hemisphere as a whole, an increase of about 2.0 days per decade is evident for 1951–2018 with slightly larger increases north of 45°N.
• Over North America, a rise of about 1.3 days per decade is apparent in the United States for 1900–2014 with larger increases after 1980.
• Growing season length in China increased by at least 1.0 days per decade since 1960 .
• Peak bloom dates for cherry blossoms in Kyoto, Japan have occurred progressively earlier in the growing season in recent decades. In 2021, peak bloom was reached on 26 March, the earliest since the Japan Meteorological Agency started collecting the data in 1953 and 10 days ahead of the 30-year average.3
• Grape harvest dates in Beaune, France have also been earlier. Using harvest data for Beaune stretching back nearly 700 years it has been noted that from 1354 to 1987, grapes were on average picked from 28 September whereas during the last 31-year-long period of rapid warming from 1988 to 2018, harvests began 13 days earlier.4

2. Map the changes listed above on the appropriate regions on the world map below:

Source – https://equal-earth.com/

## Changes in dates for various plants, crops and regions

Image source: Adjusted from IPCC 1

1. Add straight lines of best fit to each graph.
2. What has happened to the date of the grape harvest in France? Use data to describe the change.
3. Which graph shows the greatest change?
4. Which graph shows the smallest change?
5. How might these changes affect insect, bird and land animals? You could research these and consider migration, harvesting, hibernation and flowering times.
6. How might these changes affect farmers and food supply?

## The change in growing season in the USA

Study the graph5 below:

1. Complete the table below using information from the graph. Use the nearest WHOLE NUMBER available.
1. Explain which location has the greatest change in its growing season. Use data from the table above in your response.
2. Make a list of advantages that this shift in growing season will bring to the USA.
• Sources:
1. IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.7. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)
2. IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.517. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)
3. Associated Press (author unknown), 2021. Climate crisis ‘likely cause’ of early cherry blossom in Japan. [online] the Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/mar/30/climate-crisis-likely-cause-of-early-cherry-blossom-in-japan [Accessed 28 November 2021]
4. Mercer, C., 2021. Burgundy harvests getting earlier as vineyards heat up, says study – Decanter. [online] Decanter. Available at: https://www.decanter.com/wine-news/burgundy-harvests-earlier-study-423807/ [Accessed 28 November 2021].
5. US EPA. 2021. Climate Change Indicators: Length of Growing Season | US EPA. [online] Available at: https://www.epa.gov/climate-indicators/climate-change-indicators-length-growing-season [Accessed 28 November 2021].

## IPCC 2021 – Which Regions have been affected the most by climate change?

“A.3 Human-induced climate change is already affecting many weather and climate extremes in every region across the globe. Evidence of observed changes in extremes such as heatwaves, heavy precipitation, droughts, and tropical cyclones, and, in particular, their attribution to human influence, has strengthened since AR5”1

Consider the three following maps with your students, or alternatively focus in on one of the maps.

## Heavy Precipitation

“A.3.2 The frequency and intensity of heavy precipitation events have increased since the 1950s over most land area for which observational data are sufficient for trend analysis (high confidence), and human-induced climate change is likely the main driver. Human-induced climate change has contributed to increases in agricultural and ecological droughts in some regions due to increased land evapotranspiration (medium confidence).”1

1. Study carefully the map above which shows an assessment of the observed change in heavy precipitation across the globe.
2. How many of the regions showing on the map have experienced an increase in heavy precipitation?
3. How many of the regions shown on the map have experienced a decrease in heavy precipitation?
4. What is the situation in the region where you live with regards to changes in heavy precipitation?
5. Identify the region where there is high confidence in the human contribution to the observed change.
6. Use TEA (Trend, Evidence, Anomoly) to describe the patterns shown on the map above. Which regions have had an increase in observed heavy precipitation? Which regions have limited evidence?
7. Suggest what impacts an increase in heavy precipitation might have.
8. Look closely at the areas that have limited data and/or literature. Can you suggest reasons why these areas have limited data and literature in relation to heavy precipitation?

## Hot Extremes

“A.3.1 It is virtually certain that hot extremes (including heatwaves) have become more frequent and more intense across most land regions since the 1950s, while cold extremes (including cold waves) have become less frequent and less severe, with high confidence that human-induced climate change is the main driver14 of these changes. Some recent hot extremes observed over the past decade would have been extremely unlikely to occur without human influence on the climate system. Marine heatwaves have approximately doubled in frequency since the 1980s (high confidence), and human influence has very likely contributed to most of them since at least 2006.” 1

The IPCC define an extreme weather event as “an event that is rare at a particular place and time of year. Definitions of rare vary, but an extreme weather event would normally be as rare as or rarer” than the top or bottom 10% of observed events. Therefore, for hot extremes these would be periods where temperatures are in the top 10% for that region. 1

1. Study the map above carefully which shows an assessment of the observed change in hot extremes across the globe.
2. How many of the regions showing on the map have experienced an increase in hot extremes?
3. How many of the regions shown on the map have experienced a decrease in hot extremes?
4. What is the situation in the region where you live with regards to changes in hot extremes?
5. Identify the region where there is high confidence in the human contribution to the observed change.
6. Describe the patterns shown in the regions that have had an increase in observed hot extremes.
7. Suggest what impacts an increase in hot extremes might have.
8. Look closely at the areas that have limited data and/or literature on both the hot extremes and heavy precipitation maps. There are more regions with limited data on the heavy precipitation map.  Can you suggest reasons why?

## Agricultural and Ecological Drought

“A.3.5 Human influence has likely increased the chance of compound extreme events18 since the 1950s. This includes increases in the frequency of concurrent heatwaves and droughts on the global scale (high confidence)”1

Image source: Adjusted from IPCC 1

The IPCC define Drought as “A period of abnormally dry weather long enough to cause a serious hydrological (water) imbalance.”1 This would mean that the amount of rain that falls is not sufficient to meet agricultural (farming) or ecological (the plants and animals in a region) needs and during the growing season impinges on crop production or ecosystem function.

1. How many of the regions showing on the map have experienced an increase in agricultural and ecological drought?
2. How many of the regions shown on the map have experienced a decrease in agricultural and ecological drought?
3. Identify the two regions where there is medium confidence in the human contribution to the observed change.
4. What is the situation in the region where you live with regards to changes in agricultural and ecological drought?
5. Describe the patterns shown in the regions that have had an increase in observed agricultural and ecological drought.
6. Suggest what impacts an increase in agricultural and ecological drought might have.
7. Look closely at the areas that have limited data and/or literature. Can you suggest reasons why these areas have limited data and literature in relation to agricultural and ecological drought?

## Overview – Which Regions have been Affected the Most?

1. Using the graphic above identify three places but are affected negatively by all three situations [hot extremes, heavy precipitation, and agricultural and ecological drought]
1.
2.
3.
2. Using the graphic identify an area that that is affected by fewest of the situations?
3. Which areas on the map should be a priority for further research into the effects of climate change? Explain your answer.
4. Which of the three situations have affected most regions of the world? Use evidence from the maps to support your answer.
5. Write a letter to your local MP, use evidence from the graphic to justify the need for action on climate change. You should focus upon the urgent need for action and how that can be implemented (done) locally.

## Geographical information systems activity

Visit the website below, it is the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Interactive Atlas. IPCC WGI Interactive Atlas Click on the regional information button, it will bring up an interactive map. Complete the table below using information from the map. You will need to use the menu tools above the map, changing the variable and scenario. Complete this for the Near Term. If you finish, you could repeat for the Long Term on a new sheet and then compare results.

Overall what does the table and map show you about global climates in the future?

Note

• SSP1-2.6: Global CO2 emissions are cut severely, but not as fast, reaching net-zero after 2050. Temperatures stabilize around 1.8°C higher by the end of the century.
• SSP5-8.5: Current CO2 emissions levels roughly double by 2050. The global economy grows quickly, but this growth is fuelled by exploiting fossil fuels and energy-intensive lifestyles. By 2100, the average global temperature is a scorching 4.4°C higher.

Sources:

• IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.11. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)

# Climate change and urban areas

C.2.6 Cities intensify human-induced warming locally, and further urbanization together with more frequent hot extremes will increase the severity of heatwaves. Urbanization also increases mean and heavy precipitation over and/or downwind of cities and resulting runoff intensity.1

The table below shows the efficiency of various factors at warming up or cooling down neighbourhoods of 3 urban areas. Overall, cities tend to be warmer than their surroundings. This is called the ‘urban heat island’ effect. Cities and urban areas tend to be warmer due to extra warming caused by human activities such as industrial processes, but also because urban surfaces tend to be darker coloured and drier than rural surfaces.

Recall that a positive figure represents a temperature rise and a negative figure represents a temperature decrease.

1. Calculate the difference between the worst- and best-case scenarios.
2. Which factor has the greatest variability between the best and worst case scenarios?
1. Which factor has the smallest variability between the best and worst case scenarios?
2. Using the average change data, how much additional temperature change could there be in cities that have no sources of water & no vegetation?
1. Complete the graph by adding the average change to city areas temperature for each of the five factors shown in the table.
2. Which of the five factors shown has the biggest warming impact in cities?
3. Which of the five factors shown has the biggest cooling impact on a city?

1. Which of the following locations would be most likely to….
2. Feel cooler during a summer heatwave?
3. Feel too hot in a summer heatwave?
4. Have people wearing shorts and a t-shirt in summer?
5. Observe the tarmac on the roads melt in a summer heatwave?

According to the IPCC in the future:

• Further urbanization will amplify the projected air temperature change in cities regardless of the characteristics of the background climate, resulting in a warming on minimum temperatures that could be as large as the global warming itself.
• Compared to present day, large implications are expected from the combination of future urban development and more frequent occurrence of extreme climate events, such as heatwaves, with more hot days and warm nights adding to heat stress in cities.

Using these statements, what are the two factors that will cause temperatures to rise in urban areas?

Imagine that you could redesign the city to limit the effects of climate change. Make a list of all of the things that you could do to reduce the impact of climate change on your chosen city. Next, consider the strengths and weaknesses of all of those options. You might want to consider using a table like the one below;

Using the urban areas fact sheet

1. Read very carefully through the fact sheet from the IPCC, about the impact of climate change on urban areas. You can access it here – Urban Areas fact sheet (ipcc.ch)
2. Explain why urban areas can influence the temperatures locally:
3. Suggest how urbanisation might affect the water cycle within urban areas. Make a list below;

Source: IPCC, 20212

Using the map above, identify;

1. The city with the greatest increase in temperatures
2. The city with the smallest increase in temperatures
3. A city where the temperature has not changed
4. The city where urban effects have caused the largest relative share of total warming
5. The city where urban effects have caused the smallest relative share of total warming
6. The areas of the world but have heated the most between 1950 and 2018
7. An area of the world which has experienced cooling in the same time period
8. Considering what you have already learned, suggest reasons why some cities have warmed more than others

Source: IPCC, 2021 2

Using the graph from Japan answer the following questions;

1. In 1900 which area was the warmest?
2. In the year 2000 which area was the warmest?
3. Calculate the temperature difference between the urban and rural areas of Japan in 1900.
4. Calculate the temperature difference between the urban and rural areas of Japan in the year 2000.
5. In which year did urban temperatures surpass rural temperatures for the first time?
6. Suggest reasons why Tokyo is now significantly warmer than Choshi
7. Describe the general patterns on the graph.

According to the IPCC:

• The difference in observed warming trends between cities and their surroundings can partly be attributed to urbanisation
• Urbanisation has exacerbated changes in temperature extremes in cities, in particular for night time extremes.

One study examining the 2003 heat wave in Europe that killed upward of 70,000 people found that night-time temperatures were a key indicator of the health risk from high temperatures. There’s also research that shows high night-time temperatures disrupt sleep. Without relief from the heat, the stresses on the body mount.

While it may cool off after the sun sets during a heat wave, it may not cool off enough for people who have been exposed to high temperatures all day. That leads to a higher cumulative exposure to heat.

Extreme heat is one of the deadliest weather phenomena in the world. There are direct health effects like heat stroke, (when body temperature rises above 40C, leading to organ failure) and heat exhaustion.

Prolonged periods of high temperatures cause cardiac and respiratory disease leading to excess deaths, particularly in older people.

Simplify the information above into the flow chart below:

Explain why the fact that urbanisation has increased night time extremes of temperature could pose health problems for people who live in cities.

Sources

• IPCC, 2021: Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, A. Pirani, S.L. Connors, C. Péan, S. Berger, N. Caud, Y. Chen, L. Goldfarb, M.I. Gomis, M. Huang, K. Leitzell, E. Lonnoy, J.B.R. Matthews, T.K. Maycock, T. Waterfield, O. Yelekçi, R. Yu, and B. Zhou (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press. In Press. P.34. Accessed 28th November 2021 at Sixth Assessment Report (ipcc.ch)
• IPCC.ch. 2021. Regional fact sheet – Urban Areas. [online] Available at: https://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar6/wg1/downloads/factsheets/IPCC_AR6_WGI_Regional_Fact_Sheet_Urban_areas.pdf  [Accessed 5 December 2021].

## IPCC Carbon Dioxide Predictions

The graph, from the IPCC 1.5 Report, shows how the rate of carbon dioxide emissions could
fall between 2020 and 2040, or between 2020 and 2055.

In 2020, the rate of carbon dioxide emissions is 42 billion tonnes/year

a) Convert 42 billion tones to kilograms, giving your answer in standard form.
[2 marks]

b) If the emissions follow a straight line from 2020 to 2040, estimate the predicted
emissions in 2030, giving you answer in billions of tonnes.
[2 marks]