Climate change is a phrase that pops up constantly in today's social media, news, and everyday topics. Odds are that if you're reading this, you've heard of it. The real question facing us though is what is it?
According to NASA, climate change is a change in the usual weather found in a place. This can be a change in how much it ususally snows in a year, or it can be a change in a place's usual temperature for a month or season. Climate change is also a big problem facing today's world. Although the Earth's climate has been constantly changing, over the past 50 years the average global temperature has increased at the fastest rate in recorded history. Experts see that the trend is nothing but accelerating: All but one of the 16 hottest years in NASA’s 134-year record have occurred since the year 2000.
Global warming (climate change) occurs when air pollutants such as but not limited to carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N20), also known as greenhouse gases, collect in the atmosphere and absorb sunlight and solar radiation that has bounced off the Earth's surface. In normal circumstances, this radiation would just bounce off the Earth's surface and escape into space - but these pollutants which can last anywhere from decades to centuries in the Earth's atmosphere trap the heat and cause the planet's temperature to rise to unhealthy levels.