Your browser does not support JavaScript! What is Climate Change? | Glossary | Resource Center
Knowledge Base | Glossary | What is Climate Change?

What is Climate Change?

May 27, 2016

Climate Change is the change in long-term weather activity through the fluctuation of Greenhouse Gases by natural and human activity. This can be measured through the change in average and extreme weather activity. Typically, when radiation from the Sun enters Earth’s atmosphere and bounces off its surface, a layer of gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2) traps some of this radiation on Earth. Thanks to this layer, life on Earth is able to sustain itself and not freeze. Climate Change occurs when more of this radiation becomes trapped in Earth’s atmosphere,causing weather conditions can be altered in some form, such as global warming or the distribution of precipitation.

Originally, Climate Change was a natural cycle caused through natural forces such as changes in the Earth’s orbit and volcanic eruptions; these were noticeable through the cold, glacial periods known as the Ice Ages and warming periods that followed. The rise of industrialization in the past century has caused more of the sun’s radiation to become trapped in the same fashion as the exhaust from the volcanic eruptions, causing the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere to increase by 42 percent and has in turn led to changes in Earth’s weather patterns.



Government of Canada. “About Climate Change.” Accessed May 2, 2016.

David Suzuki Foundation. “What is Climate Change?” Accessed May 2, 2016.