Global warming is the increase in the average temperature of Earth’s near-surface air and oceans since the mid-20th century and its projected continuation. According to the 2007 Fourth Assessment Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), global surface temperature increased by 0.74 ± 0.18 °C (1.33 ± 0.32 °F) during the 20th century. Most of the observed temperature increase since the middle of the 20th century has been caused by increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases, which result from human activities such as the burning of fossil fuel and deforestation. Global dimming, a reduction of sunlight reaching the surface as a result of increasing atmospheric concentrations of human-made particulates, has partially countered the effects of warming induced by greenhouse gases.
The scientific consensus is that anthropogenic global warming is occurring. This finding is recognized by the national science academies of all the major industrialized countries and is not rejected by any scientific body of national or international standing. According to a recent Gallup poll, people in most countries are more likely to attribute global warming to human activities than to natural causes. The major exception is the U.S., where nearly half of the population (the largest percentage of any country) attributes global warming to natural causes.
When did Global Warming Jump the Shark ?
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