Climate


Figure 1.--Here Japanese school children are visiting exhibitions set up for the World Climate Summit in Kobe (2008).

Climatology is the study of climate or long term weather conditions (atmospheric pressure and composition, cloud cover, humidity, precipitation, temperture, winds, and other factors). It is an enormously complex discipline because so many different phernomenon affect climate. Climatoligists have to consider not only celestial phenomenon (such as moon and sun gravitation and solar sunspots) as well as a range of earthly phenomenon, including those in the atmosphere, hydrosphere (oceans), cryosphere (frozen areas), land surface, subsurface (volconology is important here), and biosphere. Many of these phenomenon and spheres are poorly researched and understood. Climatolgy is now at the center of the climate change debate. In recent years, climate change has become a mantra of liberal politicans. As House speaker Nancy Palozi explains, "We have a planet to save." In the West, liberal and Socialist politicans have been the strongest supporters of enormnously expensive climate change legislation. The issue does not, however, cut nealy accross traditionsal left-right political cleviages. Thus Green parties have achieved considerable support in Europe, especially Germany. Climate has affected both history and clothing in many ways. Some argue that changing cliate was a factor in forcing primates down from the trees, out of the forest and on to the African savanah resulted in the development of bipedalism, the destinctibe characteristic of homonoids. We now know that homonoids developed bipedialism before they emerged from the forest. The impact of climate on history is enense and well documented and this has continued to our modern age. Climate is an importat factor affecting clothing. One major impact on clothing is utlity. While clothing has been influenced by other factors such as fashion, the first major influence nust have been utility, especially protection from cold weather. As human society became increasingly sophisticated, fashion influences have become increasingly important. Climate continues, however, to be an important factor. We have seasonal discussions on many HBC pages.

Climatology

Climatology is the study of climate or long term weather conditions (atmospheric pressure and composition, cloud cover, humidity, precipitation, temperture, winds, and other factors). It is an enormously complex discipline because so many different phernomenon affect climate. Climatoligists have to consider not only celestial phenomenon (such as moon and sun gravitation and solar sunspots) as well as a range of earthly phenomenon, including those in the atmosphere, hydrosphere (oceans), cryosphere (frozen areas), land surface, subsurface (volconology is important here), and biosphere. Many of these phenomenon and spheres are poorly researched and understood. Scientists in the late-20th century have begun a massive research effort, but are only beginning to understand the basic issues of climatology. The complexities are emense because so many different poorly researched phenomenon are involved. This should lead the reader to treat with some scepticism the projections being made by global warming activists.

Climate Change

Climatolgy is now at the center of the climate change debate. In recent years, climate change has become a mantra of liberal politicans. As House speaker Nancy Palozi explains, "We have a planet to save." In the West, liberal and Socialist politicans have been the strongest supporters of enormnously expensive climate change legislation. The issue does not, however, cut nealy accross traditionsal left-right political cleviages. Thus Green parties have achieved considerable support in Europe, especially Germany. Interesingly, the world greatest polluters has not been the Capitalist West, but the Cold War Era Communist gountries, the Soviet Unin and its East Bloc sattelites. Climate change activists have focused on greenhouse gasses and global warming. The Liberal dominated media has picked on the issue. Some scientists, politicans, and media figures have pursued this as a virtually religious crusade. We are told that the sciece has definitively decided the climate change debate. This simply is not the truth and the examples of important climate change scientists falsifying their data is a good indicator of this. There are reputable scirntists who raise important objections to those the climate change activists. Now it is true that the Earth is warming, although the date in recent years suggests that the warming projections published by alimate alarmisrsare not coming to fruition. The central points here are that 1) it is not clear that green house gases are the major cause of the temperature increases and 2) that the very costly climate change remedies proposed to reduce geen house gases would have a sihnificant impact. The youngest child who gas seen the ammated film "Ice Age" is aware that the Earth has gone through far greater climatic change than the current global warming trend. This highlights the fact that the Earth is subject to a range of changes which can affect climate. Greenhouse gasses are just one of these changes.

Exter-terestrial Events (ETEs)

There is increasing acceptance of the likligood that exrta-rterrestrial events (ETEs) have caused major climatic change. The most famous of course is the event hat resulted in the extinction of the dinosaurs and many other species. Such events were at first seen as very rate. The Holocene Impact Working Group (HIWG) is a group of six scientists who theorize tht that ETEs are more common than the dominant scientific consensus currently suggests. And some scientists believe that actully comets may be at least as important meeorites (astroid events). They may have been frequent enough to have affected human history. The mechanism is ejecting large quantities pf matter into the atmosphere, reducing sun light, and thus affecting agricultural productivity. This is the same as the impact of major volcanos and most scientists think that major volcanic eruptions are more likely causes. . HIWG researchers believe that one large impact (equivalent to a 10-megaton bomb) may occur on average about every 1,000 years. They point to five to ten large impact events they believe to have identified in the last 10,000 years. Evidence for these events includes impact craters and landforms such as chevrons which some scientists were left by megatsunamis which seem to point to possible impact craters. These theories are rejected are currently rejected by the bulk of the scientific community, but are gaining some currency. Historical events such as the ebd of the Clovis culture in North America are attributed to ETEs (11,000 BC). The HIWG has speculated that an ETE in the Indian Ocean created an underwater feature which it has nammed the Burckle Crater (3,000 BC). Other researchers speculate that the Dark Ages may have begun as aresult of an ETE (about 535 AD).

History

Climate has affected both history and clothing in many ways. Some argue that changing cliate was a factor in forcing primates down from the trees, out of the forest and on to the African savanah resulted in the development of bipedalism, the destinctibe characteristic of homonoids. We now know that homonoids developed bipedialism before they emerged from the forest as a result of the 1994 discovery of Ardi (Ardipithecus ramidus) in Ethiopia. [Science] Ardi has been dated as 4.4 million years old. this is a million years older than Lucy (Australopithecus afrarensis). The impact of climate on history is enense and well documented and this has continued to our modern age. Historians in recent years have given increased attention to climatology. The most obvious of course is the Ice Age which created a Bearing Sea land bridge to the Americas. Historians are finding climatic links to other major events such as the fall of the Roman Empire and the plages. On recent years there has been increassing attention to the Little Ice Age. Climate has affected major military campaigns such as Napoleon's invasion of Russia (1812) and the World War II German invasion of the Soviet Union (1941). One wonders how Hitler who considered himself a military genius was suprised that it got cold in Russia during the winter.

Environmental Disasters

While the world's focus is on climate change suposedly caused by green house gasses, there are major impending environmental disasters that are largely being ignored. While contrary to the constant media blitz, green house gassesas the primary cauative agent of global warming hs not been proven nor the actual intensity of global warming. There are, however, very real environmental problems that do exist and pose huge disasters in a relatively short time period. They may relate in part to global warming, but have other root causes, many of which are amenable to real amelorative measures that are within the realm of public policy.

China

In its quest to develop. China has given little or not head to enviromental issues. Many in China say environmental issues as a fiction dreamed up by Westerners to imede the country's growth. Thus the country did not require pollution control devices on cars or factories. The full impact of this negligence is not yet fully understood. Some of the most obvious consequences are impossible to ignore such as polluted air and rivers. Neijing and many other citues as a result exist in toxic pools of polluted air. These cities are rapidly becoming inlivable. The long term health consequences of which are still unknown. The pollution is so bad that there are days in which vission is limitd even during the day. Vast streans of polluted air are nw crossing the Pacific and reaching the American Pacofic coast. China has finally realized that it must do something. New regulations are promoting electric cars. Just how effecive this effort will be or the long trm enviromentalfuture of China is yet to be determned.

Egypt

Egypt's population in recent years has skyrocketed. The population at the end of World War II was less than 20 million people. While Arabs like to blam the West for their ills, Westrn tchnology has significantly reduced the death rate in Arab countries. And as a result, Egypt's population is now approaching 90 million people and will soom be 100 million. Despite this increase, the Egyptian economy as an independent country hs not expanded. Political and religious leaders have focused on what they see as Western imperialism and the West. After dallying with the NAZIs, President Nasser moved toward the Soviets and Arab socialism. both were failures. And the Egyptian economy little changes from ancient Egyot is based on the bounty of the Nile. The great bulk of the population lives in tge Nile Valley or Nile Delta. Many farmers continue to use methods dating back to ancent times. Thus crop yields have not changed to fed a burgoning ppulation. Egyot which was once the bread basket of the Mediterranean, now has to import food to feed its people. Unlike neigboring Israel,Egypt has not adopted technologies to turn arid regions into productive land. They have not evn daopted the technologies developed by Israel. And if ll of that is not bad ebough, the situation in Egypt is likely to get even worse. Soil compactation and saltwater intrusion are both affecting Egyptian agriculture. To the south, overfishing and ilconeived devlopment projects are affecting the Red Sea ecosystem. Efforts to expand agriculture into marginl land have unlike Israel, used poorly conceived, unsustainable methods. Theresult has been soil erosion an expanding desertification. And even worse further south, other countries with which Egypt shares the Nile are planning to take a greater share of the water before the river reaches Egypt. Egyptian Hovernments have largely ignored these problems are responded inefectully.

Iran

The population of Iran when the Mullahs seized power and launched the Islamic Revolution was 37 million people. The population is now approching 80 million people. This means that the oil incomee which could once bring prosperity to the nation, but as the population gros has less and less an impact without a prosperous economy, an economy that can not be created wih the isolation that the Mulhas have caused, if not sought. But this is not the only problem tht the Mulhas face. The steadily rising population has caused great stresses on Iran's fragil enviroment, especially on the Iranin plateau, the heartland of the country. A former Iranian Minister of Agriculture writes, "Our main problem that threatens us, that is more dangerous than Israel, America or political figting, is the issue of living in Iran. It is that the Iranin plateau is becoming uninhabitable. .... Ground water has decreased and a negative waterbalance i widespread, and no one is thinking aboutbthis. I am deeply worried about the future generations. If this situation is not reformed, in 30 years Iran will be a ghost town. Even if there is precipitation in the desert , there will be no yield, because the area for groundwater will be dried and water will rejain at ground water nd evaporate. .... ... the desery=ts of Iran re spreading, and I am warning you that people will have ti evaporate. But where? Easily I can say hat of the 75 million people in Iran, 45 million will have uncertain circumstances." [Kalantari] And despite this clear danger, the Mulhas pursue the quest for nuclear weapons, the destruction of Israel, and the historic struggle with the Sunnis--efforts which have no real benefit for the Iranian people.

Clothing

Climate is an importat factor affecting clothing. One major impact on clothing is utlity. While clothing has been influenced by other factors such as fashion, the first major influence nust have been utility, especially protection from cold weather. Humonoids first appeared in the ropical and sub-tropical regions of Africa. The first prot-clothing was almost certainly humans making use of the hides of scavaged or prey animals that they could not consume. This development of course is lost in time. Man's inginuity gradualy began fashion more sophisticated protective garments. The clothing helped humans deal with seasonal changes and to eventually move out of Africa. This migration appears to have been brought on by climate change. Thus protective clothing enabeled humans to populate nearly every corner of the globe. While utility certainly was the origin of clothing, fashion from a very early phase of human development appeared as factor affecting clothing. As human society became increasingly sophisticated, fashion influences have become increasingly important. Climate continues, however, to be an important factor. We have seasonal discussions on many HBC pages. Some garments are highly seasonal. Others used to be, but because of life style issues are no longer so. We will gradually link our many seasonal pages here. A new development with a fuller understanding of the potential health hsazzards of ultra-violet radiation in sunlight is sun-safe clothing.

Sources

Kalantari, Issa. Ganoon Nespaper (July 9, 2013.

Science (October 2, 2009). This special issues of Science include 11 aricles from 47 researchers presenting the findings on Ardipithecus ramidus after 15 years of work.









HBC







Navigate the Children in History Web Site:
[Introduction] [Biographies] [Chronology] [Climatology] [Clothing] [Disease and Health] [Economics] [Geography] [History] [Human Nature] [Law]
[Nationalism] [Presidents] [Religion] [Royalty] [Science] [Social Class] [Royalty]
[Bibliographies] [Contributions] [FAQs] [Glossaries] [Images] [Links] [Registration] [Tools]
[Children in History Home]





Created: 9:44 AM 6/1/2010
Last updated: 7:48 PM 7/26/2014