Research Proposal: Weather and Climate

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Weather and Climate

Comparison of Two Publications on Climate change

In his unique New York Times article, "On the Climate Change Beat, Doubt Gives Way to Certainty," retired Times reporter William K. Stevens recalls his work in climate change reporting, documenting how scientific knowledge on the topic has changed from his first days in the newsroom until today. Published on February 6, 2007, this article draws primarily on the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change's 2007 report for its information regarding the science behind climate change today in contrast to the science behind climate change years ago.

Stevens begins his article with an anecdote of life in the Times newsroom. He recalls that whenever a cold front would hit, other reporters would spend some humor on the climate change reporter, saying something to the tune of "so much for global warming." Stevens comments that a joke like that would probably not be heard today.

He worked for the paper until 2000, when a minority of people were convinced that global warming was a result of humans' actions. Today, he argues, little doubt exists that humans have a serious impact on global warming. One of the primary arguments that Stevens uses to support this claim is the vast amount of political attention that the issue receives. For instance, Stevens notes the attention paid to global warming in the 2008 election, especially recalling the importance that conservative Republican John McCain assigned to the issue. A similar scene "back in the day" would have been "unimaginable," according to Stevens. In addition to the politics and widespread attention paid to the issue, Stevens cites the most recent publication of the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change, in addition to its progression of reports. According to Stevens, this panel commented that human involvement in the climate change crisis could occur "easily" in the 1990s. More recently, the panel noted that human involvement in climate change is "likely." Finally, Stevens mentions the 2007 report's long list of ways in which climate change is having an affect on the globe. Included in this list is an increase in temperature and drought paired with a decrease in precipitation, as well as an increase in hurricanes like Katrina. His final statement is a wish of luck to those who will be around to see climate change and its affects on population and planet.

In contrast to Stevens' article, which is just over 1500 words, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's 2007 report, "Climate change 2007: Mitigation of Climate Change," is quite lengthy, filled with research, recommendations, and data. The report opens with an introduction, in highly scientific language, that discusses not only the degree by which greenhouse gases are rising and the association of energy to climate change and greenhouse gases, but also the social and political implications of climate change, along with the goals of the UN regarding climate change. Most importantly, this introduction addresses the previous attempts at mitigating climate change, noting that the Koyoto Protocal and other mitigation efforts are not enough to prevent the damage caused by greenhouse gases. The report contends that the dangers caused by developing technologies, population growth, and continued consumption by individuals are overshadowing the efforts to curtail the growing climate change issue. In addition, the report suggests that differences in regions' attempts to address the problem are a contributor to the continued problem that is… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Weather and Climate.  (2009, January 13).  Retrieved December 7, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/weather-climate/799779

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"Weather and Climate."  Essaytown.com.  January 13, 2009.  Accessed December 7, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/weather-climate/799779.