Climate Change - the facts

What is climate change? 

Climate change is a name given to the change in our climatic patterns, particularly over the last few decades. 

Climate change means we are seeing more extreme weather patterns in Scotland and it is expected we will experience wetter winters and drier summers. This will affect everything from flooding, the crops we can grow and our natural plants and animals. Glaciers and ice sheets worldwide are melting and sea levels are rising. 

This short film introduces climate change. It is narrated by two Junior Climate Challenge Fund (JCCF) Youth Panel members, Finlay Macdonald and Ryan Thomson. 

 What is causing climate change? 

Our planet is surrounded by a blanket of 'greenhouse gases' in the atmosphere. These greenhouse gases have kept our planet warm enough to sustain life. 

Scientific evidence is clear that human activities have increased this blanket of greenhouse gases, causing our planet to heat up which in turn is leading to changes in our climate. 

You can learn more about the causes of climate change through our short film. 


Greenhouse Gases and Carbon footprint 

We can think of the total quantity of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide we each create from our activities (heating, lighting, travel, food and the stuff we buy) as our carbon footprint. 

 Scotland emitted just over 60 megatonnes of greenhouse gases in 2011 which works out as an average 'carbon footprint' of 11.7 tonnes of greenhouse gases per person in Scotland. 

Scottish Greenhouse Gas Emissions by Sector

 If we all work together to reduce our carbon footprints we can start to tackle global warming and climate change. 

The Paris 2015 United Nations Climate Change Negotiations  

The 21st United Nations Conference on Climate at Paris ran from November 30th to December 11th 2015. It was crucial conference, as it needed to achieve a new international agreement, applicable to all countries, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C. You can read more about the agreement reached here 

Keep Scotland Beautiful produced a webinar that provides some of the background to the COP21 UN climate negotiations that took place in Paris. You can also read more on the Paris 2015 website  

 Low Carbon Skills 

Low Carbon Scotland

The Low Carbon Skills E-Learning Resource is available for all young people looking to increase their knowledge of real world, real time, climate change and sustainability. It supports those who are actively seeking opportunities to contribute their skills as part of Scotland’s developing workforce. Click on the graphic to get started on this exciting journey!

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