Climate change

Definition

Climate change refers to a statistically defined change in the average and/or variability of the climate system, this includes the atmosphere, the water cycle, the land surface, ice and the living components of Earth. The definition does not usually require the causes of change to be attributed, for example to human activity, but there are exceptions.

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Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • Editorial |

    By considering the environmental impact of materials through their whole life cycle, materials scientists can help develop more sustainable alternatives.

  • Comments and Opinion |

    Concerns about the planet's health call for a careful evaluation of the environmental impact of materials choices. Life-cycle assessment is a tool that can help identify sustainable materials pathways by considering the burdens of materials both during production and as a product.

    • Randolph E. Kirchain Jr
    • , Jeremy R. Gregory
    •  & Elsa A. Olivetti
    Nature Materials 16, 693–697
  • News and Views |

    There is widespread speculation as to whether hailstorms are getting more intense or frequent as the global climate warms. Now research suggests a potential increase in both the mean hail size and frequency of larger hail events over North America.

    • John T. Allen
  • Comments and Opinion |

    Reconstructions of Earth's past are much more than benchmarks for climate models. They also help us comprehend risk by providing concrete narratives for diverse climates.

    • Richard D. Pancost
  • Research Highlights |

    More than two billion people face at least 20 days of potentially lethal temperatures each year

    Nature 546, 578