Who Predicted Global Warming

When people hear the term “global warming,” they often think of the predictions made in the late 1990s—technically by scientists in the 1980s—that human-caused climate change is real. But who predicted global warming before that, and what did they say?

The earliest scientific predictions of global warming date back to the 19th century. In the 1880s, physicist and meteorologist Svante Arrhenius published a paper in which he calculated that the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere could double, leading to a 5-6 Celsius (9-11 Fahrenheit) increase in global temperatures. Though this was groundbreaking work, most of the scientific and political communities at the time discounted his findings. It wasn’t until the late 20th century that Arrhenius’ predictions began to gain traction.

Fast-forward to the mid- to late-20th century, and we find a growing body of scientific evidence accumulating in favor of global warming. Starting in the 1950s, researchers began to notice that the average global temperature was increasing and that the amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide had gradually been increasing. Though these initial observations were supported by direct measurements, there wasn’t a fully developed scientific consensus about the cause-and-effect relationship between emissions of greenhouse gases and global warming.

At this point in history, most people thought that the implications of global warming were largely hypothetical. In the 1970s, the situation changed, as scientists began producing sophisticated climate models to help understand the processes at work. In 1979, the US National Academy of Sciences issued a report confirming the human-caused contribution to climate change as well as its potentially catastrophic effects. The 1980s also saw a surge in public support for environmental regulations and initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Overall, the conclusion that human-caused global warming is indeed real has been reached by a consensus of scientists. This has been evidenced in the peer-reviewed research of hundreds of scientists over the last century, from Arrhenius to the National Academy of Sciences. The public, however, may not fully understand the implications of global warming or the effects their behavior can have. We must be conscious of our responsibility to reduce emissions and conserve energy if we hope to mitigate the most damaging consequences of global warming.

Joseph Pearson is a passionate advocate for global warming, ecology and the environment. He believes that it is our responsibility to be stewards of the planet, and take steps to reduce our environmental impact. He has dedicated his life to educating people about the importance of taking action against global warming and preserving our natural resources

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