The UNFCCC1 does not define ‘climate’ at all, while WMO2 used to define climate as: the average weather over a longer period of time. This website will provide information and ask, does science know what climate is?
1. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change; 2.The World Meteorology Organisation

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www.bernaerts-sealaw.com

www.arctic-warming.com

www.1ocean-1climate.com

www.seaclimate.com

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Various Glossaries

Concerning meaning of:

 Climate, climate change, and weather

A-113

Note: The table is provisional and may be subject to changes

 

Glossary by

Climate

Climate Change

Weather

 

 

 

 

 

UNFCCC[1]

secretariat

In section:

Glossary of climate change acronyms

NONE

In section:

Glossary of climate change acronyms

NONE

In section:

Glossary

NONE

 

IPCC[2]

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

Climate in a narrow sense is usually defined as the “average weather” or more rigorously as the statistical description in terms of the mean and variability of relevant quantities over a period of time ranging from months to thousands or millions of years.

Climate change refers to a statistically significant variation in either the mean state of the climate or in its variability, persisting for an extended period (typically decades or longer). Climate change may be due to natural internal processes or external forcings, or to persistent anthropogenic changes in the composition of the atmosphere or in land use.

 

 

NONE

NOAA[3] _ National Weather Service

_Climate Prediction Centre

 

The average of weather over at least a 30-year period. Note that the climate taken over different periods of time (30 years, 1000 years) may be different. The old saying is climate is what we expect and weather is what we get.

A non-random change in climate that is measured over several decades or longer. The change may be due to natural or human-induced causes.

 

 

NONE

Energy Information Administration[4] , USA

 

 

 

NONE

A term used to refer to all forms of climatic inconsistency, but especially to significant change from one prevailing climatic condition to another. In some cases, "climate change" has been used synonymously with the term "global warming"; scientists, however, tend to use the term in a wider

 

 

 

NONE

NASA[5] , USA

 

 

 

NONE

The term 'climate change' is sometimes used to refer to all forms of climatic inconsistency, but because the Earth's climate is never static, the term is more properly used to imply a significant change from one climatic condition to another. In some cases, 'climate change' has been used synonymously with the term, 'global warming'; scientists however, tend to use the term in the wider sense to also include natural changes in climate.

Atmospheric condition at any given time or place. Compare with climate.

 

CLIMAS[6]

Climate Assessment for Southwest

 

The general or typical atmospheric conditions for a place and/or period of time. Conditions include rainfall, temperature, thunderstorms, lightening, freezes, etc.

 

 

 

NONE

Describes the daily conditions (individual storms) or conditions over several days (week of record-breaking temperatures) to those lasting less than two weeks.

 

 

 

Australian Government, Bureau of Meteorology[7]

 

 

Climate and weather are both components of meteorology.

In brief: the weather of any place refers to the atmospheric variables for a brief period of time. Climate, however, represents the atmospheric conditions for a long period of time, and generally refers to the normal or mean course of the weather. Climate can now be expanded to include the future expectation of long term weather, in the order of weeks, months or years ahead.

  • A more detailed definition from the Meteorological Glossary published by the U.K. Meteorological Office is: The climate of a locality is the synthesis of the day-to-day values of the meteorological elements that affect the locality.

Synthesis here implies more than simple averaging. Various methods are used to represent climate, e.g. both average and extreme values, frequencies of values within stated ranges, frequencies of weather types with associated values of elements. The main climatic elements are precipitation, temperature, humidity, sunshine, wind velocity, and such phenomena as fog, frost, thunder, gale; cloudiness, grass minimum temperature, and soil temperature at various depths may also be included. Climatic data are usually expressed in terms of an individual calendar month or season and are determined over a period (usually about 30 years) long enough to ensure that representative values for the month or season are obtained.

 

 

 

NONE

In brief: the weather of any place refers to the atmospheric variables for a brief period of time.

 

Michael Branick
NOAA/NWSFO Norman

A COMPREHENSIVE GLOSSARY OF WEATHER[8]

 

 

NONE

 

 

NONE

 

 

NONE

 

Science and Development Network[9]

 

 

 

NONE

Climate Change (Also referred to as 'global climate change'). This term is sometimes used to refer to all forms of climatic inconsistency, But as the Earth's climate is never static, the term is more properly used to imply a significant change from one climatic condition to another. In some cases, ‘climate change' has been used synonymously with the term, 'global warming'. Scientists, however, tend to use the term in the wider sense to also include natural changes in climate.

 

 

NONE

 

 

NSIDC Arctic Climatology and Meteorology[10]

Climate is defined as statistical weather information that describes the variation of weather at a given place for a specified interval. In popular usage, it represents the synthesis of weather; more formally it is the weather of a locality averaged over some period (usually 30 years) plus statistics of weather extremes.

We talk about climate change in terms of years, decades or even centuries. Scientists study climate to look for trends or cycles of variability (such as the changes in wind patterns, ocean surface temperatures and precipitation over the equatorial Pacific that result in El Niño and La Niña), and also to place cycles or other phenomena into the bigger picture of possible longer term or more permanent climate changes.

 

Climate Change: A study dealing with variations in climate on many different time scales from decades to millions of years, and the possible causes of such variations.1) In the most general sense, the term "climate change" encompasses all forms of climatic inconstancy (that is, any differences between long-term statistics of the meteorological elements calculated for different periods but relating to the same area) regardless of their statistical nature or physical causes. Climate change may result from such factors as changes in solar activity, long-period changes in the Earth's orbital elements (eccentricity, obliquity of the ecliptic, precession of equinoxes), natural internal processes of the climate system, or anthropogenic forcing (for example, increasing atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases). 2) The term "climate change" is often used in a more restricted sense, to denote a significant change (such as a change having important economic, environmental and social effects) in the mean values of a meteorological element (in particular temperature or amount of precipitation) in the course of a certain period of time, where the means are taken over periods of the order of a decade or longer.

 

Weather is the day-to-day state of the atmosphere, and its short-term (minutes to weeks) variation. Popularly, weather is thought of as the combination of temperature, humidity, precipitation, cloudiness, visibility, and wind. We talk about the weather in terms of "What will it be like today?", "How hot is it right now?", and "When will that storm hit our section of the country?"

 

IPIECA[11]

International Petroleum Industry

Environmental Conservation Association

 

The average trend of weather, including its variability in a geographical region. The averaging period is typically

several decades.

(UNFCCC definition)

A change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability over comparable time periods.

 

 

NONE

 

Footnotes

[1] http://unfccc.int/essential_background/glossary/items/3666.php

[2]http://www.ipcc.ch/pub/syrgloss.pdf

[3] http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/outreach/glossary.shtml

[4] http://www.eia.doe.gov/glossary/glossary_w.htm

[5] http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Library/glossary.php3?mode=alpha&seg=b&segend=d

[6] http://www.ispe.arizona.edu/climas/forecasts/glossary.html

[7]http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/glossary/#W

[8]http://www.geographic.org/climate/c.html

[9]http://www.scidev.net/dossiers/index.cfm?fuseaction=definitions&dossier=4

[10] http://www-nsidc.colorado.edu/arcticmet/glossary/

[11] http://www.ipieca.org/activities/climate_change/climate_publications.php#1

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Previous archives
Year 2007

Essays from 1992 to 1997 on CLIMATE
by Dr. Arnd Bernaerts
1994
“Legal Means for Understanding the Marine and climatic Change Issue”,
p.24 presented at the 28th Annual Conf. of the Law of the Sea Institute, Honolulu
 

 
1992
“Conditions for the protection of the global climate”,
p.53 presented at GKSS Research Center Geesthacht
 

 
1997
Black Sea-Model Case
--Paper, p.53, on www.1ocean-1system.de
--Conf-Paper, p. 6
 

Four short texts
1994 Moscow

1994 LOS

1993 LOS

1992 Nature

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