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on the environment

You are here: Home / Environmental topics / Climate change / FAQ / What makes the climate change?

What makes the climate change?

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The Earth’s climate is influenced by many factors, mainly by the amount of energy coming from the sun, but also by factors such as the amount of greenhouse gases and aerosols in the atmosphere, and the properties of the Earth’s surface, which determine how much of this solar energy is retained or reflected back to space.

The atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) have significantly increased since the beginning of the industrial revolution. This is mainly due to human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels, land use change, and agriculture. For instance, the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide is now far higher than in the last 650 000 years and has been growing faster in the last ten years than it has been since the beginning of continuous measurements around 1960.

It is very likely that, overall, human activities since 1750 have had a global warming effect on the Earth.

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European Environment Agency (EEA)
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