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Planet earth is heating up, and the signs of warming are everywhere.

Broccoli: “We see this with global temperature. We see this with sea ice. We see this with sea level. And it’s painting a very consistent picture of a world that’s warming … and warming at an alarming rate.”

That’s Anthony Broccoli, a climate scientist at Rutgers University. He says the average global temperature continues to rise. 2016 was the hottest year on record, and the third year in a row of record-breaking global temperatures.

And as the world warms, the amount of sea ice in the Arctic is decreasing. Last December, the frozen area of the Arctic Ocean was the second-lowest on record for that month.

It’s a visible consequence of the carbon pollution humans are pouring into the atmosphere.

In 1958 scientists started measuring the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Since then, it’s increased by about 28 percent.

Broccoli: “Realizing that these changes are taking place over a time span comparable to a human lifetime I think really brings home the point that climate change is not just about the distant future. It’s something that’s happening now.”

Reporting credit: ChavoBart Digital Media.
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Sara Peach

Sara Peach is the editor-in-chief of Yale Climate Connections. She is an environmental journalist whose work has appeared in National Geographic, Scientific American, Environmental Health News, Grist,...