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The climate, is the average condition of the weather at a particular place on Earth. According to the meteorological definition the “average time period” is determined as 30 years. Paleoclimatology on the other hand is the reconstruction of ancient climates, based on the study of sediments.
Some Important climatological elements are: temperature, precipitation and sunshine. The climate has a decisive influence on the environment of organisms. Strong changes in climates, can cause mass extinctions .
The amount of sunshine is plays an important role in the relation to the different climates on earth. As a result of astronomical variations in the Earth's orbit, the distribution of sunshine on earth and thus the climate changes, this creates the so-called Milankovi? cycles. Other significant changes in climate, are caused by the emission of large quantities of ash, carbon dioxide (CO2) and sulfur into the atmosphere, causing major temporary climate changes . Volcanic eruptions can considerably cool down the earth’s temperature, by partially blocking the sunlight.
A well know impact of drastic climate change occurred at the end of the Cretaceous era. On the place that is now the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico, a giant meteorite impact had disastrous consequences . Due to the high speed of the impact, large amounts of dust were released into the atmosphere . This had a disastrous effect on the climate, many organisms became extinct.
The climate today is subject to relatively strong changes, which are partly caused by anthropogenic activity. Adapting to these global changes is one of the biggest challenges for humans, animals and ecosystems in the coming decades.
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