Talk:Climate change

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Sentence on "affecting oceans, ice, and weather"?[edit]

I was looking for a good summary sentence on the effects of climate change (to be used in the lead of effects of climate change). I then came across this sentence in our article which I find odd: The environmental effects of climate change are broad and far-reaching, affecting oceans, ice, and weather.. I'm assuming that "ice" was added there instead of "cryosphere" but still the sentence is odd. At the very least, it should be introduced with "for example". When you look at the IPCC AR 6 WG I report chapters, I see there:

  • CHAPTER 8: Water Cycle Changes
  • CHAPTER 9: Ocean, Cryosphere and Sea Level Change
  • CHAPTER 11: Weather and Climate Extreme Events in a Changing Climate

Therefore, a better summary sentence could be The environmental effects of climate change are broad and far-reaching, affecting the water cycle, oceans, sea and land ice, sea level, weather and climate extreme events. EMsmile (talk) 13:10, 15 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm not quite sure how to convert that into professional prose (without the very long enumeration). Maybe something like: The environmental effects of climate change are broad and far-reaching, affecting oceans, ice on land and sea, and weather. Your proposal is a bit duplicative (both water cycle and weather/oceans, both weather and climate extreme events). —Femke 🐦 (talk) 17:42, 15 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I like "ice on land and sea" better than just "ice", thanks. Why is a long-ish enumeration problematic, or let's ask this way: how many items in an enumeration are still acceptable? I am assuming that if the IPCC report has a dedicated chapter on "water cycle changes" (chapter 8) then this is sufficiently distinct from "weather changes" (chapter 11)? Similarly, if they say "weather and climate extreme events" then there must be a reason and they are not duplicating the same thing, or are they? Honest questions, I am a lay person on all this. EMsmile (talk) 20:26, 15 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I can't find a style guide, but I've always been taught that more than three items in a enumeration starts to become boring, and people skip over it. I think the reason is that Ch11 is about "weather extreme events" and "climate extreme events". Not sure, and climate extreme events is too ambiguous to be put in a Wikipedia article. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 20:47, 15 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

As has been discussed before, be careful using IPCC work as a model for wording. They are a political organization whose role is to provide high level analyses to inform policy makers. They have a level of political responsibility that often requires a nuance in wording that can easily confuse lay readers, and it often doesn't work with WP's value as a provider of information in a readable common language form. Crescent77 (talk) 20:45, 15 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Only the SPM really has that strong policy angle. Most of the IPCC is written by scientists for scientists. Which leads me to the same conclusion; there is often nuance only understood to experts in those reports, making the source difficult for lay people to translate to Wikipedia. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 20:49, 15 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Currently, we have heard of events on the news and on social media, like acid rain in Ohio due to a train derailment, sea levels rising because ice sheets and glaciers are melting in the Arctic, and the amount of pollution we create through gas and trash in the environment. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Leeleeh574 (talkcontribs) 19:07, 25 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I don't think it's fair to say that the IPCC is a "political organisation". By the way, we recently updated the Wikipedia article for it, it's much better now than before and well worth a look: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. (first two sentences: "The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is an intergovernmental body of the United Nations. Its job is to advance scientific knowledge about climate change caused by human activities"). I think the IPCC assessment reports are basically one big fat literature reviews. Yes, by scientists and for scientists. Our job is to translate their language for the general public but not over simplifying things. I am pretty sure that "water cycle changes" is not the same as "extreme weather events" and should thus be listed as two distinct things from each other. The water cycle can change without causing "extreme events" simply by changed precipitation patterns for example. If we are only allowed to list 3 items in that sentence (perhaps 4 would still be alright?), could we say maybe (3 short sentences instead of 1 long one): The environmental effects of climate change are broad and far-reaching. They affects oceans, ice on land and sea and the water cycle. This, in turn, affects other aspects of the climate system, for example the frequency of extreme weather events (or without the third sentence). EMsmile (talk) 21:06, 15 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

How is "an intergovernmental body of the UN" not political? That's about as political as politics goes, I'd suggested taking a look at the concept of "politics" on WP.

Our job is most definitely not to translate the IPCC's language. Our job is to use the information they, and other sources, provide to further a readers understanding of the topic at hand. In some cases, that may mean the specific wording the IPCC uses is best left in their reports and off WP. Provide the reader the reference information, let them read it for themselves.

I'm with Femke. The meaning of "extreme" events can be quite vague, and is better left off. Keep it simple. Crescent77 (talk) 21:52, 15 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It depends on what you mean with "political". When I hear "political", I think of politics, left-wing, right-wing, republicans, democrats, looking for the next elections, short-term thinking etc. Anyway, I wasn't thinking of the IPCC (the organisation) but of the IPCC Assessment Reports. Those are one giant piece of literature reviews. If you want to rather cite those publications which the IPCC reports cite, be my guest. But in general, we are supposed to use secondary and tertiary sources, not have an over-reliance on primary sources (see WP:PST). Do you agree that the IPCC reports are a reliable source for Wikipedia editing? I would say so! See WP:reliable sources. And yes, I think our job is to translate the IPCC's language as well as any publication's language that is rather "academic/scientific/difficult to understand". We are supposed to summarise that kind of content "in our own words". Which aspect of this do you disagree with? EMsmile (talk) 22:53, 16 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The IPCC is most definitely a reliable source. Couple problems:

1. As discussed above, they are a group of expert scientists/policy advisors reviewing material for expert scientists/policy advisors. The language does not present itself well for the average reader. It can easily lead to confusing passages when a layperson attempts to "translate" it. It should be summarized, in your own words. I challenge you to do so, you've been fighting to hold onto IPCC language, rather than prioritizing clear summaries. Please share the greater understanding you have gleaned from reading the IPCC work.

2. WP is NOT a repository for any and all information. Just because the IPCC included it in their reports, does not mean it needs to be here on WP, if it does not contribute to a general understanding. See #1 above, the IPCC experts include alot of wording in their reports for expert understanding that does not need to be covered in detail on WP, especially on a high level summary article.

Sometimes, these climate change articles look like bad hoarder situations. There's alot of great material from great sources, but it's buried under piles and piles of stuff, and it's hard to move around. They need some cleanup, and the folks inhabiting this page who are holding on to stuff are going to have let things go if they want visitors to be comfortable to learn here.

That is what we're hoping for, I believe? Crescent77 (talk) 14:37, 17 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Haha. bad hoarder situations, I love this wording, and very much agree. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 15:20, 17 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
bad hoarder situations excuse me I feel the need to rant here BAD HOARDER SITUATIONS Turkish Wikipedia is so stupid - maybe 10 times I tried to remove rubbish like paragraphs of decades old fire risk from the electric car article and it was always put back in - those editors are just disrespecting the work of the guys in the factory here who are making the cars - rant over I feel better now thanks Chidgk1 (talk) 18:23, 20 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, of course I agree with #2. This is why Wikipedia is a tree of information where a high-level article (such as climate change) just touches on things, and then you have sub-articles, like effects of climate change for more detail. - Anyhow, coming back to the specific sentence. The sentence was The environmental effects of climate change are broad and far-reaching, affecting oceans, ice, and weather. My proposal is to change it to this which I think is actually clearer for lay persons: I am not a fan of gerunds in general (in this case: "affecting") as they are difficult to understand for non native English speakers.: The environmental effects of climate change are broad and far-reaching. They affect oceans, ice on land and sea and the water cycle. This, in turn, affects other aspects of the climate system, for example the frequency of extreme weather events. I think my proposal is also more accurate while only being a little bit longer. If we are only allowed to have 3 items in a listing, then I think the three that I chose make the most sense: oceans, ice and water cycle. The other things (weather extremes) stem from that. EMsmile (talk) 21:45, 17 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I also agree with your Point #1 (I think; more or less). When I said "translate", I meant this to say "summarise in my own words" - more or less. Although not every statement/paragraph/chapter can easily be summarised; often they are already summaries of a lot of sources. Also, why challenge me to this - why don't we work on this as a collaborate effort rather? I have the feeling that overall you don't think the IPCC reports are all that suitable for our work here. I disagree with that. But I think we could just agree to disagree and move on. EMsmile (talk) 21:45, 17 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I do think the IPCC reports are suitable for our work here. My issue is that there seems to be a tendency to sole source the IPCC reports, specifically related to the use of their nuanced language in alot of the passages here, without appropriate context.
Anyways, as far as disagreement, you failed to address the point twice made related to the specific turn of phrase. "Extreme" can be an ambiguous term, better to avoid it in such sweeping statements.
As a side note, although we may have our disagreements, I do appreciate your work here. Crescent77 (talk) 22:45, 17 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thank you, that's kind of you to say that! And I can say: likewise. :-) (would you like to add something to your user profile page? It puzzles me a bit why it's still in red). Regarding extreme weather, well I would just add the wiklink to extreme weather so it's less ambiguous, isn't it? Our own Wikipedia article explains it like this "Extreme weather or extreme climate events includes unexpected, unusual, severe, or unseasonal weather; weather at the extremes of the historical distribution—the range that has been seen in the past." (interstingly, they are saying that extreme weather is the same as extreme climate events; as an aside, the Wikipedia article on extreme weather likely also needs some TLC (tender, love and care)... ). - Would it be OK to have the sentence like this then (without the third sentence that mentions extreme weather?): The environmental effects of climate change are broad and far-reaching. They affect oceans, ice on land and sea and the water cycle.. EMsmile (talk) 23:17, 17 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Comments on the adaptation content in the lead[edit]

Some further comments on this section (I was referred here by User:EMsmile):
"Human migration and conflict can also be a result." I think that is more of an argument/topic of research still, rather than a documented result, and it would be difficult to find sources, especially for conflict but also for migration (depending what is meant by migration, ie. displacement and forced migration). I think the evidence is probably not clear enough for it to sit in this para ?
"The capacity and potential for humans to adapt.." uses a very old source and does not cite any source showing AC is increasing. This needs further investigation (could we look at ND-GAIN)? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Richarit (talkcontribs) 17:46, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"Natural and human systems will experience severe risks without limiting warming" I think it is important to get the message across that that adaptation is the main way of tackling climate risks, both for current risks as well as for the next 20 years (with strong emission cuts, only after 20 years we could clearly see the effect on global temperature). So I think in this section it indeed needs to be stated that communities are adapting and the main things that they are doing...
'Adaptation to sea level rise ..' leading paragraph two looks a bit odd. Adapting to shifting rainfall patterns/seasonal cycles and drought conditions has been much more widespread (and probably more important to mention here). The next most documented hazards that people are responding to are heat and flooding (ch17 AR6) SLR is lower down the list.
It is correct and not controversial to say that 'some impacts are unavoidable' This comes into the discussion of adaptation limits in AR6. Richarit (talk) 16:04, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Richarit, this paragraph talks about both near or long term. Migration and conflict is in AR WG2, p. 15:

In the mid- to long-term, displacement will increase with intensification of heavy precipitation and associated flooding, tropical cyclones, drought and, increasingly, sea level rise (high confidence). At progressive levels of warming, involuntary migration from regions with high exposure and low adaptive capacity would occur (medium confidence). Compared to other socioeconomic factors the influence of climate on conflict is assessed as relatively weak (high confidence). Along long-term socioeconomic pathways that reduce non-climatic drivers, risk of violent conflict would decline (medium confidence). At higher global warming levels, impacts of weather and climate extremes, particularly drought, by increasing vulnerability will increasingly affect violent intrastate conflict (medium confidence). {TS B.7.4, 7.3, 16.5, CCB MIGRATE }

The fact that severe impacts will happen without limiting warming needs to come across in this paragraph. We can amend the sentence about adaptation for its importance in the short term. Bogazicili (talk) 20:10, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks @Bogazicili. I see. But I didn't get that you were taking about modelling results in this passage. I think that could be made clearer (because there is not strong observed evidence).
I think it would be better to say "Displacement and migration can be a result" or "Disasters and displacement can be triggered as a result" and leave out conflict because the evidence is still weak and we should probably still be sceptical of the long-term scenarios (?)
[near term (2021–2040), mid-term (2041–2060), and long term (2081–2100) out to the year 2300]
Migration is an example of a 'cross-border risk' that also includes trade links, transboundary natural resources, etc. I don't know if that could be mentioned.
"Severe impacts will happen without limiting warming .. " agree but can we write this more understandably? Howabout this:
"More severe impacts in future can be expected if climate change mitigation actions (cuts in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions or enhanced removal of these gases through carbon sinks) are not deep enough or fast enough. The needs for climate change adaptation, which is the main way of responding to climate impact risks, will be also be greater." BTW I would not qualify this statement to say adaptation will be important 'only' in the short term, because changes are expected to continue to happen in the long term (eg. SLR) as warming continues. Richarit (talk) 14:38, 12 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Richarit, this paragraph is in the lead, so we have space and word count limitations. This is not in the body of the article. The word "mitigation" has not been introduced yet, and the previous discussions were that it was too technical for the lead I believe.
"will increasingly affect violent intrastate conflict (medium confidence)" in AR6 doesn't sound weak evidence to me? Again, this paragraph talks about future impacts of climate change with varying levels of warming.
Another WG2 quote, p. 53:

TS.B.7.4 Climate variability and extremes are associated with more prolonged conflict through food price spikes, food and water insecurity, loss of income and loss of livelihoods (high confidence), with more consistent evidence for low intensity organised violence within countries than for major or international armed conflict (medium confidence). .... There is insufficient evidence at present to attribute armed conflict to human-induced climate change.

Currently, we are saying "Human migration and conflict can also be a result". I think this seems to be accurate, we aren't saying armed conflict between states.
As for the other sentence and adaptation being the "main way of responding to climate impact risks", you will need a source. How about:

Societies and ecosystems will experience more severe risks in the future without without limiting warming.[Wg2 p 19] Adapting to climate change through efforts like [example 1] or [example 2] reduces climate change risks, although this may not be possible with increasing warming.[WG 2, p.21-26; p.2504]

Bogazicili (talk) 15:24, 12 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for the explanation. Could it be modified to say "Societies and ecosystems will experience more severe risks in the future without action to limit warming." so we can avoid saying mitigation but make it easier to understand that human action is needed? I like the rest of the suggested passage.
Re: "main way of responding to climate impact risks" I don't have a source for it now but we have a section on the CCA page about 'reducing risk factors' (which is based on Ar6 WGII ch 1). I recently proposed to rewrite the Purposes section to link it to the 3 elements of the Global Goal on adaptation - 'reduce vulnerability to climate change' that might work here because vulnerability is also already mentioned in the lead.
"Climate change threatens people with food and water scarcity, increased flooding, extreme heat, more disease, and economic loss." Perhaps consider listing the climate-related hazards first (flooding, extreme heat) and then the impacts afterwards (food and water scarcity, more disease) as more logical ordering ? Richarit (talk) 14:29, 26 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Examples for adaptation options (lead and main text)[edit]

I suggest we either delete "through efforts like coastline protection or expanding access to air conditioning" or we come up with better wording. Using those particular two examples to explain what climate change adaptation is all about seems wrong to me (like I explained above). I think we can just stop here: "some communities may partly adapt to climate change". Or otherwise: "some communities may partly adapt to climate change through Infrastructural, institutional, behavioural or nature-based options." (or a shortened version of that). - Regarding sources in the lead, I think they are good to have (more and more), especially for leads that might be transcribed in future through the excerpt tool. EMsmile (talk) 17:53, 6 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I prefer giving examples, given that climate change adaptation is something people may not understand. The phrasing " Infrastructural, institutional, behavioural or nature-based options." is much too abstract for our audience (jargon) and too difficult (reading level). Note that leads in particular need to be understandable per WP:EXPLAINLEAD. I have similar quibbles with "natural and human systems". Maybe we can say "societies and ecosystems" instead? Second version is good otherwise. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 17:58, 6 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Fair points but I think if we do give examples we have to select them very carefully to be at least somewhat representative globally. Access to aircon is something that is more achievable for wealthy people but not so much for the masses, who often don't even have access to electricity in rural areas of developing countries. How about instead of talking about aircon we talk about measures to reduce the urban heat island effects? And regarding sea level rise the wording “coastline protection” is also not that clear. Maybe we could say instead “construction of dams, dikes and by improving natural defenses” (I’ve taken this from the adaptation section of sea level rise). Overall the sentence could be: “through efforts like coastal management (for example construction of dams and dikes), or planting more urban trees and building green roofs to reduce the urban heat island effect.” Or if that’s too long make it: “through efforts like building dams or encouraging more urban trees and green roofs in urban areas.” EMsmile (talk) 12:22, 9 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Air conditioning is expected to grow to 5.6 billion units in 2050, making it quite a global solution. I'm okay to compromise though, and add information about increasing shade in cities. This can only be added to the lead after it has been added to the article. I must sound like a broken record, but terms like "urban heat island" and "coastal management" are jargon and do not belong in the lead. Furthermore, the urban heat island effect is a separate fact from global climate change, so not quite on topic. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 17:48, 9 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The current wording of "coastline protection" is equally jargony as coastal management... Building dams and dykes is less jargon, I'd say. Yes, aircon is growing of course but it won't be accessible for a huge chunk of the world population (those without money and access to electricity, see energy poverty). Climate change contributes to hotter cities so measures that help with cooling would be adaptation measures. Interesting that air conditioning is mentioned 3 times in the article but methods for cooling cities are not yet mentioned (as far as I can see). Urban heat island is mentioned once in the article. It seems to me perhaps an over-emphasis on the role of air conditioning and not enough on green roofs etc. I might suggest to User:Richarit - who is currently improving the climate change adaptation article - to also take a little look at the section on "Adapting to a changing climate" in this article if that is OK (knowing that it's a highly optimised article already). EMsmile (talk) 18:04, 9 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'd hesitate to give air conditioning as an example for CCA. I think the picture gallery as below might be a good option to show readers what this could mean. Richarit (talk) 15:01, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This is what WG2 says, p. 21

Adaptation to water-related risks and impacts make up the majority of all documented adaptation (high confidence). For inland flooding, combinations of non-structural measures like early warning systems and structural measures like levees have reduced loss of lives (medium confidence). Enhancing natural water retention such as by restoring wetlands and rivers, land use planning such as no build zones or upstream forest management, can further reduce flood risk (medium confidence). On-farm water management, water storage, soil moisture conservation and irrigation are some of the most common adaptation responses and provide economic, institutional or ecological benefits and reduce vulnerability (high confidence). Irrigation is effective in reducing drought risk and climate impacts in many regions and has several livelihood benefits, but needs appropriate management to avoid potential adverse outcomes, which can include accelerated depletion of groundwater and other water sources and increased soil salinization (medium confidence). Large scale irrigation can also alter local to regional temperature and precipitation patterns (high confidence), including both alleviating and exacerbating temperature extremes (medium confidence). The effectiveness of most water-related adaptation options to reduce projected risks declines with increasing warming (high confidence).

so maybe we can say "through efforts like additional flood control measures or farm water management". For the earlier sentence, I'm good with "societies and ecosystems" btw. Bogazicili (talk) 20:29, 9 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I would find "farm water management" too unclear and niche but the paragraph that you pointed out is very interesting, putting the emphasis on water-related risks. It would be good to included something short on that somehow. And I have now copied here in the talk page the 4-image collage that we used for the lead in the climate change adaptation article. This is quite well balanced, I think (took us a long time to agree on). Is there a possibility to integrate these images, or some of them, into the climate change article in the section on adaptation? Currently the article does not have a single image on adaptation. Maybe they could be added like those image galleries that we have for "impacts on the environment" and "impacts on people"? EMsmile (talk) 09:43, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks @Richarit for joining the conversation! It seems there is consensus to remove air-conditioning from the lead, and to rephrase coastal protection as flood control. I agree with EMsmile that farmed water management is a vague word (management in general is a vague word). I'm okay with adding the word irrigation, after a statement on it is integrated into the main text (see WP:LEAD: significant information should not appear in the lead if it is not covered in the remainder of the article). We could use Bogazicili's source to add that. Adaptation is the only section that can still be expanded, so no need to remove anything else when adding info about irrigation. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 17:34, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm good with any example here, but I'd prefer to keep it short, because I'd also like to add something short about co-benefits of mitigation and adaptation in the 4th paragraph. I think the preference is for the lead to be less than 500 words. Co-benefits are in WG3. We can discuss this later though. Bogazicili (talk) 20:16, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Air conditioning is critical for adaptation in countries like India and Pakistan that have not traditionally had it, but for which future survival will increasingly demand it. The fact that AC runs counter to mitigation is a key reason to leave it in- to point out that we are creating a problem that demands even more energy to cope with in the future. Here is a good article on it Efbrazil (talk) 00:27, 11 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for the link. maybe aircon it is more prevalent than I thought as also mentioned quite a bit in AR6 WGII(ch7 p 1108). I would still worry that readers would not see the drawbacks and how it would be helpful to leave it in Richarit (talk) 19:08, 12 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm fine with air conditioning, but if people want to drop it and if farm water management is too vague, how about drought-resistant crops? It's in the gallery below. Combining it with suggestion from above, how about:

Climate change threatens people with increased food and water scarcity, increased flooding, extreme heat, more disease, and economic loss. Human migration and conflict can also be a result.[sources] The World Health Organization (WHO) calls climate change the greatest threat to global health in the 21st century.[sources] Societies and ecosystems will experience more severe risks in the future without without limiting warming.[Wg2 p 19] Adapting to climate change through efforts like flood control measures or drought-resistant crops reduces climate change risks, although this may not be possible with increasing warming.[WG 2, p.21-26; p.2504]' communities may adapt to climate change through efforts like coastline protection or expanding access to air conditioning but some impacts are unavoidable. Poorer Lower-income countries are responsible for a small share of global emissions, yet they have the least ability to adapt and are most vulnerable to climate change [needs source].

Bogazicili (talk) 13:59, 16 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I like this suggestion. I would just suggest a couple of minor things
  • increased flooding, extreme heat, increased food and water scarcity, more disease and economic loss (logical to list the hazards before the impacts)
  • "without action to limit warning" is clearer
  • "Vulnerability differs within communities and across societies, regions and countries, and can change over time. (source: IPCC WG2 TS)" (it is not that relevant to mention historical emissions again in the last sentence)
Richarit (talk) 17:37, 26 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Given that there was no further comment on this and the previous proposal was also accepted by Efbrazil and Femke, I'll make the changes after factoring in the comments from above, except the last sentence. Richarit, there was consensus to include something about climate justice in the lead here (Talk:Climate_change/Archive_92#Mention_inequity_between_polluters_and_pollutees_in_the_lead). Can you make a suggestion for the last sentence factoring in that previous consensus? Bogazicili (talk) 18:45, 24 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I made the changes to the lead, we are at 487 word count now, below the 500 threshold. Bogazicili (talk) 19:05, 24 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Adaptation images (cnt from above)[edit]

(I copied EMsmile's message from above, as it pertains to two separate topics) —Femke 🐦 (talk) 17:28, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I would find "farm water management" too unclear and niche but the paragraph that you pointed out is very interesting, putting the emphasis on water-related risks. It would be good to included something short on that somehow. And I have now copied here in the talk page the 4-image collage that we used for the lead in the climate change adaptation article. This is quite well balanced, I think (took us a long time to agree on). Is there a possibility to integrate these images, or some of them, into the climate change article in the section on adaptation? Currently the article does not have a single image on adaptation. Maybe they could be added like those image galleries that we have for "impacts on the environment" and "impacts on people"? EMsmile (talk) 09:43, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Adapting to climate change involves structural, physical, social and institutional approaches. Clockwise from top left: mangrove planting and other habitat conservation; seawalls to protect against storm surge worsened by sea level rise; green roofs to provide cooling in cities; selective breeding for drought-resistant crops.
I think the top left pic of reforestation would be best as it shows people more obviously Chidgk1 (talk) 12:24, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My proposal would be to add all 4 in a horizontal picture gallery like we have it in the section on "impacts on the environment", in order to show that adaptation can be about all sorts of things. But if that's regarded as too much then at least one out of those four images would be good (but makes it hard which one to choose to be somewhat "representative" of adaptation efforts). EMsmile (talk) 14:04, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It would be great to have images of adaptation in the section. The article in general has too many images, so wouldn't support four, but I am happy with one or two. The horizontal picture gallery to me looks highly unprofessional and breaks up the article, so I would be strongly opposed exacerbating that problem. They have a proposal about which images to cut to improve the balance between text and figures?
I think the sea wall and green roofs examples are good (that is, without the complication in the caption of a different climatic effect). The green roofs one feels a bit of a priviliged solution possibly, can we show shade from trees in a normal street instead, possibly somewhere in Asia or South America?
Having fewer images also allow others to have a few extra words per image on why it is adaptation. To me it is not clear directly why reforestation is a form of adaptation. I think the selective breeding image may not actually be about selective breeding (it seems to be against cross pollination), and it is unclear what is shown, so that should not feature in the article. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 17:50, 10 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
“reforestation” in the caption could be changed to “mangrove planting” to make it clearer Chidgk1 (talk) 16:00, 11 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
yes, you are both right I think - mangroves also work as a buffer against storms and provide nurseries for fish and I think the final one is not actually about selective breeding. Maybe the top two images would be sufficient (?) Richarit (talk) 16:39, 11 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks for the feedback on these photos! I checked in the talk page archive of climate change adaptation, see here: We had a looong discussion about these four images in May 2021. I think now is a good time to revisit that and to optimise it:
  • The third image was meant to show selective breeding of drought resistant crops. Although the image caption in Commons doesn't say this exactly. It says: "Pearl millet seed production plots at ICRISAT (Patancheru, Hyderabad (AP), India), the panicles covered in parchment paper bags to ensure self-pollination in this normally mainly cross-pollinating crop (February 2013)." So perhaps this image is not great as it takes too much explaining?
  • The first image with the mangroves has as its original caption: "USAID is backing a mangrove planting activity as part of a climate change Adaptation Strategy in the Philippines municipalities of Quilitisan, Calatagan and Batangas. Photo credit: Jessie F. Delos Reyes". So I've replaced reforestation with mangrove planting now.
  • For the green roofs we could change the caption to "green roofs to provide cooling in cities"? It's true that green roofs might still be a bit niche, but perhaps it's nice to show something innovative. Just showing a street lined with trees would look very "normal" (e.g. Brisbane has a lot urban trees from way back but they were not planted for adaptation - they are just coming in handy now) EMsmile (talk) 08:49, 12 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Happy with 3 images too. I think the green roof one can be croppoed to be horizontal and fit nicely still. drought-resistant crops :: are better explained in text. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 19:57, 12 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I've boldly added 3 images to the article now (in the conventional format, i.e. below each other on the right handside): mangrove planting, sea wall and green roofs. It happens to fit nicely with the new skin layout, at least on my screen. But perhaps 3 are too many, do we need to take one out?EMsmile (talk) 09:26, 20 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Horizontal picture galleries[edit]

Coming back to Femke's comment above: "The horizontal picture gallery to me looks highly unprofessional and breaks up the article" I think they are actually quite OK but if others also dislike them then perhaps now is a good time to change that (rather than adding a third horizontal picture gallery for adaptation images). What do you think of the layout where 2-3 images are put side by side, on the right handside? I've seen this from time to time, see e.g. here: . If its just single images on the right side of the article, one below the other, it's a little bit hard to make sure they are seen as belonging together. EMsmile (talk) 08:54, 12 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I favor including horizontal picture galleries where appropriate, for example to prevent graphics from overflowing into following sections. I don't think they're unprofessional if they're coordinated and relevant to the specific section. Especially in a general-audience encyclopedia: A picture is worth a thousand words, so galleries are actually efficient uses of space! :-) —RCraig09 (talk) 19:03, 12 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I don't mind them (the two "Climate change impacts..." galleries) per se, and support RCraig09's post in general, and would be fine with a third gallery, but I do mind that they are set at 100% of the width—which for me is about three times the width of the images themselves in of my (admittedly very wide) browser window. I'd like to get a consensus to change them to just width of the images, please. —DocWatson42 (talk) 04:16, 13 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The main reason I find it unprofessional is how it looks in the new vector and how it looks on small screens. The images are spread over two lines, which means there is barely any text visible, so that's easy to loose the orientation of where you are in the article.
I still believe the gallery falls afoul of WP:GALLERY.
I'm not entirely sure what you mean by changing them to do with of the images. Feel free to boldly try it out, and will see if anybody objects then. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 17:30, 13 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Now that I also have the new skin (was turned on for me automatically yesterday), I checked how the horizontal picture gallery looks. On my screen, the 5 horizontal images look fine. Maybe with other screen settings they don't? Either way, what about my suggestion to use thelayout where 2-3 images are put side by side, on the right handside? I've seen this from time to time, see e.g. here: . EMsmile (talk) 09:17, 20 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
3 images side-by-side poses clear accessibility issues (the line lenght becomes too small on smaller monitors). I've fixed it in the retreat of glaciers article. 2 images do to a lesser extent. I think it's fine to have them vertically; this is usually best in terms of accessibility, as multimage uses a fixed pixel size, which goes against WP:ACCIM.
You've not addressed the issue yet of describing why mangroves are adaptation in the article. Can you do that? —Femke 🐦 (talk) 17:23, 20 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Mangroves managed Chidgk1 (talk) 19:53, 20 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Femke, have the recent small edits in the article addressed your concern? I worded is as "reduced coastal flooding" in the caption, whereas Chidgk1 had called it "buffers storms". I am not sure if both wordings are correct. Perhaps User:Richarit can advise. Not sure if laypersons would understand what buffering of storms is meant to mean. EMsmile (talk) 09:46, 27 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sounds good. May be good to get a cite for the caption too. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 16:59, 27 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
they can dampen storm energy ? Richarit (talk) 19:11, 30 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What's the exact wording you would propose in the caption and in the text then (I'd say just go ahead and make the change in the article). I still wonder if it's clear for a layperson what "dampen storm energy" would mean - could we say it in other words still or give an example perhaps? EMsmile (talk) 10:49, 1 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Models are software, they are not reality; and they guess at, rather than define, the future[edit]

The current text in the Modelling section of the article says things like:

 Models are used to calculate the degree of warming future emissions will cause...

I tried to fix this to:

 Models are used to predict the degree of warming future emissions might cause

but was instantly reverted by @femke, who said, "Feels less neutral to overemphasize limits to models".

It is not neutral to state that models reflect the actual future. That is clearly false. Most people have no idea how models work or how accurate or inaccurate they are -- which is why the article got wording like that. People think, "The computer said X, therefore X is the truth." But why did it say X? Because of the model's internal programming and the data that was input to that program about the past. Both of those can be, and almost certainly are, inaccurate and incomplete. They create working approximations but they are nowhere near gospel truth. Responsible models calculate "error bars" which are mathematical estimates of the likely range of errors in the predictions, though most laypeople ignore these or don't know how to interpret them. There is a bit more information about how models work at Atmospheric model but @femke deleted the wikilink that I added leading to that article.

I accept that some of the specific changes that I contributed may not be right for the article. And yet, I think it's important to tell people in the section on climate modelling, that these models are software simulations, and not reality. The models used to write the original IPCC reports did not correctly predict what happened over the subsequent 20 years. The models that we have today will not correctly predict what happens over the next 20 years. Responding to climate change means making decisions based on uncertain predictions and only partial understandings. This is obvious to anyone who deals with predictive models, but these obvious attributes of models are not reflected in the current wording of the Climate change article. How can we improve this? Gnuish (talk) 03:38, 3 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The section is full of descriptions of how accurate or inaccurate models have been. Very little change is needed: I just changed "calculate" to "estimate" because "estimate" is used several times later in the section. This section already forewarns readers that models aren't perfect; but contrary to what some politicians have falsely claimed, the models are not "guesses" and have generally been fairly close to reality. —RCraig09 (talk) 03:57, 3 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Suggested changes for last para of adaptation section[edit]

I've just made some small changes to the last para of the adaptation section, shown in bold below. My aim was to make it clearer to our readers that first we give examples of trade-offs, then of synergies:

"There are synergies but also trade-offs between adaptation and mitigation. Adaptation often offer short-term benefits, whereas mitigation has longer-term benefits.[1] Two examples for trade-offs include: Increased use of air conditioning allows people to better cope with heat, but increases energy demand. Compact urban development may lead to reduced emissions from transport and construction. At the same time, this kind of urban development may increase the urban heat island effect, leading to higher temperatures and increased exposure.[2] An example for synergy is increased food productivity which has large benefits for both adaptation and mitigation.[3]"

Further points that I think need thinking about:

  1. I suggest to delete this sentence which to me seems outdated and simplistic - as if we had to choose between adaptation and mitigation. It makes it sound like mitigation is always better. But we need both (sadly): "Adaptation often offer short-term benefits, whereas mitigation has longer-term benefits." And I don't think the ref used is particularly strong (primary source?). At the adaptation article it's worded like this "Strategies to limit climate change are complementary to efforts to adapt to it.[4]: 128 "
  2. Also I think we should perhaps change it around so that we first talk about synergies (of which there are many), then about trade-offs (which are perhaps not as numerous? Or?). - This is the order used at the adaptation article, see here.
  3. Regarding examples for synergies I find the sentence about "increased food productivity" not particularly clear. This sound to me like "we need more intensive agriculture". We should either improve it or use a better example for synergies such as public transport, nature-based solutions and urban trees. Compare with the content at the climate change adaptation article here.

Pinging User:Richarit. EMsmile (talk) 09:21, 15 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  1. ^ Berry, Pam M.; Brown, Sally; Chen, Minpeng; Kontogianni, Areti; et al. (2015). "Cross-sectoral interactions of adaptation and mitigation measures". Climate Change. 128 (3): 381–393. Bibcode:2015ClCh..128..381B. doi:10.1007/s10584-014-1214-0. ISSN 1573-1480. S2CID 153904466.
  2. ^ Sharifi, Ayyoob (2020). "Trade-offs and conflicts between urban climate change mitigation and adaptation measures: A literature review". Journal of Cleaner Production. 276: 122813. doi:10.1016/j.jclepro.2020.122813. ISSN 0959-6526. S2CID 225638176.
  3. ^ IPCC AR5 SYR 2014, p. 54.
  4. ^ Ara Begum, R., R. Lempert, E. Ali, T.A. Benjaminsen, T. Bernauer, W. Cramer, X. Cui, K. Mach, G. Nagy, N.C. Stenseth, R. Sukumar, and P. Wester, 2022: Chapter 1: Point of Departure and Key Concepts. In: Climate Change 2022: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability. Contribution of Working Group II to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [H.-O. Pörtner, D.C. Roberts, M. Tignor, E.S. Poloczanska, K. Mintenbeck, A. Alegría, M. Craig, S. Langsdorf, S. Löschke, V. Möller, A. Okem, B. Rama (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK and New York, NY, USA, pp. 121–196, doi:10.1017/9781009325844.003.

EMsmile (talk) 09:21, 15 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Main image - climate stripes?[edit]

Should we change the main picture to the climate stripes? Our2050World (talk) 15:11, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • Oppose. It has too much of an appearance of advocacy for the main climate change page, but I do think it would be appropriate for some of the sub pages. Crescent77 (talk) 16:41, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Good point and agree Our2050World 🌏 (talk) 19:05, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • With wistful sadness, oppose for now. I'm the main editor of the Warming stripes article, and in ~2019 tried to give the diagrams some prominence here. Though stripe graphics have a definite place in science communication to public audiences, consensus was generally against featuring them prominently in this high level article where article space is at a premium. The reasoning, at least in part, was that they were "new"—non-"standard" and therefore requiring some explanation with each presentation—and by design don't portray quantitative data in the way many conventional line charts do. See, e.g., Talk:Climate change/Archive 77#Warming stripes: prominence, mobile compatibility and citations. Stripe graphics are in the IPCC's AR6 publication (see this figure and archive), so maybe their time will come here, as they are increasingly common in the literature. PS: they're not "advocacy" any more than any other graphic. —RCraig09 (talk) 20:54, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    hashtag showyourstripes : "Infiltrating popular culture is a means of triggering a change of attitude that will lead to mass action." Crescent77 (talk) 00:59, 30 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Again: stripe graphics are not inherently more "advocacy" than any other graphic—just perhaps more effective for portraying data to non-techies. The motives/goals of the people/organizations that use a graphic (stripes or line charts or bar charts ...) are distinct from the graphic itself. Line charts can just as easily be seen as alarmist. —RCraig09 (talk) 04:15, 30 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Existing graphics at Commons (not a good sampling of graphics that are in the literature): (talk) 21:00, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Oppose. Climate stripes tell you absolutely nothing about how much warmer things have gotten or where, they are just designed to elicit alarmism. They don't belong in any scientific or educational materials. Efbrazil (talk) 22:34, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Actually, they in fact do portray how much warmer things have gotten—they're just not indexed numerically (and purposely so: a public audience has little conception of what numerical indications like "+1.5 °C" would imply anyway). The stripes are presented alongside some context that explains location, time period, etc. The IPCC apparently finds them acceptable for use in prominent publications. —RCraig09 (talk) 22:52, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I trust the IPCC on the science, but not on graphic design. The best graphics work for everyone- they can be interpreted visually by newbies and have interesting data for people that know more. The IPCC regularly misses on both counts. Warming stripes would look exactly the same if the Earth was 50 degrees warmer or 0.5 degrees warmer. They are simplified to the point of being stupid (imho). Efbrazil (talk) 23:15, 29 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
— Aw, c'mon, don't be a Graphics Grinch! The graphical distinction between stripe graphics and line charts etc., is that stripe graphics have less granularity in the dependent variable: ranges of the dependent variable are assigned to discrete colors. For global warming, warming stripes convey accelerated change the same way as the slope of a line chart. Stripe graphics are arguably a simple case of heat maps (consider File:Change in Average Temperature With Fahrenheit.svg as being "alarmist").
— Separately, I don't understand the relevance of saying warming stripes would look exactly the same for 50° vs. 0.5°: the assignment of temperature ranges to stripe colors would be different, in the same way that the vertical axes of line charts would be more squished for 50° than for 0.5°... but the shape of the line chart itself would be exactly the same (if I understand your scenario). —RCraig09 (talk) 04:16, 30 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Bah, humbug, graphics grinch I am. I grant you that a chart with an unlabeled vertical axis would also be stupid, similarly stupid to warming stripes. Both get a clear failing grade. The only way to make warming stripes clear is with a run on sentence for a title or a separate key, both of which are ugly and awkward. Without that, 0.5 degrees and 50 degrees of warming are the same thing.
As a rule color should be the last information dimension to go in when designing an informative graphic. It doesn't work for the color blind and is imprecise in interpretation. Colored heat maps or colored geographical maps make sense because they're falling back on color as the least worst option for displaying a third dimension of data. Warming stripes, on the other hand, are an abomination that should only be used as a case study in bad graphic design. Efbrazil (talk) 14:53, 30 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Aye, multicolor warming stripes don't help the colorblind any more than multi-color heat maps (though multitone graphics do work for the colorblind). A main advantage of stripe graphics is for audiences for whom precise quantitative indexing is counter-productive—which is a substantial portion of the population, the portion whose eyes glaze over at the sight of this. —RCraig09 (talk) 19:30, 30 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If the 2020 is removed, and possibly the word year, it becomes slightly less glazeworthy. Agree that warming stripes have a mild activist association which make them unsuitable for the lead. —Femke 🐦 (talk) 19:35, 30 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I removed "Year" as it really isn't necessary, like you say. I think 2020 is important to show so I left that in for now. When refreshing the chart with new data (which is blocked because there's no new estimates data) I can revisit the X axis labels. Efbrazil (talk) 15:14, 31 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]