What Even Is Climate?

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Authors

Oliver Bothe 

Abstract

Although the concept of climate is easy to understand, there is not any uncontroversial definition of it. Most definitions fall back to the simple formulation that `climate is the statistics of weather. Recent attempts at a definition called versions of this saying vague. Climate is policy-relevant, and discussions on climate and climate change benefit from clarity on the topic. Beyond the policy relevance a definition should also be valid for scientific purposes and for individual views. It has to account for a general concept and individual instances of climate. Here, I try to highlight why the flexibility and the immediacy of the colloquial definition fit the topic. This defence shifts the lack of a clear definition towards the term `weather and the time-scales separating weather and climate.

DOI

https://doi.org/10.31223/osf.io/8ge9s

Subjects

Climate, Geography, Oceanography and Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology, Other Geography, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Social and Behavioral Sciences

Keywords

climate

Dates

Published: 2018-06-26 10:30

Last Updated: 2019-03-27 11:31

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License

CC BY Attribution 4.0 International

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