Glossary Term

Climate change

The Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) defines climate change as: a change in the state of the climate that can be identified, (e.g. by using statistical tests) by changes in the mean and/or the variability of its properties, and that persists for an extended period, typically decades or longer. Climate change may be due to natural internal processes or external forcings, or to persistent anthropogenic changes in the composition of the atmosphere or in land use. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) defines climate change as a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods. For disaster risk reduction purposes, either of these definitions may be suitable, depending on the particular context.