Effects of Climate Change in North America: An Overview

Rachel JC Chen


As forecast by many researchers, climate change can be expected to impact regions through direct effects (e.g., temperature shifts, changes in sea level, extreme weather events, and precipitation changes) and indirect effects (e.g., migrations of species and changes in ecosystems).  Previous studies have reported how various regions will face challenges as to adaptations and vulnerabilities brought on by climate change differently according to their wealth. Interrelated impacts have been forecast to occur in North America stemming from variations due to climate change, including economic, ecological, environmental, and social impacts, as well as social and ecological changes.  This study overviews the effects (direct and indirect) of climate change on various sectors in North America.  It concludes, along with the suggestions of the AR4, that future studies should focus on regional studies of climate change, impacts of extreme weather events, and in-depth integrated models for mitigation, adaptation, and impact based on future simulations of climate change.


Keywords: temperature shifts, sea level, extreme weather events, migrations of species

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5539/jsd.v4n3p32

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