"Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get." - Mark Twain
Weather versus Climate
Weather is a specific event or condition that happens over a period of hours or days. For example, a thunderstorm, a snowstorm, and today's temperature all describe the weather. Weather conditions can change from one year to the next. For example, Minneapolis might have a warm winter one year and a much colder winter the next. This kind of change is normal. But when the average pattern over many years changes, it could be a sign of climate change.
Climate refers to the average weather conditions in a certain place over many years. For example, the climate in Minnesota is cold and snowy in the winter, and the climate in Honolulu, Hawaii, is warm and humid all year long. The climate in one area, like the Midwest or Hawaii, is called a regional climate. The average climate around the world is called global climate.
When scientists talk about global climate change, they're talking about the global climate and a pattern of change that's happening over many years. One of the most important trends that scientists look at is the average temperature of the Earth, which has been increasing for many years. This is called global warming.
Rising global temperatures lead to other changes around the world, such as stronger hurricanes, melting glaciers, and the loss of wildlife habitats. That's because the Earth's air, water, and land are all related to one another and to the climate. This means a change in one place can lead to other changes somewhere else. For example, when air temperatures rise, the oceans absorb more heat from the atmosphere and become warmer. Warmer oceans, in turn, can cause stronger storms.
Here's an easy way to remember the difference between weather and climate: Climate helps you decide what clothes to buy, and weather helps you decide what clothes to wear each day.
Article modified using information from the U.S. Federal Environmental Protection Agency Climate Concepts website: https://www.epa.gov/climatechange
Current Morongo Mitigation Strategies
Mitigation is action to decrease the intensity and reduce the potential effects of global warming
- Energy Efficiency Policy
- Going for LEED certification for the new Administration Building
- Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction
- Retrofitting lighting fixtures
- Solid waste diversion
- Greening Morongo's transportation fleet
Proposed/Planned Morongo Adaptation Strategies
Adaptation is a response to climate change that seeks to reduce the vulnerability of natural and human systems to climate change effects
- Create a Tribal Climate Change Work Group
- Collect and review existing climate change information/impacts for the area
- Conduct a vulnerability assessment (what systems/species are sensitive, how much exposure do they receive, and what are the adaptive capacities of each system)
- Conduct a climate change risk assessment (based on above assessment what systems are more at risk, set priority for planning)
- Develop and implement Adaptation Plan
- Monitor and measure progress, modify as needed