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01 April 2004 1405 BST
Graphic: A-Z of Norfolk Science, G: Global Warming
Picture: Climatic Research Centre at the University of East Anglia
Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia

Norfolk is home to one of the world's leading institutions for the study of climate change.


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Climatic Research Unit

Tyndall Centre

CSERGE

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The Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia aims to improve our understanding of past changes to the Earth's climate, what the future holds and how temperature changes affects us.

Picture: The Broads
The Broads may be affected by climate change

The Unit based in Norwich, investigates both natural climate change and changes induced by man - for example, the burning of fossil fuels like coal.

Discovering the greenhouse effect

In November 2000 the Tyndall Centre, named after the 19th century scientist John Tyndall, was opened at the UEA.

John Tyndall was the first person to explain why the sky is blue and to prove the existence of the greenhouse effect.

The Tyndall Centre brings together climate scientists, economists, social scientists and engineers to explore ways in which we can respond to climate change and advise the government on plans of action for the future.

Also at the UEA is the Centre for Social and Economic Research on the Global Environment (CSERGE). Scientists there research climate change, recycling, the wetlands and coastal zone management.

Studies on climate change

All three departments have done some important studies into climate change across the world.

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Will we have to use umbrellas all the time in 50 years?

Scientists at the Tyndall Centre believe that the Norfolk and Suffolk Broads will be 3.6C degrees hotter in the summer months 80 years from now. This could have a big impact on wildlife.

The CRU have discovered that heavy rainfall in winter, over multiple days, has increased between 50 and 60 percent.

They also found that the number of days of heavy rainfall in summer has been decreasing.

Experts in CSERGE have spent time studying the effect of the European Union on our environment asking - how, for example, will the 10 new countries joining the EU this year affect the campaign to protect our environment?

Recommended reading
By Sheila McKeown, a librarian at the Millennium Library in Norwich.

Air Pollution: Our Impact on the Planet, by Matthew Chapman. Hodder Wayland 2001. ISBN 0750234946.

Climate Crisis by Nigel Hawkes. Watts 2000. ISBN 0749637188.

You can get hold of these books through your local library.


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