Ice Ages

Scientists have determined through proxy evidence that Earth has experienced several natural ice age intervals throughout its history. Understanding what they are and why they occur helps them better understand the forces at work today shaping the climate. It also gives them insights into what humans can expect in the future. This chapter first studies ice ages, why they occur, and how scientists are able to uncover this information about events that happened millions of years ago. It also looks at the concept of climate cycles and prominent cooling events, presents the hockey stick theory and what that means for future climate, and finally, addresses the concept of global dimming and whether a future ice age may be possible.

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