How do clouds and climate change are related?

According to NOAA’s 2020 Annual Climate Report, Earth’s average surface temperature has risen at an average rate of 0.13 degrees Fahrenheit (0.08 degrees Celsius) per decade since 1880. However, the average rate of increase since 1981 has been more than twice that rate — 0.18°C / 0.32°F.

Image 1. Significant climate anomalies and events in 2020. Source: NOAA’s NCEI State of the climate report & The WMO Provisional Status of the climate in 2020.

Today, we will figure out how clouds are contributing to temperature rise and Global Warming.

Generally, clouds affecting the Earth in two ways that climate scientists define as positive and negative feedback. Clouds shade the sunlight, therefore, cooling the Earth. Clouds also produce precipitation from water vapor releasing the heat into the atmosphere. Evaporation of water vapor from the surface cools it. This process transfers heat from the surface to the atmosphere and is known as negative feedback.

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