Climatology, the study of climate, is no longer regarded as a single discipline that treats climate as something that fluctuates only within the unchanging boundaries described by historical statistics. The field has recognized that climate is something that changes continually under the influence of physical and biological forces and so, cannot be understood in isolation but rather, is one that includes diverse scientific disciplines that play their role in understanding a highly complex coupled “whole system” that is the Earth’s climate. The modern era of climatology is echoed in this book. On the one hand it offers a broad synoptic perspective but also considers the regional standpoint as it is this that affects what people need from climatology, albeit water resource managers or engineers etc. Aspects on the topic of climate change – what is often considered a contradiction in terms – is also addressed. It is all too evident these days that what recent work in climatology has revealed carries profound implications for economic and social policy; it is with these in mind that the final chapters consider acumens as to the application of what has been learned to date. This book is divided into four sections that cover sub-disciplines in climatology. The first section contains four chapters that pertain to synoptic climatology, i.e., the study of weather disturbances including hurricanes, monsoon depressions, synoptic waves, and severe thunderstorms; these weather systems directly impact humanity. The second section on regional climatology has four chapters that describe the climate features within physiographically defined areas. The third section is on climate change which involves both past (paleoclimate) and future climate: The first two chapters cover certain facets of paleoclimate while the third is centered towards the signals (observed or otherwise) of climate change. The fourth and final section broaches the sub-discipline that is often referred to as applied climatology; this represents the important goal of all studies in climatology–one that affects modes of living. Here, three chapters are devoted towards the application of climatological research that might have useful application for operational purposes in industrial, manufacturing, agricultural, technological and environmental affairs.
- Modern Climatology,
- whole system,
- historical statistics,
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