Energy Consumption and Global Warming

The earth at night. This photo collage made with more than 400 superimposed remote sensing images shows the whole planet during the night. It got my attention the light from the big cities, most of them in the northern hemisphere. I got surprised by the bright color and the tried to imagine the energy consumed.
By 2006 it was estimated that the worldwide energy consumption was about 498 exajoules. This anthropogenic heating may affect the circulation pattern and the surface air temperature. Actually, a research recently published at the NAture Climate Change showed that including energy into climate models leads to remote temperature changes. Such study concluded that energy consumption is probably a missing forcing for the winter warming trends.

Photo source: Der Spiegel
Additional reading:
Energy consumption and the unexpected winter warming over Asia and North America
Satellitenbild der woche: Wo des Nachts die Lichter brennen

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