In order to understand the problem and then be able to manage it effectively, it is imperative to have an understanding of the complex theory and science behind climate change. Although much of the existing literature refers to the issue as global warming—the term used predominantly in the past—scientists have largely transitioned to the term climate change because of the multifaceted nature of the phenomenon. This book utilizes the current terminology. As background, the term global warming tends to imply that the only consequence is that the earth’s atmosphere is slowly getting warmer, unfortunately causing many to minimize the significance of the issue. When the media reports that scientists predict that the earth’s atmosphere is warming, some people expect to hear that the temperature will get tens of degrees warmer. Some may have visions of sitting in a hot, steamy sauna—a vision that for those who live in extremely cold climates, such as Siberia or the Yukon, may be very welcome indeed! Therefore, when climatologists predict a temperature rise of 1.1°C–6.4°C, the public may be inclined to ask what the urgency about the issue really is. After all, it is just a few degrees, right?