Climate variability and climate change - what's the difference?

Climate variability refers to shorter term (daily, seasonal, annual, inter-annual, several years) variations in climate, including the fluctuations associated with El Niño (dry) or La Niña (wet) events.

Climate change refers to long-term (decades or longer) trends in climate averages such as the global warming that has been observed over the past century, and long-term changes in variability (e.g. in the frequency, severity and duration of extreme events).

Source: South Eastern Australian Climate Initiative

The climate system is complex and chaotic – we will never have 100% accurate climate forecasts.

The weather we experience is influenced by many weather and climate drivers and the ways that these drivers interact are not fully predictable.

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