Global climate change is a gradual temperature rise or fall over time. Ice ages come and go, warming trends come and go. But human-made global climate change (or warming) is completely different. Human-made global warming, the trends of three decades of hotter summers world wide, is called both climate change and global warming. It is very angrily debated by political leaning parties, and some individuals.
Global climate change is much more than just one thing. It is, in fact, by definition everything affected under the sun, because life evolved on earth under many climates, but only in the anthropocene (human made climate change) is it found that for the first time humanity has a choice about affecting the climate. Many people are not convinced, because the news is overwhelming, and frightening to them. Even though all things needed to affect earth's climate to protect it, are for the better, people can not see this.
What "climate change " actually is, is not debated. It is warmer temperatures recorded due to more heat being trapped in earth's atmosphere from several sources. Many CO2 and methane sources are influenced greatly by human activity, primarily burning things, and overpopulation.
Why is it so contested? The reasons are complex, but most have to do with simple human psychology. People very often, in fact most often, are in denial about dreadful news. If there can be no news more dreadful than what many call the end of the world, it is quite normal for people to go into denial of it. Also, people who profit from current pollution and lost habitats use considerable political clout to create false debates where as real scientists do not get emotional, irate and agitate for dissemination of propaganda, preferring to have people look out the window, or simply note how things are going.
Many people (deniers) now believe that social discontent, the Occupy Movement, the housing and wall street bubbles burst, the economic global crisis and more) are not related to global climate change. This is remarkably sad, because when people sense they have some control, they can create better lives. Blaming politics, nature herself, or the greens ignores that people must do all they can each day to have better lives.
Beginning to use alternative energy sources, beefing up world economies, polluting less, preserving air, water and soil quality are looked upon with disdain and severe, often violent rhetoric. Instead of debating what climate change actually is, perhaps it it time to just say: What if we acted to have a better world, and no body came? What if all the good things we could do for improving all quality of life on the planet was all for "no real good reason," because Global climate change, and/or global warming is all some trumped up hoax?
Or, alternatively, the protection and appreciation of air, water, soil and food could become party of everyday life just because it is the right thing to do even if there was a scam, or insane Al Gore- hippie-climatologist-science inspired hoax. For most people, a higher quality of life would bring much needed fresh air to the debate.