New York Times, Dec. 28, 2017
With unusually frigid weather gripping much of the Eastern United States this week, President Trump took to Twitter on Thursday to cast doubt on the reality of climate change, but he appeared unaware of the distinction between weather and climate.
Indeed, parts of the East Coast are bracing for record-breaking New Year’s Eve temperatures. New York City is forecast to experience its coldest New Year’s temperatures since the 1960s. But Mr. Trump’s tweet made the common mistake of looking at local weather and making broader assumptions about the climate at large.
Climate refers to how the atmosphere acts over a long period of time, while weather describes what’s happening on a much shorter time scale. The climate can be thought of, in a way, as the sum of long periods of weather.