I know both of them means Climate change but I want to know when either of them is used.

2 Answers 2


Klimaänderung describes a specific change (eg. temperature) or a few things that change which could also happen in a sauna.

Klimawandel means the thing that is happening to our world.


The word used usually in German is "Klimawandel". While "Klimaänderung" transports the same meaning "Klimawandel" simply is the established term.

  • 2
    I think it is worth noting, that "Klimawandel" is somewhat politically loaded (related to the greenhouse effect), whereas "Klimaänderung" seems to be more a neutral word to describe climate changes, which could be caused by anything else.
    – Liglo App
    Commented Jun 4, 2015 at 7:31
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    @BarthZalewski That's currently the case, but only because one is the term commonly used in the controversial debates, and the other isn't. A few years back "globale Erwärmung" was loaded and "Klimawandel" wasn't yet. Commented Jun 4, 2015 at 11:01

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