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I was watching an English video when a native english speaker compared the PAST to the PRESENT. I usually use ''in the past/to the past'' to compare but the native chose ''it used to be'' instead, and then it popped into my head that it may be a good alternative to not sound repetitive. Can I use this interchangeably:

The Earth's climate has changed compared to the past.

And

The Earth's climate has changed from what it used to be.

Are they the same? I think it is but I'm not 100% sure, and I might be misterpreted if I use it incorrectly in my future conversation.

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    Both are incorrect. You should explain why you wrote them the way you did. Basically, what is the comparison that "than" implies? – user3169 Aug 30 '18 at 20:44
  • I have edited it, is it ok now? – John Arvin Aug 30 '18 at 21:39
  • The second one still doesn't make any sense. The first one is OK, though. – stangdon Aug 30 '18 at 21:57
  • There!? Hehe I think they are all grammatical now, aren't they.. – John Arvin Aug 30 '18 at 22:11
  • "Changed" means different from what it used to be, so it is redundant to repeat that in a general reference to change. It's like saying "The Earth's climate is different from what it used to be from what it used to be." You would only need such qualification if it was a comparison to a specific previous time. "The Earth's climate has changed compared to 1800." – fixer1234 Aug 31 '18 at 23:30
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You can use has changed, but not in the way you've constructed the sentences.

The following versions would work:

The Earth's climate has changed from what it was in the past.
The Earth's climate has changed from what it used to be in the past.

However, in the past is somewhat redundant and could be dropped:

The Earth's climate has changed from what it was.
The Earth's climate has changed from what it used to be.

Finally, most direct of all:

The Earth's climate has changed.

  • Oh NICE, that's the word ''from what it was''!. You nailed it. – John Arvin Aug 30 '18 at 21:43
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There must be something that has degree in your statement in order to use than. For example: big, cold, hot, wet, slow, rapid.

The earth's climate is hotter today than in the past.

The summer season is wetter this year than last.

The verb has changed does not have degree.

Technological change is more rapid today than it was a century ago.

hotter ... than

wetter ... than

more rapid ... than

  • My apologies for that comparison conjunction. I've changed it now – John Arvin Aug 30 '18 at 21:41

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