Pollutants that contribute significantly to climate change over days to decades timescales have been defined as Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (SLCPs). SLCPs are climate forcers and environment pollutants, which have an effect on earth’s radiative balance, influence the global temperature and climate system through different ways. They also have adverse effects on the ecosystem and human society directly and indirectly. Mitigation emissions of the four SLCPs, black carbon, methane, troposphetic ozone and hydrofluorocarbons are the most effective strategy for constraining global warming and the rising of sea level as an important complement to reducing long-lived warming gases in the near term. In this paper, we summarized the significance of SLCPs research, pointed out the potential benefits of SLCPs emission reductions. They offered important policy opportunities to reduce radiative forcing and air pollution effects in short term. Then, we explained the physical and optical characteristics of SLCPs, illustrated how they contributed to the regional and global climate by interactions with clouds, ice, snow or other aerosols, discussed the present and future trends of their distribution and radiative forcing, summed up their direct and indirect climate effects and mechanism that are comprehensive in inclusion of all known and relevant processes and proved estimates of main forcing terms. At the same time, the advances in research methods and SLCPs climate effects as well as changes in climate forcing were also introduced in this article. We concluded the potential trends of SLCPs concentration in the atmosphere, pointed out the uncertainties factors in researches and relevant potential measures to reduce harmful emissions, which can slow the rate of climate change and protect the people and regions most vulnerable over the next several decades.