Climate Change and Global Warming
Climate Change and Global Warming
In the current times, climate change presents the biggest challenge to the existence of the human race. Climate change and global warming is already taking place and it represents one of the biggest environmental, economic and social menaces that are facing the planet. Human beings as this paper will discuss are the biggest contributors, if not the sole contributors, to the climatic change and global warming that is experienced on earth today. The human activities such as urbanization and industrialization have led to the introduction of new chemicals and toxins into the atmosphere, water bodies and the surface of the earth. These have led to the destabilization of the various ecosystems that exist on the planet while also leading to global warming and melting of ice at the arctic. The social and economic effects of global warming and climate are also discussed. These range from the effects on the employer and employee, to the customer and the society at large. Solutions to these problems will be provided and discussed in little but important and pragmatic detail.
38100381000000The rising temperatures of the climate system are explicit, as it is now perceptible from observation of the average global temperatures of the air and ocean bodies, extensive melting of ice, glaciers and snow at the arctic and on top of mountains, and the rising global mean sea level. The average temperature of the surface of the earth has taken a rise of 0.76°C from 1850. A major part of the warming that has taken place over the past 50 years is most likely to have been due to human activitiesCITATION Ess14 p 1 l 1033 (Tabakova 1). With no further action to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases, the average global surface temperature is likely to take a further rise by 1.8-4.0°C in the current century, and in the worst possible scenario, by 6.4°C as per the Fourth Assessment Report. Even the range at its lower end would take the temperature increase since the pre-industrial times above 2°C which is the threshold where if the temperature exceeds, it becomes irreversible and catastrophic effects become more likely to occurCITATION Ess14 p 1 l 1033 (Tabakova 1).
Figure SEQ Figure * ARABIC 1A table showing the trends in the global average temperature, sea level and Northern hemisphere snow cover. CITATION Ess14 p 1 l 1033 (Tabakova 1)The climate change can affect every person and every living organism’s health on the planet directly through the increase in temperature. These increases may lead to more severe heat waves during the summer and at the same time producing less extreme cold times during the winterCITATION Cli11 p 1 l 1033 (Climate Impacts on Society 1). Specific parts of the population with health complications such as heart problems and asthma, infants and the elderly can be very susceptible to extreme heat. There can also be extreme weather conditions and calamities such as hurricanes, floods and droughtsCITATION Ess14 p 1 l 1033 (Tabakova 1).
Currently there are numerous industries and factories that produce toxic gases and exhale them into the atmosphere and these destructive substances end up polluting the air. It is biologically known that atmospheric air is necessary for the survival of many living organisms and humans. When we inhale the polluted atmospheric air, we may have various toxic and destructive substances introduced into our bodies and these may cause serious illnesses. Ground-level ozone can cause serious damages to the lung tissues and is very harmful especially to those with asthma and other serious lung complications. Pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds coupled together with sunlight and high temperatures can cause the ground-level ozone to riseCITATION Cli11 p 1 l 1033 (Climate Impacts on Society 1).
The fact that the sea levels are increasing every day and worldwide poses another problem. The increase in the ocean water is caused by warmer ocean temperatures which have been brought about mainly due to global warming. The glaciers on mountain tops and small ice caps are melting, including Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets. The increase in temperature means that melting of the ice is now accelerated as compared to the rate of melting in the pastCITATION Cli11 p 1 l 1033 (Climate Impacts on Society 1).
In spite of the above mentioned problems, there are more issues that pose problems that contribute to climate change. Another such issue is greenhouse gases. These are gases which trap the sun’s heat and heat from the earth’s surface in the atmosphere. Carbon dioxide, for example, which is a greenhouse gas, occurs naturally through natural processes and other forms of it are created and emitted exclusively through human activities. A good example of the creation and emission of carbon dioxide by human activities into the atmosphere is by burning of fossil fuels. All motorized vehicles emit too much of harmful substances into the atmosphere.
These emissions contain carcinogenic particles and other components such as organophosphates which when dumped into the atmosphere and water bodies, they end up in ground water and are later consumed by crops and other living organisms in the ecosystem leading to their death. There have been many researches that are aimed at reducing the emission but the problem is still discussable. In my personal view, I believe that we should adopt means of transport such as usage of bicycles and walking on foot and when using motor vehicles, we should plan our drives to use the shortest route possible and reduce the amount of time in which we contribute to the emission of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. People should also be encouraged to use alternative and clean sources of energy such as solar energy and to use vehicles which produce less emission or run on an alternative fuel such as the hybrid vehicles which are currently in the market. The tax and duty exercised on vehicles should also be increased to be able to encourage people to use public means of transport. By reducing the number of personal vehicles, we would consequently reduce the amount of emission of gases into the atmosphereCITATION Cli11 p 1 l 1033 (Climate Impacts on Society 1).
Other human activities such as deforestation and land conversion such as urbanization also lead to the loss of habitat for other living organisms in a short term basis but in long term basis, its leads to problems such as global warming and climate change since the reduction of trees contributes to the reduction in the creation of rainfall. Other vices such as overhunting also have a direct and threatening effect to other life forms. Animals such as elephants, rhinos, lions and tigers are being hunted in parts of the world where they exist and even though they are classified as threatened species, the demand for their ivory and skin has made them to be victims of poaching all over the world. This contributes to the steep drop in the population of these animalsCITATION Hum13 p 1 l 1033 (Alonzo 1).
Climate change and global warming have had some serious economic effects on people engaged in business and ultimately the common person since they buy various products from the same business people. Various damages have been experienced by the business people such damages are caused by calamities such as floods, hurricanes and wildfires. Disruptions in the daily running of the businesses due to climate change related problems are also a challenge. Security threats due to unpredictable weather caused by climate change have also caused serious declines in workforce availability in some parts of the world leading to straining of the company in trying to find new workers leading to lossesCITATION Hum13 p 1 l 1033 (Alonzo 1).
From a social perspective, climate change and global warming have led to changes in the way people live and relate in many parts of the world mainly since they have been forced to move from place to place and in the process they have had to coexist with each other. It has also discouraged the human race to survive for long since they become more vulnerable to heat stress as they age and the temperature on the planet keeps increasing over timeCITATION Cli11 p 1 l 1033 (Climate Impacts on Society 1).
Considering all the activities that lead to climate change, it is important to note that in the fight against global warming and climate change, we start by fighting poverty. Poverty may not seem to be the main cause but in the real sense, it is the source of many forms of pollution to the environment since it is what makes manufacturers use pollutant chemicals in a quest to save money and create profits. By controlling or eradicating poverty, we may be able to save our planet. Many Physics experiments have been carried out in the past and even recently to determine the levels of Carbon Dioxide and other gases which cause the greenhouse effect and it has been found out that the fluctuations in the levels of these gases directly influence the changes of temperature on the globe. These tests give insight into a Physical mechanism that is responsible for the increase of global temperature unless other theories are created and tested.
BIBLIOGRAPHY Alonzo, Ben . Human Activities that Affect the Ecosystem. 13 May 2013. 18 July 2015 <http://classroom.synonym.com/human-activities-affect-ecosystem-9189.html>.
Climate Impacts on Society. 15 February 2011. 18 July 2015 <http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/impacts-adaptation/society.html>.
Tabakova, Ralitza. Essay about climate changes. 13 December 2014. 18 July 2015 <https://climatechangesandpoverty.wordpress.com/essay-about-climate-changes/>.