Millie HennickSeptember 17, 20188260
The research has been consistent from the start: combustion of fossil fuels is the greatest threat to our planet. It is not easy to calculate the numbers of premature deaths caused by the burning of fossil fuels. But denying this is true is even more threatening. Man-made climate change has been with us for some time. Global warming is the term used to describe the rise in the average global temperatures above those temperatures predicted from the patterns of data amassed over the past years. The effect of global warming has a notable impact on everything from unpredictable weather patterns and violent weather cycles to the rapid melting of the polar ice caps. Global warming is disturbing the natural ecosystems of the earth.
Most scientists agree that the greatest contributor to global warming is an increased concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other types of upper atmospheric pollutants as a straightforward result of burning fossil fuels. Scientists also agree that the use of renewable energy sources (including solar, wind and biomass) as an energy resource, is not only cleaner for the planet with regards to most fossil fuel pollutants, but its constant use represents a closed-loop and balanced carbon cycle with respect to the reduction of atmospheric carbon dioxide.
The most apparent effect of global warming is that the earth is getting warmer daily as the average temperature of the planet slowly increases. Most of us have seen news reports of the melting of the polar ice caps as the temperature rises by about one degree each year. This melting of the polar ice caps places enormous quantities of liquid water directly into the sea, increasing sea levels around the world. Normally, snow and ice reflect most of the sunlight from its surface. Since polar ice caps are covered in snow and ice, they can, theoretically, reflect a very high percentage of the solar radiation that falls on its surface.
Another effect of global warming is climate change. The greenhouse effect is poised to change the entire global climate due to a rise in the average global and regional temperatures, with some regional increases more volatile than others. This will, of course, have a negative effect on agricultural and economic activities around the world which depend on a relatively constant climate, predictable summer and winter seasons and a decent amount of rainfall throughout the year. Therefore, any changes in regional climate along with rises in sea level, of any magnitude will inevitably disrupt the economic life of the planet. Global warming could result in the permanent relocation of millions of people.
To be clear, most of the impacts of global warming are a result of man’s activities. It may seem obvious that burning fossil fuels is driving global warming, or at very least, making global warming worse than it would otherwise be. But recent climatology research shows that the sun undergoes an 11-year sunspot cycle which can have an effect upon the global climate.
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