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Global warming

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by karunamurty, Jun 4, 2010.

  1. karunamurty

    karunamurty Bronze IL'ite

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    This essay was a prize winning entry in a local competition. (material collected from the net)
    ******************************************************

    The sky is falling, the sky is falling! Growing up we heard this phrase in folktales as a “wolf cry”-- a cry that is so ridiculous that nobody would believe it. Now that global warming is a major environmental issue, the saying doesn’t sound so out of place. Our world has gone through several stages in its life time. Like any powerful changes, it takes time to deal and cope with them. Over the years, the earth has been gradually getting warmer due to pollution. Humans, however, were slow to take the necessary actions to prevent it from getting any worse. Now, we are on the verge of a very disastrous change; Global Warming. If we continue to go on with our lives, ignorant to the consequences of our actions, we will face drastic and devastating loss. And in this case, with they’re not being enough food or fresh air, the environment being destroyed, and the outrageous heat, it will be difficult… or nearly impossible to cope.

    WHAT IS GLOBAL WARMING AND HOW DOES IT OCCUR:
    By definition, Global Warming is an increase in Earth's temperature due to an increased use of fossil fuels and certain industrial wastes and agricultural process leading to a buildup of "green-house gases" mainly consisting of carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, chlorofluorocarbons in the atmosphere. Problems can occur when higher concentrations of greenhouse gases are present in our atmosphere because they have enhanced our earth's heat trapping capability.

    The Effects of Global Warming on Our Planet


    When the sun heats the earth the atmosphere is supposed to radiate most of the heat but instead it takes all the warmth and uses it to power the Earth causing a buildup of green house gases. Global warming affects natural and geographical and historical boundaries.
    As we all know, Global Warming has become a major scientific and social issue during the past decade. It has captured broad public attention because it would easily damage nature and many socio-cultural aspects of life. That's why it should be investigated thoroughly.

    For the last 20 years or so the subject of global warming has spawned heated debate among the world’s brightest minds. Its causes and effects have been hotly debated.
    Facts of Global warming
    1. The effects of green house effect are visible more prominently in the recent years, with number of natural calamities on the rise in the whole world.
    2.The main gases contributing to green house effect are carbon dioxide, water vapor, methane and nitrous oxide. The largest producers of these gases are the thermal power plants, which burn the fossil fuels and produce these gases in large quantities. The second biggest sources of these green house gases are the road vehicles and industries.
    3.The global warming has led to increase in mean earth surface temperature and thus melting of polar ice. And further increase in temperature may further melt the ice and lead to further increase in mean sea level, which will engulf low lying countries.
    4.The effect of global warming is very evident on the animal kingdom also. Some animals have become extinct due to loss of their natural habitat or their inability to evolve to the rapid changes in the climate. Also there is a change in their life style because of the changes in the seasons. The migrating birds have changed their time of travel and also their place of migration.
    5.The effect of global warming can be felt on seasons too. There is shift in season cycle, as the summers are getting longer than the winters. This has affected the animals and made them to change their lifestyle accordingly, and those who failed to do so have perished or on the verge of extinction.
    6.The global warming is also responsible for the introduction of some new diseases. The bacteria are more effective and multiply much faster in warmer temperatures compared to cold temperatures.
    7.Global warming is also effecting the crop production, as the crops are getting destroyed by the sudden change in temperatures or sudden on set of rains. Also the flash floods and other natural calamities affect the crop.
    8.As a matter of fact, because of global warming, the earth’s atmosphere is getting more unpredictable with heavy rains in the areas, which have scanty rainfall or drought in the areas, which received good annual rainfall. The months of rainfall has also getting affected.
    CAUSES OF GLOBAL WARMING
    Natural Causes
    Natural causes are causes that are created by nature. One natural cause is a release of methane gas from arctic tundra and wetlands.
    Another natural cause is that the earth goes through a cycle of climate change. This climate change usually lasts about 40,000 years.
    Man-made Causes of Global Warming
    Global warming is caused by several things, which include man-made or anthropogenic causes, and is also caused by natural causes. to help stop global warming, we have to understand how our actions are causing it. The main causes of global warming, in order of the magnitude of their impact, are:
    1. The Most Significant Causes Carbon Dioxide from:
    1. Fossil Fuel
    2. Deforestation
    3. Failing Sinks
    2. Methane from:
    1. Cattle and Rice Paddies
    2. the Artic Tundra
    3. Clathrates
    3. Nitrogen Oxides from Farming
    4. Other Gases
    The Most Significant Cause
    The buildup of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, mainly from your fossil fuel emissions, is the most significant human cause of global warming. Carbon dioxide is released every we burn something thus increasing the pollution level on earth.
    Deforestation increases the severity of global warming as well. All living plants store carbon. When those plants die and decay, carbon dioxide is released back into the atmosphere. .
    A "carbon sink" is a natural system that stores carbon over thousands of years. Such sinks include peat bogs and the arctic tundra. But if these sinks destabilize, that carbon will be released, possibly causing an unstoppable and catastrophic warming of the Earth.
    The ocean is a huge carbon sink. the increased thermal stratification of the oceans has caused substantial reductions in levels of phytoplankton, which store CO2 further contributing to climate change. As carbon sinks fail, the amount of carbon in the atmosphere climbs![
    Methane's Huge Impact
    Methane is created when bacteria break down organic matter under oxygen-starved conditions. This occurs when organic matter is trapped underwater, as in rice paddies. It also takes place in the intestines of herbivorous animals, such as cows, sheep, and goats. Because human agriculture has grown over time to engulf most of the arable land on the planet, it is now adding a lot of methane to the atmosphere. Landfills and leakage from natural gas fields are also significant sources of methane.
    Clathrates are frozen chunks of ice and methane that rest at the bottom of the world's oceans. As the water warms, the ice melts, and the methane is released. It is believed that some of the warming cycles in the Earth's history have been caused by the sudden thawing of clathrates.
    A Growing Problem
    One of the primary components of the green revolution has been the development of nitrogen fertilizers which have 300 times more heat-trapping capacity per unit of volume than does carbon dioxide, and we release them every time we apply fertilizer to soil.
    The Few But Strong
    CFCs and HCFCs (chlorofluorocarbons and hydrochlorofluorocarbons) used in refrigeration are also powerful greenhouse gases. These gases occur in lower concentrations in the atmosphere, but because they are so much more potent than carbon dioxide they contribute to global warming as well.
    THE GLOBAL CRISIS AND ITS SOLUTION:
    After years of debate, consensus among most of the world's scientists holds that we are warming the planet. Unless we take steps now to curb global warming, our way of life, our planet, and our children are all in grave danger. There is hope. Each us can make simple decisions that will reduce global warming pollution.

    Responsible Choices


    Choosing modern technology can reduce our use of fossil fuels and help protect the planet. These steps will help curb global warming, save you money, and create a safer environment for the future
    Support clean, renewable energy.
    1.Renewable energy solutions, such as wind and solar power, can reduce our reliance on coal-burning power plants, the largest source of global warming pollution.
    2.Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs.
    3. Plant a Tree, protect a forest. Protecting forests is a big step on the road to curbing global warming.
    4.Reduce! Reuse! Recycle!
    Producing new paper, glass, and metal products from recycled materials saves 70 to 90 percent of the energy and pollution.
    5.More frequent use of public transportation helps the environment. Walking is the least impactful mode of transportation, followed by the bicycle, whose usage produces no carbon emissions.
    Conclusion:
    The goal of all human beings is to live in joy and perpetual harmony with oneself and with the environment, to be able to enjoy life free of sorrows and fears. We harm or destroy exactly what we eventually wanted to get in unison and harmony with. Around the world, there is an increasing awareness of the importance of climate change as a factor in a range of issues. Many environmental, economic and social issues find common ground in the form of climate change.
    .. Global warming can be slowed, and stopped, with practical actions that yield a cleaner, healthier atmosphere. The question is: will we act soon enough? It is a matter of time. Ultimately it is up to each of us, as individuals and families, to take action to slow down and eventually reverse global warming through everyday awareness of our energy use and attention to ways we can conserve electricity and minimize fossil fuel usage.
    If we personally take responsibility, we won't lose anything. On the contrary, we and everybody else is just gaining advantages.
    Deeds are more important than words - do start now!
     
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  2. gjaya

    gjaya Silver IL'ite

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    This was a nicely written essay. Lot of information that I didn't knew. Thanks for sharing it Karuna.
     
  3. karunamurty

    karunamurty Bronze IL'ite

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    Thanks Jaya for your fb. :)
    Global Warming is a burning issue but sadly, often ignored.
     
  4. narra

    narra Silver IL'ite

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    karuna,
    nice write up.thanks for sharing
     
  5. skchivukula

    skchivukula Bronze IL'ite

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    Hi Karuna
    Excellent write-up
    Liked the conclusion very much.
    Keep it up :thumbsup:thumbsup
     
  6. karunamurty

    karunamurty Bronze IL'ite

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    Dear Vijaya and Chivukula,
    Thank you so much for your fb. I am glad you appreciate the write-up.
     
  7. suryayasaswini

    suryayasaswini Silver IL'ite

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    Dear karuna
    Excellent write up.
    Keep it up:thumbsup
     

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