2/06 – A Disaster waiting to Happen

Global warming is an ever-present disaster and we are the not only the cause but we are also the salvation. However one must be willing to taqke the steps and precaution if we are to protect the Earth or before you know your fart could spell our doom.

What is Global Warming?

Global warming is when the earth heats up (the temperature rises).  It happens when greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, water vapor, nitrous oxide, and methane) trap heat and light from the sun in the earth’s atmosphere, which increases the temperature.  This hurts many people, animals, and plants.  Many cannot take the change, so they die.

What is the Greenhouse effect?

The greenhouse effect is a process by which radiative energy leaving a planetary surface is absorbed by some atmospheric gases, called greenhouse gases. They transfer this energy to other components of the atmosphere, and it is re-radiated in all directions, including back down towards the surface. This transfers energy to the surface and lower atmosphere, so the temperature there is higher than it would be if direct heating by solar radiation were the only warming mechanism.

In order, Earth’s most abundant greenhouse gases are:

  • water vapor
  • carbon dioxide
  • atmosheric methane
  • nitrous oxide
  • ozone
  • chlorofluorocarbons

Causes of global warming:-

  • Agriculture is a huge source of methane and nitrous oxide, and responsible for 15% of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions.
  • One quarter of all man-made CO2 emissions is transportation related.
  • 750 million cars worldwide emit a total of approx. 2.25 billions tons of CO2 each year.
  • Industrial production is responsible for more than half of all C)2 emissions.
  • Largest quantities of CO2 emitted by energy producers and energy-intensive industries.
  • A quarter of CO2 emissions worldwide result from deforestation.
  • Net forest loss since 2000: 7.3 mill. hectares per year.

Impact:-

  • Since the early 1960s mountain glaciers around the world have experienced an estimated net loss of over 4,ooo cubic kilometers of water; this loss was more than twice as fast during the 1990s as in the previous decades.
  • Projection: 4*C rise in average global temperatures would cause nearly all of the world’s glaciers to melt, resulting in rising sea levels.
  • Globally, the annual number of strong storms doubled from around 8(early 1970s) to 18(2000-2004).
  • Hurricane Katrina in 2005 was the 6th largest hurricane on record, and caused over 60 billion US dollars in damage.
  • The magnitude of damages caused by the 27 tropical storms in the Atlantic during 2005 were the highest yet recorded.
  • 2 bill. people in 110 countries are affected and threatened by accelerating desertification.
  • The UN projects that 30% of the world’s fertile land surface will turn to desert in the future.
  • Exemple: Niger, 250,000 hectares an area about the size of Luxemburg, becomes desert each year.

Solutions :-

  • Organic farming
  • New filtration technology
  • Improvement measures: afforestation, reforestation, avoided deforestation
  • Reducing carbon footprint (energy savers)
  • Carpool, use of public transporation
  • Reducing our red meat consuption
  • Walking, running and cycling to destinations

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