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Global Warming: Causes and Consequences

Introduction

Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the earth’s atmosphere and its oceans, a change believed to be permanent. (livescience.com ). The National Geographic website explains that global warming is the result of high levels of greenhouse gases(carbon dioxide, water vapor, methane and ozone) in the earth’s atmosphere. Wikipedia asserts that global warming is the increase in the average temperature of the earth’s near-surface air and oceans (Wikipedia.com, 2008).

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According to National Geographic’s official website, global warming is a concern because the earth’s climate is changing faster than some living things may be able to adapt. Furthermore, the new and more challenging climate creates new challenges to all life (Environment, National Geographic) Scientists usually alternate the term ‘global warming’ with ‘climate change’. This is because as the average temperature of the earth increases, ocean currents and winds interchange and consequently some parts of the earth are cooled while others are warmed. In the end, the climate differs in different places around the earth.

Discussion

Global warming has had both positive and negative effects on climate and the environment but the negative effects have received more attention. These include rising sea levels because of melting polar icecaps and an increase in the occurrence and severity of weather events, for example storms, hurricanes and floods (LiveScience.com).Other consequences of global warming include drought due to changes in the amount and pattern of precipitation (Wikipedia.com),changes in agricultural yields, species extinctions and increases in the range of disease vectors.(Wikipedia.com,2008)

When these effects are combined the results will be especially harsh on countries and people without the resources to stay those effects. For example, climate change includes hotter temperatures. Extremely high temperatures are detrimental to the health of human beings. Also, there is the depletion of the Ozone layer. Thus, Ozone gas increases at ground level, damaging lung tissue as it is a harmful pollutant.

A positive consequence of global warming has been the increase in water. For example, increased seasonal runoff of Himalayan glaciers resulted in increased agricultural production in Northern India throughout the 20th century (Wikipedia.com,2008 ).

Many scientists believe that global warming is unstoppable, but people can try to stabilize the greenhouse gases emitted. Currently, the concentration of GHG rests at about 380 parts per million ( ppm),which is a cause of worry since it is believed that the point at which the most damaging impacts of climate change can be evaded is around 450 to 550 ppm.

To stabilize the emission of greenhouse gases involves cutting down on environmentally unfriendly practices, for instance using less fossil fuel like coal and petroleum and instead advocating for “clean’ fuels. Also, green vegetation (forests) should be conserved.

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The article from USA Today that quotes scientists from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory is mostly correct in the facts that it contains. It is basically a report of a five-year study that discovered a relationship between the appearance of extremely high clouds that are normally associated with severe storms and rainfall and seasonal variations in average sea-surface temperature of tropical oceans.

The scientists believe that global warming is causing the frequency of extremely high clouds to increase. According to their study, every time the average ocean surface temperature increased by 1.8 degrees, there was a 45% increase in the frequency of the very high clouds. As global warming is progressing yearly, the researchers predict that the frequency of storms will increase by 6% per decade.

Wikipedia.com quotes that Hoyos et al (2006) have linked the increasing trend in the number of category 4 and 5 hurricanes between 1970 and 2004 directly to the trend in sea surface temperatures. However, some scientists are undecided as to whether global warming is the real reason behind the increase in precipitation. The World Meteorological Organization clarifies that “no individual tropical cyclone can be directly attributed to climate change”.(Wikipedia.com/effects of global warming/).

The article quotes another similar study and shows that the results are consistent. This lends credibility to the assertion that the global rain rate has been increasing over the past 18 years. Because Earth’s existing ice sheets are beginning to melt, sea levels could be raised significantly. Additionally, the weather can become more extreme, leading to more intense storms, more rainfall and longer and drier droughts (environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/global-warming/)

Recent evidence suggests that global agricultural yields will be affected by climate change.” Rising atmospheric temperatures, longer droughts and side-effects of both, such as higher levels of ground level ozone gas, are likely to bring about a substantial reduction in crop yields”(Wikipedia.com/effects of global warming)

The Senior research scientist at JPL, Hartmut Aumann mentions climate models that will benefit from the results of his research. According to NASA’s website, climate models are used to predict the climate change. The validity of the predictions depends on the ability of the climate model to reproduce the climate as seen. The models represent the various conditions that affect the climate, including land, oceans and the gases that form the atmosphere. If a model cannot explain the variations in weather and climate trends, their predictions cannot be completely credible.

Aumann’s research gives some idea on how clouds can be used in climate prediction without the amount of challenges that had been experienced before. Ocean-atmosphere models are used to tell how the weather and climate systems, including rainfall and clouds, respond to variations in the chemical composition of the atmosphere. At the moment, many climate models are at loggerheads when it comes to how clouds/cloud cover affect global warming. Some indicate changes in cloud cover that intensify global warming effects, while others demonstrate that cloud cover has little has a minor or even dampening effect on global warming.

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Most scientists are in agreement over the fact that climate models have to undergo much improvement before any credible predictions concerning the earth’s future climate. The USA Today article is a strictly informational piece of journalistic work It reports the facts as the NASA scientists gave them and it has not added any sensational facts. On accuracy, it has managed to stick to the truth. I have verified this with information from the NASA website, Wikipedia, the National Geographic website and the LiveScience website.

Conclusion

To this end, the scientific evidence provided by the article is complete even if it did not go into much detail. Therefore, in conclusion, the USA Today article has represented accurately, clearly and fairly scientific information based on global warming from scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

References

  1. Livescience. 2007. All About Global Warming. Web.
  2. National Geographic.2008. Environment. Web.
  3. Our Environment. 1995. NASA Facts. Global Warming. Web.
  4. Wikipedia. 2008. Global Warming. Web.

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StudyCorgi. (2021, October 25). Global Warming: Causes and Consequences. Retrieved from https://studycorgi.com/global-warming-causes-and-consequences/

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StudyCorgi. (2021, October 25). Global Warming: Causes and Consequences. https://studycorgi.com/global-warming-causes-and-consequences/

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"Global Warming: Causes and Consequences." StudyCorgi, 25 Oct. 2021, studycorgi.com/global-warming-causes-and-consequences/.

1. StudyCorgi. "Global Warming: Causes and Consequences." October 25, 2021. https://studycorgi.com/global-warming-causes-and-consequences/.


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StudyCorgi. "Global Warming: Causes and Consequences." October 25, 2021. https://studycorgi.com/global-warming-causes-and-consequences/.

References

StudyCorgi. 2021. "Global Warming: Causes and Consequences." October 25, 2021. https://studycorgi.com/global-warming-causes-and-consequences/.

References

StudyCorgi. (2021) 'Global Warming: Causes and Consequences'. 25 October.

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