By: Tiffany Lu
Oftentimes when someone mentions climate change, many do not understand what that really means. Today, I will break down what exactly the earth is coming to and what specifically caused the environmental crisis.
So, what exactly is Climate change?
By Google's definition, Climate Change is: "a change in global or regional climate patterns, in particular, a change apparent from the mid to late 20th century onwards and attributed largely to the increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide produced by the use of fossil fuels".
So, basically due to our unsustainable lifestyle, the climate/weather is irregularly changing.
Why is this happening?
Let's see the basic and main causes of climate change/ global warming.
(We will be going more in-depth in future blogs)
Certain gases within the atmosphere that traps heat.
The gases vary from methane to water vapor to carbon dioxide and on.
Natural Greenhouse gases, aka the “good” gases, allow us to not freeze or burn to death. However, due to industrialization and exploitation of Earth’s resources, man-made greenhouse gases are found in the atmosphere.
This is part of the reason why the Earth can stay at a humanely acceptable/liveable temperature. (They protect us from the harshness of the Sun’s rays and radiation)
Even though natural greenhouse gases are relatively great, man-made ones cause too many gases within the atmosphere. Each of which can stay for different periods of time. Some even last thousands of years.
As a result, the planet traps too much heat. More industrialization = more gases= more heat.
Thus, this all this leads to global warming,
Since Industrialization and the exploitation of resources such as fossil fuels, there has been a huge increase in the “bad” greenhouse gases.
We produce livestock, commit deforestation, destroy the habitats of countless organisms, frack to gain oil, mass product single-use products, etc... I can go on and on, but it's clear that humans are the catalyst of this environmental crisis.
The levels of carbon dioxide in the air are levels higher than a million years ago.
This is not something that is naturally happening.
Nasa states, “ The industrial activities that our modern civilization depends upon have raised atmospheric carbon dioxide levels from 280 parts per million to 414 parts per million in the last 150 years. The panel also concluded there's a better than 95 percent probability that human-produced”
We engage in activities and actions that produce greenhouse gases, which result in global warming.
Since the planet is getting hotter and hotter aka global warming, there has been drastically more negative weather.
For example, the average temperature of the Earth is changing, so oceans are warming up. The ice glaciers and ice caps are melting! Which results in rising sea levels, because the ice is turning into water.
This all leads to the main resulting problem of Climate Change.
Conclusion & Summary
Human activity has allowed us to destroy the planet. We continued and exploited resources to gain wealth and live in easiness. Admittedly, we have billions of people who do depend on this continuous lifestyle. However, that does not mean we should give up.
We can alter how we decide to industrialize and mass manufacture. We can always improve.
If we do not change now, the greenhouse gases will rise along with the temperatures and along with natural disasters.
This does not have to be the end of the story.
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Johnson, S. (2019, March 02). How Are Greenhouse Gases Bad for the Earth? Retrieved December 12, 2020, from https://sciencing.com/greenhouse-gases-bad-earth-23688.html
Ocko, I. (1969, July 25). 9 ways we know humans triggered climate change. Retrieved December 12, 2020, from https://www.edf.org/climate/9-ways-we-know-humans-triggered-climate-change
Overview of Greenhouse Gases. (2020, September 08). Retrieved December 12, 2020, from https://www.epa.gov/ghgemissions/overview-greenhouse-gases
The Causes of Climate Change. (2020, November 10). Retrieved December 12, 2020, from https://climate.nasa.gov/causes/