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Serious Global Warming

Serious Global Warming

Due to natural forces, the Earth's temperature has been fluctuating for millions of years, long before humans arrived. However, it is the additional carbon dioxide, leading to an increase in the greenhouse effect, which must also be taken into account. When fossil fuels are burnt, such as coal, fuel oil or natural gas, the carbon emissions combine with oxygen to further thicken the Earth's atmospheric 'blanket' and thus warm the planet. An analysis of ice cores can provide information from thousands of years ago. Comparisons of carbon dioxide levels show that those of today are far beyond anything seen in the past.

Dramatic changes are taking place in the world as a result of global warming. Global warming has contributed to a 20 percent increase in rain over the last 100 years. However this increase in precipitation is not uniform, and some areas of the world have suffered from drought. It was striking to see the role this drought plays in the horrors now going on in Africa. Famine is killing many children and putting millions of lives at risk in the Niger area. In Darfur, a horrific genocide is being carried out. While the causes leading to the genocide and famine are complex, a contributing factor to these nightmare situations is changes brought on by global warming. Lake Chad, once the sixth largest lake in the world, has shrunk to one-twentieth of its former size, with sand dunes covering its bed. The disappearance of the lake has led to collapsed fisheries, lack of irrigation and crop failures, and millions displaced by hunger.

While the climate changes produced by global warming are beginning to show themselves today in shocking ways, these are just a glimmer of the changes that scientists predict may come about due to global warming: mass extinction of species, flooding in coastal areas due to melting polar ice, spread of infectious diseases, and the destruction of coral reefs caused by rising CO2 in the ocean’s water.

The destruction of glaciers due to global warming does not mean only that our children may never be able to see a glacier. The Himalayan glaciers, which provide more than half of the drinking water for over 40% of the world’s population, are among the most affected by global warming. Within the next 50 years these people may face a massive drinking water shortage as well as food shortages due to lack of irrigation.



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Global Warming


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