The Major Causes And Consequences Of Global Warming

817 Words 4 Pages
Imagine a future where a growing population experiences shortages of food and water as well as growing temperatures. These gradually increasing temperatures bring with them such dire environmental consequences that not only are many different species threatened with extinction, civilization finds itself threatened as well. Though this sounds like the setup for a science fiction movie, this is actually just one of the possibilities for the future due to the long term effects of global warming. Global warming is the detection of the “overall statistical increase in the average temperature of the Earth 's atmosphere and oceans over recent years” (Miller, 2006). Although it is highly debated as to whether the major causes of global warming are …show more content…
The leading activities contributing to this increase in the greenhouse effect being the burning of fossil fuels and clear cutting forests (Environmental Defense Fund, 2016). The burning of fossil fuels consists of the burning of natural resources like oil, natural gas, and coal in order to heat and cool our buildings, run appliances, drive vehicles, etc. When it is taken into consideration that our society not only depends but also runs on actions such as these, it may be easier for the magnitude of our role in releasing greenhouse gasses to begin to come into focus. The machinery used in clear cutting forests for lumber or for future development, release large amounts of carbon dioxide while at the same time eliminating the forestry that would absorb this greenhouse gas to grow. Once again, increasing the amount of greenhouse gasses stuck in the atmosphere and escalating temperatures. A recent study from NASA, using updated calculations of the difference between the amounts of solar energy the planet absorbs and the amount it returns to space, confirmed that, between 2005 and 2010, the earth absorbed more energy than it returned despite unusually low solar activity (Jones, 2012). This validates the …show more content…
The question of whether global warming is natural over time due to changes in solar activity or if it is being accelerated by humans comes is a great one but it comes secondary to the question of how each of us can minimize and raise awareness to the negative impact we can have on the earth. Though scientists overwhelmingly agree that the Earth is warming because of human activity, in a 2012 poll, more than half of Americans were still unaware that scientists held this position (Rustad, 2013). Perhaps the importance of raising awareness is best stated by John Cook, the lead author of the Environmental Research Letters, when he says, “There is a gaping chasm between the actual consensus and the public perception which is staggering and significant, because when people understand that scientists agree on global warming, they’re more likely to support policies to take action on it.”(Rustad,

Related Documents