Global Warming: Should It be Ignored?

Hannah Daniel

With numerous issues affecting the global community today, such as international conflicts and medical subjects, environmental issues often occur without great recognition from the public, despite its profound effect on the biological processes and economies of nations. Today, we thrive in a society that is adapted to a lifestyle that excessively exploits the natural resources that blanket the Earth; a lifestyle which is gradually deteriorating the well-being of nature as our mechanized actions are polluting our life sources. With the percentages of greenhouse gas emissions slowly mounting, we are now more than ever seeking new environmentally-friendly and cost effective solutions to improve the conditions of living today and for future generations to come. United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) exposed that concentrations of the greenhouse gases CO2, methane and nitrous oxide in the atmosphere have risen by 40%, 150%, and 20%, respectively since 1750 due the limitless, industrial human activities (UniversitaetTübingen, 2013). The greenhouse gas effect presents a concept concerning greenhouse gases and their dramatic influence on the increase in temperature in the atmosphere.

Often overlooked, are the two individual types of the greenhouse effect: “natural” and “man-made”.  The naturally occurring greenhouse effect regulates the temperature to stabilize Earth’s climate for optimal living conditions. In contrast, the “man-made” greenhouse effect, an enhancement of Earth’s natural greenhouse effect by the addition of greenhouse gases from the burning of fossil fuels, deforestation, population growth, factorial and agricultural production (mainly petroleum, coal, and natural gas) and the introductions of CFCs, aid in the reduction of ozone from the atmosphere. Although we cannot see the damages, the environmental impacts are continually occurring throughout the world and jeopardizing the welfare of the nature of the Earth. Average annual temperatures and significant climatic events are expected to increase, as greenhouse gases encase the UV radiation reflected from the land into the atmosphere, also recognized as the theory of global warming.

With greater knowledge on the impacts of global warming, such as drastic natural disasters and increased chances of melanoma and the benefits of reducing emissions, worldwide communities are beginning to take action against the rise of greenhouse gas output. However, some governments are reluctant to apply alterations, such as green energy technology, due to the enormous costs of production and maintenance, loss of resources, possible interference in economies, and research from skeptics of man-made global warming.

Water and air, the two essential fluids on which all life depends, have become global garbage cans (Jacques-Yves Cousteau). Our actions will dramatically impact the future generations and continuation along the path of immense outputs of carbon will potentially lead to the large-scale extinctions of organisms including humans. Countries should invest money into research of technologies and methods that promote green energy and the education of the public about the dangers of global warming, as well as maintain programs such as the cap-and-trade program to stimulate economic growth as well. Many simple solutions such as increasing “transportation efficiency”, conserving water and electricity that is created by coal, reusing materials, and becoming a conscious consumer by observing and limiting the products consumed can not only reduce atmospheric emissions, but improve the conditions of the environment as well as the quality of life. Now begin to imagine a world where the skies show hues of blue not the distasteful colors of black smog from carbon…