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A Global Disaster: Global Warming Essay

2381 words - 10 pages

When disasters ensue, proper response must be thoughtfully recognized and relief thoroughly enacted. Without recognition, said disasters still exist - there can be no “blissful ignorance” - and without relief, said disasters do not repair themselves. Global warming, a worldwide disaster, poses a dangerous threat. Large portions of coastal cities will need to relocate, harsh droughts and heat waves will strike, and strong weather systems will develop. These effects will occur globally and affect everyone. Global warming is occurring, as evidence has shown, with modern civilization a cause: And though its danger exists and its full reversal is improbable, humanity may inhibit it - as mankind’s responsibility.
Because global warming poses a threat, global warming’s definition and its associated facts serves as very useful information. Merriam-Webster dictionary defines global warming as “the recent increase in the world’s temperature that is believed to be caused by the increase of certain gases (such as carbon dioxide) in the atmosphere.” Average global temperatures have risen to unusually high levels (Nuccitelli). In the last fifty years, the average temperature of the Earth’s surface has risen faster than ever recorded (Nuccitelli). A graph depicting the temperatures recorded shows a rise to nearly two times the highest average temperature since 800 A.D.; the temperatures on this graph are estimates from the amount of the sun’s influence, which can be known back to those dates (Nuccitelli) Even the last decade indicates abnormal temperatures: “Eleven of the last twelve years (1995-2006) rank among the twelve warmest years in the instrumental record of global surface temperature” (“Climate Change 2007: Synthesis Report”). In short, Earth’s recent temperature trend has surpassed normal, predicted ranges. Global warming is occurring - there should not be any doubt. Evidence clearly shows that the Earth is warming abnormally. Since 1880, the globe has heated, “the warmest years occurring in the past 12 years” even regardless of a solar output decline, or less potency of the sun’s energy (“Climate Change: How do we know?”). It is important to note that the warming began at approximately the middle of the Industrial Revolution in the 1700s and 1800s, when industry was outputting many new emissions. The average temperature of the Earth’s surface has been shown to warm “approximately 1.4°F since the early 20th Century” (“Global Climate Change Indicators”) by recordings from “ships, buoys, and satellites” (“Global Climate Change Indicators”). The atmosphere’s composition has been changing, and due to this, a significant amount of heat cannot leave the atmosphere. Firstly, carbon dioxide, a gas found in the atmosphere, has a “heat-trapping nature” (“Climate Change: How do we know?”), explained further later. Because it traps heat, the carbon dioxide in the Earth’s atmosphere serves as a giant insulating blanket for the whole planet. When the “blanket”...

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