The planet Earth has seen a 1.4°F increase in global temperature since the 19th century; carbon dioxide concentration has increased by 40% since 1880, the highest in 800,000 years; sea ice in the Arctic is shrinking; sea levels have increased by eight inches thus far; and the ocean’s acidity is increasing. Global climate change is all too real. Global climate change is not a myth.
I interviewed two experts in this field to obtain additional expert accounts and information. One of my interviewees, Virginia Burkett is the Chief Scientist for Climate and Land Use Change for the US Geological Survey and has been studying climate change for 23 years. She claims, “some of the most important changes of the past 100 years are an increase in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, an increase in temperatures globally, changes in the phenology of plants and animals that are driven by the increase in temperatures, changes in precipitation patterns, an accelerated loss of sea ice and glaciers, a decline in permafrost in the Arctic, accelerated sea level rise, increasing ocean temperature, increasing ocean acidity, and more frequent droughts and fires in many parts of the world”
In a survey conducted on 30 students from Liberty High School, it was found 27 (90%) of those individuals believe global climate change is all too real. The mere three students cited their reason for disbelief as “it’s a myth,” no scientific evidence backing their claim Quite simply, all scientific evidence points towards humans are responsible for global climate change.
Coral Reefs are extremely sensitive to even the smallest of changes in water temperature. In 1998, coral reefs experienced the worst bleaching rate, 70% in some areas. Bleaching is the process in which “prolonged rises in sea temperature force coral colonies to expel their symbiotic, food-producing algae” (Markey). It is possible to recover from bleaching, but the vast majority of coral reefs do not. Many coral reefs have become simply rubble, effectively killing off food and shelter for many fish. The first long term study of global-warming-induced bleaching mainly focused on Africa's Seychelles Islands. It concluded the diversity of fish has been cut in half in some regions due to loss of coral reefs. Some species in the region, such as Butterflyfish, Damselfish, and two Wrasses are now assumed to be locally extinct as well as six other special sustaining critically low populations.
Sea levels aren’t the only part of nature affected by melting glaciers and ice. Polar bears among other indigenous cultures in the arctic environment also suffer from the loss of sea-ice. More than a million species could potentially face extinction from disappearing habitats, changing ecosystems, and acidic oceans (Global Warming Facts). In Antarctica, the number of breeding pairs of Adélie penguins has dropped from 32,000 to 11,000 in only thirty years. Arctic ice is disappearing all too quickly, it’s predicted the arctic region...