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Global Warming: An Issue That Is Man Made?

1506 words - 7 pages

Global warming is both a political and scientific problem, which tends to be manipulated by media to prove one side of the argument. Although the media sways the public to see global warming as a settled matter, it is far from that. Scientifically speaking, the evidence to support man-made global warming comes from assumptions rather than solid evidence that can be fully proven. Scientists cannot say for certain whether or not the warming of the globe is primarily man-made or natural due to the constantly changing research, unreliability of climate models, lack of research, and prior observations before the pre-satellite era.
Climate models play a big role in the global warming ...view middle of the document...

This extra heat that is being carried by water vapor in air currents will transport the extra heat upward, allowing an excess of clouds to form. Clouds are known to block as much as 30% of the harmful UV rays emitted by the sun, so if there are more clouds to block the energy, less heat and UV rays will be able to enter the atmosphere. Dr. Spencer argues that this could help further cool the earth by adding some shade from the sun. This process is known as the hydrologic cycle, which already plays a significant role in today’s weather world. Overall, processes like these make it difficult to grasp really how much the earth may warm in the future, if any.
As little as thirty to forty years ago, in the 1970s, global cooling was being promoted with dire threats of a new ice age. In such a small period of time, from then until now, thoughts and fears have changed dramatically. The blame of global cooling in the 1970s had the same main argument of today’s warming period: man-made pollution. If this warming is a result of man, including the pollution that we emit, then how can one’s views change so drastically in such a short amount of time to support the exact opposite argument (Spencer 48)? The acts and laws that were passed, such as the clean air and water act, will certainly help our environment, but it’s not sure if it can change the amount of warming or cooling of the globe.
Temperature records have been kept since the late 1800s, but technology to measure the entire globe has only been available since the 1960s. As a result, the new satellite age research is being taken and compared to old temperature readings that were not as abundant. Since this is taking research that is more abundant and comparing it to only bits and pieces that were taken prior to 1960, it is hard to get a full grasp on the warming (Singer 17). Instead, to get a 100% accurate reading, one must compare it only to modern data, which is yet to be sufficient enough to fully show how much the earth is warming compared to the past.
Before humans were even present on earth, studies show that many natural variations took place time and time again. These variations were in the form of both warming periods, as well as ice ages. When looking at those warming and cooling periods in the past, a direct correlation to solar activity was found (Wibjorn 63). Today, solar activity has been at its peak of the current cycle, which may be a factor of the current warming. In the future, solar activity will be on the downtrend, so it will be interesting to see the correlation of temperatures and solar activity (Sullivan). Other natural factors, such as continental drift, Earth’s orbit, or volcanic eruptions have also been linked to play a role in Earth’s temperature change.
Several teleconnections make up different regions of the atmosphere. These include patterns like the NAO (Northern Atlantic Oscillation), PNA (Pacific North American...

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