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Global Warming: Implications On Public Health

2872 words - 11 pages

Theories of global warming surfaced in the nineties as the decade proved to be the warmest on record. Since then, nations have come together to attempt to reverse the effects, if that is at all possible. Some refused and some have made great strides in the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions hoping that this will lead a reversal in the direction of the temperature pattern.

Many nations have a great stake in the future of the World’s climate, as it is the dictator of our very existence. The nations with the most stake in threats of sea level rising and destructive weather tend to be those whose economies are already weak or teetering. Haughty nations with vast resources such as the United States have a little more time to relax.

However, new projections of disease vectors, driven by warm weather, finding their way into temperate climates of the economic giants. Diseases such as dengue, malaria, yellow fever, encephalitis, and cholera which usually spare the Americas could be moving North. Cases of such diseases are popping up as far north as New York and Canada striking fear and genuine concern. Models have lead to projections of potential outbreaks of such diseases in industrialized nations.

Many say that a warm climate could be what makes the difference. Others still fear not a plague resulting from global climate change and rest assured that industrialized nations are protected by modern conveniences such as advanced medicine, sanitation, and proper housing. Both sides have valid points and credible scientists supporting them. This paper will detail both sides of the argument citing evidence of those who see disaster on the way and those who downgrade the threat to just hype.

Introduction

Global Climate Change, also often referred to as Global Warming is a hotly contested issue to scientist, politicians and opinionated folk alike. The topic has become even more unsettled with the arrival of George Bush into office. Only a few months into his term he pulled the United States out of a three-year summit on reducing carbon dioxide emissions. These Kyoto Protocol talks were a meeting of 160 nations who willingly discussed cutting emissions at the cost to their own economy. The US was the first to pull out, not only citing concern for the economy, but also lack of evidence, so to speak. Bush had the National Academy of Sciences review dire findings by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Meanwhile, the Bush-Cheney administration enacted an energy policy, which called for the increased burning of fossil fuels, which are believed to be a key factor in Global Warming. This action, from the nation that consumes most of the world’s energy and creates most of the world’s waste angered many, domestic and abroad.

Factoid 1: The U.S. produces more carbon dioxide emissions than any other country in the world. (Source: International Energy Agency via UNEP (W2))

Relevance of the topic

Global warming is such a...

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