Everyone is talking about it, and the news is constantly covering it. But nobody ever does anything about it. The “it” is global warming. Global warming has been steadily increasing since the industrial revolution at alarming rates causing extreme weather including droughts, floods, heat waves, and hurricanes, which is a major concern. In fact, it’s increasing at a rate of 10% every year (Ferrey 68). The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a group of scientists and government representatives from 130 countries that estimate the temperature rise to be 3.2-7.8 degrees Fahrenheit by the year 2100 (Cunningham 207). There is a way to slow carbon emissions. The people of Sweden produce only 6.5 tons per person per year of carbon dioxide (CO2) versus the United States with a CO2 production rate of 20.14 tons per person per year. Amazingly, Sweden adopted renewable energy sources and strict conservation measures which have reduced its carbon emissions by 40 percent over the past 30 years while still experiencing dramatic increases in personal income and quality of life (Cunningham 208).
In order to minimize the consequences of global warming, we must introduce highly efficient vehicles, create an abundance of renewable resources, and form the laws needed to slow global warming. Each of these solutions will provide a dramatic impact in reducing the carbon emissions, but it will take more than just the effort of these solutions, we must apply them to keep the earth as healthy as possible.
The first solution is the introduction of highly efficient cars that will get better gas mileage and consume much less fossil fuel because they are the primary producers in global warming (Heckeroth 94). There has been significant development of highly efficient vehicles, researching options for cleaner fuel, and incentives for people who buy efficient vehicles. For example, plug-in hybrids that offer a range of 500 miles or more, and the benefit of all-electric power vehicles, which require no gasoline at all, produce zero total emissions (Heckeroth 94).
Although highly efficient vehicles are effective, they will cost more to buy, but will ultimately pay off in the long run. To prevent the costs from getting too high, there must be multiple companies producing these highly efficient vehicles to increase the competition, therefore leaving the prices lower for the consumer. Lower prices mean more people purchasing this low or non-emitting vehicle to replace their old gas guzzler, which will result in less CO2 emissions.
The second level of CO2 reduction is the usage of renewable energy, such as solar panels and wind towers. Solar and wind energy are being used now as a clean, safe choice for our nation. One of the quickest ways to add more solar to our energy mix is to build utility-scale power plants because the United States has some of the best solar resources in the world (Hanis 55). These power plants are not...