Throughout history the planet Earth has experienced many climate changes due to natural causes. The Earth’s orbit, the sun’s intense heat, volcanic activity, and the circulation of the ocean all play a role with climate change and the Earth’s temperature. The natural cycle of these factors working together dictate how the planets weather and seasons take place. However, the Earth’s rapid warming trend seen today cannot be explained by natural causes alone. Humans are responsible for the rapid rise in anthropogenic climate change (formally known as “global warming”), due to industrial over development and excessive use of products which cause gas emersion into the Earth’s Atmosphere. Now that anthropogenic climate change has become a serious problem, many environmental scientists as well as activist argue if the damage that has taken place is irreversible. Many argue the Earth has a chance at surviving the damage anthropogenic climate change has caused as long as less gas emersion takes place, while others feel the immediate actions taking place will not be effective enough to have a positive long term effect on the environment.
What’s really happening?
The earth receives energy from the sun and then radiates much of this energy back toward space. However, the EPA research shows certain gases in the atmosphere called “greenhouse” gases absorb some of the outgoing energy and trap it in the atmosphere. Greenhouse gases are any gases whose absorption of solar radiation is responsible for the greenhouse effect, including carbon dioxide, methane, ozone, and the fluorocarbons. The
Greenhouse effect occurs naturally, however human activities have substantially increased the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere causing the earth to trap more heat (EPA 2010).
In February of 2007, thousands of scientific experts, collectively known as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded that there is greater than 90 percent likelihood that humans are responsible for the increasing amounts of greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere which has become the main cause of anthropogenic climate change in the past century (IPCC 2007).
The IPCC indicates that during the twenty first century the global surface temperature is likely to raise a further 1.5 to 1.9c degrees or 2.7 to 3.4f (IPCC 2007)). If anthropogenic climate change continues to get worse, the ice in the Antarctic parts of the world will continue to melt rapidly causing the sea levels to rise. The oceans temperature will continue to raise causing sea life to die or migrate to cooler waters. Weather seasons will change due to inconsistent weather patterns and resulting in extreme weather conditions of which the planet is are already beginning to experience. Extinction of many species of animals and plants will continue to take place due to lack of food and water source. Anthropogenic climate change ultimately is...