All winter long I was thinking, Yippee, a blizzard!We had many multi-day snowstorms. At some points it snowed so hard, I couldn'tsee the house across the street. One snowy day when school had been cancelled, Iplayed on my computer, then went down to breakfast. My mom turned on the news andthe big headline was "Blizzard 2003." Yet, how it could be cold enoughto snow was a puzzling question for me. How could there be a blizzard if there isglobal warming, especially in the U.S?. The answer: Global warming doesn't meanit won't snow, it just means that there is a hole in the ozone layer and theoverall temperature of the planet is increasing.
We did have a long, coldwinter, but that doesn't mean global warming is over or doesn't exist. Oceanlevels are still rising because glaciers continue to melt. People have againbecome careless about CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) which enlarge the hole in theozone layer. Just one CFC molecule can destroy up to 10,000 ozone molecules. Theozone drops an atom and becomes oxygen. Although we don't have to worry about nothaving enough oxygen, we do have to worry about the increasing risk of skincancer* from the ultraviolet rays that are coming through the hole in the ozonelayer.
CFCs are constantly pumped into the air by everything from cookingsprays to computer part sanitizers. Smog and greenhouse gases (which keep hot airinside the atmosphere, causing further warming) are still going into theatmosphere. This is partially because our president wouldn't sign an agreement todecrease CFC and greenhouse-gas production, and also because people are morecareless.
My suggestion for you is to help save the environment, notdestroy it. Don't you want a nice, clean world for you and your children to livein? Besides, it could be a simple matter of buying non-CFC products (instead ofthe ones you use today that contain them). Or you could donate money toscientific research to find a way to contain CFCs in the lower atmosphere, wherethey won't do any harm. Whatever you do will make a difference, so go out thereand do something.
*Editor's Note: See an article on skin cancer
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.