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Global Warming

By , Paw Paw, MI

Storms are increasing in size. Droughts are lasting for longer periods of time. The Earth is constantly gaining more heat. Why is this happening? The answers are global warming and what it is, its effects on land, in the sea, and also the ecosystems.


What is global warming? Global warming is the unusually rapid increase in temperature of the Earth and the Earth’s atmosphere (Ranney, Reinholz, and Goldwasser; “Global Warming”). When sunlight hits the Earth 30% is shot back out into space, while the majority of the other 70% is absorbed by the land and sea. Whatever is left is absorbed by the atmosphere (“Global Warming”). The temperature of the earth that is in the atmosphere increases by the rays of sunlight being absorbed by greenhouse gases (Ranney, Reinholz, and Goldwasser). More gas is returned into the atmosphere by the heat of the rocks, sea, trees, and animals; meanwhile, the water vapor and greenhouse gases absorb that heat as well (“Global Warming”). As the atmosphere increases in temperature, it emits more and more heat into the Earth (Ranney, Reinholz, and Goldwasser). If global warming increases past a certain point it has negative effects on the atmosphere, sea, and land.

In 1750, which is the Industrial Age, the number of factories increased which caused up to 40% more carbon dioxide went into the atmosphere (Ranney, Reinholz, and Goldwasser). Also, the amount of methane has increased by 150% because it returned to the atmosphere (Ranney, Reinholz, and Goldwasser). These increases in gases cause the amount of heat in the atmosphere to increase, but the heat also is harder to push out (Ranney, Reinholz, and Goldwasser).  In the time between 1906 through 2005, the temperature of the atmosphere rose from 1.1 to 1.6 degrees Fahrenheit. In addition, the rate of temperature has nearly doubled in the last 50 years (“Global Warming”).  The reason this happens is because humans spew more gases into the atmosphere by factories (Global Warming”).  In 2009, the carbon dioxide levels were found to have increased by 38%, and the methane levels increased by 148%. The more molecules that the atmosphere obtains the more heat that is radiated back toward Earth, which therefore increases the Earth’s temperature (“Global Warming”). This is the reason why global warming is such a crucial issue to deal with.

Secondly, global warming affects the land of the Earth.  Global warming has extra, far reaching effects on this planet because it modifies rainfall patterns, amplifies costal erosion, lengthens the growing season in some regions, melts ice caps and glaciers, and alters the ranges of some infectious diseases (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). Some examples are an increased amount hot days and fewer cold days. This also causes hotter summers, and more frequent fires (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”).  Global warming may also increase the intensity of hurricanes; and storms, floods, and droughts will be more severe than normal (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). Freshwater may also become scarcer as heat increases, and glaciers melt away (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). It has been predicted that higher latitudes places will have longer growing seasons because they will have more water; while lower latitudes will have many more food shortages (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). There have been more heat waves and droughts than ever before in the Earth because of human-caused global warming (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). All this extra heat from global warming has harmed people in the lower lying areas of the world (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”).

  Global warming also affects the sea. For example, it causes the sea level to rise. During the years between 1870 and 2000 the sea level has risen to a grand total of 221 millimeters with a rate of 1.7 millimeters per year. This rate of the sea level rising is constantly increasing. The rate of sea level rising has increased to 3 millimeters per year since 1993. By 2009, the total amount the sea level rose was 48 more millimeters (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”).

Finally, global warming affects the ecosystems of the Earth. This change in temperature has spring to come two weeks earlier, which has an effect on migrating animals. This causes the animals to go seek food sources earlier (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”).This also has effects creatures that pollinate plants because they go out sync with when the flowering plants and trees bloom. This causes their ability to survive and reproduce harder; which affects the entire food chain (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). These increasingly warmer temperatures cause the growing season to increase (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). Shorter winters also affect the number of dormant insects to increase which risks more damaging infestations (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). These temperatures could also increase beyond the tolerance levels of some plants and animals. Many animals have started to migrate toward the poles (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). Animals which are unable to quickly adapt to different environments will go extinct (“How Will Global Warming Change Earth”). Global warming does many harmful things to nature, and will only continue to do so.
The world needs to know global warming, and how it works; the effects it has on land, sea, and life. Global warming has been increasing for hundreds of years, and will continue to increase until the people stop overdosing on greenhouse gases. Like many other things, people overuse greenhouse gases to live, and there consequence is dangerously high amounts global warming.

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