Global warming is defined as the rise in the normal temperature of the world’s atmosphere, particularly a continued increase, which is enough to cause changes in climate. “One of the most interesting global questions is whether the climate is changing and, if it is, whether the reasons are anthropogenic or natural or maybe even both.” (Kenneth, 2008) Though there are myths associated with global warming, research shows that global warming exists. Some scientists believe that greenhouse gases caused by man are insignificant compared to the ones released naturally. However, research by the US National Academy of Science shows that human activities have contributed to the current rise in the atmospheric greenhouse gas level on the planet. “Due to this warming trend, data from Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change shows that by 2100 the earth’s temperature will rise from 2.5 to 10.4 °F.” [Ucar]. A lot of scientists predict that global warming may cause increases in hurricanes and storms, ice which melts rapidly, earlier spring, heat waves, high-level oceans, drought, rainfall as well as others not known yet. “Some scientists agree that global warming is a real crisis and others don’t agree, and they say that global warming is just a normal change in the climate.” Research findings have proved that there is global warming, for it was reported that “the ten hottest years on record have occurred since 1990, the decade of the 1990s was the hottest in the last millennium, the planet is warming at a rate faster than at any time in the last 10,000 years. This accelerated rate is of great concern to scientists.” (Jarl, 2008).
According to DA Morgan, a writer for the Washington Post, most are aware of the change that has been reported concerning the gigantic ice mass breaking up the coast of Antarctica, and people shouldn’t be surprised that it is happening in the northern hemisphere, too, “New measurements by US scientists show that since 1996 the Greenland ice sheet has been moving faster during the summer melting season,” but it appears to be the opposite. That was a general opinion about global warming as evidence in 2002 [DA Morgan]. At the beginning of the issue of global warming, a large number of writers declared that scientists wanted to create new ideas simply to make money from them. But these days’ people begin to realize that global warming isn’t just a change of climate but a huge calamity connected to reasons and results. “IPCC has on several occasions warned that the climate is rapidly warming and that the reason for this is an anthropogenic effect caused by an increase in the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.” (Kenneth, 2008) It involves a circle of factors and effects such as human causes, natural results, greenhouses effects, and others. Although there have been myths concerning global warming, it is important that the truth be told.
In 1997, an agreement on global warming was reached by the United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Kyoto, Japan. In the Kyoto Protocol agreement, the major industrial nations pledged to reduce their emissions of greenhouse gases between 2008 and 2012. “Although the American delegation signed the protocol, the United States Senate has refused to ratify the treaty, mainly because it believes that the targeted reductions are so steep that they will produce a severe economic slump” [Answer]. The Protocol was created by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change UNFCCC. It targeted to cover 163 countries that agree to reduce their emissions of CO2 and others greenhouse gases. In 1997, the president of the United States decided to pull out from the Kyoto Protocol, and the European Union and Japan condemned the U.S. because it was felt that the U.S. was obliged to follow the Kyoto protocol. In general, The United States has agreed to cut greenhouse gas emissions by more than 5 percent from 1990 until 2012, but President Bush explained that U.S. houses only affects 5 percent of humanity and accounts for a quarter of all carbon dioxide emissions, while 60 percent of emissions are caused by the rest of world’s population [Asia source]. The action of the United States is essential to reduce greenhouse gases, but President Bush explained that would hurt the economy of the country. The European Union, Japan, Brazil, Russia, and New Zealand are concerned about global warming, and they decided to continue with their efforts, despite the negative impact of the Bush administration concerning the international agreement to cut the emissions of greenhouse gases. Many people were angry about the Bush administration’s stance on this issue. They felt that he was ignoring environmental gangers. At one time, there was a large protest in Washington D.C. to show dissatisfaction concerning withdrawal from the Kyoto Protocol. The activists waved banners that read PROTECT THE PLANET, NOT POLLUTERS and BUSH: POLLUTER OF FREE WORLD and PRESIDENT BUSH HAS COMPLETELY BROKEN HIS TRUST WITH THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. President Bush knows that if he tries to stop using fossil fuels, it will affect the economy of America. If America changes the whole method of using fossil fuel, such as the operation of cars, gas stations, factories, and power companies that depend on fossil fuel, it will affect an important part of the economy. For example, “if the efficiency of every centrifugal chiller in the world were increased by only 0.08 kW/ton, power plant-generated greenhouse gas emissions would be reduced by literally billions of pounds”(ESS). The amount would be equivalent to the elimination of two million cars from the road each year, or equal to planting a half-billion trees every year [ESS]. President Bush knows that industries of the 21st century are trying to create clean and efficient energy. Policymakers have the choice to reduce the impact of global warming, but it is still under the control of each individual country [David Roberts].
People have the ability and technology to reduce or stop global warming with efficient solutions. The real action has to begin with the government and then filter down to the people. However, in America, the opposite is happening because the American people aren’t satisfied with the Bush administration. The number of Americans who are worried about global warming increased from 62 to 77 percent between 2004 and 2006. In fact, Al Gore, a former U.S. presidential candidate and a very open-minded man, advocate the prevention of global warming. NEWSWEEK spoke to many people who understand Gore’s battle. One, in particular, stated, “Al Gore can’t convince me but, his data can convince me.” The big part of the global warming solution is that the government has to support people in their efforts to reduce the use of fossil fuels. Experts expect Americans to burn more than 140 billion gallons of gasoline in 2006 [Newsweek]. Toyota and Honda have invented hybrid cars which combine a small gasoline engine and a battery-powered electric motor. Also, those kinds of cars have new technology combined with smaller sizes. Scientists explored new combustions, such as ethanol, to use for cars instead of using gasoline. It’s cheaper but less efficient than gasoline. Also, changes included a new way to design buildings. Many companies have begun to follow suggested models to build, such as Bank of America in Manhattan. It promotes sustainability by growing its own food and capturing rainwater to use for plant growth. Also, companies can produce half a building’s electricity from scraps from the cafeteria to get methane as a supplementary fuel. The waste heat from the generator will warm the offices and power the refrigeration plant to cool them. Solar panels can be used to heat water and produce electricity.
In conclusion, global warming is one of the greatest challenges facing the world today. Everybody is responsible for taking care of our children’s future and our planet. Countries have to join and support Kyoto Protocol because so far, we begin to face strong environmental results such as hurricanes and storms, melting ice, earlier spring, and heatwaves. A lot of research indicates that the main cause for global warming is human activity, and we have to find and work on serious solutions. We need to balance our technology and the protection the environment needs. To reduce greenhouse gas emissions, I recommend people to stop destroying tropical forests, increase energy efficiency as well as the sinks for greenhouse gases and expand renewable sources of energy. “Global warming is not a liberal conspiracy to expand the power of government, nor is it a threat to our prosperity. It is a very real and compelling problem that we must face and solve.” (John R.E 2001).
DA Morgan (F:DA Morgan – More evidence global warming isn’t real.htm).
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Fenn Karen, Global Climate Change. New York, NY: Harvard University Press. (2002).
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