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Ellis Cain

Marissa Nelson
11/20/15

What is global warming? What are the causes and consequences?


One of the biggest issues that we face as a people today are hard to see and
to the average person, nearly impossible to Notice. That issue is global
warming. As Global warming has firmly taken a seat on the world stage
many people want to know what they can do to help solve this issue. Before
a problem can be solved there needs to be a good and strong understanding
of what exactly the problem is. According to Live science Global warming is
the slow heating of our planets surface. (Bradford 2014) the issue has
garnered worldwide attention about 2 years ago. Climate scientists are now
at least 95% sure that the increase in climate change is completely
manmade (Chow 2013) this essay will focus on the causes of global
warming, the effects of it and what can be done about it.
There are many causes of global warming but I will focus on the major ones
the biggest one is one we have all heard about, the greenhouse effect. The
greenhouse effect is the trapping of heat from the sun on earth because of
the atmosphere that earth has. (Lallanila 2015) This effect is what keeps

the Earth warm enough for us to live on because of the natural carbon gases
on earth. According to Nasa scientists are concerned that humans have
been increasing the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere at a
very high level ( Reinbeck 2010) this is mostly due to the burning of fossil
fuels, since the industrial revolution began in the mid 1700s carbon dioxide
levels rose 38% and methane have risen 14%. (Reinbeck 2010) these
numbers have the chance to have devastating effects on the planet. One of
those effects is the rising sea level. Because water expands as it heats up, it
expands and takes up more space. This process is called thermal expansion.
Not only has that but the increased temperature led to the melting of ice in
glaciers, the polar caps, Antarctica and Greenland. The problem with this is
that when sea levels rise it can have horrible effects on habitats of fish and
other animals on the coast. Other consequences include bigger, more
powerful storms as well as people may have to leave low areas as they
would be in constant danger of flooding. So what can we do about it? We
have to begin to focus on using other types of energy. There are several
forms of natural energy that we can use and wouldnt cause the issues we
see right now. Wind energy, solar power and hydro electricity are just some
of the different types we can use more often in order to lessen our
dependence on fossil fuels.

Another cause of global warming is deforestation. Deforestation is when


humans remove large areas of forest for other uses that arent forest related.
These land a generally never replanted. This affects global warming because
all plants take in carbon dioxide in the process called photosynthesis. As a
result when the forest is burned down the carbon is released back into the
air. According to National geographic forests still cover 30% of the world but
we lose large amounts every year. The effects this has on the environment is
devastating like with the rising sea levels many animals lose their habitat.
According to National geographic 70% of the worlds land animals live in
forests and wouldnt be able to survive the loss of their homes. Another
consequence of deforestation is soil erosion. The loss trees and the roots
that holds the soil together causes it to be eroded especially after heavy
rains. This can cause major problems in developing countries who lose
millions of dollars every year due to top soil erosion.
Top soil is the part of the soil that is fertile and provides plants with all the
nutrients that they need to survive. When the top soil has eroded away its
makes very difficult if not impossible to be successful farming there.
Of course there are other sides to this argument there are some who believe
that global warming doesnt exist or if it does thats its all natural and that
the planet goes through phases where it goes up and down all the time
throughout its history. there is no scientific consensus about whether
global warming Is occurring ( Hawkins 2014) not only that but because

there is such a big divide within the scientific community about whether or
not its real or if it is man made its hard for some people to agree or believe
that global warming does in fact exist.
There are several good points made in their favor though I personally think
that the evidence for global warming outweighs the evidence against it.
In conclusion I feel global warming is major issue that we need to fix before
it becomes unfixable. Its something that is very important for s to deal with
as soon as possible. I gave examples of some of the consequences
surrounding global warming. There were also some potential solutions to
some of the problems I outlined. I hope that I informed you about global
warming and all of its effects on us and the planet .

John Hawkins - 5 Scientific Reasons That Global Warming Isn't Happening.


(n.d.). Retrieved November 30, 2015, from
http://townhall.com/columnists/johnhawkins/2014/02/18/5-scientific-reasonsthat-global-warming-isnt-happening-n1796423/page/full
Sea Level Rise -- National Geographic. (n.d.). Retrieved November 30, 2015,
from http://ocean.nationalgeographic.com/ocean/critical-issues-sea-levelrise/

Chow, B. (2013, September 27). IPCC Climate Change Report: Experts React.
Retrieved November 30, 2015, from http://www.livescience.com/40021-ipccclimate-change-report-reactions.htmlSowers, S. (2015, August 27). Climate
change. CQ Researcher.
Bradford, B. (2014, December 15). What Is Global Warming? Retrieved
November 30, 2015, from http://www.livescience.com/37003-globalwarming.html
Oreskes, N. (n.d.). The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change. Retrieved
November 30, 2015, from
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/306/5702/1686.full