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Contents : About Global Warming Causes of Global Warming Effects of Global Warming Facts of Global warming Prevention of Global Warming Some Interesting Pictures
About Global Warming Global Warming is the increase in the average temperature of the earth’s atmosphere due to greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide.
According to the 2007 Fourth Assessment Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), global surface temperature increased 0.74 ± 0.18 °C (1.33 ± 0.32 °F) during the 20th century.
Most of the observed temperature increase since the middle of the 20th century has been caused by increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases, which result from human activity such as the burning of fossil fuel and deforestation.
Global dimming, a result of increasingconcentrations of atmospheric aerosolsthat block sunlight from reaching thesurface, has partially countered the effectsof warming induced by greenhouse gases.
Climate model projections summarized inthe latest IPCC report indicate that theglobal surface temperature is likely to risea further 1.1 to 6.4 °C (2.0 to 11.5 °F)during the 21st century.
• The uncertainty in this estimate arises from the use of models with differing sensitivity to greenhouse gas concentrations and the use of differing estimates of future greenhouse gas emissions.
► Anincrease in global temperature will cause sea levels to rise and will change the amount and pattern of precipitation, probably including expansion of subtropical deserts.
► Warming is expected to be strongest in the Arctic and would be associated with continuing retreat of glaciers, permafrost and sea ice.
Other likely effects include changes in the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, species extinctions, and changes in agricultural yields.
Warming and related changes will vary from region to region around the globe, though the nature of these regional variations is uncertain.
As a result of contemporary increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide, the oceans have become more acidic, a result that is predicted to continue.
The scientific consensus is that anthropogenic global warming is occurring.
Nevertheless, political and public debate continues.
The Kyoto Protocol is aimed at stabilizing greenhouse gas concentration to prevent a "dangerous anthropogenic interference".
As of November 2009, 187 states had signed and ratified the protocol.
Causes of Global Warming Scientists have spent decades figuring out what is causing global warming.
Theyve looked at the natural cycles and events that are known to influence climate.
But the amount and pattern of warming thats been measured cant be explained by these factors alone.
The only way to explain the pattern is toinclude the effect of greenhouse gases(GHGs) emitted by humans.
To bring all this information together, theUnited Nations formed a group ofscientists called the International Panel onClimate Change, or IPCC.
• The IPCC meets every few years to review the latest scientific findings and write a report summarizing all that is known about global warming.
► Each report represents a consensus, or agreement, among hundreds of leading scientists.
► One of the first things scientists learned is that there are several greenhouse gases responsible for warming, and humans emit them in a variety of ways.
Most come from the combustion of fossil fuels in cars, factories and electricity production. The gas responsible for the most warming is carbon dioxide.
Other contributors include methane released from landfills and agriculture, nitrous oxide from fertilizers, gases used for refrigeration and industrial processes, and the loss of forests that would otherwise store CO2.
Different greenhouse gases have very different heat-trapping abilities.
Some of them can even trap more heat than CO2.
A molecule of methane produces more than 20 times the warming of a molecule of CO2.
Nitrous oxide is 300 times more powerful than CO2.
Other gases, such as chlorofluorocarbons (CFC’s) have heat-trapping potential thousands of times greater than CO2.
But because their concentrations are much lower than CO2, none of these gases adds as much warmth to the atmosphere as CO2 does.
In order to understand the effects of all the gases together, scientists tend to talk about all greenhouse gases in terms of the equivalent amount of CO2.
Since 1990, yearly emissions have gone up by about 6 billion metric tons of "carbon dioxide equivalent" worldwide, more than a 20% increase.
Effects of Global WarmingThe planet is warming, from North Pole toSouth Pole, and everywhere in between.
Globally, the mercury is already up morethan 1 degree Fahrenheit (0.8 degreeCelsius), and even more in sensitive polarregions.
• And the effects of rising temperatures aren’t waiting for some far-flung future.
► They’re happening right now. Signs are appearing all over, and some of them are surprising.
► The heat is not only melting glaciers and sea ice, it’s also shifting precipitation patterns and setting animals on the move.
Some impacts from increasing temperatures are already happening.
Ice is melting worldwide, especially at the Earth’s poles.
This includes mountain glaciers, ice sheets covering West Antarctica and Greenland, and Arctic sea ice.
Researcher Bill Fraser has tracked the decline of the Adeline penguins on Antarctica, where their numbers have fallen from 32,000 breeding pairs to 11,000 in 30 years.
Sea level rise became faster over the last century. Some butterflies, foxes, and alpine plants have moved farther north or to higher, cooler areas.
Precipitation (rain and snowfall) has increased across the globe, on average.
Spruce bark beetles have boomed in Alaska thanks to 20 years of warm summers.
The insects have chewed up 4 million acres of spruce trees. Other effects could happen later this century, if warming continues.
Sea levels are expected to rise between 7 and 23 inches (18 and 59 centimeters) by the end of the century, and continued melting at the poles could add between 4 and 8 inches (10 to 20 centimeters).
Hurricanes and other storms are likely to become stronger.
Species that depend on one another maybecome out of sync. For example, plantscould bloom earlier than their pollinatinginsects become active.
Floods and droughts will become morecommon. Rainfall in Ethiopia, wheredroughts are already common, coulddecline by 10 percent over the next 50years.
Less fresh water will be available.
• If the Quelccaya ice cap in Peru continues to melt at its current rate, it will be gone by 2100, leaving thousands of people who rely on it for drinking water and electricity without a source of either.
► Some diseases will spread, such as malaria carried by mosquitoes.
► Ecosystems will change—some species will move farther north or become more successful; others won’t be able to move and could become extinct.
Wildlife research scientist Martin Obbard has found that since the mid-1980s, with less ice on which to live and fish for food, polar bears have gotten considerably skinnier.
Polar bear biologist Ian Stirling has found a similar pattern in Hudson Bay. He fears that if sea ice disappears, the polar bears will as well.
Facts of Global Warming Climate change is observed worldwide. Average temperature of earth has increased by 0.8 degrees since last 100 years.
Higher levels of CO2 have caused ocean acidification.
Most of the densely populated Low lying coastal regions are more vulnerable to climate shifts.
Winter of 2003-2004 was the 33rd coldest in the North Eastern America since the records began in 1896.
Prevention of Global Warming Drive less. Take bikes, walk or carpool whenever possible.
Consider investing in a hybrid or electric vehicle to help prevent against further global warming.
Replace all the light bulbs in and around your home with energy-efficient fluorescents that use fewer watts for the same amount of light.
Clean or replace your filters monthly.
Choose energy-efficient appliances whenits time to buy a new one.
• Decrease your air travel.
► Washclothes in cold water and line-dry whenever possible.
► Use a low-flow showerhead, which will lessen the hot water used but not drop your water pressure in the shower.
Cut down on your garbage—buy fewer packaged materials to prevent further global warming.
Unplug electronics when they are not in use, because they still take up energy. At the very least, turn items off when they’re not being used.
Run the dishwasher and clothes washer only when you have a full load, and if available, use the energy-saving setting.
Insulate your home better, and don’t forget to repair or replace worn caulking or weather-stripping. Insulate your water heater.
Buy recycled paper products and recycle as much of your waste as possible.
Bring your own reusable canvas grocery bags when grocery shopping.
Plant a tree.
Have an energy audit done on your home so you can find the trouble areas and fix them.
Use nontoxic cleaning products.
Shop locally for food. A farmer’s market is an excellent place to visit. And choose fresh food over frozen foods. Fresh takes less energy to produce.
Keep your car tuned up, and check tirepressure often to save gas.
Eat less meat and more organic foods inyour diet to do your part in preventingglobal warming.
Some Interesting Pictures
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