The Earth’s climate is changing rapidly and is impacting our lives on a daily basis. After the industrial revolution in 1950, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and emissions of other greenhouse gases have only been increasing and hasn’t gone down since. Our planets temperature has been changing for a very long time now but it’s starting to effect how people, plants and animals live. From changes in natural cycle to rise in sea levels and melting glaciers. Only a small amount of these climate changes have been caused by the variation of the planets orbit or the solar energy received by the planet. We as humans are abusing our planets natural resources and with a population of over 7 billion people, we would run out of resources in a matter of years. With a constant increase in the usage of fossil fuels and continuous deforestation, its only a matter of time before the CO2 levels override the Oxygen levels. This is a term we now refer to as Global Warming. Only a small amount of these climate changes have been caused by the variation of the planets orbit or the solar energy received by the planet so how could we continue at this rate. The UAE alone would need 5.4 Earths to live. If we want to live a sustainable life, immediate changes need to start taking place before more problems start to occur.
Our planet is undergoing quick climate change and 95% of this is caused by human activity ever since the Industrial Revolution. It’s reached a point that it has never touched before in decades and it’s only going to continue this way. From our advancements in technology, scientists can see the bigger picture from space, and have collected massive amounts of date proving the signs of climate change. With a daily use of fossil fuels and a continuous increase in demand due to our massive population, pollution is spreading world wide and trapping of CO2 and other harmful gases has shown its effect over the years. From melting glaciers to evidence from oceans around the world, global warming is occurring nearly 10 times faster than it should be and this is because of the actions we take on a daily basis.
Evidence for the change in the planets temperature has been piling up over the past years where scientists have found results of the global temperature rise. The planets surface temperature has risen a full 2 degrees Fahrenheit because of our greenhouse gas emissions and the past 2 years have been the warmest on record. There is only going to be an increase in this statistic in the years to come.
The habitants of this planets actions have not only caused the global temperature to rise, but it has lead to even more severe problems that we can’t go back on. With a steady rise in the temperature, countries in Europe will start to face temperatures from Middle East but this is not the only problem. Warmer weather conditions has lead to evaporation of water causing drought in many LEDC’s. This doesn’t only lead to them not being able to grow crops anymore but it leaves them starving for months at a time and although they bare with it, this wouldn’t be tolerated in the parts of the world. More greenhouse gases also means the oceans will warm much faster and glaciers will start to melt which then leads to a huge rise in sea level. The increasing sea level can be a great danger to coastal countries as in a matter of years, they may be submerged under water.
In just a matter of a few years, the ocean has absorbed heat of up to 0.302 Fahrenheit which has lead to countries on the coast being at a high risk and many species are at danger while coral reefs around the world are threatened. With warmer oceans, it causes more powerful tropical storms that can cause massive amounts of damage to small coastal countries as it has already done to the Caribbean islands last year. It impacts the sea life such as the fish or even the coral as the food web changes completely. Some species start to grow faster than others which means one will be more superior and start to eliminate one whole species. This can effect animals higher or lower than them in the food webs. The oceans will only continue to get warmer and even with a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, the damage is already done and it will continue for many more years. The warmer oceans also lead to a rising sea level as in only the past 100 years, the sea level has risen by 7 inches. Rising sea level will mean that people who live near the ocean will be facing frequent flooding and land lower will just be gone. If the glaciers start to melt faster there will be an even bigger rise and this doesn’t only effect us humans but also the animals habitats that are being lost.
These are some of the major effects of the climate change that we have created but that’s not where it ends. Oceans start to acidify and ever since the Industrial revolution, there has been an increase in ocean surface acidity levels by 30% due to our constant emissions of C02. With a growing population and industries trying to make peoples lives easier, the greenhouse gas emissions don’t stop. In Greenland alone, they faced a loss of 250 cubic kilometres of ice sheets per year in between 2002-06 and this effected places like Antartica too. The melted water from that directly effects the sea level which then continues to rise. As temperatures continue to rise, the glaciers around the world are starting to retreat and in places like the Alps or the Himalayas, major parts are disappearing every year. The temperature doesn’t only affect the water but also Snow cover. Satellites have observed that over the past 50 years, the snow season hasn’t lasted as long and it’s starting to melt much quicker. As for weather conditions, extreme events have been occurring much more and are becoming more and more destructive each time which the US alone witnessing so many along with increase in rainfall levels.
Although 95% of climate change is caused by us humans, people have argued that some of the effects are because of natural causes too. There are two main causes of climate changes – natural causes and human activities. Natural causes have been effecting the earth’s climates ever since the planet was created such as volcanic eruptions, the ocean current, the earth’s orbital changes and solar variations. The eruptions of volcanoes cause a cooling effect on the earth as a volcano erupts large volumes of sulphur dioxide (SO2), water vapour, dust, and ash into the atmosphere. The volcanic eruptions can have a change on climate for years although it only occurs for a few day
Furthermore, ocean current is one of the other natural cause affecting climate changes. The ocean is one of the biggest parts of climate change. As the oceans cover about 71% of the planet and absorb about twice as much of the sun’s radiation as the atmosphere or the land surface. Winds push horizontally against the sea surface and drive ocean current patterns. Besides that, the oceans also play an important role of the concentration of carbon dioxide. The changes in ocean circulation will affect the climate through the movement of carbon dioxide into or out of the atmosphere. Moreover, another cause that affects climate changes is the earth’s orbital changes. Changes in the tilt of the
earth can affect the severity of the seasons. For example, if there is more tilt means we will experience warmer summers and colder winters and if there is less tilt means we will experience cooler summers and milder winters.
A massive cause that leads to climate change is the activities that we humans do on a daily basis. The large- scale use of fossil fuels for industrial activities has lead to many advancements in transportation methods and every day household chores but this can be a massive problem when it’s being used for 7 billion people. Industries and Transportation require large amounts of fossil fuels to be burned everyday which has contributed to the rise in greenhouse gases such as Carbon Dioxide. The movement of people from place to place and the development of different countries has led to mass amounts of deforestation to make space for infrastructure. The increased amounts of agriculture around the world has also led to increased emissions of methane which directly ends up trapping heat in our atmosphere. Humans have destroyed this planet and in a few years it will be inhabitable.
In Conclusion, the Earth has been going through Climate Changes over millions of years with the variations in sunlight received by the planet, the orbit of the planet or even the volcanic activity. Human Causes have only been occurring very recently and NASA scientists have proven that climate change was occurring before too. After the Industrial Revolution, the greenhouse gas emissions have been trapping heat in our atmosphere but the Earth has always been warming and cooling with fluctuations recorded over the past 3,000 years. The climate change in the 1700’s can be explained by the natural causes, but the most recent warming in the Earth’s climate cannot be explained by just natural causes. Due to human activities like going to different places or production of goods and services, we burn fossil fuels on a daily basis which emit harmful gases into the atmosphere. The CO2 levels have reached an extremely high point that it has never gone to before and this can only be because of our actions. The gases that our actions emit mean that more and more heat is trapped in our atmosphere changing the climate to make it much hotter.
We can see from evidence that there are many effects of the climate changes and a large amount of these problems are occurring because of our actions. The damage in the environment we live in will create huge consequences for our future generations and now we must take action to change this. We must start looking at sustainable ways of living through electric cars or biofuels in households. We should look at recycling on a daily basis to waste less energy or create landfills that damage different habitats and release pollutants. To keep the planet safe and live here for more years to come, we must make changes to our lifestyle and reduce the destruction we do to our environment.