You often hear about rising temperatures on Earth. But is there a scientific basis for that? And what would be the consequences of global warming?
There is no doubt that the Earth is getting warmer. The Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia has calculated the global average temperature since 1860, and in that period it has risen by 0.6 degrees. Furthermore, the 1990s were the warmest decade in the last 1000 years. According to estimates from the UN Climate Change Panel IPCC, it will be even warmer on Earth over the next 100 years. Thus, the panel estimates that the average temperature will rise by between 1 and 3.5 degrees. If it really happens so, that will bring major consequences: The water level in the ocean is expected to rise between 15 and 50 centimeters over the next 100 years. This is because both the glaciers and the icecaps at the poles will continue to melt and the water in the oceans will increase more when the temperature warms up. The higher water levels will cause many coastal areas to be threatened with floods, and that millions of people will be forced to abandon their habitats.
The warmer climate also increases the risk of natural disasters, including hurricanes and heavy precipitation.
Climate researchers discuss the reasons for the global warming. However, most people agree that a large part of the warming is due to the man-made greenhouse effect. We are still leading larger quantities of greenhouse gases, mainly carbon dioxide, into the atmosphere. Greenhouse gases block the ability of the planet to emit heat. Global satellite imagery shows that over the past 20 years, 18 more days have been added to summer in Europe and the North Americans have had 12 additional summer days. Man-made greenhouse effect is the biggest reason for that outcomes.
How can we fight against global warming and climate change?
At the Paris Conference organized at late 2015, 180 countries signed the Paris Agreement which will come in to farce after Kyoto Protocol.
1. All the countries should approve the Paris Agreement, levy heavier taxes on carbon usage and restrict thermal power plants.
2. Daily-life precautions to be taken for controlling greenhouse gas emission:
- Coal shouldn’t be an option for heating.
- We should eat less meat. Our houses should be isolated better.
- Changing regular lamps vith the LEDs would bring 75kg carbon dioxide savings.
- We should prefer cars with green energy, walk more, use bicycles and use public transportation vehicles more often. We would save 150 g – 380 g carbon dioxide for every kilometers that we didn’t drive fossil-fuel using vehicles.
- We should use less hot water. Heating water requires much more energy than you think. We may save 175kg carbon dioxide by using a less-water-consuming-shower head, 250kg by washing our cloths in cold or warm water.
- We should plant a tree at least once a year and make it a family tradition. A tree absorbs 1 ton carbon dioxide throughout its entire life.
- We should use solar-powered systems for heating. That will provide big energy savings.