In the past 50 years, the earth’s global temperature has increased by 3%. Pollution caused by the release of carbon dioxide into the air creates a blanket over the atmosphere. Global warming can cause a whole chain of events to rupture ecosystems, weather patterns, and a variety of other factors. We all play a part in our future.
To understand global warming, it would be beneficial to know what the greenhouse effect is. The atmosphere is composed of a few gasses such as carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, and methane. The collective name for these gasses is greenhouse gasses. If they are in the right amount, these greenhouse gasses are good.
Greenhouse gasses naturally form a circular layer wrapping around the earth. When sun rays strike the surface of the earth, some are absorbed by the earth. But a majority of them bounce back into the atmosphere. The reflected sun rays go all the way to the upper atmosphere.
In the upper atmosphere, the greenhouse gasses absorb vast quantities of heat from the reflected sun rays. Some of the heat finds its way into space. The heat absorbed by greenhouse gasses meanders in every direction. The absorbed heat helps in keeping the earth warm. If the heat emanating from the sun is not absorbed by these greenhouse gasses, the earth will freeze.
This point to the fact that these gasses are essential for the survival of every species living on earth such as animals, plants, and humans. This absorption of the sun’s heat by greenhouse gasses to keep the earth warm is referred to as the greenhouse effect. The greenhouse effect ensures that humans live happily on earth.
When the sun rays are reflected by the earth, they come into contact with the thick layer of greenhouse gasses surrounding the earth, and all of the heat is trapped. No amount of heat goes out to outer space. This leads to an increase in temperatures, and the earth gradually starts to become warmer. This phenomenon is known as global warming.
Greenhouse gasses such as carbon dioxide and methane are the greatest contributors to global warming and the greenhouse effect. A shift to renewable sources of energy such as wind, solar, and hydropower will help bring down demand for fossil fuels and eventually lower the level of greenhouse gasses emitted into the atmosphere.
Global warming is affecting many parts of the world. Due to global warming, the glaciers are melting which is causing the rise in the sea level. When the level of the sea rises, it causes danger to the people living in low-lying areas.
When the level of the sea rises, it covers the plants and causes some of them to die. When they die, animals lose their main source of food. We, human beings lose our two sources of food, plants, and animals. It may also force people to lose their homes. In other words, the whole chain will get affected if nothing is done on time to stop global warming from spreading its wings.
Reasons for global warming
1. Forest fires
Deforestation by nature is one of the leading causes of global warming. Natural forest fires usually devastate mountain homes and communities.
Forest fires emit carbon-filled smoke into the atmosphere, and new forests’ growth is slow and not stable enough to produce the much-needed oxygen into the newly, suffocating carbon air. Natural forest fires will eventually run their course, but left in the ashes are polluting gases that get trapped in the atmosphere.
According to the Environment Protection Agency (EPA), sunspots are increasing global temperature. Sunspots restrict the passing of solar plasma, which in turn gives off radiation. Sunspots and solar flares are powerful and unstoppable. They can change the energy radiating to the earth’s atmosphere, and thus increase climate temperature.
3. Water vapor
According to NASA, two-thirds of the gases stuck in the thick blanket are in the form of water vapor. This hitch in tow effect means rising temperature and rising vapor. The water vapor is unable to escape and thus results in hotter climate changes.
4. Man-induced deforestation
Deforestation is the cutting down of trees and plants to make way for any development activity. Mother nature taking out an entire forest is one thing, but man doing it for the use of crop cultivation, fuel, and other consumption, is another. Each day our forests are bulldozed for the prospect of farms and factories. Fuel used for wood and charcoal only adds to the polluted gases in the atmosphere.
Our consumer commodities provided by forestry includes paper and lumber. The loss of our forests results in a chain reaction where too much carbon is released into the air, with not enough oxygen to combat it.
This means that it is very important to protect our trees to stop the greenhouse effect, and also so we can breathe and live.
5. Fossil fuels
Every day billions of vehicles release various gases into the atmosphere. This causes the Earth to warm up and increase its average temperature.
Over 75% of electricity worldwide is produced by the burning of fossil fuels. Many gases are sent into the air when fossil fuels are burnt of which main is the carbon dioxide gas.
We’re all well aware of the vast amounts of energy consumed every day by humans everywhere since our first memories. Finding sources for renewable energy, clean-burning fuel options, and methods to cut back the amount of energy exhausted could cut that 40% significantly.
Industries, on the other hand, release various gases into the water and air. Carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide are the major greenhouse gases.
Different gases have different heat-trapping capabilities. Some of the trap more heat than carbon dioxide. Methane is much more effective than carbon dioxide in entrapping heat in the atmosphere. By driving cars, using electricity from coal-fired plants, and heating our homes from natural gases, we release carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases into the atmosphere.
Landfills are those big chunks of garbage that stink and can be seen in so many places around the world. The garbage is then used by big recycling companies to make some useful products out of it.
Most of the time that garbage is burnt which releases toxic gases including methane into the atmosphere. These enormous amounts of toxic greenhouse gases when going into the atmosphere make global warming worse.
Another cause of global warming is overpopulation. Since carbon dioxide contributes to global warming, the increase in population makes the problem worse because we breathe out more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
More people means more demand for food, more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, more demand for cars, and more demand for homes.
Oil and coal are the two main culprits in producing greenhouse gases. Methane, like carbon dioxide, creates a thick shield over the atmosphere trapping the sun’s rays. With the continued use of mining operations, these harmful gases will only increase.
9. Meat consumption
According to research, 51% of the greenhouse gases: methane, carbon dioxide, and nitrous oxide are caused by animal agriculture. If we would stop ordering juicy cheeseburgers, excessive amounts of carbon dioxide by animals stop emitting into the atmosphere.
What are solutions for global warming:
1. Use fluorescent light bulbs:
You should immediately change incandescent light bulbs and use fluorescent light bulbs because these fluorescent bulbs consume only 25 % of energy compared to incandescent bulbs.
2. Switch off electric appliances:
When electric appliances are not in your use, then plug them off, because they use some energy even in the off position.
3. Uses of solar energy:
You should convert your heating system to solar energy, in this way you can save electricity, money, and your environment from global warming.
4. Plant trees at home:
If you have placed it on the front or back side of your home, tree shading can make your home cold during summer. Since trees absorb carbon dioxide, so reduce the carbon dioxide in your surroundings.
5. Save clean water:
You should not waste clean water, because clean water has become less, and experts see the water crisis in the future. We need more energy for the processing of clean water.
6. Avoid lighting in the daytime:
The sun provides you light from dawn to dusk; if you design your home with good planning, you can save on electricity costs.
7. Reduce trash at home:
You should reduce the trash that gets produced in your house. You can achieve this goal by using recycled products and avoiding unnecessary garbage items.
8. Reduce, reuse, recycle
Reducing your need to buy new products results in a smaller amount of waste. Even if you need to buy, consider buying eco-friendly products. It is the most effective of the three R’s. It simply says cut back from where are you now.
You can recycle almost anything e.g., paper, bottles, aluminum foils, cans, and newspapers. Recycling these unwanted things is a great earth-saving tip. By recycling, you can help in reducing landfills.
9. Ride your bike
Not only is bike riding healthy, but it also reduces the amount of CO2 released into the air. Walking is another easy way to reduce global warming. If you have trouble making this habit for yourself, why don’t you use our app?
10. Bring your shopping bags
Plastic bags are destructive to the environment. They take hundreds of years to break down, contaminate soil and waterways, and cause widespread marine animal deaths.
Switch to reusable bags and use them consistently to contribute.
11. Turn off electronic devices
Turn off electronic devices when you are moving out for a couple of days or more. Unnecessary usage of electronic appliances will not only save fuel, i.e., coal by which we get electricity but also increase the useful life of your gadgets.
12. Take public transit
Public transportation helps reduce gridlock and carbon emissions. Many city dwellers incorrectly assume that buses and trains take longer. So, give transit a try. These days public transport is made much comfortable and speedy. It may just exceed your expectations.
13. Spread the awareness
Always try your best to educate people about global warming and its causes and after-effects. Tell them how they can contribute their part by saving energy that will be good for the environment. Gather opportunities and establish programs that will help you to share information with friends, relatives, and neighbors. By being just a little more mindful, we all can play our part in combating global warming.
In conclusion, there are several natural causing factors involved in global warming. While scientists continue to observe and study sunspots, water vapor, and permafrost, there is little that can be done to penetrate such vast forces. What we can do, however, is truly evaluate and prioritize how we treat and value our planet.