Human Activities and Global Warming
HUMAN ACTIVITIES AND GLOBAL WARMING 4
HumanActivities and Global Warming
HumanActivities and Global Warming
Globalwarming has been one of the most controversial topics in thecontemporary human society. The term “global warming” underlinesthe gradual heightening of average temperature in the atmosphere ofthe earth alongside its oceans, which is seen as causing a permanentalteration in the climate of the globe. Testament to the increasingaverage temperatures across the globe is the accelerating rise in sealevel, the increasing number of wild fires and dangerous heat waves,as well as severe or extreme weather conditions such as storm eventsand droughts. Given the devastating effects of global warming, theattention of scientists the world over has been turned to thestrategies that can be used in slowing down or even reversing globalwarming (Casper,2010).This has necessitated an examination of the causes of global warming,which has come with considerable controversy. While there may bediffering opinions regarding global warming, it is evident that humanactivities are the main cause.
First,human beings have increased their usage and exploration of fossilfuels. Fossil fuels such as coals are burnt to produce energy whilegiving out carbon dioxide. Since the advent of the industrialrevolution, there has been an increase in the carbon dioxide that isreleased in the air. The fossil fuels have been used in varied waysincluding in industries and particularly, in the motor vehiclesgiving rise to immense volumes of carbon dioxide. Scholars note thatsince the industrial revolution, about 500 billion tons of carbondioxide have been emitted by the burning of fossil fuels, half ofwhich is still in the atmosphere (Casper,2010).This carbon dioxide has ended up covering the ozone layer, therebyreducing the capacity of head reflected on the surface of the earthfrom escaping. This trapping of the heat between the ozone layer hasresulted in the increase in average global temperatures.
Inaddition, human beings have worsened the capacity of the environmentto balance the composition of the gases available through the immensedeforestation. Indeed, there has been a widespread deforestationacross the entire globe with the forest cover remaining at less than4 percent. Scholars have acknowledged that trees clean the airthrough taking in carbon dioxide and giving out oxygen (Casper,2010).In essence, the reduction of forest cover for the sake of creatingmore settlement areas, lumbering and even farming has resulted in areduction of the capacity of the forests to eliminate carbon dioxide,thereby resulting in its increase and causing a rise in temperatures.
Nevertheless,some scholars opine that it is unfair to blame the rise in averagetemperatures on human beings, instead stating that there are numerousother natural processes that produce carbon dioxide (Casper,2010).However, it may be noted that carbon dioxide from human activitiesmay be distinguished from natural one. Indeed, scholars note thatcarbon molecules from deforestation and fossil fuels are lightercompared to the combined signal pertaining to the carbon moleculesfrom other sources (Casper,2010).The lighter molecules have been increasing in line with the knownemissions trends.
Inconclusion, human beings have been largely responsible for theincrease in the average global temperatures, as a result o theincreased burning of fossil fuels, as well as the immensedeforestation that has taken place in the contemporary world.Essentially, global warming can be eliminated or even slowed down ifonly alternative and cleaner sources of energy are devised, anddeforestation slowed down.
Casper,J. K. (2010). ChangingEcosystems: Effects of Global Warming.New York: Infobase Pub.