Want to understand the key characteristics of global warming? Look no further than this post, where we explore the science behind this phenomenon and the impacts it’s having on our planet.
Global warming is the average increase in Earth’s temperature. This global warming has two main sources of action:
- It is produced by anthropic actions (that is, the action performed by man).
- Alterations of solar radiation.
Visually, this warming is manifested by violent and timeless climate changes at different times of the year. Thus, a summer day can be similar temperatures to autumn or winter and vice versa. On the other hand, this phenomenon is also visible in the increase of ocean temperatures.
Global warming and its consequences is evident from the twentieth century by the intervention of man in the use of certain elements that significantly harm the environment.
There are 3 fundamental factors that contribute to global warming:
- Increase in the world population.
- Burning fuel
- Destruction of forests (since these are the ones that absorb carbon dioxide, gas that comes from the sun’s rays).
Characteristics Of Global Warming
1. Main cause
The main cause of global warming is the increase of greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere, primarily carbon dioxide (CO2), methane, and nitrous oxide. These gases are released into the atmosphere as a result of human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels, deforestation, and agriculture. When these gases are emitted into the atmosphere, they trap heat from the sun and cause the Earth’s temperature to rise, leading to a variety of impacts such as sea level rise, more frequent and severe weather events, and damage to ecosystems and biodiversity. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions is critical to mitigating the impacts of global warming and addressing climate change.
2. Increase in world population
The world population has been steadily increasing for centuries, with significant growth occurring in the last few decades. In 1800, the world population was around one billion people, and it took more than a century to reach two billion in 1927. However, since then, the population has grown rapidly, reaching 7.9 billion in 2021.
Several factors have contributed to this growth, including improved healthcare, increased food production, and advancements in technology. These factors have reduced infant mortality rates, increased life expectancy, and improved the standard of living for people around the world. Additionally, access to family planning and birth control has had a positive impact on the ability of individuals and couples to plan their families and control their fertility.
While population growth has many benefits, it also presents challenges such as strain on natural resources, increased demand for food and water, and environmental degradation. Managing population growth is essential to ensuring sustainable development and protecting the health of our planet.
3. Burning of fuels
The burning of fossil fuels, such as coal, oil, and gas, is one of the primary contributors to global warming. When these fuels are burned for energy, carbon dioxide (CO2) is released into the atmosphere, which acts as a greenhouse gas and traps heat from the sun, leading to an increase in global temperatures.
The burning of fossil fuels is responsible for approximately 75% of all greenhouse gas emissions globally. This includes emissions from transportation, electricity generation, and industrial processes. As the global population and economy continue to grow, demand for energy and fossil fuels is expected to increase, which will further exacerbate the impacts of global warming.
Reducing our reliance on fossil fuels and transitioning to clean, renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, and hydropower is critical to mitigating the impacts of global warming and addressing climate change. Additionally, improving energy efficiency and reducing consumption can also help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and slow the rate of global warming.
4. Destruction of forests
The destruction of forests is a significant contributor to global warming. Forests play a critical role in regulating the Earth’s climate by absorbing carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere through the process of photosynthesis. However, when forests are cleared, burned, or degraded, the carbon stored in trees and other vegetation is released into the atmosphere, contributing to greenhouse gas emissions.
Deforestation and forest degradation occur for many reasons, including agriculture, mining, logging, and urbanization. These activities destroy critical habitats, increase soil erosion and water pollution, and have other negative impacts on local ecosystems and biodiversity.
In addition to releasing carbon into the atmosphere, deforestation also reduces the capacity of forests to absorb carbon in the future. Forest conservation and restoration efforts are critical to mitigating the impacts of global warming and addressing climate change. These efforts can include reducing deforestation and forest degradation, planting trees and restoring degraded areas, and promoting sustainable land use practices.
5. Twentieth century
As consequences of the actions that were presented since the beginning of the 20th century, the sun’s rays reach the Earth but they are captured there, preventing them from leaving. This raises the temperature of the planet and produces global warming, generating fires and shortage of water.
6. Severe rains and floods
On the other hand, global warming produces severe rains. This is a product of the sun’s rays heating the ocean. This evaporates and then rains occur. This phenomenon worsens the situation if a hurricane crosses causing the rains to be catastrophic.
In addition, global warming melts the fresh water of the poles. This enters melted and mixes with the salt water of the sea, which produces floods.
Contamination is another factor that contributes to global warming. Contamination refers to the release of various types of pollutants into the environment, including gases, chemicals, and particulate matter. These pollutants contribute to air and water pollution, which can have significant impacts on human health and the environment.
Many of these pollutants also contribute to the greenhouse effect and global warming. For example, black carbon or soot, which is emitted from the burning of fossil fuels and biomass, absorbs solar radiation and heats the atmosphere. Methane, which is emitted from landfills, agricultural activities, and oil and gas production, is another potent greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming.
Reducing contamination requires a comprehensive approach that includes measures to reduce emissions from various sources, improve energy efficiency, promote clean technologies, and support sustainable production and consumption patterns. Such actions will help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air and water quality, and protect the health of people and the environment.
8. Consequences for living beings
The consequences of global warming for human beings are growing gravely. These can be:
Areas that are currently highly humid receive a higher rainfall. This produces floods of neighborhoods, localities and even entire coastal cities can be under water.
As a result of the felling of trees, coupled with the flooding of certain areas, many species can disappear as a result of the extermination of their natural habitat.
Air pollution can produce malformations in future generations or diseases in the current ones.
The lack of control can produce the extermination of our planet and, therefore, the human being.
9. Investments and policies
There are different policies at the state and global level that are used to reduce the consequences of global warming. Some of the most used government policies are:
Manufacture of ecological cars, that is to say that they consume less fuel or even that they are conducted with non-toxic metals.
Separation of garbage. Recycling of garbage.
Creation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It is a worldwide convention created just to prevent or prevent global warming.
In 2009 and during the 15th UN Climate Change Conference the 140 countries agreed not to raise the temperature of the planet above 2 ° C per year. This agreement was called the “Copenhagen Accord”.
In the year 2017, the government of the United States, reversed its position against previous efforts to stop global warming, arguing that “it prevents the creation of jobs for millions of people.”
There are several solutions to global warming that can help to mitigate the impacts of climate change and protect the health of the planet. Here are some key solutions:
- Reduce greenhouse gas emissions: The most effective way to address global warming is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, primarily carbon dioxide (CO2), methane, and nitrous oxide. This can be achieved by transitioning to clean, renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, and hydropower, improving energy efficiency, and reducing fossil fuel consumption.
- Promote sustainable land use: Sustainable land use practices can help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and promote reforestation and restoration efforts. Additionally, sustainable agriculture practices can help to reduce emissions from livestock and fertilizer use.
- Increase energy efficiency: Improving energy efficiency in buildings, transportation, and industry can help to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.
- Support clean technologies: Supporting the development and deployment of clean technologies such as electric vehicles, energy storage systems, and renewable energy systems can help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote sustainable development.
- Promote sustainable consumption and production: Encouraging sustainable consumption and production patterns can help to reduce waste, increase resource efficiency, and promote sustainable development.
- Raise awareness: Educating the public and raising awareness about the impacts of global warming and climate change can help to mobilize support for action and promote sustainable behavior change.
By taking action on multiple fronts, we can work together to address global warming and create a more sustainable future for ourselves and future generations.