Global Warming is Real

Gwen Kazmierczak, Writer

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There has been debate over whether global warming is real or not, especially if it is caused by humans. Some people believe that Earth is naturally getting warmer, but that is untrue. According to NASA, the energy coming from the sun has been relatively constant over the years. The Earth is getting warmer because of the excess of gases in the atmosphere.

The cause of global warming is the greenhouse effect. The greenhouse effect traps the sun’s energy in the lower atmosphere, causing the surface of the Earth to heat up, similar to how a greenhouse functions. The greenhouse effect is further amplified by carbon dioxide being put into the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels and industrial activity. Deforestation is helping to reduce carbon dioxide. Because there are fewer trees, there is less oxygen in the air to counteract the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Another gas, methane helps to trap the sun’s energy in the atmosphere. The methane is produced from livestock on farms and landfills.

With the rising temperatures of the Earth, the beach will be closer than it is now. Sea levels have been rising at twice the global rate in America. In Louisiana, the sea level rose eight inches in the past fifty years, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency. When the levels of the ocean rise, fresh water becomes saltier as the sea water moves inland, and there is less drinkable water. The change in salinity of water also harms the aquatic life living in that area. The coastal areas will flood easier when heavy rainfall occurs, damaging property. Coastal water is also getting warmer, so aquatic species are migrating north for cooler water. There will be more competition for resources in one area, and it disrupts ecosystems. The warmer temperatures of the oceans are damaging to coral reefs. Coral reefs are important to many species because they live off of them. When coral reefs begin to die, hundreds of other sea creatures die as well. This is only what will happen to the oceans if global warming is not addressed and people start looking for the best ways to solve it. Along with rising sea levels, forest fires and dangerous waves will occur more often.

There are ways to slow down the rate that global warming is occurring. Switching over from coal energy to cleaner, renewable energy like solar or wind power will put much less carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Planting more trees would put more oxygen into the atmosphere as well. These could be seen as short-term solutions. Until there are laws passed so that everyone uses renewable energy sources, the disaster of global warming is inevitable. As soon as more people realize that it is a real threat, this problem can be solved.

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