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Global Climate Change

NASA Global Climate Change and former Vice-President of US Al Gore underlines the fact that global climate change and global warming had never been before like dangerous, alarming and threatening as it was today. For 650.000 years atmospheric carbon dioxide had never been above the line as it was in 1950. Global temperature rose 1.4F since 1880. The oceans have absorbed much of the increased heat. The Greenland and Antarctica ice sheets have decreased in mass. 400 billion tons of ice in glaciers, 287 billion metric tons of ice in Greenland and 134 billion metric tons of ice in Antarctica lost per year since 1994.  As a result, global sea level rose 17 centimeters in the last century.[1] These latest statistics provided by NASA Climate Change was well predicted in the documentary “Inconvenient Trust”. It was 2006 when Al Gore in the film was alarming the global warming and its impacts on the Earth such as increase in sea level, floods around the globe. 10 years passed from the time that movie released, but there is still no scientific consensus and signed document of all countries around the world who are the first instigators of the global climate change and global warming.

The industrial activities that our modern nations depends upon have raised atmospheric carbon dioxide levels from 280 parts per million to 400 parts per million in the last 150 years. [2] There are certain needs that people have to meet. Then questions arise “Who we should blame?” “Does this responsibility lie on individuals or government?” “Do we really know what is going on Earth?”

Consumption of fossil fuels contributes 57% of carbon dioxide to atmosphere.[3] This is the primary source of warming of the atmosphere. As we always say, everything is connected to everything. For my point of view, population growth is one of the factors that can even make the boundaries cross over much worse situations. The more people there are, the more consumption rate of fossil fuels, the more deforestation, the more overgrazing. And even we don’t know how many of those out of next 4 billion will start smoke, drive, pollute the atmosphere. Why didn’t Hans Rosling think about the contribution of next 4 billion growth to the planet Earth? He strongly was claiming that the situation on the Earth is even better that we think. But, what about the available land scape for accommodation of the population growth when floods are widespread happening on different continents. Al Gore showed it in his lecture that due to the loss of huge ice pieces into the seas and oceans sea levels will rise and some coastline cities can remain under water. This not only about the available land scape for placement but also available land scopes for agriculture. Thus, all these adversely affect to available food consumption.

Now, who is guilty for it? Again I would say that, individuals have great responsibility, because all these big plants, wide-range of public services, natural recourses are transferred to different types of energies and delivered to individuals. In order to affect government policies, we, individuals should have an understanding and idea of what and who we harm by emitting that much greenhouse gases. The problem here is that in order to understand our behavior we have certain knowledge about the climate change and global warming. But, do we really know what climate change is and how it works? I went to search on the perceptions of Americans, the first nation in the world for consumption of fossil fuels and emission of greenhouse gases. According to the Yale University 63% of Americans believe that global warming is happening but many don’t understand why.[4] However, misperceptions among the Americans lead to the doubt that human activities are the real contributor to global warming. For instance, at least once a week we hear about disastrous floods somewhere on the Earth or ice shrinks. However, very rarely we know why these floods happens, what are real causes and effects of different climate changes around the world. For making the people go into action and remember it always the problem should be on agenda.

By: Zeynab Abdullayeva


[1] http://climate.nasa.gov/interactives/global-ice-viewer/#/


[2] http://climate.nasa.gov/causes/

[3] http://www3.epa.gov/climatechange/ghgemissions/global.html

[4] http://environment.yale.edu/climate-communication/article/Americans-knowledge-of-climate-change

About Zeyneb Abdullayeva