Have you experienced an extremely hot day lately? Some scientists believe this may be the handiwork of global warming. In 1998, the world over experienced more hurricanes and floods than in other years. In that same year NASA scientist, James Hansen, proclaimed that he was “99 percent confident” that the heat has arrived. Other scientists do not believe in the global warming dilemma while others agree that our world is definitely warming up.
There are some facts presented by those who believe in global warming. Since the last ice age, the world has warmed up about five to nine degrees. Studies have also shown that the 20th century is the hottest century in the last six hundred years. A few researchers even say that the average temperature of Earth will rise degrees in the next century! In opposition to this, other groups of scientists say that global warming is certainly not happening, but may be a natural cycle of warm periods throughout time.
Some scientists believe that global warming is becoming an increasing problem for creatures on Earth. But what causes global warming? According to some scientists, the cause is human beings. When the Industrial Revolution began, people began using machines more than ever before. These machines, as well as those of today, are powered by wood, coal, oil, and natural gas. When the fuels burn, they release waste products such as carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. In fact, since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased by thirty-one percent. According to scientists, humans are releasing a larger amount of these products into the atmosphere than ever before. This causes the greenhouse effect, meaning that the Earth, like the greenhouse, will become hotter. To some scientists, this means that the Earth and its oceans will change drastically. However, other scientists believe this is only a natural fluctuation. Humans must soon decide whether or not to cut back on the use of burning fuels or to not do anything that would change their pursuit of progress.
How does global warming affect you? The researchers who are studying global warming say that the effects will be devastating to our Earth. Near the year 2030, they say the global average temperature will rise 1.5- 4.5 degrees Celsius. This will heat up the globe more than it has for over the past 100,000 years. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Earth will be so hot by the end of the next century that “…temperature could have reached those of the time of the dinosaurs and it is doubtful if humans could survive.” Also storms will become more common and extremely powerful when global warming heats up our oceans and causes more water to evaporate. The number of category 4 and 5 storms has already increased. In 1991, Typhoon Mireille, the worst typhoon in 30 years, hit the country of
Amazing Ocean Fact!
Since the mid 1800s, the hottest years on record were 1997, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2003.