Global warming is the increase in the average temperature of the Earth’s near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. Global warming may be a very serious problem for the world. It causes floods and storms.
Today, the atmosphere of the world is about a half a degree Celsius hotter than it was two hundred years ago. But many people disagree about whether this is caused by man’s pollution (from cars and factories, for example), or a natural change.
What causes global warming?
Carbon dioxide and other air pollution that is collecting in the atmosphere like a thickening blanket, trapping the sun’s heat and causing the planet to warm up. Coal-burning power plants are the largest source of carbon dioxide pollution — they produce 2.5 billion tons every year. Automobiles, the second largest source, create nearly 1.5 billion tons of CO2 annually.
Here’s the good news: technologies exist today to make cars that run cleaner and burn less gas, modernize power plants and generate electricity from nonpolluting sources, and cut our electricity use through energy efficiency. The challenge is to be sure these solutions are put to use.
What is the Greenhouse Effect?
Coal-burning power plants, car exhausts, factory smokestacks, and other waste vents of the human environment give off about 22 billion tons of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the Earth’s atmosphere each year. The atmospheric concentration of CO2 has increased by 31% above pre-industrial levels since 1750. This is quite higher than at any time during the last 420,000 years, the period for which reliable data has been extracted from ice cores. From less direct geological evidence, it is believed that CO2 values this high were last attained 40 million years ago. About three-quarters of the anthropogenic emissions of CO2 to the atmosphere during the past 20 years is due to fossil fuel burning. The rest is predominantly due to land-use change, especially deforestation
Can we do anything to stop global warming?
Yes. When we burn fossil fuels — oil, coal and gas — to generate electricity and power our vehicles, we produce the heat-trapping gases that cause global warming. The more we burn, the faster churns the engine of global climate change. Thus the most important thing we can do is save energy.
And we can do it. Technologies exist today to make cars that run cleaner and burn less gas, generate electricity from wind and sun, modernize power plants, and build refrigerators, air conditioners and whole buildings that use less power. As individuals, each of us can take steps to save energy and fight global warming
10 Simple steps to help stop Global Warming