GLOBAL WARMING: Causes of Global Warming
What you need to know...
Global Warming: So what?
- So the planet is warming up by a few degress, what difference has it made!?
- Well there is growing evidence of the link between global warming and rising sea levels, extreme weather, the loss of farmland, need I go on....
- Watch the video below for a gentle, somewhat worrying, introduction to the effects of Global Warming
Global Warming leads to rising sea levels
- As temperatures rise, the sea will absorb heat from the atmosphere, causing it to expand and therefore creating sea level rises.
- Recent studies show that the ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are melting faster than the snow is replacing the mass. Land glaciers will continue to melt over the coming century which will increase the level of the seas. (BBC, 2014)
- Scientific research indicates sea levels worldwide have been rising at a rate of 0.14 inches (3.5 millimeters) per year since the early 1990s.
- The trend, linked to global warming, puts thousands of coastal cities, like Venice, Italy, (seen here during a historic flood in 2008), and even whole islands at risk of being claimed by the ocean. (National Geographic, 2014)
Global Warming leads to a loss of farmland
- Changes in climate could have significant impacts on food production around the world.
- Heat stress, droughts, and flooding events may lead to reductions in crop yields and livestock productivity.
- Areas that are already affected by drought, such as Australia and Africa, will likely experience reductions in water available for irrigation.
- At mid to high latitudes, cereal crop yields are projected to increase slightly, depending on local rates of warming and crop type.
- At lower latitudes, cereal crop yields are projected to decrease.
- The greatest decreases in crop yields will likely occur in dry and tropical regions.
- In some African countries, for example, yields from rain-fed agriculture in drought years could decline by as much as 50% by 2020. This decline will likely be exacerbated (worsened) by climate change.
- Global warming also effects the oceans and the marine animals within it!
- Climate change has already affected many fisheries around the world. Increasing ocean temperatures have shifted some marine species to cooler waters outside of their normal range.
- Fisheries are important for the food supply and economy of many countries. For example, more than 40 million people rely on the fisheries in the Lower Mekong delta in Asia.
- Projected reductions in water flows and increases in sea level may negatively affect water quality and fish species in this region.
- This would affect the food supply for communities that depend on these resources.
- A great resource to research the effects of global warming on agricultural and food industries can be found here!
Global Warming leads to more extreme weather
- The link between rising global temperatures (i.e. Global Warming) and more extreme weather is receiving increasing support; especially in light of the recent flooding which has affected southeast areas within the UK
- The flooding which has taken place in the UK has led some politicians to blame it on global warming and climate change:
"Labour leader Ed Miliband said global climate change was an issue of national
security for Britain" (BBC,2014)
- As well as the impact to the transport network, about one million properties had their power cut off in the last week and thousands in southern England and Wales are still without power, according to the Energy Networks Association.
- Ed Miliband, leader of the Labour party said: "What we've learnt from what's happened over the last few weeks, tragically, is that the costs of not acting on climate change in terms of the billions of pounds that are lost in terms of businesses and families as well as the human costs are greater than the costs of acting."
- Of course the UK is not alone in being effected by more extreme weather; watch the video below!
- Further information on the link between global warming and extreme weather can be found here!
Global Warming leads to population displacement
- More than 32 million people fled their homes last year because of disasters such as floods, storms and earthquakes – 98% of displacement related to climate change. Asia and west and central Africa bore the brunt. Some 1.3 million people were displaced in rich countries, with the US particularly affected. Floods in India and Nigeria accounted for 41% of displacement. (Guardian, 2014)
- Click on the image opposite for a larger version!
Global warming leads to the need for international aid
- Nearly £1.5 billion has been spent tackling man-made climate change by Government department responsible for fighting poverty abroad, it can be revealed.
- The Department for International Development (Dfid) has spent the total on projects which they say will either reduce carbon emissions abroad or attempt to deal with the effects of predicted changes in the earth's climate.
- In the past four years Dfid has spent £900 million on climate change projects with nearly two thirds of that being spent in the past financial year under the Coalition. A further £533 million has already been committed up to 2013.
- The biggest recipients of the climate change aid are India and Indonesia, two countries considered to be rapidly emerging economies.
- The figures released by the government reveal that total spending on tackling climate change overseas has increased from £61 million in 2007-08 to more than £883 million in 2010-11.
- During that time, Dfid saw the biggest increase in spending on climate change with funding available for projects now 45 times higher than four years ago. (Telegraph, 2014)
Global Warming leads to lost output
- Global warming has led to a significant reduction in output (the production of goods and services)
- Indeed, one of the latest study's indicated that...
"Climate change is already contributing to the deaths of nearly 400,000 people a year and costing the world more than $1.2 trillion, wiping 1.6% annually from global GDP, according to a new study.
The impacts are being felt most keenly in developing countries, according to the research, where damage to agricultural production from extreme weather linked to climate change is contributing to deaths from malnutrition, poverty and their associated diseases.
Air pollution caused by the use of fossil fuels is also separately contributing to the deaths of at least 4.5m people a year, the report found." (Phys-Org, 2014)
The effect of Global Warming on societies and individuals
- Recent studies have linked global warming and climate change with increased risk of of diseases such as malaria
- A recent scientific disease study reported that...
"Millions of people living at higher altitudes in the tropics will be at risk of malaria as a result of rising temperatures and climate change, according to an analysis of the disease over the past two decades in two mountainous regions in South America and Africa." (The Independent, 2014)
- The effects of global warming has a human face...watch and absorb!
Want a re-cap on the effects of global warming?
- Of course you do; watch and enjoy!
Stretch & Challenge: are the effects of Global Warming all bad?
- Are there any positive effects on economies and societies from global warming?
- Some have suggested that there may be short-term gains from global warming in some countries
- Indeed, it has been suggested..."that short-term Global Warming is good for the economy as it reduces the need for domestic heating and the higher temperatures will push crop yields up. The cost is the need to use the air conditioning more. In fact the short-term impact of moderate warming (1-2C) will be beneficial. It is only in the long-term year 2070 that Global Warming will have a negative impact on GDP." (Tutor2U, 2014)