Global Warm(n)ing and Climate Change

Supriya P. Babar


Global warm(n)ing ?

Global warming is primarily a problem of too much carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere which acts as a blanket, trapping heat and warming the planet. Glaciers are melting, sea levels are rising, cloud forests are on fire and dying, and wildlife is scrambling to keep pace. It has become clear that humans have caused most of them. Scientists spent decades figuring out what is causing global warming.



Culprits of Global warming: WE


One of first things is that there are several greenhouse gases responsible for warming, and humans emit them in a variety of ways.

a. Combustion of fossil fuels in cars, buildings, factories, and power plants. In India vehicular pollution is estimated to have increased eight times over the last two decades. India's contribution to World carbon emission is expected to increase in coming years due to rapid pace of urbanization, shift from non- commercial to commercial fuels, increased vehicular usage, and continued the use of older and more inefficient coal- fired and fuel- power plants.

b. The gas responsible for the most warming is carbon dioxide, or CO2.

c. Methane released from landfills, natural gas and petroleum industries, and agriculture (especially from the digestive systems of grazing animals.)

d. Nitrous oxide from fertilizers; gases used for refrigeration and industrial processes; and

e. The loss of forests that would otherwise store CO2. Forest Facts - did you know that tropical forests alone could provide 23% of cost-effective mitigation action needed by 2030 to limit global warming to 2°C?

It's time to protect our faraway forests !


Effects of Global Warming….


Each year, scientists list the consequences of global warming, and many agree that Environmental and health consequences are likely to occur if current trends continue.

A Warming planet thus leads to climate changes which can adversely affect weather in different ways.

  • 1 million animal and plant species are now threatened with extinction, many within decades, more than ever before in human history.

  • Melting glaciers, early snowmelt, and severe droughts will not only cause more dramatic water shortages and increase the risk of wildfires but also will alter geology of earth.

  • Rising sea levels will lead to coastal flooding. Forests, farms, and cities will face troublesome new pests, heat waves, heavy downpours, and increases flooding. All those factors will damage or destroy agriculture and fisheries.

  • Disruption of habitats such as coral reefs, forests and marine life could drive many plant and animal species to extinction.

  • Allergies, asthma, infectious and new emerging disease outbreaks will become more common.

The way we are using Earth's resources is not Sustainable. Global warming in today's scenario is threat to the mankind.



How to stop this global warming ....what we can do?

It is eye-opening to see that the planet and atmosphere we call home could one day turn against us from the Australian Bushfires incident. Global warming has increased in vast increments in the last decade. In fact, in the last 50 years, the earth's global temperature has increased by 3%.

We all play a part in our future.

1. Replace Regular Incandescent Light bulb: Replace regular incandescent light bulb with compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs. They consume 70% less energy than ordinary bulbs and have a longer lifetime.

2. Drive Less or Carpool: By driving less you are not only saving fuel but also helping in reducing global warming. Also, look out for other possibilities, e.g.: Carpooling

3. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: Reduce your need to buy new products and consider buying eco-friendly products. It is most effective of the three R's. Buy things which can be reused. Recycling unwanted paper, bottles, etc. is a great earth saving tip. By recycling, you can help in reducing landfills.

4. Go Solar: Many people have caught the energy efficient bandwagon of solar energy. Having solar panels installed is something readily possible and available.

5. Buy Energy-Efficient Appliances: Always buy products that are energy efficient as they can help you save money and reduce your carbon footprints and turn the devices off when you are away for a couple of days.

6. Plant a Tree: Planting trees can help much in reducing global warming than any other method.

7. Replace Filters on Air Conditioner and Furnace: If you haven't, not only are you wasting energy but breathing in dirty air. Cleaning a dirty air filter can save several pounds of carbon dioxide a year.

8. Tune Your Car Regularly: Regular maintenance will help your car function properly and emit less carbon dioxide.

9. Conserve Water: This is a tired tip, but ever so important. Taking a quick 5-minute shower will greatly conserve energy. Take showers instead of baths. Showers use less water than baths by 25%.

10. Eat Naturally: Not only do the health benefits speak wonders for those who eat naturally, but it cuts down the energy costs used by factories who produce processed food and Walking is another easy way to reduce global warming.

11. Use a Kitchen Cloth Instead of Paper Towels: Paper towels produce nothing but wasted energy. Think of factory pollution, as well as tree consumption.

12. Check your Tires: Make sure your tires are inflated properly when you drive. If not, then your vehicle might consume more fuel which in turn release more CO2 in the atmosphere.

13. Celebrate Arbor Day and Earth day: Although most of us hear about these days in passing, see what buzz is all about. Plant a tree, pick up trash, or join a forum.

14. Spread the Awareness: Always try your best to educate people about global warming and it causes and after effects.

SAVE ENVIRONMENT - SAVE EARTH !!

References:

Singh, BR, et al., 2010.

Harison and Woloson 2018.

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