If you were fortunate enough to take Mrs. Anderson’s environmental science class, the title of this post should look familiar to you. I’ll admit, when she wrote this sentence on the board, I was a bit confused! Due to numerous articles and debates by misinformed individuals, the line is often blurred between the clear causes and effects of global warming. Exhibit A…
Following the series of devastating natural disasters in the past few months, such tweets and discussions have skyrocketed. While I love the awareness, nothing pains me more than seeing a misconstrued concept of the issue. So sit back, relax, and get ready for a little science lesson by yours truly! I promise, it’s much more simple than some make it out to be.
Global warming is caused by an excess of greenhouse gases that heat the earth.
That’s it! Truly. Gas molecules slow the process of reflected light from the sun from leaving our atmosphere. The more greenhouse gases there are, the longer that heat remains trapped in our atmosphere, raising the overall average temperature. This theory suggests the increase in greenhouse gas emissions are most closely related to human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels. Want to see this concept in action? Watch this short video to see global warming explained in just 2 short minutes. Now just because greenhouse gases are the source of global warming doesn’t mean we need to get rid of them all. In fact, if there weren’t any greenhouse gases in our atmosphere, the temperature of our earth would be approximately 35°C (95°F) cooler! It is due to the greenhouse effect that we have such a habitable environment.
So if the concept of climate change is so simple, why is there such a large debate??
Many scientists argue that our climate has gone through periods of “warming” and “cooling”; the point we are currently at in history is simply a “warming” phase. This theory sparks a large debate on whether the current data is sufficient enough to suggest human activities are truly the leading cause. Whether you believe in global warming or not, I challenge you to follow up in the links below to investigate more about the opposing side of the story.
…if the hole in the ozone isn’t causing global warming, what is it doing?
The ozone layer protects living organisms on Earth from harmful ultra-violet rays. Simply put: Ozone depletion causes an increased risk of skin cancer due to heightened exposure. This depletion is connected to the use of CFC’s found in aerosols and refrigerants and is in no way responsible for the shift in our climate.
As always, if you’d like to learn more about the topic or read more related articles, please click on the links below!! I’m always happy to answer questions as best I can and love having discussions. Don’t be shy!
Stay warm 😉