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One of the greatest challenges earth is facing is Global Warming. The global warming hypothesis orginated in 1896 when Svante Arrhenius, a Swedish chemist, developed the theory that carbon dioxide emissions from the burning of fossil fuels would cause global temperatures to rise by trapping excess heat in the earth’s atmosphere. The term “Global Warming” signifies the temperature of the earth’s neon- surface air. The change in climatic conditions is one of the impacts of global warming. It is directly impacting on rising sea levels and the melting of ice. It is a threat to life on earth. The effects of global warming have been increasing significantly for the past decades. Climate change, devastation of the ecosystem, water contamination, melting ice over Arctic and Antarctic regions, negative impacts in the agricultural sector are just the problems caused by global warming. The reason behind this is human activities that lead to release of greenhouse gases.
The concentration of greenhouse gases has significantly increased since 20th century. Some Scientists believe that there is an increase of 0.5 Celsius in earth’s temperature since 1900 and will continue to increase. The year 1990 was said to be the hottest year in the last century. We Human Beings have created an imbalance between life and nature that has led to flood, cyclones, landslides, tsunami, drought, etc. If this imbalance continues, soon our life on earth would be difficult. The increase of Carbon-dioxide in air is one of the reasons for warming the earth’s surface. The most significant greenhouse gas is actually water vapor, not something produced directly by humankind in significant amounts. However, even slight increases in atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) can cause a substantial increase in temperature.
When the earth’s surface warms up it will eventually lead to evaporation of water. Water vapor, itself is a greenhouse gas. It is believed that the increase in CO2 in the atmosphere will continue due to ongoing burning of fossil fuels and deforestation. Not only CO2 but other gases such as methane, CFCs, nitrous oxide, tropospheric ozone are also responsible for global warming. The increase in these gases is due to industrialization, deforestation, urbanization and increasing population. Nature has given us a mechanism to decrease the content of CO2 in atmosphere but we are exploiting it. Trees are the mechanism given to mankind as a gift from nature. Trees convert CO2 gas into Oxygen. This helps to decrease the CO2 content in atmosphere which eventually helps us prevent global warming.
The question that should be put forward now is that if this mechanism only won’t exist then how will we prevent global warming? Human beings have always been exploiting nature. Trees have been cut down for the benefits of humans without realizing that it is going to affect us eventually. Deforestation is responsible for 25 per cent of all carbon emissions entering the atmosphere, by the burning and cutting of 34 million acres of trees each year. Everyday over 5500 acres of rainforest are destroyed. Increasing population is also one of the reasons for global warming. Approximately, 80 per cent of atmospheric C02 increases are due to man’s use of fossil fuels either in the form of coal, gas or oil. Vehicles with poor gas mileage contribute the most to global warming. Besides, the sulphur group gas is the most harmful for this. Its contribution is 30 per cent in global warming. This gas is also emitted from the burning of fossil fuels.
One of the effects of global warming is rise in sea-level. It will lead to melting of glaciers and changes in rainfall patterns. The rate of melting glaciers have been increasing since the past decade. . The shrinking of glaciers is going to pose a major problem of drinking water. The sea levels as a result of melting of glaciers have risen from 0.35 mm to 0.4 mm. Scientists have warned in their reports that most of the glaciers will disappear within a period of 15 to 25 years. It will create problems of drinking water and food grains in most of the North American countries. India is not unaffected from it. The Himalayan glaciers have shrunk about 30 per cent after 1970. The rise in sea levels is a major cause of concern. A large number of cities located in coastal areas will submerge in the sea. Besides, many island countries will ultimately lose their existence and will be washed away from the surface of the earth. In India this effects may also threaten the Lakshadweep islands, Mumbai and deltas of Ganges (West Bengal), Carvers (T.N), Godavari (AP) and Mahanadi, Orissa.
India is also affected by global warming. As India is an agricultural country, it is largely dependent on rainfall but due to irregular rainfalls caused by global warming, the yield is decreasing every year. The rise in atmospheric temperature and fall in rain would naturally result in decline in crop production. Moreover, it would have great effect on biodiversity as well. Forestation can be of great help in this regard. Planting more trees worldwide will help restore the imbalance. Secondly, we must follow on environmental policy of ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’, i.e. promoting the reuse of anything. Thirdly, the use of fuel-efficient vehicles should be promoted as these vehicles have lower emissions of harmful gases. Fourthly, every individual should be aware of the importance of the protecting environment. Besides, eco- friendly technologies must be promoted, and must be substituted with the technologies which cause great emission of global warming gases.
Many government agencies around the world are very interested in maintaining fossil fuel use, especially coal. Furthermore, we are not going to run out of coal in the near term (oil may begin to run low sometime after 2010). Methods for reducing carbon emission levels while still burning coal are now investigation by government and industry, as we now discuss. It is too late to debate on global warming. We need to take some measures to decrease global warming. Forestation can be of great help in this regard. Planting more trees worldwide will help restore the imbalance. Secondly, we must follow on environmental policy of ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’, i.e. promoting the reuse of anything. Thirdly, the use of fuel-efficient vehicles should be promoted as these vehicles have lower emissions of harmful gases. Fourthly, every individual should be aware of the importance of the protecting environment.
Besides, eco- friendly technologies must be promoted, and must be substituted with the technologies which cause great emission of global warming gases. We should control the growth of population by decreasing birth rate. This can be done by proper family planning. We should reduce the use of chlorofloro carbons. More use of non-conventional source of energy like wind power and solar energy. It is said that “There is no place like home” and earth is our home so we need to protect it. Policies are made every day but do we follow it? The answer is “No”. We all are aware of global warming so we need to change the way we think that we can’t do anything and only the rich who are seated in the seats of government can save us. Who you are, whatever you are you can do something for your planet when you think global warming is a problem.