The movie tells the story of a paleontologists who warns the world of a possible abrupt climate change that could occur. While his warnings go unheeded, extreme weather becomes rampant throughout the world signifying an eventual end to humanity. The film stirred some controversy, however, since scientists claim that it portrays an inaccurate depiction of the dangers brought about by global warming.
Yet, other scientists see the movie s a teaching tool, a way of making the public more aware of climate change and global warming. Is the Earth really warming up? The answer is yes. Over the past 50 years, the average global temperature has been climbing at the fastest rate in recorded history and physical damage illustrates this. Experts claim that this will only get worse. Scientists were initially wary of The Day After Tomorrow due to its overly extravagant special effects that could lead an individual to simply dismiss the problem entirely.
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A survey, however, showed that 83% of viewers were concerned about global warming, compared to 72% of nuthatches. Overall, watchers demonstrated high levels of concern towards the issue but unfortunately, few of them actively worry about it. Although the effects of global warming are not predominately showing, there is reason to worry as scientists are learning more each year how warming affects our planet. If the trend continues, humanity is more and more likely to experience a global catastrophe that is reminiscent of an apocalypse.
In other words, action must be taken. What is Global Warming and is it Really Happening? The mechanism that drives global warming is the release of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide being a major one) into the atmosphere. Those gases reflect heat energy trying to escape the earth ‘s atmosphere back towards the planet, thereby trapping the heat energy. Global warming has yet showed any fatal effects for humanity, but it is quickly becoming a matter of concern in the world, especially in the United States.
For example, in the US, coal- burning power plants amount for the largest source of carbon dioxide pollution producing 2. 5 billion tons annually. Automobiles contribute to this by producing 1. 5 tons of CO each year, placing them right under coal power plants. Consequentially, the US is at a loss here as automobiles and electricity ND power are commonplace in today’s society. Scientists know that human activity is responsible for changing the Earth’s composition and the atmospheric buildup of carbon dioxide and greenhouse gases.
Scientists also accept that greenhouse gases are capable of trapping heat in the Earth’s atmosphere that eventually leads to global warming. These key greenhouse gases that are produced by human activities are even capable of staying in the atmosphere for decades to even centuries. Perhaps, this is the reason why a warming trend has been taking place. A rising trend of about 1 degree Fahrenheit has been recorded since the late 19th century. Additionally, the past 50 years have shown the fastest rate of increase in the average global temperature.
While this may seem insignificant, this still needs to be stopped, as it will only grow into a bigger problem. In 2001 , the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (EPIC) estimated that the full warming range over 1 990 to 2100 to be 2. OFF to 10. OFF with the mid-range estimate being 5. OFF. Likewise, human induced CO concentrations are expected to rise between two or three times its pre-industrial level by the end of the twenty-first century. 20th Century global warming already has had its detrimental effects to the environment.
In addition to the melting glaciers, decreased snowfall in the northern hemisphere, and underground warming, parts of the southwestern US have suffered from the worst wildfire seasons (in 2002) ever recorded. That same year also showed an increase in drought- induced dust storms and floods in the mid and northwest parts of the country. The warmer temperatures are also shortening the seasons in some parts of the country, such as the Cascade mountain range in Oregon and Washington where snow accumulation has dropped 60%.
Outside of the US, the county of Nepal has expressed concern that global warming could hearten the many glaciers and the 2,300 glacial lakes. This alone means that glacial areas are threatened already as global warming can lead to rising sea levels and floods for those who live in the area. Most threatening, however, are the polar ice caps that have shown to be declining at a rate of 9 percent per decade. Global warming is happening and over the next century, it will only increase. The question is not if global warming is happening, but what will happen if this problem escalates.
Why Worry? Global warming is a difficult phenomenon to deal with. On one hand, the recent of global warming has been proven and its effects can be seen in various parts of the world. On the other hand, the long-term effects are almost impossible to determine. Global warming and climate change is an environmental condition that has unfolded itself year by year as scientists learn more about it. This makes it more dangerous as we cannot pinpoint every effect of global warming at a given time, nor can we say how the temperature will fluctuate in the future.
Although the effects of global warming are not predominately showing, there is reason to worry as scientists are learning more each year how warming affects our planet. If the trend continues, we are likely to experience the melting glaciers (early snowbell and severe droughts), rising sea levels, easier spread of germs and disease, and many plant and animal extinctions. Who/What is Causing Global Warming? As noted before, human activity accounts for the primary source Of greenhouse gases in the air. The increase of CO is linked to the start of the Industrial Revolution.
Yet the revolution does not mark the start of global warming. Global warming began 18,000 years ago as the earth started warming its way out of the Pleistocene Ice Age. It is thought that humans had title involvement in global warming prior to the revolution, but in actuality, it is possible that our ancient ancestors have been adding CO to the air. William Radiant explains: “The more plausible “new factor” operating in the climate system during the present intergeneration is fermentation common practice tied to farming– deforestation–provides a plausible explanation for the start of the anomalous CO trend.
Growing crops in naturally forested areas requires cutting trees, and farmers began to clear forests for this purpose in Europe and China by 8,000 years ago, initially with axes made of stone and later from bronze and hen iron. Whether the fallen trees were burned or left to rot, their carbon would have soon oxidized and ended up in the atmosphere as CO. ” Currently, however, concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere are already 30 per cent higher than the levels, which existed before the Industrial Revolution.
As more and more factories Were being constructed, combusted fossil fuels began to spew into the atmosphere. In turn, more solar energy was becoming trapped causing the Earth to warm up. The Industrial Revolution can be linked to arbitration and with that, population growth. Arbitration brought people to the cities, where work and living accommodations were more available. But this would prove to be detrimental for the Earth and its atmosphere. The growth of the city involves construction of more buildings, factories, homes, etc.
Alone, this urban development can be harmful for the environment, but consider the factors involved. Often times, people will need to rely on their cars to get to work and home as public transportation can be inadequate in some areas. Los Angels, for example, suffers from traffic congestion problems. This is because it combines the highest population density of any US urban area 5,600 people per square mile in 1 990 compared with only 4,100 in the New York area) The high population produces by far the most vehicle miles traveled per square mile of any major US city.
Yet with so few freeways per capita, those cars get jammed in daily congestion meaning more CO gets pumped into the atmosphere. Population growth will only perpetuate the problem more especially when urban sprawl occurs. When cities become less and less dense, options such as public transportation or even walking become infeasible. Dry. John Holloway notes, “Worldwide urban sprawl is lowering average residential densities, increasing auto ownership and riving[lysine 1970 sprawl has grown and driving has increased faster than population growth, while the fraction of trips by foot, bicycle or public transit is down.
Fast growing Asian, African and South American cities are following the same trends. ” That alone is crucial to control, as a higher population will only lead to more greenhouse gas emissions. In a hectic society like the US, where work/education relies on transit of some sort, it is difficult for the public to realize the damage that is being done to the Earth. What should be done? Action must be taken in order to control the greenhouse gas emissions reduced by industry and society. The United States and the EPA, in 1990, formed the Clean Air Act.
According to the EPA website, the "EPA sets limits on how much of a pollutant can be in the air anywhere in the United States. This ensures that all Americans have the same basic health and environmental protections. The law allows individual states to have stronger pollution controls, but states are not allowed to have weaker pollution controls than those set for the whole country. ” (EPA 2002) The United Nations has taken steps in curbing the problem by forming the Kyoto Protocol. The Kyoto Protocol is an agreement made by the countries that sign it to reduce the amount of green house gases that is produced, by a certain amount.
Chuck Mirror, director of SHARE in Washington DC, explains that, "Under the Kyoto Protocol, industrialized countries are to reduce their combined emissions of six major greenhouse gases during the five-year period 2008-2012 to below 1 990 levels. ” Of all the countries that are part of the Protocol, the US is not part of this. This shows a lack of commitment to the environment on the part of the government despite the fact that US provides the largest share of carbon dioxide pollution.
Things that should be done to lower these emissions are not only to have the US sign the Kyoto agreement and to strengthen and reinforce the Clean Air Act, but also to take basic steps to reduce the emissions. More focus should be put on biking to work, running, jogging, public transportation, and car-pooling. The ban of coal to produce energy should be imposed and developments must be made in solar and wind energy as alternative energy sources. Reforestation and research for new building materials should also be considered, so that the trees in the ecosystem can do their natural work and reduce the CO levels.
In addition to this, America and the rest of the world should capitalize on new technologies and advances such as hydrogen cars, fuel cells, and renewable energy. Conclusion with my thoughts (similar to the ones presented in this pa per/forum) I believe that this situation of climate change relates to several other things that have already occurred and have been somewhat taken care of. Take, for example, smoking. About 40 years ago it was everywhere, and allowed everywhere as no one really knew of the terrible side effects. As years passed, there were studies that proved cigarettes to be extremely addictive and very unhealthy.
Still, the tobacco industries oppressed these ideas and hid the facts to make a few bucks. The very same is happening with the oil industry, Bush is more or less being paid by Mobil/Exxon oil not to sign the Kyoto agreement. Believe there also needs to be new laws made to make some sort of a system where each household/business is awarded a certain amount of carbon credits. If this limit is exceeded then additional taxes must be paid. Income tax could be averted into this new carbon tax and low- income families would have to pay fewer taxes.
This would boost the overall economy, as they would reinvest their money into the local market as opposed to the wealthier classes that just toss all of their money into a foreign bank. People need incentive to change; it is my assumption, that in North America, the media has great control over this. After all, the media stresses great importance as to what is going on in the War against Terrorism by showing the public what is going on in the Middle East and Afghanistan. Personally, would like to see the media document what a common SUB does to the environment. Maybe then will global warming be considered a dire matter to be taken care of.