Greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide) can stay in the atmosphere
for any amount of time, ranging from decades to hundreds of thousands of years.
No matter what we do, global warming is going to have some effect on Earth and
all of it's inhabitants. There are many effects of global warming, from
very deadly and drastic to more mild side effects. The following will discuss
the 5 deadliest effects of global warming, since there are way too many effects
to cover in one article (as many as 200 have been proposed by various scientists
and researchers). Whether you live in a thatch hut in Vietnam or in downtown Toronto townhomes, the effects of climate change have global impact and everyone is sure
to be impacted by this system.
The spread of disease As northern countries warm, disease carrying insects
migrate north, bringing plague, malaria, influenza and other deadly diseases
with them. Indeed some scientists believe that global warming is the cause of
malaria running ramped in some of the world's developing nations. Since
disease carrying insects are born in and around standing water, you may want
to put that Ontario waterfront cottage for sale on the market, since living
close to water can increase your risk of exposure to these diseases. Yet this
may be a drastic measure that is not needed. Taking the proper precautions against
bug bites in the peak of summer can greatly reduce your risk. This includes
things like applying a bug spray that contains Deet, the chemical responsible
for repelling the insects, setting up mosquito netting in areas that you frequent
around the house, and burning citronella candles or mosquito coils are all great
ways to be bug free while enjoying the view of the lake.
Warmer waters and more hurricanes As the temperature of oceans rises, so too
will the frequency and strength of hurricanes increase. We saw in this during
the hurricane season of 2004 and 2005, when massive hurricane Ivan devastated
the island nation of Jamaica, and the now infamous hurricane Katrina caused
utter chaos and heartbreaking losses in Louisiana, and New Orleans. If you live
in a part of the world that is prone to hurricanes, now is the time to invest
in home insurance, a good chain saw and some industrial strength web slings,
in case of emergency. The rise in oceanic temperatures also puts the entire
ecosystem of the Earth's oceans and waterways at risk, which means that
many species are on the brink of extinction, since the microscopic algae can
only be formed in specific temperatures. Once these essential organisms disappear,
the entire food chain of the ocean is out of whack, and this will be devastating
to the sea life and food supply around the world.
Increased probability and intensity of droughts and heat waves Although some
areas of Earth will have increased precipitation due to global warming, other
areas will suffer serious droughts and heat waves. Africa will receive the worst
of it, with more severe droughts also expected in Europe. Water is already a
dangerously rare commodity in Africa and Australia, and according to the Intergovernmental
Panel on Climate Change, global warming will exacerbate the conditions and could
lead to conflicts and war. This will affect a great number of people, everyone
from farmers to engineers will certainly feel the
effects of these pressures on the earth.
Polar ice caps melting The ice caps melting is a very real four-pronged danger.
First, it will raise sea levels. There are 5,773,000 cubic miles of water in
ice caps, glaciers, and permanent snow. According to the National Snow and Ice
Data Center, if all glaciers melted today the seas would rise about 230 feet.
Second, melting ice caps will throw the global ecosystem out of balance. The
ice caps are fresh water, and when they melt they will desalinate the ocean.
The desalinization of the gulf current will wreak havoc on ocean currents, which
regulate temperatures around the planet. Third, temperature rises and changing
landscapes in the Arctic Circle will endanger several species. Only the most
adaptable will survive, and even they will struggle to adapt in this accelerated
time frame. Natural adaptations through evolution normally take thousands of
years, and the simple truth is that these species simply cannot keep up with
their rapidly changing habitats. The endangered polar bear has become the poster
child for this concern. And finally, fourth, global warming will snowball with
the ice caps gone. Ice caps are white, and reflect sunlight, much of which is
reflected back into space, further cooling the Earth. If the ice caps melt,
the only reflector is the ocean. Darker colors absorb sunlight, further warming
the Earth, and making the situation catastrophic. The threat of global warming
on the earth is as real as the efficacy of the technology card on the market,
and if we can change our lifestyles as quickly as cell phone companies come
up with new ideas, we will be in great shape to tackle the challenges that climate
change forces us to face.