The Greenhouse Effect

The Greenhouse Effect

The greenhouse effect occurs when gases
such as methane, carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide and CFCs trap heat in the
atmosphere by acting as a pane of glass in a car. The glass lets
the sunlight in to make heat, but when the heat tries to get out the gases
absorb the heat. Holding this heat in causes heat waves, droughts,
and climate changes which could alter our way of living.

The main gases that cause the greenhouse
effect are water vapor, carbon dioxide (CO2), and methane, which comes
mainly from animal manure. Other gases like nitrogen oxide and chloroflurocarbons,
man made gases, get caught in the atmosphere as well. The decay of
animals and respiration are two main natural sources of carbon dioxide.

In my opinion, we the people of the world should try to slow down the emission
of greenhouse gases and/or find ways to balance the gases so the climate
doesn’t change so rapidly. If it did, we would be forced to adapt
to the new climate that we brought upon ourselves. If we had an international
cooperation to put a damper on the production of chloroflurocarbons and
slowed down the use of fossil fuels it would dramatically slow done the
process of ‘global warming’. Carbon dioxide pollution from the increase
of industry and transportation is a major cause of global warming.

These two causes are connected with the growth in the world population.

As the population grows the necessity for food and other products increase,
therefore industry must grow to keep up with the demand. The increase
in transportation is directly due to the growing population and the need
for jobs and the growing congestion on our highways. Another cause
in global warming is deforestation. Trees remove carbon dioxide from
the air as they grow. The carbon dioxide is released back into the
air as they are cut and burned. The forest ability to reduce the
carbon dioxide from the atmosphere is decreasing due to massive deforestation
around the world. These causes seem simple and fixable, but if they
are not cut down, the Earth and its inhabitants will feel the effects.

Over the last hundred years, the
global temperatures have been increasing slowly, but steadily. Since

1980, the temperature has risen 0.2 degrees Celsius (0.4 degrees Fahrenheit)
each decade. Scientist predict that if we continue putting the same
amount of gas into the atmosphere, that by the year 2030 the temperature
will be rising as much as 0.5 degrees C (0.9 degrees Fahrenheit) or more
per decade. Overall, the global temperature could rise anywhere from

5 to 9 degrees over the next fifty years.

If the temperatures do rise, as predicted,
several things could happen. The increase of temperature could alter
the growth of crops in areas near the equator due to insufficient rain
and heat. This could really hurt countries that rely in imported
food. With the high temperatures the polar ice caps could melt and
cause the sea water level to go up 1 to 3 feet. This could take out
small islands, coastal cities and some shallow rivers. The Everglades
in Florida would be almost, if not totally, wiped right off the map.

The Everglades is the home for many animals and plant life. If it
did get flooded, they would all have to move northward across very dry
land, which they will not be able to endure for very long. When the
hot temperatures do spread southward and northward, tropical disease will
spread with it. Diseases that were down in Mexico will, maybe, occur
in North and South Carolina or eventually Vermont. These new diseases
will be hard to deal with causing many more deaths and illnesses that before.

The financial problem with this is that the flooding will cause dams to
be built and cities to be reconstructed. The shortage in food will
cause the price of the food to go up and with all the diseases, we will
need more medical supplies and workers. All of this combined could
and will cost a lot of money if we don’t do something about it now.

The computer models can’t predict
exactly that the climate is going to be in the future, but they can come
close to what it will be like down the road. Scientists proved this
by predicting, with computers, what the climate was in the past.

Then, by looking back in records, they found that the predictions were
close to being right. The ‘Topex’ (Topographic Experiment) collected
information on the changes of the sea level, the temperatures across the
globe, and the amount of gases emitted into the atmosphere. Each