enviromental change Essay example

Submitted By starrarj
Words: 1533
Pages: 7

ENVR 1401 Term Paper
I. Introduction. The Day After Tomorrow is a 2004 film, about a paleoclimatologist named Jack Hall who discovers a huge sheet of ice that has been broken off of Antarctica. Jack is not aware however, that this ice sheet will trigger a climate shift that will eventually lead to an ice age. Jack uses his findings and presents at a United Nations conference and explains to them the severe consequences that global warming will eventually present. Although what Jack finds is indeed real, most of the diplomats are not convinced by his theories. At the conference, Professor Rapson tells Jack that the ice caps have mixed into the ocean causing the water temperatures to drop by a large amount. All over the world, cities are burning to the ground from Tokyo getting baseball sized hail to Los Angeles being destroyed by F5 tornadoes. Then, the U.S. is advised to leave the country and head south. As the climate system is taking a turn for the worst, Jack must also get to his son Sam who was trapped within NYC. Cities all over the world are coming to an end, but there is a light of hope when Sam is successfully rescued. At the conclusion of the moving, we see a shot from the International Space Station, showing the northern hemisphere almost completely covered in ice, including most of the U.S. with the exclusion of a few southern states. Global warming defined as the rise in temperature of the Earth’s oceans and atmosphere. What may cause this sensation has been debated about for decades, but today I hope to explain the causes of global warming- including anthropogenic and natural causes.
II. Body.
a. Anthropogenic Causes
As stated before, global warming is the rise in temperature of the Earth’s oceans and atmosphere. In 1988, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was created to bring all known information from global warming written into a report by hundreds of scientists. One of the first things we discovered, were that there are several greenhouse gases that are responsible; humans also emit the gases that are responsible. Overall there are four main gases that are the contributors to the “greenhouse gases,” carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and fluorinated gases such as hydrofluorcarbons etc. The effect is to warm the Earth's surface and the lower atmosphere because greenhouse gases absorb some of the Earth’s outgoing heat radiation and direct it back towards the surface. The burning of fossil fuels is a major issue within global warming. Fossil fuel burning like coal, oil and natural gas accumulates carbon overtime within the atmosphere. The gas that is the worst however is carbon dioxide, CO2. The CO2 becomes trapped in the atmosphere and traps heat and warms the planet. Worldwide deforestation releases largee amounts of CO2 as well. Carbon dioxide is removed when plants absorb it but the rate at which we produce CO2 is not a rate at which plants can keep up with so to speak. Therefore, the less CO2 that is absorbed, the more heat is trapped in the atmosphere. Methane is another gas, which is emitted during the production of coal, gas and oil. Methane can also come from agriculture practices as well as the decay of waste in landfills. Nitrous oxide is emitted during many agriculture practices and industrial too. Fluorinated gases are synthetic gases that are very powerful and can be emitted from many different industrial activities. These gases can stay in the atmosphere ranging from a couple of years to thousands. All of the gases remain in the atmosphere for so long that they become very well mixed, which in terms means the amount within the atmosphere is the same all over the world regardless of the place where it was emitted.
b. Natural Causes.
There are also natural causes of course to global warming. Yet, the natural causes of global warming do not compare to anthropogenic causes. One cause is sunspots, sunspots are dark patches on the sun’s surface that block solar plasma. The…