Essay on Gobal Warming

Submitted By JessicaPhan123
Words: 849
Pages: 4

Global warming has a negative impact towards polar bears’ lifestyles over the past few years. Little do people know the effects of global warming are starting to gradually build up. These events have changed the polar bears’ ways of survival dramatically in only a few decades. The typical polar bear people know today hasn’t always been the way it looks. These mighty mammals have adapted to the cold habitats over “one to three million years ago from the brown or grizzly bears” (National Wildlife Federation, 2014). Adapting to the climate the bears developed adaptations such as an outer layer of fur that is hollow and reflects light which gives the bears’ its magnificent white fur colour along with having skin black as the night sky under its fur only to be evident on their noses. Not only having adaptations on fur the polar bears developed footpads on their paws with a non-slip surface allowing traction on slippery ice. The adaptation that most helps them live in their harsh environments is their “thick layer of fat below the surface of the skin” (2014) which aids in trapping heat especially when swimming during winter. The polar bears have only just adapted to their environment merely to have a new problem with their habitat. Polar bears face new problems with the increasing rate of global warming. What is global warming? Researchers proclaim global warming as “the unusually rapid increase in Earth’s average surface temperature over the past century primarily due to the greenhouse gases released by people burning fossil fuels” (Riebeek, 2010). This increase in temperature is dramatically affecting their habitat. With temperatures rising in the Arctic carbon dioxide levels are now far above the levels during the Eemian period. The Eemian period was “the earliest era when the Arctic was quite possibly free of summertime ice which was 125 000 years ago” (Nsidc, 2013). This tells scientists the change in sea level and habitat loss that the polar bears are struggling with. Polar bears deal with habitat loss which includes the decrease of sea ice, the main source of habitat to these mammals. Without these large platforms of ice around the bears lose their habitat and access to their prey. The polar bears use the annual sea ice, “as a platform to hunt, habitat for mating, for travel, migration, connecting habitats, a summer refuge and dens to produce young in some areas” (Derocher, 2014). As the temperatures rise due to global warming the sea ice platforms start to move farther apart and gradually melt. Creating larger gaps of open waters between the ice and land that, “contributes to rougher wave conditions, making the bears’ swim from shore to sea ice more hazardous” (National Wildlife Federation, 2014). Global warming is shortening the period of ice cover and lengthening the period of open waters. Researchers have proven that the rate of change in sea ice is changing faster than projected. They say the decline in max extent of sea ice in the winter by 1.5% per decade and the loss of multiyear ice by ten percent per year. This not only impacts their environment but their source of food as well. With the shorter periods of sea ice cover this affects the bears’ ability of obtaining food. These strong mammals main source of food are seals but they will also eat walruses, whale carcasses and bird eggs. Having their seal