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of global warming are of concern both for the environment and human
life. Scenarios studied by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
(IPCC) predict that global warming will continue and get worse much
faster than was expected even in their last report.
Research by NOAA indicate that the effects of global warming are already irreversible. The IPCC reports attribute many specific natural phenomena to human causes. The expected long range effects of recent climate change may already be observed.
Rising sea levels, glacier retreat, Arctic shrinkage, and altered patterns of agriculture are cited as direct consequences of human activities. Predictions for secondary and regional effects include extreme weather events, an expansion of tropical diseases, changes in the timing of seasonal patterns in ecosystems, and drastic economic impact.
Global Warming and the Significance of Rising Water Temperatures
A part of the alarm that is being raised about global warming has to do with rising water temperatures, especially in the ocean. Scientists are studying warming waters all over the globe to determine the extent of the change.
The consequences of this global warming are far-reaching. One of the most devastating effects of global warming is that, as the ocean water warms, it impacts tropical storms. Hurricanes that would have been category 3 storms in past years are now category 4 or above. This is because they are energized when they pick up the warmer ocean water.
In fact, there has been a significant increase in these higher intensity storms in the last 35 years. This could be due to global warming. In 2005, the Atlantic was bombarded with 27 tropical storms powerful enough to receive a name. 15 of them developed into hurricanes.
Five of these storms reached the force of category 4 hurricanes. Four of them actually became worse, at category five. Hurricane Katrina made a terrible mark on history in August of 2005. It became the costliest hurricane in American history. It was also one of most lethal. Global warming has left destruction in the form of more intense hurricanes.
As global warming causes temperatures to rise in the oceans, glaciers and icecaps are melting more rapidly. One particular ice shelf in Antarctica, the northern section of the Larson B shelf, collapsed in recent years. Scientists got a rude awakening when they realized how fast the ice shelf could disintegrate.
The polar ice cap is disappearing at an astonishing rate as well. It is dissolving at 9% per decade. This aspect of global warming is a definite cause for alarm. In the last 40-50 years, the thickness of ice in the Arctic has decreased by 40%.
The ice that is present on earth is beneficial to maintain the delicate balance of the environment.
Perennial sea ice in the Arctic has been receding as well. There was a record low in the square miles of this sea ice in 2005. Just two years later, in 2007, the record was broken with a half of a million square miles less perennial ice than in 2005. Global warming has truly had an impact on the sea ice of the Arctic. Some scientists predict that all the sea ice will be gone by 2040.
Global warming could also cause the sea level to rise as ice melts. When this happens, islands are lost and coastal communities are flooded. Various suggestions have been made about the levels that the water level could reach, anywhere from 10 to 23 inches by 2100.
Global warming has the potential to make the earth a very inhospitable place to live. Rising temperatures in the oceans' waters are a clear indication that the process has begun.
With the melting of ice in the glaciers, icecaps, and on the sea, it is only a matter of time before global warming has much more harmful effects. It is up to the people of the world to do what they can to make the future look brighter.
More ArticlesBooks That Support Or Deny The Concept Of Global Warming
... backs up the claims and demonstrates why no one should be concerned about global warming, in the authors' opinions. However, there is scientific information that supports the claims of global warming dangers. A book called Global Warming: The Complete Briefing gives facts and theories about the foundations ...
... winter, but they would not be shorter if more global warming occurred. In 2004, it was observed by lobster fishermen that the warmer temperatures caused by global warming had affected their work. There seemed to be an abundance of Maine lobsters living and thriving in the warmer waters. They were happy ...
... warming. The trouble with using this fact to predict global warming is that it is not known how many dark areas will be uncovered by melting ice. As long as there is enough ice to maintain a light color, a good deal of the heat will be reflected off into the atmosphere. While it is nearly impossible to ...
... global warming continues on its present course, this will be a common occurrence. Gasoline prices have an effect on the economics of communities. When gas prices are high, people will patronize business establishments that are close to their homes. This hurts the chances of success for a business that ...
... because of changing habitats and the suitability of the climate for the animal. The good news about global warming is that there are ways to slow the process down. Each person can take responsibility for doing their part in protecting the earth's environment. With everyone helping, emissions of greenhouse ...
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