Air Pollution And Climate Change
It is no secret that the climate of the world around us is changing. Due to poor air quality caused mostly by fossil fuel burning, there have been significant changes in the climate of the Earth. This process can be slowed, if not reversed, by careful and more conservative living on our parts.
There are skeptics when it comes to the topic of global warming and climate change, but it is very much happening around us. Incidents like acid rain and a rise in temperatures can be contributed to pollution caused by car exhaust for the most part, and even things as seemingly simple as smoke from a wood-burning stove or even from a forest fire. Change in the overall global climate can be contributed to activities that release a large amount of greenhouse gases into our atmosphere. Greenhouse gases is a term used to describe harmful gases such as Carbon Dioxide (CO2), Methane (CH4), and Nitrous Oxide (N20). The gases are essentially being held into our atmosphere from its multiple layers that are meant to protect our planet. The buildup of the gases that cannot escape our atmosphere in turn causes the warming of our climate.
Global warming is triggering major changes on our planet. A simple rise or fall in general temperature can have a large effect on precipitation patterns and the frequency of storms. The rise in sea level, which has been accounted for and is constantly rising, has been result of the melting of ice and glaciers. Scientists have observed that the recent increases in the temperature of the global climate has occurred at a much faster rate than that of in any of the previous decades before us. The current levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide are substantially higher than they have been for thousands of years.
Though there was some controversy and debate circling the idea and concept of global warming at first, now roughly 90% of scientists agree and are certain that there is indeed a change happening in our climate, and that it is in fact due to greenhouse gases that are produced by human activities. In 2010 this examination was made official. In 2013, climate projections were made. It was predicted that throughout the 21st century, the temperature of the surface of the earth is said to rise anywhere from 0.3 to 1.7 degrees celsius based on their lowest emissions predictions. For predictions based on high emission scenarios, it was concluded that the temperature could rise anywhere from 2.6 to 4.8 degrees celsius.
In order to prevent this situation from worsening or continuing how it is currently, it is important to be more conscious of your burning of fossil fuels and energy use. Not only will these actions most likely save you money, but they will contribute towards saving our planet and possibly stopping global warming before it worsens to a point of no return. As this is a problem that we as humans brought about, it is a problem that we can certainly work together to eliminate. After all, there is only one Earth.
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View Slides on Introduction Part 1 & Part 2
Based on 1996 National Toxics Inventory data, major sources account for about 26 percent of air toxics emissions, smaller area sources and other sources (such as forest fires) for 24 percent, and mobile sources for 50 percent. Accidental releases, which also contribute air toxics to the atmosphere, are not included in these estimates.