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Environmentalism - There is currently a vast political, cultural and moral debate going on about the authenticity of the concept of global warming.

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Introduction

COYS 1411 Major Essay Environmentalism There is currently a vast political, cultural and moral debate going on about the authenticity of the concept of global warming. Questions are being asked as to whether it even exists. Top scientists are disagreeing with each other along with politicians and the public who are feuding over whether or not to cut down our C02 emissions. This debate on global warming is relatively new, with the evidence that carbon dioxide is making the world greener and sustaining the life of many of Earth's trees and vegetation coming to surface in 2001. Since then the debate has been raging. The debate has spawned two completely opposing sides, one being the long-held traditional view, where the belief is held that the burning of fossil fuels, overpopulation and our throwaway western society, among other things are damaging the environment which in turn is causing Earths temperature to increase dramatically and it is thought that if something is not changed soon then the oceans will rise from the melting of polar ice caps, leading to global flooding and other disastrous events. The other belief held is that the idea of global warming is a hoax which is being publicized by extreme environmentalists to target the industrialized nations in order to undermine economic growth. It is also thought that there is no real and accurate way to measure the Earths overall temperature and so there is no real way to be sure of whether or not temperatures are increasing. This view also holds opinions that if something was to be done about the emissions of Carbon dioxide then it would be hugely expensive, and living standards for poor people will become even lower. It is believed that many jobs will be lost over it and extra costs will be added onto things like gas - 55c a gallon. The thought of this outrages people who take this opinion as they believe that there is no problem to be fixed in the first ...read more.

Middle

Caruba has also found evidence that, large temperature swings have been common in the past 1,000 years, and that temperatures warmer than today were common in 50-year periods about 1,000 years ago. These studies suggest that the climate we see today is not unusual at all." In fact, nearly 17,000 scientists, including 2,100 climatologists, meteorologists and environmental experts, recently signed a declaration stating, "There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth's atmosphere." Understanding from a Utilitarian perspective and trying to find the greater happiness, we cannot reach a conclusion because there is no absolute scientific data that overrides everything else. There are many scientific facts, some of which contradict each other. Instead Goffman uses cost/benefit analysis when discussing a possible solution to global warming, he reasons that his suggestion for a solution is flexible enough "so that industry can achieve pollution reductions in cost-effective ways that can help the economy." He then goes on to reason that it "strikes the right balance between incentives and mandatory cuts" and reasons that this small sacrifice now will keep the environment healthy for the future, this is an excellent way of analyzing the problem. I researched the environmental issue of global warming and found many contradictory facts, however in the end I was convinced by new evidence as well as Caruba's article that the world is improving every day. Environmental quality in Canada has improved dramatically over the last 30 years, and is up a full 18% since 1980. Canada is not the only country which has improved. With recycling programs and the world being more conscious of looking after the environment nowadays, the earth is in much better condition. Air quality and water quality are improving, with more developing countries receiving more clean water now than ever before. ...read more.

Conclusion

If trends continue, by the end of the century, Boston's climate could resemble that of Atlanta's and rising sea levels could make much of Florida's coastal regions uninhabitable. In spite of the milieu of scientific warnings, many in Washington have been indifferent to the problem and are moving in the wrong direction. Instead of taking meaningful action to match the seriousness of the problem, the Bush Administration and its allies in Congress are proposing voluntary actions with no mandatory cuts in emissions. The Bush Administration approach is an invitation for inaction at a time when active leadership is critical. Thankfully, there is better plan. Earlier this year, Senate leaders John McCain (R-AZ) and Joe Lieberman (D-CT) introduced the Climate Stewardship Act, the first legislative action that takes all the right steps to curb global warming. This bill starts with mandatory caps on greenhouse gas emissions. The bill is also flexible enough so that industry can achieve pollution reductions in cost-effective ways that can help the economy. It strikes the right balance between incentives and mandatory cuts, and it takes sensible steps now to avoid even graver risks in the future. Like Senator McCain's previous legislative struggle to clean up America's campaign finance laws, the McCain-Lieberman global warming initiative is sure to face intense opposition, in spite of its laudable goals. Following last year's elections, powerful special interests - including some automobile, utility and oil companies - have made no secret about their plans to see to it that nothing is done about greenhouse gas emissions. That is why Environmental Defense has launched an unprecedented two-year effort to enlist the support of one million Americans to sign up as citizen cosponsors of the McCain-Lieberman approach. We are asking every American concerned about the kind of world their children will inherit to join our Emergency Campaign on Global Warming by signing our petition. To join the campaign and do your part to support meaningful action to stop global warming, please sign our petition. It's time to raise the bar. Together, we can make a difference. Joe Goffman is the senior attorney for Environmental Defense. ...read more.

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