Are Humans causing global warming?

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Are humans causing global warming?

Heather Kilby

Contents Page

  1. Title
  2. Contents
  3. What is global warming
  4. Arguments for, first piece
  5. Arguments for, second piece
  6. Arguments against, first piece
  7. Arguments against, second piece
  8. Comparing the arguments
  9. Comparing the arguments
  10. Bibliography

Global Warming

Global warming refers to the rising average temperature of the earth’s atmosphere which in turn causes a change in climate; we can prove this as in the last 100 years the earth’s average surface temperature has increase by about 0.8˚c with about two thirds of the increase occurring over just the last three decades.

For decades scientists have been trying to figure out what is causing global warming, they have looked at natural cycles and events that are known to alter climate.  But the amount and pattern of global warming can’t be explained by these factors alone. The only way to explain the pattern is to include the effect of greenhouse gases emitted by humans.

The greenhouse effect is the warming that happens when certain gases in the earth’s atmosphere trap heat. Sunlight shines onto the earth’s surface, where it is absorbed and then radiates back into the atmosphere as heat, the rest escapes into space. The more greenhouse gases are in the atmosphere the more the heat gets trapped. The greenhouse effect is what makes the earth’s climate livable, without it the earth earth’s surface would be about 15˚c cooler. However if the greenhouse effect continues to increase then consequences will follow. Some of the impacts of rising temperatures have already taken place;

  • Ice is melting worldwide, especially at the Earth’s poles. As well as mountain glaciers, ice sheets covering west Antarctica and Greenland, and artic sea ice.
  • Sea level rise became faster over the last century.
  • On average precipitation has increased across the globe.

If warming continues these more serious effects could take place;

  • Sea levels are expected to rise between 7 and 23 inches by the end of the century.
  • Hurricanes, floods and droughts are likely to become more common.
  • Less fresh water will be available.
  • Ecosystems will change- some species will move further north, others won’t be able to move and could be extinct.

This graph from NASA proves that global warming is taking place. The average temperature has increased dramatically since the 19th century.

Arguments for humans causing global warming

        Many scientists strongly believe that global warming is a cause that humans have created and the evidence as follows supports that.

First piece of evidence        

“Humanity is emitting nearly twice as much CO2 as ends up remaining in the atmosphere. Our actions are having a significant impact on the composition of our atmosphere.”

These pieces of evidence were taken from  

This article shows that over the last 200 years c02 levels have increased dramatically, this was caused by the overuse of resources from humans. The graph has two lines one showing the total co2 emissions and one showing the atmospheric co2 levels, this proves that global warming is caused by human’s not natural causes.

In the late 19th century there was a dramatic rise in the line, this also happened to be the time when scientific breakthroughs were taking place. The start of the rising of co2 emissions was caused by a number of things. Cars were invented in 1769, however it was very rare for someone to have a car as they were very expensive and not many had been made, around the 1890’s cars became cheaper and more could afford them, so because of the cars producing carbon dioxide, the levels of carbon dioxide would rise.

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Another cause of the sudden increase of the carbon dioxide levels could well of been due to the use of industrial machinery, this would have been because of the manufacturers would have needed to produce larger quantities of items quicker and faster, meaning that the use of carbon dioxide would have increased because of this excessive use.

 A final possible reason why the total co2 emissions suddenly rose is that the war started in 1914, around the time of the increased carbon dioxide levels, so the demand of equipment suddenly grew, so factories had to work harder to keep up ...

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