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Global Warming

Global Warming

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Published by Mahesh

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Published by: Mahesh on Dec 15, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Global Warming
"Human activities are increasingly altering the Earth's climate.... It is virtually certain that increasing atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases will cause global surface climate to be warmer. The unprecedented increases in greenhouse gas concentrations, together with other human influences on climate ovethe past century and those anticipated for the future, constitute a real basis for concern." 
What Is Global Warming?
Global warming refers to a long-term rise in global average temperature. Morespecifically, the ongoing rise in temperature that started a century ago and isbelieved to be caused mainly by pollution from human activities, including theburning of fossil fuels and deforestation. Rising temperatures have alreadyresulted in an increase in extreme weather events, loss of sea ice and glaciers,rising sea level, and harm to wildlife. But it is not too late to take action. Asharp reduction of greenhouse gas pollution would significantly slow global warming and reduce the likelihood of dangerous and irreversible impacts.
 The Greenhouse Effect is what keeps Earth warm enough for people to live on,but a build-up in the gases that produce this warmth is overheating our planetand causing global warming.
How does global warming occur?
Heat from the sun is trapped at the Earth's surface by a blanket of greenhousegases. This "greenhouse effect" keeps the Earth warmer than it otherwise would be. Human activities are rapidly increasing the amount of greenhousegases in the atmosphere, causing more heat to be trapped and increasingglobal temperatures. The burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil, and natural gas) andland-use changes such as deforestation have raised the amount of carbondioxide, the most important human-produced greenhouse gas, by 30% sincepre-industrial times. Concentrations of methane, another potent greenhousegas, have more than doubled. Climate scientists around the world agree thatglobal average temperature has risen about 1°F (0.6°C) over the past century.Current temperatures are likely the warmest seen in the last 2,000 years.Assessments by the U.S.National Academy of Sciencesand theUnited Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPCC) find that most of the warming of the past 50 years is likely due to human-produced greenhouse gaspollution
How much global warming is predicted for the future?
Scientists predict that in the absence of policies to cut greenhouse gaspollution, the Earth will heat up by 2–10°F (1-6°C) over the next century, morequickly than at any other time in the history of civilization. The difference inglobal average temperature between modern times and the last ice age—whenmuch of Canada and the northern U.S. was covered with a thick ice sheet—  was only about 9°F (5°C). A future rise in temperature greater than 4°F (2°C)could have dangerous and irreversible effects on the planet, such as thedisintegration of ice sheets on Greenland and Antarctica and the resultinginundation of coastal cities. Action is needed now to prevent these kinds of dangerous impacts in the future.
 Today, the Center for Immigration Studies, our lovely friends at the nativist“think thank” have released yet another report. We all remembera few weeksago when they claimed that the numbers of unauthorized immigrants in thecountry was decreasing because of raids, not because
of our failing economy.
Well now, they areblaming immigrants for Global Warming. No, really. The findings of a new study indicate that future levels of immigration will havea significant impact on efforts to reduce global CO2 emissions. Immigration tothe United States significantly increases world-wide CO2 emissions because ittransfers population from lower-polluting parts of the world to the UnitedStates, which is a higher-polluting country.

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