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Climate Change Due to Humans

By: Wil Schuehler

A carbon dioxide emission study was carried out by Our World in Data, and their
findings were very alarming. The organization gathered their information from MacFarling
Meure and Ethridge, these two groups figured the amount of the emissions out by collecting the
amount of Carbon Dioxide within yearly averages of ice core data collected from direct
observations made by the individual groups themselves. The process of collecting data from an
ice core is when scientists extract layers of ice and by the estimated age of the ice layers they can
analyze and collect data involving our atmospheric gases and temperatures from within the ice.

The evidence that this group Our World in Data is presenting represents the amount of
CO2 emitted into the atmosphere or it can also be looked at and is presented in the graph as the
amount of CO2 that composes our atmosphere by parts per million. The study and its graph states
that during the 1800’s Carbon dioxide was roughly 280 ppm (global concentration of carbon
dioxide), however in 2016 it had increased all the way up to 400 ppm and continues to rise.

These emissions are relevant because the largest contributing gas in the greenhouse
effect is Carbon dioxide; so clearly a spike and rise in Carbon dioxide emissions would lead to a
larger effect on the global temperature due to the Greenhouse effect. In my opinion this large
spike around the 1950’s (a time where much industrialization came into place) can be attributed
to new and improving technology in the world. This can include, the large amount of fossil fuels
(coal, oil, natural gas) beginning to be burned from a new found age of transportation in cars,
processes such as cement production and deforestation can also be credited to the rise of CO2

The ramifications of this study are very alarming, the rapid rate of growth in the global
temperature can lead to major problems for the human population and the environment.
Increased global temperature can lead to the alteration of the cryosphere (ice on the earth),
weather is becoming more extreme, and oceans are becoming more acidic. Quite obviously this
is a very negative effect assuming the climate continues to rise.

Actions that can be taken in order to reduce the global warming process can be little
everyday things such as taking public transportation (creates less burning of fossil fuels), using
electric cars and other energy alternatives such as solar power can also decrease the CO2 output
into the atmosphere. There are a multitude of possible actions that can aid in the resistance of
global warming and climate change.

“CO₂ and Other Greenhouse Gas Emissions.” Our World in Data,