It’s Real: What You Need to Know about Climate Change

Within the last 650,000 years, there have been seven cycles of glaciers expanding and melting. These climate changes were due to a change in the Earth’s orbit caused by outside forces. However, the current climate change is different. This climate change is caused by humans, and it is progressing at an unusually fast rate. Our current president, Donald Trump, has falsely educated people into believing climate change is a hoax. In reality, climate change is real; there is evidence collected by many scientific organizations, including the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), to prove so. I am here to help properly educate people on the causes and effects during the current climate change crisis.


Simplifying the Greenhouse Effect

There are many chemicals in our atmosphere including: 

  • Water vapor 
  • Carbon dioxide 
  • Methane 
  • Nitrous oxide 
  • Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) 

When humans perform certain activities, they release more of these chemicals into our atmosphere. There has been an abundance of these chemicals emitted into the atmosphere due to human activity. 

What happens is the sun radiates heat onto Earth. Some of the sun’s rays are reflected back into space by our atmosphere while others make it through the atmosphere. Of those that make it through Earth’s atmosphere, some are absorbed into the Earth. The heat that isn’t absorbed should be able to bounce back into space. However, due to the excess chemicals in the atmosphere, they are getting reflected back down to the surface of our planet, causing extra heat to be absorbed. Therefore, this causes Earth’s temperature to rise.


Negative Human Activity

Many activities performed by humans negatively impact the Earth including:

1. Deforestation, which is the cutting down of trees. Trees take in carbon dioxide and produce oxygen in return. By cutting down trees, humans are taking away a very helpful tool in fighting climate change. This causes less oxygen and more carbon dioxide to enter into our atmosphere.

2. Waste in landfills causes the release of methane as it breaks down during decomposition.

3. Burning fossil fuels releases carbon dioxide into our atmosphere. Luckily, there is an alternative—solar energy.


Rising Temperatures

The vital signs of the Earth are drastically getting worse. As stated earlier, previous climate changes have happened due to outside forces in the solar system affecting Earth’s orbit. However, the current rise in temperature is caused by humans. The warmest year on record was in 2016. Rising temperatures in the poles will push the colder air down, causing snow to fall sooner and more frequently in areas, such as the midwest in the United States. This will especially cause a problem for farmers. Recent years have already shown signs of this in states like Minnesota.


Negative Effects across the Globe

1. Changes in precipitation patterns cause more dangerous storms. This is due to the basic science of evaporation—the warmer the Earth’s temperature gets, the more water evaporates. When this precipitates (in the form of rain, snow, etc.), it causes local areas to have frequent flooding. This includes the selfish people that live inland that say, “Climate change won’t affect me, so why should I worry about it?”

2. Melting ice caps cause sea levels to rise. In the past 40 years, arctic sea ice has already dropped 2.73 million square kilometers. Ice sheets, especially in Greenland, are decreasing at an even more alarming rate. Sea levels in just the past 23 years have risen 95 millimeters. 


All of these things are progressing at a scary rate. It is important to properly educate people on the impacts their actions have in the current, and very real, climate crisis. The Earth can only sustain our current living trends for a little bit longer. The entire globe is already experiencing the effects of climate change. 

You can vote and participate in peaceful protests to have your voice heard because it is up to us to change our negative ways and save our home. Climate change is real, and it is time to acknowledge the havoc we are wreaking on Mother Earth before it is too late.


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