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Climate facts and issues

 

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The Global Warming Issue

The opinions about the reasons behind global warming are split. In any case, global warming, if it continues as projected, will change the living conditions on the planet in the mid term to the less comfortable side.

Some related questions that come to mind:

  • Is global warming/global climate change actually happening?
  • Will it continue?
  • What are the causes?

And if itís happening:

  • Can we do something about it?
  • Should we do something about it?
  • What should we do about it?

There is a video on youTube with the message that no matter whether itís happening or not, we should take significant, immediate action to prevent it. The reasoning goes like this:

 

We take significant action

Yes

No

Global Climate Change is happening

True

We spend a lot of money and save the world from major disaster

We save a lot of money and the world as we know it ends

False

Everything is fine and we spend a lot of money in vain

Everything is fine and we save a lot of money

Got it?

To summarize the message:

- no significant action:

life as we know it may or may not come to an end

- significant action:

life as we know it will continue

Suggested conclusion:
The only responsible choice is to take significant action now to save life on this planet.

The delivery of the message is as eloquent as it is verbose. If you donít mind 10 minutes of talk on issue, then just go to youTube and watch the Most Terrifying Movie youíll ever see.

Saving life on earth from possible near extinction is certainly a worthy goal and if the danger is real, petty political and money talk may be irresponsible - if there were no other worthwhile issues that deserve our attention, financial included.

Should we now, by the same way of reasoning spend money on a nuclear or laser defense shield around earth to avoid a possible extinction level event by meteorite?

Should we spend money and resources on ending world hunger, poverty, injustice, human rights violations?

Should we spend money and resources on fighting disease in developing nations?

Should we ...

Once we look closely at the whole range of situations a responsible decision becomes a  complex issue. That, of course, shouldnít matter. And itís not meant to say that change isnít inevitable.

However, in light of finite resources itís necessary to weigh the options responsibly and not succumb to the newest trend which at the time of this writing happens to be Global Warming.

That said, the author of the above video, does not think so. He considers global warming a fact and no matter what the causes - we must spend money now to fix it.

Al Gore, in his documentary An Inconvenient Truth, takes a similar approach. He considers global warming a moral issue. It may be, but first of all itís a scientific issue.

Science can - and has to - tell us what the causes are and only on that basis measures to cope be designed. Everything else is irresponsible. So, of course is, dragging feet, stalling. However, when taking a closer look the issues appears much less clear cut than they are normally assumed to be.

However, there is no denying considerable ecological - as well as other issues - exist which challenge, even threaten the existence of humankind here and now.

But global warming is not the only one and life will become less livable even if we take significant action against climate change. Issues like world hunger, poverty, inequality, violations of human rights with all its consequences threaten mankindís way if life just as well.

With that in mind - what now about climate change? Does it happen?

What are itís causes?

What are the opinions?

Here are some of the factors that influence the Earthís climate.

Natural factors:

  • Glaciers
  • Oceans
  • CO2
  • Solar activity / solar cycles
  • Earthís orbit around the sun
  • Volcanoes

Human factors:

  • Burning of fossil fuels
  • Aerosols in the atmosphere
  • Increased CO2 in the atmosphere
  • Land use and livestock

 

 

 

 

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