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The effect of global warming on our planet has been widely observed over the last few decades. From the living things to natural resources, the severity of global warming is increasing and its signs are everywhere. Every year, the consequences of global warming towards the environmental, health and economic factors are continuing to grow. One recent global warming news that’s concerning is in the Arctic region.
Due to climate change, the Arctic region is experiencing a sharp rise in temperatures. This is leading to a declining quantity of formation of ice. Before we jump in, let’s get a clear idea of the fundamentals of global warming.
There are so many ways to define global warming, but NASA’s one global warming definition sums it up. According to NASA, global warming is “the unusually rapid increase in Earth’s average surface temperature over the past century primarily due to the greenhouse gases released by people burning fossil fuels.”
Ever since the mid-20th century, scientists have been observing the occurrences of the weather at various parts of the Earth and the associated natural activities. These collected data show that our planet’s climate has changed since the Industrial Revolution. This has made a permanent impact on the weather conditions.
The global average surface temperature rose 0.6 to 0.9 degrees Celsius between 1906 and 2005. Also, the temperature increase rate has nearly doubled in the last 50 years. This has resulted in the rise in Earth’s temperature and, therefore, leading to distinct changes in the climate.
Many think that ‘global warming’ and ‘climate change’ are synonymous. Climate change is a broad term that encompasses the change in weather patterns. This includes the local, regional and global climatic conditions.
Ever since we began burning fossil fuels, the harmful greenhouse gases are getting trapped within the Earth’s atmosphere and increasing the temperature. Such conditions where the action of humans lead to temperature rise is termed as global warming.
Global warming is caused due to a variety of factors. It includes volcanic activity, changes in the ocean patterns, burning of harmful substances, rising sea levels, cloud and vegetation changes. There are other natural changes that cause hurricanes, drought, flood, heatwaves, etc.
Global warming refers to the increase of Earth’s temperature. Climate change includes not just the changes in temperature but also the effects of global warming. No matter if we’re talking about climate change or global warming, we are essentially talking about the same consequences.
Due to climate change, the sea ice in the Arctic region is declining at a rapid pace. Already, the amount of ice has reduced so much that even during the extremely cold weather, the quantity of ice is less than what it was decades ago.
In fact, in the study published in the journal Nature Climate Change in September 2020, it’s observed that the extent of ice in the recent years is consistently lesser than what is expected even in the worst year in the mid-20th century. The effect of global warming has shifted the usual climatic conditions of the Arctic region. These changes include fewer ice and snow, and more rain and open water.
Scientists say that the shift in the climatic conditions of the Arctic region is slowly but surely happening, that it can no longer be predicted. This change of climate is expected to complete by the middle of the century. After this we can expect a ‘new Arctic’.
This global warming news is just the tip of the occurrences in the Arctic. This shift in climate has affected many people living in the Arctic region. Due to the eroding coastlines, many people from the native villages in Alaska are considering relocating. There are many endangered Alaskan communities that are facing a difficult choice. They have to choose between moving to a higher ground that could cost millions or hope to find money to secure their buildings and shore the coastline.
While relocation is on the minds of many such communities, the process could take decades to set up a livable place with all the necessary amenities like water, medical help, a place to take shelter during storms, etc.
The first signs of global warming, threatening a whole group of people on Earth, is a grave reminder of its consequences. There’s no way but to take a hard look at every one of us and consider our actions that have contributed to this effect.
About Plastic Collectors: On seeing the glaring effects of global warming, we have come together and began the ‘Plastic Collectors’. We aim to solve two of the world’s main issues – plastics and poverty. Every one of us can contribute to this cause in our way and make our planet better. Love to know more? Check out how you can join the cause!