Global Warming: Are We To Blame?
Is Global Warming a real threat to us and are we to blame for any changes to the climate that are happening?
Yes the climate is changing but it always has when you look back at the earths history it has gone through many changes in its climate even without the help of us humans pumping Greenhouse Gases into the atmosphere.
It occurs due to the variation in the Earth's tilt and orbit around the sun. Another natural factor that influences it are volcanic eruptions.
We do have a part to play in our climates changes but it is a natural process that the earth has been going through since it was formed.
If we cut down on our CO2 emissions we may be able to slow it down and help bring the earth back to a natural state of balance The problem is that we at the moment cannot stop natural events like volcanic eruptions from throwing CO2 into the atmosphere.
The Volcanoes Part in Global Warming
It was thought that volcanic eruptions where what brought the earth out of the last ice age.
However recent evidence shows it could have been the trigger for it to start.
With the Eyjafjallajokull eruption in Iceland in 2010 there was a large amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere. These eruptions also produce sulfur in varying amounts which has the opposite effect of cooling the earth.
Eruptions in recent years have released more cooling sulfur than warming CO2 into the atmosphere. This would suggest that Volcanoes keep the Earthstemperature down.
However more evidence is emerging that seems to show that the CO2 from erupting Volcanoes is only a small part of the story and it is what is emitted by the Volcanoes afterwards that we need to be looking at. It is now beleived that even Volcanoes classed as dormant are actually contributing to Global Warming.
The main impact of the Eyjafallajokull eruption was on our travel plans and the grounding of planes actually had a good effect on the CO2 levels in the atmosphere as they are shown to have dropped.
The Relationship Between CO2 and Temperature
If you cross reference the graphs above it shows the relationship between CO2 levels and Temperature. It shows a significant increase in both over the last 100 years as we have used more and more CO2 producing products. As you can see from the last graph it does not always follow that the temp goes up as CO2 levels rise it is only in the period since 1950 that this shows to be the case in recent history.
The graph above shows the proof that climate change due to CO2 emissions was happening before we started pumping CO2 into the atmosphere. And the peeks and troths in both graphs do correspond with each other.
Other Factors in Climate Change
There are other factors that we cannot control that effect the Earths Climate. These are the way the Earth is tilted on its axis and how it Orbits around the Sun.
What does the earth's tilt and orbit have to do with climate change?
The earth orbits around the sun once every year. As it orbits it spins on its axis which is tilted so that one half of the earth is further away from the sun that the other. It is this tilt that gives us the seasons. Over a period of around 41,000 years the earth's tilt moves between 22 and 25 degrees. This movement is believed to have contributed to the ice age.
The Earth's orbit around the sun is not circular but elliptical and it changes over a period of 22,000 years. At the moment the earth is closest to the sun in January while the northern hemisphere is tilted away from the sun. This combination makes for milder winters in the north and warmer summers in the south at the moment but 11,000 years ago the earth was closer to the sun in July meaning the seasons would have been different and possibly harsher. The shape of earth's orbit also changes but this is over a longer period of time 100,000 to 400,000 years.
How it all contributes to climate change.
All of these changes in the earth's rotation around the sun affect the earth's climate in ways that can cause it to warm up or cool down. When there are mild summers in the north it allows the ice sheets to grow. But when the summers are warmer the ice sheets melt more and shrink. This growing and shrinking of the ice sheets contributes to the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere which is another contributing factor to climate change.
- Climate Change has been happening forever but with human input it has gotten worse.
- We as individuals can do our bit to help reduce carbon emissions. However there will always be natural fluctuation in CO2 levels and Temperature.
- Volcano's can affect temperature in more ways than one as CO2 can cause an increase in Temperature and Sulfur can cause a decrease. So with some eruptions there is little or no effect to the Climate.
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What is Your Opinion on Global Warming?
What do you think about the subject of Climate Change?
- Are we to blame?
- Can we stop it Happening?
- Is it Just the Natural Way the World Works?
I'd love to read your thoughts so please comment below and lets have a great Climate Change Debate.