In 2005 when Hurricane Katrina hit the southern part of the U.S., more people started to wonder whether or not the planet was changing. Was this storm just a fluke? Was global warming to blame? Fast forward to 2012 and hurricane Sandy. Called a “super storm”, the hurricane left damage up and down the entire East Coast and people are still recovering from the devastation caused by this storm. Global warming?
As an analytical person, I am not one to jump on the media’s hype of global warming without all the facts. As an environmentalist, it is plain to see that something is happening. But what? Therein lies the discussion, educated theories and a lot of uneducated doom sayers who are more intent on creating drama then actually understanding what is going on.
What is going on?
Hard to say as far as I am concerned. I list myself in the “uneducated” list as most people are. I can only say that in my profession as an environmentalist, I do a lot of reading from experts who do know what they are talking about. The thing is, they can’t agree either. Some of the most educated people on the planet are working on these global warming theories and while they all also agree that something is happening, not one can pinpoint exactly what that something is.
This planet has been in existence for approximately 4.5 billion years according to scientists who use something called “radiometric dating” to determine the age of meteorites that have been discovered. But who is to say they are right? Who knows if there is yet an older meteorite to be found that pre-dates the oldest to date? Who knows if the testing used is really accurate?
What geologist can tell us, and have the proof to back it up, is that earth has seen many changes over the years. From global killer meteorites which are assumed responsible for wiping out the dinosaurs to cataclysmic volcanic eruptions that have changed the atmosphere and created a different world for all life on the planet.
For now, let’s just stick with the known facts that everyone can agree on (all the scientists and researchers).
The core temperature of the earth is getting warmer. “Scientists track changes to the planet’s temperature in many ways. Land-based weather stations and ocean buoys in every corner of the world monitor temperatures constantly. Temperatures from the past left their traces in tree rings, coral reef and ice cores. When scientists look at all this evidence, they have a very clear picture of how the earth’s temperature is changing. There are essentially three source that could be responsible for the global warming that scientists see: The sun, the earth’s reflectivity, and greenhouse gases. (Source – Environmental Defense Fund)
The thing to note here is that when it comes to the sun and the earth’s reflectivity we, as the human race, have no control. If those two factors are going to increase the temperature, then that is what it is. However, greenhouse gases, noted by the scientists as the fastest growing and changing piece of the puzzle, are primarily caused by us humans burning fossil fuels. Now this we DO have some control over. There is a reason why big companies and some states are adopting rules and regulations around reducing their carbon footprints. They know and agree that we are part of the problem.
Something to think about. Our weather is produced by the evaporating water into the atmosphere where it then collects and rains back down. It is one big circular system. As the earth gets warmer, so do the oceans. The warmer the oceans, the more evaporation. The more evaporation, the bigger the storms.
There is still so much to learn about this planet and how everything works to create the environment in which us humans can exist. We have the power to mess it up. Indeed we have been doing just that for years and years because we did not know and understand the repercussions of our actions. Now we do. Now it’s time to do something to fix it for future generations.