Global warming or climate change have been the source of many questions from the public and scientists. Today, the Community Environmental Center will answer some of the most frequently asked questions relating to global warming and climate change.
What is global warming?
Global warming refers to the fact that the temperature of the planet has been increasing since the Industrial Revolution. It has already increased by about 0.8 degrees Celsius or1.4 degrees Fahrenheit and is expected to increase with another 0.3 to 0.7 degrees Celsius by 2035.
What is the difference between global warming and climate change?
Global warming refers to the warming of the earth. Climate change is the broader term that includes global warming but also refers to other changes that are taking place on our planet. Things like rising sea level, faster melting of ice, changing blooming times and seasons shifting are all part of climate change and a result of global warming.
What causes global warming?
Gases like carbon dioxide and methane are the main causes. These gases exist on earth naturally and are the reason why humans can live on earth. These gases trap heat in the atmosphere to make the planet warm enough to sustain human life. However, because of too much of these gases being produced through human activity like the burning of fossil fuels and the raising of livestock, the earth is becoming too hot. Higher temperatures may make living on earth less ideal or eventually even impossible for humans and animals.
What do rising sea levels have to do with it?
Global warming is causing warmer water temperatures which mean the water is expanding and the oceans are actually starting to take up more space. It is also causing glaciers and ice sheets to melt faster than they should and this leads to an increase in runoff from the polar lands which raises the sea level. This process may be a slow one, but it is faster than is ideal if you look at the bigger picture. Higher sea levels and warmer oceans increase the risk of coastal flooding and hurricanes.
Why are we told to eat less meat?
Raising livestock releases carbon dioxide and methane. Methane is produced through livestock’s digestion process as well as well as through livestock manure. The greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere by livestock makes up 14% of the US agricultural sector. So, by eating less meat, the demand for livestock will decrease and with it the production of greenhouse gases. Unfortunately, the population is growing at a staggering rate and more and more people want meat. This is why environmentalists are promoting vegetarian or vegan diets or at least asking people to consume fewer livestock products.
What is a carbon footprint?
A carbon footprint is the amount of carbon that a person, group, business, etc. produce or emit. Many activities lead to this including the burning of fossil fuels.
How can I reduce my carbon footprint?
There are many things that you can do to live more green. Use less energy, eat less meat, use less water, use energy-saving devices, recycle, etc.
You can read more about how we impact the environment here. You can also return frequently to see what new tips and articles we have that will help you live green.