Global Warming and the Kyoto Treaty Essay

Global Warming and the Kyoto Treaty Essay

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According to David Easterling, principal scientist at the National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C. in twenty years the United States has had thirty seven weather related catastrophes each with damages exceeding one billion dollars (Levin 1). A country as wealthy as the United States can afford to pay thirty seven billion dollars in twenty years, assuming of course that the weather related disasters only cost one billion dollars each. Unfortunately, the weather does not work that way. Hurricane Katrina alone may have cost one hundred billion dollars (Tucker 13). What could be causing these devastating storms? Many atmospheric scientists like Kerry Emanuel believe that global warming is the cause of the increased ferocity of the hurricanes (Nash 38). With the polar temperatures increasing the icecaps are melting. Without the ice to reflect the sun's light, the water absorbs the heat. This creates a vicious cycle. The ocean levels rise with their temperatures. Hurricane Katrina was only a category one hurricane when it crossed Florida. However, when it reached the newly warmed Gulf waters, hurricane Katrina ballooned into a mind-blowing category five hurricane that destroyed the gulf region (McKibben, Year One 30). The melting of the polar icecaps has long been believed to be caused by global warming. Until recently, the cause of global warming itself has largely been up for debate. Now atmospheric scientists attribute global warming to increased greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide, in the earth's atmosphere (Greenstone 323). With the knowledge that carbon dioxide causes global warming countries can start taking actions to prevent future global warming.

The United States alone produces twenty four percent of the world...

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... 166 Issue 1 (2004): 10-12.

Phelps, Megan. "More Action, Less Hot Air." The Mother Earth News Vol. 210 (2005): 30.

Stenger, Richard. "Man on the Moon: Kennedy Speech Ignited the Dream." CNN.Com. 25 May 2001. Time Warner. 30 Nov. 2013

Sunstein, Cass R. "It's Only $300 Billion If We Can Fund the War in Iraq, Why Can't
We Fund the Kyoto Protocol?" The Washington Post 10 May 2006. 12 Nov. 2013 .

Tucker, Patrick. "The Rising Costs of Global Warming." The Futurist Vol.39 Issue 6 (2005): 13.
"Warming Trends What Global Climate Changes Could Mean for Wisconsin." Wisconsin
Natural Resources 12 Nov. 2006. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. 12 Nov. 2013

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