The Scientific Community and Climate Change Essay

The Scientific Community and Climate Change Essay

Length: 731 words (2.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The scientific community is now virtually certain that humans have contributed significantly to climate change, and that our global activity is leading to further drastic changes in the climate system. While this idea has almost universal consensus, the precise mechanisms and extent of our influence are not as certain. The greatest challenge now is identifying hat is affecting the climate most strongly, and in what ways, as well as how these effects will become more important in the future. This brief discusses some of the anthropogenic processes and products that are having significant impact on climate, as well as the varying levels of certainty surrounding each.
The primary human activity contributing to climate perturbation is the emission of fossil fuels. These emissions are produced through the combustion of coal, oil, and gas, processes that occur through prominent human activities such as production of electricity and cement, forms of transportation, and land-use changes. While these activities generate several products, the main release of fossil fuel emission is carbon dioxide (CO2). When CO2 is released, it remains in the atmosphere for significant periods and can block outgoing solar radiation. This blocked radiation is then reradiated back to Earth, warming the surface of the planet and producing what is known as the greenhouse effect. CO2 is currently considered the most significant greenhouse gas, largely because it is the primary gas emitted by humans; 7.8 petagrams (7.8x1015 grams) of carbon dioxide were emitted annually between 2000 and 2009 on average. The levels of certainty on the release and impacts of CO2 are high – fossil fuel emissions and the resultant CO2 alterations are some of the most studied proces...

... middle of paper ...

...e of the most mysterious factors in our system.
The climate system is massive and complex, and understanding its drivers is key to our survival. While we have gained significant comprehension in the past few decades, much of how the climate is changing and what is causing these changes is still not fully understood. Greenhouse gases and aerosols are important, but we have yet to draw a complete picture of how they are interacting with the climate and with one another. Further focus in both the scientific and political spheres is needed in order to not only reach conclusions, but to find solutions in time to save both our species and, potentially, life on this planet. While we are now certain that humans are a primary factor in global climate change, we still are not completely certain how and to what extent – and discovering the answers is of critical importance.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Global Climate Change: Society Can Slow it Down Essay

- The Earth is being poisoned. It is a well-known fact; however, a remedy has not yet been offered. Everyday, alarming amounts of toxins are released into the atmosphere, and more recently into the Gulf of Mexico. British Petroleum (BP)--one of the largest suppliers of oil in the world--has dispersed an insurmountable amount of oil into the gulf. As a result of this, marine and bird life in the area has been severely affected. Fishermen, whose livelihoods depend on the fishing season, are being told they cannot fish....   [tags: Climate Change, global warming]

Better Essays
3409 words (9.7 pages)

Climate Change: Global Emissions of Green House Gases Essay

- There are growing concerns about climate change and the effect of ‘greenhouse gases’ (GHG) on the gradual increase in world temperatures over time, now commonly known as global warming. The ‘greenhouse effect’ means that ‘greenhouse gases’ such as water vapour (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), methane, nitrous oxide, and fluorocarbons insulate the Earth by absorbing heat from the Earth’s surface and reflecting it back into the atmosphere, acting in a similar way to a thermal blanket (Houghton, 2005)....   [tags: Environment, Global Warming, Climate Change]

Better Essays
838 words (2.4 pages)

Climate Change: The Sciences, the Media, and Politics Essay

- The roles of science, the media, and politics greatly influence public opinion and understanding of the world around us. These three spheres of information and action are invariably linked when discussing complex global issues like climate change. However, the presentation and resolution of disagreement within the three spheres is incredibly independent. The many ways that climate change, specifically the debate on the existence of climate change, is portrayed within these spheres can greatly affect public emotion, knowledge, and policy of such an issue....   [tags: Global Warming Essays]

Better Essays
1463 words (4.2 pages)

Essay on Global Climate Change

- Global Climate Change is a significant and lasting change in the statistical distribution of weather patterns. Throughout the last decade the earth has seen many climate shifts and changes. It may be a change in the average weather conditions, or in the circulation of weather around the average conditions. This has been the cause of the long summers or long winters, depends on where you are living. The weather is a very odd in the Mid-West because of the Global Climate Change. In this paper I will be telling you about the Atmosphere, the science of Climate Change, and how we can respond to it....   [tags: pollution, atmosphere, weather patterns]

Better Essays
972 words (2.8 pages)

Climate Matters and Ralph Waldo Emerson Essay

- Broom Claims, Human caused climate change, has caused much harm to many people around the world. He says this is due to a large number of individual actions, and gives us many reasons why these miniscule things are unjust, he believes we should be willing to change the way we live, to have a smaller carbon footprint. Injustice is one of the many things Broom has brought up in his book, to help us better understand what we have been doing to the larger community of the world, but he only gives us some incite into the transgression we are having....   [tags: Bromm claims that humans caused climate change]

Better Essays
542 words (1.5 pages)

The Effects of Global Climate Change Essays

- Every human activity is having a particular effect on our climate. This was noted by the world in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro when it was open for signature by the United Nations Framework on Climate Change. In the Climate Change Convention, the international community agreed to prevent and combat the effects of climate change such as those in agricultural areas, melting icecaps and the increase in sea level. In 1997, governments took the next step and agreed to the Kyoto Protocol which set as its goal the reduction of greenhouse gases emitted by industrialized countries....   [tags: Global Warming Essays]

Better Essays
1001 words (2.9 pages)

The Causes of Global Climate Change Essay

- Global warming: one of the hottest and most politically charged issues of the 21st century, and for good reason. The potential harms are massive: Ice sheets melting (causing sea levels to rise and a decline of available fresh water), more common droughts and floods, stronger natural disasters and a complete over-haul of our ecosystem ( Combine these factors and add in a few hundred years, we could have a messy situation. We know what might happen if the trend of increasing universal temperatures continues, but nobody can seem to pinpoint the exact reasons as to why this is happening....   [tags: Global Warming Essays]

Better Essays
884 words (2.5 pages)

Human Activities That Cause and Accelerate Climate Shift Essay

- ... The average temperature of Earth’s surface is maintained by balance of various forms of solar and terrestrial radiation. The sum of solar radiation absorbed by the Earth is only a small fraction of total solar radiation that enters our atmosphere. “Approximately 30% of the incoming solar radiation is reflected back to space by clouds, the upper atmosphere, or reflective parts of the Earth’s surface. In order to maintain high temperature stability, Earth’s surface and atmosphere also must radiate the remaining 70% back to space according to the Stefan-Boltzmann law”(Britannica)....   [tags: climate, weather, temperature]

Better Essays
1582 words (4.5 pages)

Essay about Impacts of Climate Change

- There is widespread agreement in the scientific community that the climate is changing and it has likely received contributions from humans in the form of increased carbon emissions. The Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has stated that there is ninety percent certainty that human activity has been the primary cause of temperature rises seen since 1950; if the climate rises by more than two degrees Celsius, scientists predict dire consequences to be faced by humans and the world (McMichael and Lindgren, 2011, p....   [tags: Human Health, Infectous Diseases]

Better Essays
1996 words (5.7 pages)

Environment and Climate Change in Panama Essays

- Environment and Climate Change in Panama Home to vast tropical rainforests, an immense variety of animal and plant species and the seaway that connects the North Atlantic Ocean and the North Pacific Ocean, Panama relies heavily on all these resources for its economy. However, environmental challenges threaten the sustainability of these assets and therefore create a significant problem for the country. This paper will examine the effect of weather and climate change on Panama coupled with a specific focus on the Panama Canal....   [tags: Weather Panama Environment Essays Papers]

Better Essays
1520 words (4.3 pages)