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Global warming is no longer a prediction, as it was a few decades before. As a result, numerous developments have occurred on Earth, the most noticeable of which has been a rise in temperature. As a result, global warming has had a knock-on impact on the air and ocean. It is worth noting that, since the beginning of temperature recording, the last 28 years have been the warmest (Worland, 2015). Furthermore, the sharp rise of global temperatures is due to human activities, which have culminated in the buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere (Bose, 2010). In particular, the burning of fossil fuels which include natural gas, coal, and oil contributes immensely to a bigger percentage of greenhouse gasses. On the other hand, deforestation has also contributed to global warming but a smaller extent compared to the burning of fossil fuels.
There is a misconception that the effects of global warming are due in many decades, but it is imperative to conclude that there are adverse effects already witnessed. Specifically, scientists have documented the shrinking of glaciers and a rising sea level. The resultant impact has been flooding in low-lying locations, the occurrence of forest fires and massive rain storms. Similarly, corals are disappearing while some animal species are migrating to areas with more favorable temperatures. However, there is no definitive connection between the occurrence of such adverse effects to global warming, but it is evident that in one or the other it is a contributor (Ollier, 2013). For this matter, there is an increasing danger of global warming and people ought to take preventive measures to avert these effects. Some of the adverse effects of global warming affecting the earth include killer heat waves, torrential rains and flooding, forests and wildfires, drought, sea level rise, and shrinking snowpack among others.
Adverse Effects of Global Warming
Killer Heat Waves
Between July and August 2003, Europe experienced extreme temperatures which according to researchers were attributable to human causes (Oxlade, 2012). Not only is this trend occurring in specific regions but across the globe. Moreover, authorities have recorded more than 27,000 people arising from hot temperatures (Matawal, & Maton, 2013). Needless to say, the number of animals is way higher than this figure. On the other hand, households have had to pay massive medical costs to leave alone the trauma they have gone through over the years. Governments have not been spared either as they have spent millions in curbing wildfires resulting from the killer heat waves. More specifically, France recorded a two-thirds decline in the production of fodder while Italy experienced an 11 percent fall in cereals yield (Siegel, 2017).
There are both direct and indirect impacts of the killer heat waves caused by global warming. One of them is the frequent cuts in the power generation resulting from decreasing water levels in dams. For this reason, the international distributors of power like France ended up preserving power for domestic use which had a negative impact on the countries dependent on this power (Bose, 2010). In particular, the most affected are hospitals and other medical institutions who have to incur extra costs when running on generators. The adverse effect of power disruption due to higher heat waves also affected food refrigeration in many countries.
Torrential Rains and Flooding
Over the years there has been a substantial rise in the precipitation. On the other hand, global warming is known to speed up the rate of evaporation which ultimately increases the vapor in the atmosphere. Therefore, the resulting heavy rains lead to flooding which has affected most parts around the world (Oxlade, 2012). Anther contributor to the increasing floods is the El Nino phenomenon which occurs following the warmer-than-average temperatures in the ocean. Unlike the past decades when the phenomenon recurred after a period of seven years, it is now prevalent which is an indicator of the increasingly adverse effects of global warming (Sainju, 2016). Besides the frequent occurrences, the rains are becoming more severe, and there are worries of more longer-lasting torrential rains.
There has been reporting of high death tolls in different places owing to occurrences of landslides and the collapse of buildings. The cause of such accidents is due to floods in the low-lying regions (Ollier, 2013). The notable adverse effect of global warming is that it has discouraged investors from developing such areas due to the fear that destruction ahead.
Despite the increase in precipitation and floods, global warming results in droughts, and the sharp increase in temperatures means that they will be more severe in the future. The high temperatures lead to evaporation, and in this particular case, the soils get drier if there are no rains to replenish the moisture lost. The absence of water in soils means temperatures rise and this does not favor the growth of crops. Studies of drought patterns over the years show that in the last 20 years they have been more frequent (Chaturvedi, 2015). The arid and semi-arid areas receive a doubled effect in the event of drought, and as a result, the rivers and other drainages in these regions dry up. Therefore, its survival in these regions becomes difficult forcing animal species and other creatures to move to more favorable regions.
Forests and Wildfires
There are many causes of wildfire, and global warming is one of them. One of the adverse impacts of global warming is the occurrence of severe droughts, and this provides the perfect conditions for wildfires (Siegel, 2017). For this reason, longer drought seasons translates to longer forest fires. Additionally, during the drought season, insects that feed on tree barks multiply in large numbers paving the way for dry logs which fuel forest fires. The combination of killer heat waves, wildfires, and pests increases the likelihood of the occurrence of forest fires. The suppression of forests by human beings is one of the causes of forest fires, but in recent years, the unoccupied regions of the Arctic circle have experienced forest wildfires (Matawal, & Maton, 2013). Therefore, it is evident that global warming has a negative impact on the environment. Moreover, the air quality in the regions experiencing wildfires is known to cause respiratory problems to humans, and this is an adverse effect on individuals leaving in such surroundings.
Sea Level Rise
Around the world, reports indicate that sea level has risen by an estimated 6 inches within the 20th century which is higher when compared to the height risen in the past 2,000 years. In particular, the rise is attributable to melting of glaciers and expansion of the water in the ocean troughs owing to the increase in temperatures. The resultant negative effect of sea level rising is the increase in flooding along the coastal regions (Sainju, 2016). Additionally, the salty sea water is encroaching into the mangrove forests, and the vegetation is drowning, unlike the past years where their roots were above the water surface. The washing away of the forests by the ocean waves will affect the ecosystem as they form a habitat for most birds. Besides, they play an important role to fish, shrimp, and oysters by lowering the impact of waves (Chaturvedi, 2015). Therefore, the absence of the mangroves will mean that governments will have to incur hefty expenses to build physical barriers to regulate the rising sea level (Worland, 2015). Similarly, there is a possibility that the rising water levels will submerge islands which are habitats for most animals and birds. Hence, global warming affects the Earth adversely.
There have been many changes on earth with the most notable being the increase in temperature. The sharp increase in temperatures on earth is attributable to human activities which have resulted in the accumulation of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere. Hence, there is an increasing danger of global warming and people ought to take preventive measures to avert these effects. Regarding killer heat waves, there have been frequent cuts in the power generation resulting from decreasing water levels in dams. For this reason, the international distributors of power like France ended up preserving power for domestic use which had a negative impact on the countries dependent on this power.
Global warming also results in droughts and the sharp increase in temperatures means that they will be more severe in the future. Hence, the combination of killer heat waves, wildfires, and pests increases the likelihood of the occurrence of forest fires. Concerning the rise of sea level, the washing away of the forests by the ocean waves will affect the ecosystem as they form a habitat for most birds. Hence, global warming affects the Earth negatively.
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Worland, J. (2015). How climate change could make you poorer:. Time.com. Retrieved 10 May 2017, from http://time.com/4082328/climate-change-economic-impact/
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