Global Warming In Perspective


Research

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GLOBAL WARMING: FACT OR FICTION?

During the past few years, people have started to worry more about Global Warming. The fear is that the Earth is warming up due to excessive carbon dioxide emissions and eventually, the world will be torn apart by warmth-induced tropical storms. This misconception of the world coming to an end is a result of lies and exaggeration made largely by the media and conjectures made by some scientists.

Most people point to global temperature as proof of Global Warming. While it is true that the average global temperature now is warmer than the average temperature 100 years ago, it is also true that between 1940 and 1975, the global temperature was dropping and the widespread fear was of the coming ice age. In fact, the world is colder now than it was 1000 years ago. As you can see, the global temperature never stays on a continuous path, it is always fluctuating.

Some of the difficulty surrounding scientists’ inability to specifically name the factors causing Global Warming is that science and technology are ever-changing fields of study. Weather models, until recently did not include ocean currents in their calculations and scientists have often skewed data as a result of cloud interference disrupting proper readings. Scientists at NASA used precise radio and microwave measurements and weather balloons positioned all over the world to measure the average global temperature. They found that the temperature had dropped about 0.19 degrees Fahrenheit since 1979.

The media’s cries of skyrocketing temperatures come from measurements taken in urban areas. As one might guess, bustling urban centers are significantly warmer than rural or even suburban areas. It is also true that urban areas make up only a small percentage of all of the area of the Earth, so the media’s information is not a true measurement of the average global temperature. All that their information is telling us is that “Global Urban Center Warming” is happening, not necessarily that “Global Warming” is happening.

Supposedly, the leading cause of Global Warming is the excessive emission of carbon dioxide by automobiles and factories. Scientific studies have shown that about 90% of the temperature increase that occurred from the beginning of the 20th century until now happened before 1940. This does not seem to square with the idea that CO2 from cars and industries is raising the global temperature.

Almost everyone has heard that the ice caps and glaciers all over the world are melting and causing the sea level to rise which will completely inundate low-lying coastlines and islands. However, while reporters are declaring that Antarctica is getting smaller and smaller, they forget to mention that all over the continent, the ice is getting thicker. For some reason, the ice readings the media is getting all come from the same place on one peninsula. They see that in that one small area, the surface area is getting smaller and they wonder where the ice is going. Because they do not see the results of measurements from other parts of Antarctica, they do not see that the ice is getting thicker in other regions. Scientists have said that the surface area and thickness of the ice fluctuates from year to year and some pieces of ice break off and float somewhere else, but as long as the total volume of ice is about the same, Antarctica is in no real danger any time soon.

After being presented with all of this information, one must wonder: If Global Warming is happening, is it really a bad thing? Warmer temperatures are much better for agriculture than cooler temperatures and history has shown us that life is better in warmer temperatures. For example, around 1100 AD in Europe, temperatures were unusually warm and agriculture was doing amazingly well. From about 1450 AD to about 1850 AD, Europe endured the Little Ice Age where crops failed, winters were blistering cold and famines and starvation were widespread. History has shown us that for tens of thousands of years, the Earth undergoes cyclical temperature trends; Ice Ages are separated by warmer periods. Since we know that eventually, another Ice Age will come, maybe Global Warming will keep the Ice Age off a little while longer so that our descendants can have a higher chance of survival.

The essence of science is that it is always changing. The beauty of the scientific process is that you start with an idea or a theory or a question and you research and experiment in the hope that you will find an answer to that question or provide evidence to prove or refute your idea. But you must remember that we are only human and humans make mistakes. Science requires more and more people to research and test to find out as much as they possibly can about everything. Many times scientists must conduct their experiments once more because technology has improved enough or measurements have become precise enough that the information collected may change and may indicate something completely new. The necessity of science is that it cannot ever stop or become stagnant; scientists must continue to work and research. As of today, not enough is known about the idea of Global Warming to really say anything definite about it; all we have right now are theories and we need much more evidence to back it up. We need our scientists to research and find out exactly what is going on with our changing climate. Only then can we decide what to do about it.

-MK

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http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=2004
http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=1756
http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=513
http://uk.geocities.com/matt.capper@btinternet.com/xmas04snow.html

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