One of the most agent controversial topics that are discussed in the world is global warming. Global warming and its effects are real and various scientists unlock the past mysteries and analyze today's activities, they issue warnings that the future generations will be in jeopardy. Overwhelming evidence that the world's climate is changing due to various human activities exists. Since the industrial revolution, various human activities such as agriculture, fossil fuels, land use, burning of biomass, waste disposal, transportation, power stations among others have led to the increase in the concentrations of greenhouse gases. These human activities have led to the rapid change of the atmosphere than before and have led to unpredictable and far reaching social economic and environmental effects. The purpose of this paper is to explain the effects of global warming on pollution, health, plants and animals and economy.
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Effects of global warming animals and plants
One of the severe impacts of global warming on plants and animals is that it leads to extinction of the helpless animals and plants that cannot be able to adapt to the environments characterized by increased precipitation, very high temperatures and dry soils that are caused by human activities such as fossil fuel burning. For instance, the polar bears will be the first one to die because they use arctic summer sea ice to hunt for their food. As the ice is broken down, the bears have less food hunting time. The University of Washington scientists predicts that by the year 2040, the Arctic summer sea ice will disappear completely and they will negatively change the habitat for beluga whales, ring seals, sea birds and penguins. In the year 2007, many walruses were forced to move to the beaches in Alaska because the sea ice which was their habitat had extremely melted. In Canada, the Caribou have experienced die offs due to heavier snowfalls that cover their food supply. The sea birds in California have died leading to decrease in their population due to the warming of California ocean currents. There is an extinction of many frog species in Costa Rican Cloud forest which has been linked to high pacific temperatures which also leads to the death of coral reefs.
As the sea levels goes up, the plants that are found in the tropics will be flooded out with water containing large amount of salts leading to their death. For example, the mangrove forests in Bermuda are currently dying. Finally, when temperatures are warmer, various agricultural pests are allowed to thrive. For instance, the warm, wet weather in the year 2000 caused Australia and Sidney to experience a severe outbreak of black locusts (Langholz, J & Tuner, K., 2008).
Effects of global warming on Economics
Global warming affects various industries such as recreation, tourism, real estate, construction and insurance industry which is the most hit. Due to the increased severe weather events, the insurance rated will have to be increased to enhance the survival of the insurance companies in the business. For example, there were severe weather damages in 1990s, the warmest period ever, which led to the increase of the insurance companies' costs more than ever. Further, the poor countries experiences severe impacts of global warming as they depend heavily on agriculture, lack inadequate water resources and lack inadequate financial resources to enable them prepare to deal with the effects of global warming (Langholz, J & Tuner, K., 2008).
Since the climate change due to global warming affects various industries, the various costs have been taken into account while assessing the costs of climate change for example the cost to water supply, hurricane damages, drought damages, loss of wetlands, loss of human life, loss of forests, cost of protections, pollution and loss of species. The total annual cost of these effects is about 2 percent of the global GDP. Therefore, it can be deduced that global warming is very costly and it severely affects the developing countries because they have reduced adaptive capacity due to their poverty. The successive adaptations requires a lot of investments in infrastructure, farming system and innovation of policies which leads to the shifts in energy use as the poor and rich nations implements the economic controls and come up with appropriate technology to adapt to climatic changes and honor the agreements over emission of carbon (Gupta, R. K.E., 2005).
Effects of global warming on pollution
There is a relation between global warming and the depletion of the ozone layer. The greenhouse effect that leads to global warming takes place at the lower part of the atmosphere and the ozone depletion occurs at the upper atmosphere. The ozone layer keeps out the ultra violet radiations from the sun that harms lives on the earth. Some human made gases rises into the atmosphere and destroys the ozone layer. Therefore global warming involves the pollution of the atmosphere which in turn leads to the depletion of the ozone layer (Global Warming FAQs). This leads to the penetration of the more ultra-violet radiations from the sun to the earth posing threats to lives (Thompson, V. L., 2007).
Effects of global warming to health
Human health and mortality rate are affected by global warming. It has been feared that global warming is likely to cause increased incidence of Lyme disease, dengue fever and malaria because the mosquitoes that are the transmitting agents for these diseases requires winter temperatures of about 18 degrees Celsius for their survival. It has been inferred that very high temperatures leads to the increase in illnesses and death especially among the old people the poor people residing in the urban areas because they have limited access to proper air conditioning. From various studies, it has been suggested that global warming's direct effects on cardiovascular diseases enhances mortality rated for the people who are physically vulnerable or weak. Further, global warming extends the favorable zones for vectors transmitting diseases such as the ones for fever and malaria. The increased floods and damages to sewage and water infrastructures further encourage the spread of diseases. Due to this, the World Health Organization has issued warnings that the health of many people could be threatened by increases in waterborne diseases, malnutrition and malaria (Gupta, R. K.E., 2005).
The people living in the Arctic regions are at a very high risk. For instance, the global warming will delay the ozone recovery at these regions making these people to be exposed to a ultra-violet dose which is relatively higher. This will lead to severe skin infections. In addition, the many indigenous people live in very harsh climatic conditions to which they have been adapted to. If these climatic conditions changes rapidly due to global warming, the indigenous populations will suffer from diseases and famine because the lack adequate resources. Finally, the photochemical pollutants due to global warming increases air pollution and they adversely affect the people who are suffering from asthma (Gupta, R. K.E., 2005).
In conclusion, global warming has many adverse impacts on health, economics, pollution and ecosystem. It is our responsibility to reduce the human activities that leads to global warming in order to reduce its effects. Also, the public policy makers should base their policies on scientific forecasts. Many of us in the world are optimistic that the scientists with diverse views will embrace appropriate forecasting principles and collaborate with various experts to provide the correct scientific climate forecasts to the policy makers.
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