Basic ScienceEarth & Geography

What is Global warming?

Why Global Warming is a major concern now?

What is Global warming? Why is it a major concern now?

Have you ever notice sudden changes in the weather? Like today is too hot than yesterday and seems like this had never felt before. Have you felt extremely hot weather even in winters in past years? The answers to all the above questions are probably, yes! For everyone on this earth. These drastic climatic changes are happening all over the world. This is due to Global warming. It is one of the biggest problems which we face today. Looking at the term ‘global warming’, first, anyone wants to know what does it mean?

Global warming simply means warming up of our Earth’s surface including land, water, and atmosphere. Our planet is heating up so faster than anyone could imagine. But its effects are real and can be seen clearly all around the world. To understand global warming better, we can relate it to our own condition. When we get a fever, what exactly happens and what we all do? During fever, our body temperature rises up and our body becomes very hot. At that time we use a thermometer to check our temperature. The same thing happens with our Earth due to global warming. Its temperature is rising. This shows our Earth’s illness which is caused by many things. Thanks to the human actions that it is getting warmer every year.

Causes of global warming

  • Global warming is mainly due to the increased greenhouse gases effect. This greenhouse effect can be easily understood when we look at the actual greenhouse in our surrounding. The greenhouse is basically a glass house in which flower and plants are kept. When the sun shines in, the heat is trapped by the glass and it does not escape. This keeps the air and plants inside the house warm even during winters. The same thing happens in the Greenhouse effect on our Earth.

  • The earth’s atmosphere acts as a greenhouse and Earth is like a plant inside it which need to be taken care of. There are some gases in an atmosphere like carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and fluorinated gases which work as a roof of the greenhouse. When the sun shines through this atmosphere the earth’s surface warms up during the day and releases some heat back to space at night. But due to these gases, some of the heat gets trapped in which keeps the Earth warm and a worth living place. So some amount of these gases are good for our earth.
  • The greenhouse effect was first calculated by a scientist named Joseph Fourier and have been known to us since 1824. According to him, ” Earth would be a much colder place if it had no atmosphere.” Though some amount of gases in the atmosphere is good and important for us, at the same time we also know that too much of anything is very bad. Like, when we overcook our food on the gas, it obviously burns up. The same thing happens with the Greenhouse gases. More the greenhouse gases, the more heat gets trapped by them which will lead to the extreme warming up of our earth. And these greenhouse gases are increasing by none other than human beings itself. Some of the causes are as follows:-
  • People are using fossil fuels like coal and oil for machine work and for vehicles. Like today we see a lot of people are driving cars which create immense pollution. This pollution increases the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
  • Due to using coals, raising cattles, growing rice, methane gas is increasing in the atmosphere.
  • Due to over use of chemical fertilizers in agriculture, nitrous oxide is increasing.
  • Also by using refrigerators, AC’s, microwave ovens, we are adding more greenhouse gases to the atmosphere.
  • Gases are also increasing due to the cutting of trees and clearing of forests for setting up big industries.

Why global warming is a major concern now:-

A sudden change in anything and anywhere is difficult to adapt for any of us. Like sudden weather change quickly affects our health. In the same way, the rise in greenhouse gases has far-reaching effects on earth and has become a major concern now for all. Its long list of effects are posing a greater challenge for all living beings which are as follows:-

  • Ice of glaciers is melting.
  • Melting of ice leads to a rise in sea level. This rise will submerge any country into the sea which is near to it. For example, Maldive is small island nation which has already given warning of danger due to rise in sea level. In fact, people are already looking for new homes.
  • Global warming is increasing the intensity of storms, hurricanes, and cyclones worldwide.
  • Global warming is leading to the shortage of water supply at many places which further leading to crop failures.
  • There is shifting in rainfall patterns which makes dry areas even drier.
  • Due to rise in temperature, many species are on a decline. Eg, penguins on Antarctica were greatly impacted by this.

Apart from above, there are many other effects which are beyond to our eyes but still happening all around. So we all together have to do something to lower the impact of global warming. Like:-

  • We should avoid using fossil fuels like coal, natural gas, oil, etc.
  • We should not use plastics.
  • We should avoid using cars and other vehicles as much as possible.
  • We should save electricity by turning off the lights when nobody is in the room.
  • We should save water instead of wasting it.
  • We should avoid using AC’s, microwave ovens, refrigerators.
  • Plant as many trees as you can in your surrounding.
  • Most importantly create awareness about global warming to others.

It’s never too late for doing your bit or taking good initiatives. Until and unless we don’t do anything, global warming will continue and many other effects will take place. It’s our earth and only we could do to revive it from its illness of global warming.

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Amrita Singh

I'm from Delhi. By profession, I am a teacher but at the same time, I love writing also.

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