Dear Future President,
Global warming is threatening our world, leading our world to extinction and causing our exotic environments to shrivel up and disappear. Scientists who have done research on this particular topic have concluded that global warming is a human caused issue. We need to come together to stop this catastrophic worldwide issue before it is too late.
Global warming is unstoppable at the rate it is spreading now. As global warming is alarming to the many environmentalists working to save our planet from pollution and such, research has been done to find out what is causing this event. “Global warming is primarily a problem of too much carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere—which acts as a blanket, trapping heat and warming the planet. As we burn fossil fuels like coal, oil and natural gas for energy or cut down and burn forests to create pastures and plantations, carbon accumulates and overloads our atmosphere.” (Union of Concerned Scientists, 2011). From this we can conclude that global warming is indeed a human caused issue. A quote about global warming sums up the severity of the problem: “The warnings about global warming have been extremely clear for a long time. We are facing a global climate crisis. It is deepening. We are entering a period of consequences.” (Al Gore). Now is our chance to figure out how to stop it all together and create a safer, cleaner environment. Global warming acts like a blanket and traps the earth in heat, threatening animals living in the Arctic. Polar bears are dying out and other incredible species that thrive on the ice resting in the Arctic waters will have no chance of survival when the ice has melted. However, even though these Arctic species are the main concern, don’t get it into your head that these creatures are the only ones in danger. Eventually, global warming will begin to affect us all.
I believe this issue should be your priority because if global warming continues at this extreme rate, every animal will go extinct due to climate change, and there will be no earth left to save. So let’s not wait until global warming is at the peak of destroying the earth, let’s work ahead and stop this warming before it is a horrifying issue. Let’s put our plans into action and save our planet! We need to stop global warming. I feel that once global warming, climate change and release of toxic chemicals to the wild are ideas of the past, our planet will be much safer for everyone and we will no longer have to worry about how much time we have left to enjoy our planet.
There are many reasons global warming is a major issue in our world. One of the main causes of global warming is the burning of fossil fuels. While global warming increases, the species and their habitats are decreasing. Temperatures are hotter than ever and weather is more extreme. Habitats have no time to adapt to the warmer temperatures. Without habitats, species are left homeless and have nowhere to go. When they go extinct, they are not gone for a little while. They are gone forever. And each time one species is extinct, one beauty of the earth disappears. When an animal goes extinct due to climate change, the reason behind it is the burning of fossil fuels. Which means that while we may benefit from the large amount of electricity fossil fuels produce, we need to think about the world outside mankind as well. Yes, there are other creatures besides us in the world. And not all of them receive the same positive effects of fossil fuels as we do. “In the United States, the burning of fossil fuels to make electricity is the largest source of heat-trapping pollution, producing about two billion tons of CO2 every year. Coal-burning power plants are by far the biggest polluters. The country’s second-largest source of carbon pollution is the transportation sector, which generates about 1.7 billion tons of CO2 emissions a year.” This shows how fossil fuels are helping humans and not the rest of the planet. They may benefit us by creating large amounts of electricity in small areas, but every time we burn a fossil fuel we are hurting the planet, and therefore hurting ourselves. People need to be aware of this unique situation. Especially the ones who are helping to burn fossil fuels every day. They need to be warned of the effects their everyday jobs are having on the Earth. However, global warming causes do not stay contained simply within the burning of fossil fuels.
Another major part of this horrific reality is the deforestation of many crucial rain forests all over the world. “When trees are cut down and burned or allowed to rot, their stored carbon is released into the air as carbon dioxide. And this is how deforestation and forest degradation contribute to global warming. According to the best current estimate, deforestation is responsible for about 10 percent of all global warming emissions.” Every day, about 200,000 acres of the spectacular Amazon Rainforest is burned every day, adding up to 150 acres lost per minute and 78 million acres lost every year! With 20 percent of the Amazon already gone, this specific area is severely threatened of being completely destroyed. We need to act quickly to protect the Amazon culture, biodiversity and hidden secrets that will be long lost if we cut it all down with one swing of an ax or a chain saw, or the sizzle of a forest fire as it spreads with no one to fight it off. And not only will these features of the amazing Amazon be gone, but we will also lose 20 percent of our oxygen produced by the Amazon and tons of carbon dioxide will be released into the air making the everlasting blanket of CO2 around our Earth even thicker and harder to minimize.
Both of these main causes of global warming tie into the main threat global warming produces for our Earth: climate change. Climate change is defined as “a change in global or regional climate patterns, in particular a change apparent from the mid to late 20th century onwards and attributed largely to the increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide produced by the use of fossil fuels”. Simple acts such as the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation are creating the world’s leading disaster of climate change. “Climate change will have major and unpredictable effects on the world's water systems, including an increase in floods and droughts, causing in turn, an impact on food supply, displacement and conflict. Seasonal shifts, extreme weather conditions, change in precipitation patterns caused by climate change will impact farming and agriculture, a source of food and livelihood for more than half of the global population. The world has warmed by 0.8°C since pre-industrial times. Reports by NASA, the MET, Japan’s Meteorological Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) indicate that 2014 was the hottest year on record. At the current rate of degradation, the iconic Great Barrier Reef could be dead within a human lifetime. A report released by WWF and leading meteorologists shows that human-induced global warming was a key factor in the severity of the 2002 drought in Australia, generally regarded as the worst ever. 2003, Scotland's hottest year on record saw hundreds of adult salmon die as rivers became too warm for salmon to be able to extract enough oxygen from the water. Rising sea levels threaten entire nations on low-lying islands in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.” (Earth Hour, 2015). This article states the facts that we have avoided for years: our Earth is indeed heating up and with it comes horrendous statistics such as the melting of ice in the arctic that hosts life for thousands of species and extremity of weather. “Global climate change has already had observable effects on the environment. Glaciers have shrunk, ice on rivers and lakes is breaking up earlier, plant and animal ranges have shifted and trees are flowering sooner. Effects that scientists had predicted in the past would result from global climate change are now occurring: loss of sea ice, accelerated sea level rise and longer, more intense heat waves.” (Shaftel). “Over the past 50 years, the average global temperature has increased at the fastest rate in recorded history. And experts see the trend is accelerating: All but one of the 16 hottest years in NASA’s 134-year record have occurred since 2000.” Global warming is inevitable the way it stands now, and with your help we can stop it before we miss our window.
However, not everyone feels this way about global warming. Let it be noted that while most of the world feels global warming as a tragic event threatening to destroy our Earth, some believe global warming has benefits. “Positive effects of global warming include fewer deaths in winter due to cold weather, lower costs of energy for heating homes and other buildings, and better agricultural production. Additionally, warmer temperatures facilitate sea transportation in the northern parts of the Earth.” (Reference, 2016). More on the positive effects of global warming: “Improved agriculture in some high latitude regions (Mendelsohn 2006), increased growing season in Greenland (Nyegaard 2007) and increased productivity of sour orange trees.”(Cook, 2016). From these two articles, I gathered that naturally colder areas will benefit because their temperatures will be warmer, therefore allowing for longer growing seasons and less deaths due to cold temperatures. The other side of global warming is that less people will die of cold, there will be a longer growing season, cost of heating systems will be less because there will be less cold to worry about. There are two sides to this inevitable issue, one being that global warming must be stopped before it destroys our planet. However, some believe that global warming has benefits and will help our world, especially in colder areas.
We need to eliminate the burning of fossil fuels and the amount of deforestation to the Amazon Rainforest and other beautiful forests in the world. This will reduce the amount of carbon dioxide released into the air, therefore preventing heat from getting trapped under a blanket of carbon dioxide surrounding our earth. This issue is most closely connected to Global Goal 13, Climate Action. While the United Nations works towards eliminating this problem, you could help out by taking initial steps towards finally getting rid of global warming. If global warming is not stopped immediately, many beautiful features of the earth will be taken away. Due to the changing temperatures and more extreme weather, many species will go extinct, and their ecosystems will be destroyed. We will have to adapt to harsher conditions, including heavier rain, flooding and hurricanes. Many more people will die due to heat strokes as even the coldest of areas are suddenly violently hot. There will be more forest fires and fresh water will become rare. While some of these changes are already occurring, we as humans all need to come together to stop this problem. We need to save our Earth. Let us not stand in our own way of eliminating this issue by reducing, if not getting rid of entirely, the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation. Let us remember 2017 as the most environmentally impactful year, the year the tables turned and global warming was a phrase of the past! Let future generations enjoy the world in peace and not have to worry about the end of the beautiful Earth! Let’s go save our planet!
8th Grade Student
This image connects to my topic of global warming because it shows what the Earth looks like now, beautiful and blue and green, and a foreshadow to what the Earth will look like if global warming is not stopped. Hopefully this will be a reminder of what we need to accomplish before every time you look outside you see a larger replica of the left side of the photo.