Many people argue that global warming is not real. But people are often misinformed by conservative media or political pundits, and think of climate change as a “liberal issue”.
It’s about time that we debunk the myth for good.
The scientific evidence for global warming is overwhelming. In the last 100 years alone, average global temperatures have risen 1 degree Fahrenheit (0.6 degrees Celsius). The ten hottest years on record have all come in this century (since 1997), with the exception of 1998. Going further back, the last century was the warmest of the past millennium.
In this article, we will briefly explain the current state of climate change and why some people claim that global warming is not real. At the end of this article, we will also show you the evidence that supports climate change and some ways you could help to counteract the impending doom.
What is climate change?
Climate change is defined as a change in the weather that persists for an extended period of time. It has been happening for hundreds to thousands of years. Over this time, we have witnessed drastic changes in our climate and the environments where we live. These changes have led to major population shifts, economic booms and busts, and impacts on wildlife around the world.
So what drives climate change? The most accepted theory is that the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere systemically affects climate. The more CO2 there is in the atmosphere, the warmer it gets. A little over a century ago, scientists began to realize that humans could influence global climate on a large scale through the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil (and natural gas). Since then, the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere has risen considerably.
What are greenhouse gases?
The major greenhouse gases are water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone. Water vapor is the most abundant of all gases. Carbon dioxide (CO2) makes up a much smaller portion of the atmosphere at 0.04%. Yet it contributes about 80% of the warming effect due to the greenhouse effect.
The greenhouse effect is a term that refers to the warming of a planet’s surface because of the presence of gases in the atmosphere that absorbs and re-radiate the sun’s energy. These gases are called greenhouse gases. Greenhouse gases absorb infrared radiation and re-emit it in all directions from the Earth. However, those that have long atmospheric lifetimes, such as carbon dioxide, trap more heat than those that don’t.
Since the 1950s, CO2 levels have increased by about 35%. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) predicts that if CO2 continues to increase at its current rate, it could lead to a global average temperature rise of 5.8 degrees Fahrenheit (3 degrees Celsius).
When we burn fossil fuels at home, at work, or while driving in our cars, these greenhouse gases can then get into our atmosphere and warm it up even more.
Why some people argue that climate change is a hoax and not real
In the last few decades, some people have argued that climate change does not exist. There are many reasons why some people do not believe that climate change is happening. Some of them are listed below.
1. The models used to measure climate change are unreliable and untested:
Climate models like the ones used by the IPCC are said to be imperfect, and they argue that natural factors such as solar activity affect climate enough to make them unreliable. The predictions of the IPCC are based on a combination of computer simulation and historical data combined with current trends. This should make the naysayers agree that climate change is real, but somehow, they have doubled down on the imperfection of the science.
2. There is no scientific consensus
There is a debate about climate change within the scientific community. This is not a legitimate argument against the fact of climate change. Scientists are always trying to make sense of new information. There are many other fields that do not have a “scientific consensus”, including economics and many fields of science. But this does not be that inflation is not real, so, one cannot make the argument that climate change isn’t real because of a lack of consensus.
3. Climate change isn’t that bad
Some have argued that climate change is blown out of proportion and that the warming isn’t alarming. Here are the facts, the climate is warming, maybe slowly, but over time, this warming adds up and the argument that it isn’t that bad becomes void when you factor in time. So again, climate change is real.
4. Climate change is part of a natural cycle
I saved the best for last. This has always been the go-to argument for people who think climate change is a hoax. True, climate change is a natural process, but the rate at which our climate is warming has nothing to do with nature and its processes. Our current climate change crisis is a man-made phenomenon, and it is happening much faster than anything we have seen in the past.
Does that mean that humans are to blame? Yes and no. It means that humans are playing a major role in climate change and we can change this reality by transforming our society into one that uses renewable energy sources that do not produce CO2 at all. If we do this, the climate will change back to what it was before or even better, or so we hope.
Some evidence that climate change is not a hoax
Here are some evidence that supports climate change
- Global Temperature Rise: One tangible evidence that climate change is real and man-made is the Earth’s temperature. The last decade was the hottest decade since record-keeping began and this supports the claim that global warming and climate change is as real as it gets.
- Melting Polar ice caps: The fact that the Arctic and Antarctic ice caps are melting is more than sufficient evidence to support the claim that climate change is real. As a matter of fact, at this very moment, most of Antarctica is covered by ice. But global warming caused by climate change has caused the formation of melt ponds in West Antarctica and this has seen the rate of ice melt in Antarctica increase significantly.
- Rising sea levels: The rise in sea levels around the world is another tangible evidence of climate change. If you pay close attention to this issue, you might realize that sea levels around the world have been rising gradually over the past century. This data is supported by satellite measurements and tide gauges.
- Increasing frequency of extreme weather events: One of the effects of climate change is an increase in extreme weather events all over the world. These catastrophic events include floods, droughts, forest fires, and other types of severe weather. This fact is supported by reliable data.
- Glacial retreats
As the climate changes, glaciers all over the world are retreating and this is another fact that cannot be denied. Glaciers have always retreated. In recent times, these glaciers have started to retreat faster than they reformed and this has led to a significant loss in frozen water around the globe that contributes to sea-level rise.
Ways to help
Let’s face it, climate change is a complex problem that cannot be solved by a single individual. If you are concerned about global warming and climate change, it is very important that you take some measures to help reverse the trend. You don’t have to be wealthy or famous to do this because all you need to do is make smart choices when it comes to energy consumption and lifestyle behavior.
You can decide to plant a tree because planting trees is an established way to help reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. Again, you don’t have to be a farmer, in fact, you don’t even have to leave your house. Organizations like Click a Tree plant trees all over the world on people’s behalf. All you have to do is click on this link and go over to their website and donate a few trees for climate change.
You should also consider different lifestyle behaviors. Share a ride instead of driving alone. Rent a car instead of owning one. Switch to renewable energy and install solar power instead of connecting to the grid. This has also been proven to be cheaper in the long run.
For more ways to help, visit this link.
The climate change debate should be over. Climate change is real and it has been proven to be real. It is a phenomenon that has continued for centuries but man’s quest to break down the planet has accelerated this global catastrophe and now it is up to us, you and me, to stand up and stop the destruction of our planet. Even though the climate change controversy seems like a farce, if you read through this article, you’ll see that there was indeed climate change is real.