Taking a Look at Global Warming

Decent Essays
Let’s first look at why global warming has even occurred. Energy technologies and civilization have developed side by side ever since the Lower Paleolithic era. For millenniums, humans have been searching for energy sources to fuel their lives. It was about one million years ago when humans first figured out how to control and use fire (Miller). Now, people rely on fossil fuels – mainly coal and oil – to supply our energy. What affect does coil and oil play on global warming? The combustion of these fuels – mainly from automobiles and power plants –highly alters a process known as the greenhouse effect. Similar to that of a greenhouse, solar energy enters through Earth’s atmosphere and is either reflected by clouds, snow and ice, or absorbed by water, land, buildings and other objects. As they do so, certain atmospheric gases – greenhouse gases – reradiate this heat again and again, keeping our planet warm enough to make life possible. However, the burning of fossil fuels release multiple of these greenhouse gases; with one in particular being the most important and abundant gas, carbon dioxide (CO2). The more greenhouse gases Earth’s atmosphere contains, the more heat it traps. This means rising average global surface temperature, or global warming. What’s the big deal? According to Matt Doeden, “Earth’s temperature has risen only by an average of about 1.4°F (0.8°C) over the past one hundred years.” Though this change seems like such a small amount, many
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