Global warming has become a general buzzword, used by environmentalists and politicians alike for their own purposes, mostly to scare the humanity and urge corporations to more responsible, sustainable behaviour. Indeed, the consequences of global warming are devastating, with the global temperature averages rising steadily each year, and numerous habitats of wildlife and marine life endangered. People’s industrial ambitions and greed are to blame for the global warming, at least as the public mass media tend to claim. However, upon a closer look at the situation, one may see that the causes of global warming are not so immediately clear, as well as its consequences are not so unequivocally negative. This essay thus deals with the subject of causes and effects of global warming to examine the issue under the critical gaze of unbiased scholarly evidence.
One should note that global warming is indeed caused by human industrial activities. With the emergence of industrial production and mass industrialization of most world’s territories, the amount of carbon emissions in the atmosphere increased as a disproportionate rate, causing a jump in the global warming tempos (Haldar, 2010). However, saying that global warming is attributable to exploitative human activity only would be wrong and subjective; in fact, global warming used to take place even in the prehistoric times, when there were no cars and factories.
With global warming being caused by carbon dioxide’s emission into the atmosphere, all living beings may be blamed for its occurrence – even animals and plants, since they also breathe and contribute to CO2 concentration. Another side of the issue is that the planet, as a self-sufficient ecosystem, used to manage the volumes of CO2 emitted by the living beings, while the amount of emissions produced by industrial activities is definitely beyond the scope of what the Earth can manage.
Another cause of global warming is the irresponsible human attitude to finite resources granted by the planet. With the planet’s impressive ability to self-cure and self-purification, the humankind might have avoided the problems associated with global warming. However, as it was underlined above, the tempos of pollution are so high that the Earth cannot manage all waste and emissions, and they accumulate to cause the irreversible environmental changes (Ward, 2015).
As a result of such non-sustainable, irresponsible, and exploitative activities of the humankind, the global warming process has evolved from something natural into a global ecological catastrophe. It is needless to mention the most common effects of the process such as melting of ice caps, the greenhouse effect, extinction of natural habitats and species, deforestation, degradation of marine life, etc. (Casper, 2010). Too much has been said about them, and every individual is well-aware of the situation. However, it may be much more appropriate to mention one positive, though not evident effect of global warming – the growing human concern about sustainability and eco-friendliness. The humanity has been living for centuries without any regard to the natural resources, dealing with the natural riches irresponsibly and wastefully. At present, the new stage of human consciousness is evident; at the dawn of the ecological catastrophe, people are gradually learning to treat nature with respect, which gives hope for the positive changes to come.
As the presented evidence suggests, global warming used to be a natural process, but industrialization and technological progress have transformed it into a rapid, uncontrollable problem. It has many disastrous effects on the environment, and some of them are unfortunately irreversible. However, with the current attention to sustainability and care for the environment because of exacerbating eco-crises, there is a hope that global warming may be curbed and averted by joint human effort.
Casper, J. K. (2010). Changing ecosystems: effects of global warming. New York, NY: Infobase Publishing.
Haldar, I. (2010). Global warming: the causes and consequences. New Delhi, India: Mind Melodies.
Ward, P. L. (2015). What really causes global warming? Greenhouse gases or ozone depletion? New York, NY: Morgan James Publishing.
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