What is Global Warming

Everyone talks about global warming; it’s on the news, in magazines, and on the internet. People rave about what an issue it is today, but really, what is global warming? Does it really affect humans and animals? In the Merriam-Webster dictionary it states, “Global warming is an increase in the earth’s atmospheric and oceanic temperatures widely predicted to occur due to an increase in the greenhouse effect resulting especially from pollution.” (Merriam-Webster) So, to put it simply, people drive cars, work in factories, and burn fossil fuels, which creates pollution, in turn, making the temperature of the earth warmer. That is a serious problem that has a toll on everyone and everything in the world in one way or another, because, global warming is like a chain reaction. If it affects the environment, then automatically it affects the things that are in the environment, which evidently are humans, animals, and plants.

To relate to humans, global warming has a toll on their health. One of the main causes of global warming is the pollution that is in the air. People play a part in making that pollution (Houghton). Pollution changes the quality of our air; it increases the smog in the air, and ground-level ozone (toxic gas).When we breathe in this air, it increases the risks of getting colds, allergies, lung problems, and especially asthma attacks. Since Global Warming spikes up allergies in people, those allergies mixed with the smog, pollution, and ground-level ozone, can send people into asthma attacks, which are much more likely to occur in those circumstances (National Wildlife Federation).

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Global warming affects the animals and their ecosystems. Global warming is exactly what it sounds like, the earth warming up, which causes things to dry up, melt, and potentially die. There are animals who are accustomed to living in colder climates (Global Warming and Drought – National Wildlife Federation).They depend on the cold and ice to survive. Polar bears and penguins are good examples of this. They eat certain things that thrive in colder temperatures; when that temperature changes, the things they eat move to an area more like what they are comfortable with.

That harms their health and survival. When those animals are leave, their food source is gone. The increases in temperature can also cause plants that the animals eat, and humans eat, to dry up (Union of Concerned Scientists). This decreases the amount of food they need to survive. Animals and plants, as well as people depend on fresh water.

They are unable to survive without it. With the water evaporating and melting, the fresh water supply decreases. Out of all the water in the earth, only 1.7 percent of it is freshwater. Out of the 1.

7 percent freshwater, 68.7 percent of it is made of glaciers and ice caps (massive sheets of ice) (Glaciers and Icecaps: Storehouses of Freshwater). That is possible because even though the glaciers and ice caps are in the ocean, saltwater can’t freeze, it all freezes freshwater instead (Global Warming Effects on Sea Ice). When the earth is getting warmer, things tend to melt. This includes the glaciers and ice caps. This is an issue to humans, animals, and plants, because that means the freshwater supply is going down as well as the sea level rising.

Rising sea level result in floods and more sea water. The increased temperatures cause water to evaporate, increasing drought rates (National Wildlife Federation). Droughts effect the water supply. Restrictions are set upon the places that are suffering from drought (Climate Education Modules for K-12). The government does that to control the amount of water being used. Many restrictions are placed upon people living in drought areas.

People are asked not to water their lawn, which could include irrigation. Shipping costs would also increase, causing the place in drought to pay extra for water to be shipped.Drought affected areas will have restrictions on recreational activities including winter sports. Also when a drought occurs, depending on the intensity of it, fires can happen, destroying land and property. Since the government can put restrictions on irrigation as well, the crops would not get the water needed to survive. That lessens the amount of food we have (Union of Concerned Scientists).

Overall, one effect of global warming is the increasing temperatures drying up the land, causing droughts and restrictions. That then results in bad things for not only humans, but also the plants and animals. It makes it so that the plants don’t get enough water to survive, habitats are destroyed through fires, and crops aren’t getting their necessities; decreasing the amount of food there is. In conclusion, global warming is happening right now as we speak, and even if people don’t recognize it, it is changing our world massively. It not only affects the temperature, but everything in the ecosystems. The animals, water, humans, and plants, it has a toll on all of us.

It causes drought, puts strains on the water supply, and more. Everything in the ecosystem is put at risk in certain ways because of it. Plants and animals die, and sicknesses increase.People can either fight global warming or they must live with the consequences.