Global warming is caused by natural and anthropogenic factors. This is evidenced though rising sea levels, reduction in mass of glaciers, and increase in world-wide temperature, that is out of traditional trends. This report presents a brief background into the current issue of global warming from the perspective of a proponent of mitigation strategies. Furthermore, some effective mitigation strategies are presented in addition to possible strategies that should be implemented for effective control of CO2 emissions.
Introduction – Global Warming – Political Considerations
The issue of global warming is a serious political concern, which tends to spark intense conversation among involved individuals. Normally there appears to be two (2) different points of view. On one side there are those who lead to the “left” and state that global warming is truly a science-backed event and that humans are exponentially increasing the rate of the occurrence through anthropogenic actions. In contrast, individuals on the “right’ believe (in extreme cases), that Global Warming is simply not real and that science cannot explain away why periods of time (before industrialization) have recorded temperatures that are the same as seen today. Both sides at some point present information that although contrasting, appear to be true. Hence, I believe that global warming is currently taking place and that this is attributed to human causes (i.e. Anthropogenic).
This report will present upon the instance from a “leftist” point of view and will highlight events that many believe are anthropologic causes of global warming. Additionally, these events will serve as evidence that global warming is occurring, as a factor of anthropogenic events. Mitigation strategies will also be described in order to also provide a solution to the issue at hand. Finally, policy changes will be proposed that must be escalated to the levels of the federal government (and the United Nations), as this is required to bring forth true change, to slow down the rate and/or even stop global warming, in it’s tracks.
Natural vs. Anthropogenic, Climate Change
The causes for climate change may be categorized as: Natural or Anthropogenic. Anthropogenic indicates that human-based actions are associated with this cause, while in-contrast, Natural causes are based on events that are outside of the control of humans. Scientists indicate that the “Earth’s temperature is dependent on the balance between the energy entering and leaving the planets system,” (EPA, 2015). Changes in the greenhouse effect impact the amount of energy that is retained within the earth’s atmosphere and this is termed as global warming. In addition, variation in the sun’s energy that reaches to the earth as well as changes in the ability of the earth to reflect these changes also impact the temperature of the earth (EPA, 2015).
The events such as solar flare, and sunlight balance are events that are outside of the control of human interaction and may contribute to the rising temperature felt on earth. While the green house gasses such as: Water Vapor, Carbon Dioxide, and Methane function within the earths atmosphere to absorb energy, the elimination of some of these greenhouse gases also lead to the increase of energy and thus increase of temperature (EPA, 2015). Supporting the viewpoints of the left, scientists indicate, “the observed global warming is highly significant at this point in time,” (IPPC, 2015).
Scientific Evidence that Global Warming is Occurring
Reconstruction of natural climate events (based on historical trends) indicate that the earth should not be entering a natural warming period and that this is likely due to anthropogenic interactions. Three pieces of evidence indicating the validity of this statement are as follows:
Three Pieces of Evidence
(1) Examination of the polar ice cores as well as the earths rising sea levels, stand independent to the variable of temperature, and this is further evidence that global warming is in fact occurring (Greenhouse, 2015). Furthermore, (2) scientists predict that since the year 1750 two-thirds of anthropogenic climate changes are due to the expulsion of CO2 based emissions. This observation happens to coincide identically with the industrial revolution, which is known to have caused major increases in CO2 emissions. (3) The mining of natural gasses, which are then processed and used to power cities, towns, vehicles, etc. are likely major anthropogenic causes of increased CO2 emission, and thus are impacting factors for global warming (Global Greenhouse Warming, 2015).
Current Mitigation Strategies for Global Warming
Per the direction of NASA, guidance for mitigation strategies have been provided to the international community. Hence, many of these key points that were identified by this organization have been implemented in the form of legislation, passed by respective federal governments. Some mitigation strategies include the reduction of CO2 emission by enactment of minimum emission standards for newly manufactured vehicles. Over time, vehicle standards have become more stringent and manufactures must comply with the standards, despite the financial burden that may be accumulated (NASA, 2015).
One additional strategy that has proved beneficial has been the establishment of waste that is allowed per organization. This has been proven to be a very sticky political consideration because companies that expel waste in the form of CO2 emissions are now limited to how much they can waste. This also impacts the amount of productivity that is allowed, per organization. Reinforcement occurs by close monitor by the EPA.
Conclusion – Additional Proposed Mechanisms (i.e. Policy Changes)
In summary, global warming is a true event and this is evidenced by scientific data that correlates the increase of human caused CO2 emissions to increased global temperature. While many emission standards have been implemented by the U.S. federal government, many developing nations still lag far behind. Global warming is not an issue that can be solved by the actions of one nation. This being said, I propose that harmonized standards (strict) are adopted by the U.N. and enforced through the U.N. These standards would certainly require reinforcement at the national level via changes in policy. Hence, the world leaders should meet at the U.N and develop more stringent standards that may then be approved and adopted into policy by each participating respective nations. For example, the U.S. may determine that enforcement is best if executed by our Environmental Protection Agency.
In this case existing laws would require amendments (or new laws passed), so that the EPA would have the authority to balance businesses in our country. In parallel, U.N. leaders may account for economic imbalance by creating policy (global) that generates incentives that may be provided to developing nations. These incentives may include: funding from the private sector (of developed nations). In this scenario the applicable developing nation and the partner developed nation would write policy that allows for the creation of an “emerging market”, which would then be moved upon by private equity firms that intend to comply to new standards for emission, per the applicable policy changes. Furthermore, I believe that educating the world of the true impact of global warming should be an initiative that is pushed by the U.N. The implementation of these two attributes will likely lead to a more aggressive push against the causes of anthropogenic global warming.
- Environmental Protection Agency. (2015). Causes of Climate Change | Climate Change | US EPA. Retrieved from http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/science/causes.html
- Global Greenhouse Warming. (2015). Anthropogenic Climate Change. Retrieved from http://www.global-greenhouse-warming.com/anthropogenic-climate-change.html
- Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. (2015). 9.7 Combining Evidence of Anthropogenic Climate Change – AR4 WGI Chapter 9: Understanding and Attributing Climate Change. Retrieved from http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch9s9-7.html
- NASA. (2015). Climate Change: Vital Signs of the Planet: Government Resources. Retrieved from http://climate.nasa.gov/solutions/resources/