Climate Change

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Aspects of the climate change

Definitions:
weather: The state of the atmosphere at a given time and place, with respect to variables such as temperature, moisture, wind velocity, and barometric pressure. climate: the variability or average state of the atmosphere over many years climate change: the variation in the Earth´s global climate or in regional climates over years One of the most current issues in politics or wherever in these days is the debate about climate change. Scientists confirm that between 1906 and 2005 temperature has grown about 0,74 °C and while between 1976 till today the highest increase has been measured. On top of that the year 2005 has been the warmest year since climate researches had been started. Also oceans show higher temperatures of about 0,6 °C. To ordinary human beings this number doesn´ t seem to be threatened but you always have to remember that the mean temperatures in the last ice age have only been 6°C less .Now they´ re discussing whether this global warming has just natural causes and is an indicator to show the change between ice ages and warm periods. They also mention a lot of natural factors affecting climate change, as for example solar- and orbital variation and oceans variability. One key word which is often connected with climate change is the greenhouse effect. You can subdivide it into two kinds: a) natural greenhouse effect

Without the natural greenhouse effect, life on earth won´ t be possible, because temperature will be about – 18°C, not an average of todays 15°C.This fact can be due to two thirds to water vapour of the atmosphere and the rest to carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, atmospheric ozone and CFC. They allow short wave solar radiation to pass to earth, but they reflect long wave radiation from earth, as well as clouds.

b) man-made greenhouse effect
Beginning with the industrial revolution in the 1850s and accelerating ever since, the human consumption of fossil fuels has elevated carbon dioxide levels from a concentration of about 250ppm to more than 380ppm today. Researchers assume that the concentration will still increase at more than 560 ppm till the end of the 21st century. In addition to that they´ ve also measured higher concentration of methane, so the natural greenhouse effect is intensified.

Causes of the increase of greenhouse gases

a) fossil fuels
As already mentioned, the extreme increase of emissions of CO2 originating from the burning of fossil fuels has the largest effect on global warming. Because of the high mechanisation in every part of production there´ s a demand for more and more fossil fuels. Even in developing countries and above all in emergent nations it isn´ t unusual to have a car. Many companies prefer building their factory in these countries, because the environmental conditions aren´ t as strong, they don´ t care about filters for example.

b) deforestation
Another reason is the deforestation in many developing countries, because of their need to have more field for their growing population. One solution is the clearance so there is more room for livestock grazing and the cultivation of crops. You call this “slash-and-burn-cultivation”, which has got a double effect on the climate. One the one hand much CO2 is produced by burning the wood and on the other hand the climate-regulating role forests play doesn´ t exist anymore. Wood is often used as fuel in developing countries because it isn´ t that expensive. Also industrial countries have to be blamed because there is a huge inquiry for exotic woods and because they are very rare, thousands of hectares have to be destroyed.

c) livestock farming
Because of the higher consumption of meat factory farming is necessary, where methane is emerged from the digestion.

d) landfills
Global methane emissions from landfill are estimated to be between 30 and 70 million tonnes each year. Most of this landfill methane currently comes from developing...
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