What Is Global Warming? Global warming is the warming of the earth through carbon dioxide (CO2) being pumped into the atmosphere from tailpipes and smokestacks. Then the gases trap heat like the glass in a greenhouse. This is where the term the “greenhouse effect” came from.
What’s Happening Scientists say that the barrier insulating the continental ice caps is melting. “The impacts of warming temperatures in Antarctica are likely to occur first in the northern sections of the continent, where summer temperatures approach the melting point of water, 32 degrees F (0 degrees C).” As the ice melts, big chunks of glaciers will break off and become like ice cubes in a big glass of water. The ice chunks, known as icebergs, create mass in the ocean. The icebergs displace the water causing the ocean level to rise. Some of the shoreline in many places like Florida (where the land is at a low altitude) will go under water. “Rising global temperatures are expected to raise sea level, and change precipitation and other local climate conditions. Changing regional climate could alter forests, crop yields, and water supplies. It could also affect human health, animals, and many types of ecosystems. Deserts may expand into existing rangelands, and features of some of our national parks may be permanently altered.” The reason the temperature has risen so much in the past 150 years is because of how much more we have used fossil fuels, which gives off carbon dioxide. “According to NOAA, the global warming rate in the last 25 years has risen to 3.6 degrees F per century, which tends to confirm the predictions of temperature increases made by international panels of climate scientists (IPCC).”
What’s Happening to the Animals “Penguin population decline. Adelie penguin populations have shrunk by 33 percent during the past 25 years in