Global Warming and Its Effects Term Paper

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Ecosystem Dynamics Relative to Repair and Restoration

Ecological restoration activities are created to reverse the effect of previous human activities that damaged important parts of ecosystems. Terry L. Root, senior fellow with Stanford's Institute for International Studies affirms in one of her studies that "One thing we might do now is to consider adjusting the bag limits for hunters so we don't add insult to injury in the coming years. Because anticipation of changes improves our capacity to manage, it behooves us to increase our understanding about the responses of plants and animals to a changing climate."

In order to anticipate and prevent the predicted changes in planet's ecosystems people must create projects and activities that can improve life. For example, trees can help offset or global warming, because they absorb CO2. People must be encouraged to plant trees and preserve older forests as a way to cut down on the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Forests have a great importance because they are stores of the carbon, and people should try stopping the fires that occur almost every summer in order to avoid a growing source of greenhouse gas emissions that contributes to global warming.

In 1998 Dr. Thomas J. Goreau and Wolf Hilbertz of Global Coral Reef Alliance were awarded for pioneering the use of solar panels to grow large limestone structures in the sea which help the growth of corals and provide habitat for fish. Their invention represents a method for restoring and creating new coral reefs - one of the most complex marine ecosystems - and, in the same time is contributing to the protection of the shorelines from erosion and rising sea levels, representing a major step towards reducing the impact of global warming.

Concerted programs of preventing further destruction and of restoration are needed nowadays in order to ensure that there is a sustainable future for us and for all the other species living on earth.

Economic Costs and Social Costs of the Ecological/Environmental Impact

The Bush administration has rejected in 1997 the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the European Union criticized this action. President Bush considered that the protocol restrictions could have a negative impact on American economy. He also underlined that his administration will sustain voluntary reductions of greenhouse gases, in order to avoid economic problems. Every country knows that reducing global warming isn't a cheap and specialists have underlined that "The costs to implement a worldwide plan to cut the production of CO2 and other gases which contribute to global warming would cost approximately 3% of the World's total GDP."

What is certain is that not only the environment is negatively affected by the global warming, but also economy and agriculture suffer changes. In some regions, like Iceland for example, the rising temperatures may have some positive influence, but in other parts of the planet global warming brings reduction of rains and, in the same time, reduction of crops. In the poor and developing countries this changing will affect people's way of life because less food leads to higher prices and more people will be at risk of hunger. On the other hand, economists underline that a warmer climate could benefit certain crops and communities.

Another issue is represented by the more and more often natural disasters like storms, floods and hurricanes that damage and even destroy people's establishments. The regions most vulnerable to sea-level rise are river deltas such as the Nile delta in Egypt, the Ganges in Bangladesh, the Yangtze and Hwang Ho in China, the Mekong and also the United States that could loose 8000 square miles (20,000 km2) of land, valued at about $650 billion, and 30-80% of its coastal wetlands. Insurance companies are also affected by the natural disasters that come along and in order to avoid bankruptcy they try to develop new strategies on the market and diminish the risks.

As the ecosystem changes, all the aspects of people's life will change. Some countries are more affected than others, but one thing is sure - the global warming brings major changes in the economical environment.

Prevention and Public Awareness Effort Aimed at the Problem

Representatives of 160 nations met in Kyoto, Japan, in December 1997 in order to sign a treaty (the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)) that required industrialized nations to reduce their emissions of carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, sulfur dioxides, and perfluorocarbons below 1990 levels by 2012. The main idea is that people should try not to exceed the absorptive capacity of the ecosystem, and, in order to do that, the Protocol sets some limited rights to pollute.

Another important aspect is that people should try finding some energy-efficient technologies, alternative fuel sources that would reduce the emissions of carbon dioxide. Countries must understand the great importance of these steps, even if some of the changes we have to make will decrease our usual standard of living. In the modern society people are accustomed to use a lot of energy, but we have to become more responsible and understand that each one of us can reduce the global warming impact by using, for example, less electricity.

Forests, croplands and oceans represent important resources for people's life, and we all have the responsibility to protect them in any way we can. Nowadays, states must encourage their citizens to use less energy, to give up their cars or buy a fuel efficient car, to recycle more, to reduce garbage, to use recycled paper, to protect trees and animals because each one of us can contribute to the diminishing of the global warming phenomenon and to the preservation of planet's resources.

States, governments, corporations and NGO must also develop global cooperation projects and find solutions in order to decrease the global warming.


Undoubtedly, people must develop new strategies and also change a bit their way of life in order to deal with the global warming issue, because global warming involves economic and human costs. Humanity must understand that this is a major problem and that we should develop new programs that can reduce the energy usage in order to lower carbon emissions; we should find some alternative energy sources or use renewable energy in order to preserve planet's resources. It is believed that restoration of degraded ecosystems will take at least a hundred, given the scale of the world's environmental problems today, so it is an issue of major importance for every country and continent, irrespective of economical or political interests.

People should be aware that preserving what they have now is of great importance, because now we still have a chance to reduce the damages. Otherwise, in a few years we will be facing a big problem and we will not have the opportunity to repair the damages. Specialists have underlined it is easier to preserve the ecosystems the planet has now then to try to recreate them after their disappearance.

The impacts of climate change will be felt by not only by humans, but also by nature, plants, birds, animals even if the changes will vary from region to region across the globe. People must take prompt actions because there are solutions to global warming available to us today, solutions that will reduce the amount of greenhouse gases that we emit into the atmosphere, creating an improvement in our lives.


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Lischak Gabriel N., GLOBAL WARMING…[continue]

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