Global warming is deemed to occur
when there is measurable continual gradual increase of the
temperature of the global planet Earth. Over the years, it is has
been determined that the temperature of the Earth, in fact, has been
rising. This determination has been made by several different
scientists; alarms had been raised by each of these scientists
individually as well. However, the alarms were not taken seriously
until former VP [USA] Albert Gore joined the fray and even won the
Noble Peace price for his advocacy for social responsibility.
The cause of the global warming
has also been determined as being the effect of greenhouse
gases, which are CO2, methane and water vapor, in the atmosphere.
The greenhouse gases are so termed because they function as it were
the whole earth is a greenhouse. However, to appreciate this impact,
an understanding of the
greenhouses gases effect on global warming is necessary. The
greenhouse effect is a natural process that keeps the planet warm
enough to sustain life. When sunlight [stream of solar photons]
enters the earth's atmosphere, some of it turns into heat energy as
a result of the interaction with the atmospheric matters. This heat
is then dispersed within the surrounding air, as well as
absorbed by the water and land which in turn makes the surface of
the planet warm. As the earth gets warmer, it convects some of the
heat back into space, however, as this heat tries to escape the
atmosphere, some of it is absorbed by the greenhouse gases. So
instead of escaping the atmosphere, the heat is reradiated back to
earth, warming the earth's surface. Being the natural process
that keeps the planet warm enough to sustain life, the greenhouse
effect is supported naturally through the generation of
greenhouse gases in an eco-system that remains in a balance.
However, with technological
advances, human beings now generate such massive quantities of the
greenhouses gases. The Global Warming Theory maintains that
human greenhouse gas emissions are so large, as to have caused an
imbalance in the processing of the greenhouses gases in the
ecosystem, that they are amplifying the natural greenhouse effect,
causing abnormal quantities of heat to be trapped in our atmosphere
and consequentially warming the planet beyond acceptable levels.
Man has generated this imbalance
by several means but the most prominent contributor is the carbon
dioxide gas that is produced as byproduct of the activities of man.
The primary means by which human beings have generated the carbon
dioxide is through the combustion of fuel, mostly the fossil fuels,
which are Coal, Crude Oil and Natural Gas. Ordinarily in an
ecosystem in balance, these fossil fuels or materials are several
feet deep in the earth and so do not readily get combustion.
However, with technological advances human beings routinely combust
large quantities of these fuels to produce energy support myriads of
needs to be met.
In all cases of the combustion of
the fossil fuel, however, the products are carbon dioxide and water
in the ideal case, otherwise some Carbon Monoxide and Methane - the
main component of Natural gas - are also produced. All these being
part of the greenhouse gas collection creates the same effect.
However, while the greatest
quantity of Carbon dioxide gas is produced from the combustion of
fuel, most of the methane that becomes part of the environmental
greenhouse gas does come from the the combustion of fuel. Rather the
source of the methane is the flaring of gases [or free atmospheric
combustion] that occurs in and around crude-oil well. Chemical
reaction mechanism studies have shown that most reactions involving
polyatomic substances such as hydrocarbons, which is crude oil in this case, occur through
complex reaction networks. Such reactions
generally have to be tightly controlled to reach state of complete
combustion; naturally it stands to reason that for a free
atmospheric combustion as is the case with gas-flaring, the natural
gas and hence the methane does not undergo complete combustion. Most
of the reaction residual methane therefore plausibly becomes part of
the atmospheric greenhouse gas.
Primary Impact of Global
Several consequences of the
global warming have also been documented over the past many years. Some
of these consequences, among others, appearing only as natural
disasters to the pedestrian, have been rising sea level,
melting of ice caps of mountain tops, melting of the ice caps at the
Clearly the rising of the sea
level is causing the submergence of small island communities all
over the planet earth, although most of the inhabitants
have been thinking that their
lands were simply being eroded away.
Ecological disasters are also
occurring while others are yet to occur but will definitely occur
unless some measures are taken to avert the prospects by mitigating,
though preferably remedying, the evolving global warming impact.
Polar bears stand to become endangered species as will the Penguins
and other Polar animals.
Besides, these primary
impacts, that have been delineated, has have
impacts that are just as critical to attend to as the primary.