Environment & Global Warming, Global warming

Global Warming: Impact, Causes, and Measures to Combat Climate Change

global warming

Modern human existence is threatened by global warming. Eco systems across the globe are deteriorating at a very fast pace, as we witness depletion of resources, extinction of wildlife, change in weather patterns, and increase in pollution levels.

Global warming is a global problem that arises as an effect of gases (like carbon dioxide) that trap the heat from the sun causing the rise in the global temperature. There are myriad of measures that could be taken to tackle this pressing matter but a lot of us are unaware of them.

That’s why Helplocal – trusted for discovering climate change NGOs in India – brings a detailed guide on global warming, its causes, and measures to combat climate change. Let’s start!

What is global warming?

Global warming occurs when air pollutants in the atmosphere absorb sunlight/solar radiation that have bounced off the earth’s surface. These pollutants (like carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and synthetic fluorinated gases) can last many years (sometimes even decades or centuries) in the atmosphere. Collectively, they trap the heat and cause the planet to get hotter.

Since the Industrial Revolution, the global annual temperature has increased in total by a little more than 1 degree celsius, or about 2 degree fahrenheit. If the temperature increases to 3 degrees, the environments we live in will change more dramatically, pushing people living in vulnerable regions out of their homes.

Impact of global warming

The impact of global warming is being felt everywhere. Here are the major ones that have been felt and seen by millions of people: 

  • Extreme heat waves have caused tens of thousands of deaths around the world in recent years. Antarctica has lost nearly four trillion metric tons of ice since the 1990s. 
  • In the last 2 decades, India ranked the third highest in the world regarding the number of significant disasters, with 18 such events in just 2007-2008, resulting in 1100+ deaths and thousands of casualties. 
  • Millions of people across the globe have been displaced from their homelands due to natural events triggered by global heating.
  • The anticipated increase in precipitation, the melting of glaciers and expanding seas have the power to influence the Indian climate negatively, with an increase in flood, hurricanes, and storms. 
  • Global warming and climate change is also posing a significant threat to the food security in India.

Causes of global warming

Rising sea levels, melting glaciers, and more frequent and severe weather events are some of the effects of this phenomenon. Here are the 5 major causes of global heating that are contributing to the climate crisis in India and also rest of the world: 

Unchecked industrialization: The pollution caused  by industrial units and factories is referred to as industrial pollution. The industrial revolution brought about elevated industrialization and technological advancement. However, it caused significant contamination of air, land, and water. It also affects the health of animals, marine life, and humans.

Transportation: Global transportation is typically dependent on cars, planes, boats, and trains. Nearly all of these forms of transport depend on fossil fuels for operation. Burning fossil fuels releases carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and other types of pollutants into the atmosphere. 

Power generation: The process of generating electricity and heat by burning fossil fuels contributes significantly to global emissions like carbon dioxide. Coal, oil, and gases are the primary sources of electricity production. Their combustion releases potent greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide which are sources of global heating.

Deforestation: This activity contributes to global greenhouse gas emissions. It is responsible for approximately 25% of them. A lot of countries are clearing forest areas to setup commercial businesses, expand infrastructure, and activities, disturbing natural habitats and releasing even more carbon dioxide into the air.

Landfills: The majority of items, waste and packaging aren’t recyclable, which means it ends up in landfills. Waste in landfills decomposes, releasing harmful gases into the atmosphere and compounds into the soil. Both these contribute to global warming in India and the rest of the world.

Hazardous use of land, excessive mining, and uncontrolled construction also contribute climate changes as well.

Measures to combat global warming:

While nothing beats strong policies and regulation by global governments, we can trigger a lot of change through individual efforts as well. Here are some easy ways to do your share of work to stop global warming and climate change:

Recycle more: We can contribute to diminish the global heat by just starting from our own home. We can save 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide per year by recycling just half of your household waste like plastic bags, polythene, bottles and containers too.

Change light: Replacing an incandescent light bulb with a compact fluorescent light bulb like LED which consumes less than 80% of energy as compared to incandescent bulbs and also these save 150 pounds of carbon dioxide a year. 

Drive less: Bringing out your four-wheeler to cover small distances adds up to become a huge burden for the climate. Prefer bike and walking to reach your office or pick groceries from the nearby store. We can save one pound of carbon dioxide for every mile by choosing not to drive.

Avoid a product with lots of packaging: In a recent study, it was found that we can reduce garbage by 10 percent by simply avoiding commodities that come with a lot of packaging. Over the year, every person can stop 1200 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the air!

Plant a tree: Afforestation is a promising measure to combat increasing global heat. A single tree will absorb one ton of carbon dioxide over its lifetime. So, we should plant more and more trees.

Turn off electronic devices: Simply turning off your television, lights, and computer when you’re not using them will stop a lot of carbon dioxide emissions every year.

Need more tips to stop climate change and save mother Earth? Here are 76 small ways to stop global warming.

Combating climate change and global warming 

We hope that you gained some perspective about climate change and global heat with our blog. If you want to help others to minimise the impact of global heating, we recommend partnering with NGOs active in your region. Or simply work with the tips and recommendations we have shared to check climate change and global heating.

Feel like reading more? Here are some blogs you can check out to save the environment and expand your knowledge on the topic.

Water conservation in India

Top NGOs in India working for disaster management

Climate mitigation and adaptation

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