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Definition for global warming

Climate change is any substantial change in Earth’s climate that lasts for an
extended period of time. Global warming refers to climate change that causes an
increase in the average temperature of the lower atmosphere. Global warming
can have many different causes, but it is most commonly associated with human
interference, specifically the release of excessive amounts of greenhouse gases.

Greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), water vapor,
and fluorinated gases, act like a greenhouse around the earth. This means that
they let the heat from the Sun into the atmosphere, but do not allow the heat to
escape back into space. The more greenhouse gases there are, the larger the
percentage of heat that is trapped inside the earth’s atmosphere. The earth
could not exist in its present state (that is, with life) without the presence of some
naturally occurring greenhouse gases, such as CO2, CH4, and water vapor.
Without any greenhouse gases no heat would be trapped in atmosphere, so the
earth would be extremely cold.

What is global warming?


Some of the devastating effects of global warming include heat waves, droughts,
increased hurricanes, and massive sea-level rise. Although there is a lot of bad
news - the good news is it's not too late! We can implement solutions, but we
need to act fast and we need our government to take the lead.

We're seeing the effects of global warming all around us - more intense heat
waves that disproportionately affect the elderly and poor, more severe storms
that wreak havoc on our homes and communities, and all kinds of changing
cycles in the natural world.

Environmental News

Live Earth concert rocks crowds around the globe!

The eco-friendly Live Earth show featured popular musicians in an effort to


educate the world about global warming issues.

By Erika Hayasaki and Alicia Lozano

LOS ANGELES TIMES

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Live Earth, the confederacy of musicians who


performed Saturday on all seven continents to highlight the issues of global
climate change, featured superstars such as Madonna and the Police, who
entertained crowds in packed stadiums.

Live Earth used the now-familiar template of concerts-for-causes that was


shaped largely by Live Aid, the 1985 famine relief shows. But the 24 hours of
music circling the globe used the Internet and high-definition camera
technologies to create a uniquely 21st century event.

Leading up to the event, though, Live Earth was also criticized by some for being
too vague in its cause or for being a promotional tool for its co-founder,
environmental activist Al Gore, the former vice president.

The politician was given a rock star's welcome at Giants Stadium in New Jersey,
where he was introduced by Oscar-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio. In
London, the Black Eyed Peas' Will.i.am premiered a new pro-Earth song that he
said he recorded after an inspirational encounter with Gore at the Grammy
Awards in February.

One of the song's lines: "We got a new terror threat: The weather."

The other Live Earth concerts Saturday were in Hamburg, Germany; Sydney,
Australia; Tokyo; Shanghai, China; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and Johannesburg,
South Africa, while many "unofficial" events borrowed the name and cause of
the day, such as the Viva Earth show, an R&B and hip-hop concert at the Los
Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Climate Solutions report from the International Panel on Climate Change


(IPCC) confirms that hundreds of technologies are now available, at very low
cost, to reduce climate damaging emissions, and that government policies need to
remove the barriers to these technologies.

Implementing these solutions will enable people to usher in a new era of energy,
one that will bring economic growth, new jobs, technological innovation and,
most importantly environmental protection.

However, for global warming green solutions to find a foothold in the market,
governments and corporations need to shift away from polluting technology. In
most industrial countries, conventional electricity is heavily subsidized, and the
negative environmental impacts of its production are not reflected in the cost to
end-users.

Green Living is helping to alleviate problems such as global warming, depletion


of resources and toxic waste production, Green Living will save us money so we
can live inexpensively but environmentally. From non toxic alternatives to
energy efficient items, clean alternative energy to green batteries, there is still
room for money saving. From natural, up to date, sustainable fashion and
furniture, to recycled materials, we've got what you need to live green and
affordable and even make your life style carbon neutral! Green Living is a
perfect combination of saving the environment as well as your money!
The Greenhouse Effect

The atmosphere has a natural supply of "greenhouse gases." They capture heat
and keep the surface of the Earth warm enough for us to live on. Without the
greenhouse effect, the planet would be an uninhabitable, frozen wasteland.

Before the Industrial Revolution, the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other
greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere was in a rough balance with what
could be stored on Earth. Natural emissions of heat-trapping gases matched
what could be absorbed in natural sinks. For example, plants take in CO2 when
they grow in spring and summer, and release it back to the atmosphere when
they decay and die in fall and winter.

Too Much Greenhouse Effect

Industry took off in the mid-1700s, and people started emitting large amounts of
greenhouse gases. Fossil fuels were burned more and more to run our cars,
trucks, factories, planes and power plants, adding to the natural supply of
greenhouse gases. The gases—which can stay in the atmosphere for at least fifty
years and up to centuries—are building up beyond the Earth's capacity to
remove them and, in effect, creating an extra-thick heat blanket around the
Earth.

The result is that the globe has heated up by about one degree Fahrenheit over
the past century—and it has heated up more intensely over the past two decades.
If one degree doesn't sound like a lot, consider this: the difference in global
average temperatures between modern times and the last ice age—when much of
Canada and the northern U.S. were covered with thick ice sheets—was only
about 9 degrees Fahrenheit. So in fact one degree is very significant—especially
since the unnatural warming will continue as long as we keep putting extra
greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

How Much Is Too Much?

Already, people have increased the amount of CO2, the chief global warming
pollutant, in the atmosphere to 31 percent above pre-industrial levels. There is
more CO2 in the atmosphere now than at any time in the last 650,000 years.
Studies of the Earth’s climate history show that even small changes in CO2 levels
generally have come with significant shifts in the global average temperature.

Scientists expect that, in the absence of effective policies to reduce greenhouse


gas pollution, the global average temperature will increase another 2.0 degrees
Fahrenheit to 11.5 degrees Fahrenheit by 2100.

Even if the temperature change is at the small end of the predictions,


the alterations to the climate are expected to be serious: more intense storms,
more pronounced droughts, coastal areas more severely eroded by rising seas. At
the high end of the predictions, the world could face abrupt, catastrophic and
irreversible consequences.

The Science Is Clear!

Scientists are no longer debating the basic facts of climate change. In February
2007, the thousands of scientific experts collectively known as the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded that there is
greater than 90 percent likelihood that people are causing global warming.
(IPCC, 2007)

These latest findings amplify what other highly respected science organizations
say:

• In a joint statement with 10 other National Academies of Science, the U.S.


National Academy of Sciences said:

"The scientific understanding of climate change is now sufficiently clear to


justify nations taking prompt action. It is vital that all nations identify cost-
effective steps that they can take now, to contribute to substantial and long-term
reduction in net global greenhouse gas emissions."—Joint Statement of Science
Academies: Global Response to Climate Change, 2005

The American Geophysical Union, a respected organization comprising over


41,000 Earth and space scientists, wrote in its position on climate change that
"natural influences cannot explain the rapid increase in global near-surface
temperatures observed during the second half of the 20th century."