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Human Effects on Atmosphere and Relation to Global Warming

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Title: Human Effects on Atmosphere and Relation to Global Warming


1
Human Effects on Atmosphere and Relation to
Global Warming
2
Human Actions Affecting Atmosphere
  • Demand for goods produced in factories-production
    often has CO2 byproduct
  • Aerosols (tiny solid or liquid particles
    suspended in air) produced by transportation,
    industry, agriculture-alters precipitation
    patterns, can contribute to holes in ozone layer
  • Chlorofluorocarbons, still used in air
    conditioning units-contribute to holes in ozone
    layer
  • Agriculture-raising large amounts of animals
    produced excess methane

3
Global Warming
  • Industrialization of countries and making
    decisions on a personal level that increase air
    pollution is the suggested cause for an increase
    in the Earths average temperature, or global
    warming.
  • What is most directly responsible for increased
    global temperatures?
  • Increased CO2 emissions

4
Ways We Increase Carbon In Atmosphere
  • Burning fossil fuels, such as coal, oil,
    gasoline, natural gas
  • Reasons for burning of fossil fuels
  • Transportation
  • Produce electricity
  • Heating homes and buildings
  • Manufacturing goods, such as shoes and clothing
  • Production of paper
  • Agriculture

5
The Greenhouse Effect
  • The greenhouse effect is a natural heating of the
    Earths surface in which greenhouse gases,
    primarily carbon dioxide, but also includes
    methane, water vapor, and ozone, absorb the Suns
    energy radiated from the Earth and keeps Earths
    surface temperature warm.

6
(No Transcript)
7
Is the Greenhouse Effect a Bad Thing?
  • Not entirely, without the greenhouse effect,
    conditions on Earth would be too cold to support
    life.
  • However, the increased measure of greenhouse
    gases being released into the air over the past
    few hundred years has intensified the greenhouse
    effect, causing warming than normal surface
    temperatures.
  • Our planet would be cold, like Mars, which has a
    very thin atmosphere and surface temperatures
    that can drop to -90C
  • But too much can be a bad thing our planet
    would look like Venus too hot and greenhouse
    effect gone wild

8
Whats the difference between global warming
and climate change?
CLIMATE CHANGE is change in regional climate
characteristics, such as rainfall, humidity, and
severe weather events
GLOBAL WARMING is the increase of the Earths
average surface temperature
9
What contributes to climate change?
Natural causes Volcanic eruptions Sunspots El
Nino/La Nina Seasonal Fluctuations
Human causes Burning fossil fuels Deforestation
(both linked to industrialization) Urbanization
10
Volcanic Eruptions
  • Volcanic eruptions work to cause more global
    cooling than global warming
  • WHY? During eruptions, sulfur combines with
    water vapor in stratosphere. These particles can
    absorb huge amounts of energy, limiting the
    energy dispersed to the troposphere.

11
Sunspots
  • During higher occurrence of sunspots on Suns
    surface, greater radiation is emitted. This
    radiation is absorbed by Earths atmosphere,
    relatively intensifying the greenhouse effect.

12
El Nino/La Nina
  • Cause of El Nino-trade winds moving west along
    the equator diminish. As a result, warm ocean
    currents move east, ceasing the upwelling of
    cold, deep ocean water that would typically occur
    along the coast of South America.
  • Cause of La Nina-the opposite of El Ninos cause.
    Trade winds strengthen as they move west. These
    stronger winds more so move warmer waters away
    from the South American coast, allowing more
    upwelling of colder, nutrient rich ocean waters.

13
El Nino/La Nina How long does it last?
  • A strong El Niño can last a year or more before
    conditions return to normal. We usually get one
    every three to seven years.

14
Effects of El Nino/La Nina
  • Effects of El Nino-increased rainfall in US and
    Peru, causes flooding drought conditions in
    Australia, Africa, and Indonesia. Warm water
    limits nutrient supply in ocean waters, some
    fisheries suffer along North and South American
    western coastlines.
  • La Niña-opposite of El Nino-decreased
    precipitation rates in US and Peru higher
    precipitations rates in Australia, Africa, and
    Indonesia Colder water brings excess nutrient
    supply, fisheries do well.

15
Seasonal Fluctuations
  • Higher CO2 concentration fall/winter season due
    to lack of vegetation absorbing CO2.
  • Lower CO2 concentration during spring/summer

16
What causes climate change human causes?
Human Causes of Climate Change
17
Deforestation
  • For photosynthesis to occur, plants must take in
    carbon dioxide and release oxygen
  • Deforestation leads to the mass removal of trees
    and therefore reduces the rate of photosynthesis,
    which leaves more carbon dioxide remaining in the
    atmosphere
  • Deforestation also involves machinery that burns
    fossil fuels, adding to carbon dioxide in
    atmosphere.

18
Burning Fossil Fuels
  • Industrialization has increased burning of fossil
    fuels, resulting in increased carbon dioxide
    emission, worsening the greenhouse effect

19
Urbanization-Create Heat Islands
  • As urban areas develop, infrastructure replaces
    open land and vegetation. Surfaces that were once
    permeable and moist become impermeable and dry.
    Increased population leads to increased emission
    of greenhouse gases. These changes cause urban
    regions to become warmer than their rural
    surroundings, forming an "island" of higher
    temperatures in the landscape.

20
Effects of Global Warming
Increased Temperature
Rising Sea Level
Habitat Damage and Species Affected
Ocean Acidification
21
Rising Sea Levels
The loss of large areas of ice on the surface
could accelerate global warming because less of
the sun's energy would be reflected away from
Earth to begin with. An immediate result of
melting glaciers would be a rise in sea levels.
Initially, the rise in sea level would only be an
inch or two. Even a modest rise in sea levels
could cause flooding problems for low-lying
coastal areas. However, if the West Antarctic Ice
Sheet were to melt and collapse into the sea, it
would push seal levels up 10 meters (more than 32
feet), and many coastal areas would completely
disappear beneath the ocean.
22
Portage Glacier
  • Alaska

Photos NOAA Photo Collection and Gary Braasch
WorldViewOfGlobalWarming.org
23
Melting Glaciers More Earthquakes?
In a new study, NASA and United States Geological
Survey (USGS) scientists found that retreating
glaciers in southern Alaska may be opening the
way for future earthquakes. The study examined
the likelihood of increased earthquake activity
in southern Alaska as a result of rapidly melting
glaciers. As glaciers melt they lighten the load
on the Earth's crust. Tectonic plates, that are
mobile pieces of the Earth's crust, can then move
more freely.
24
Patagonian ice fields
25
Increased Temperatures
Poor communities are most directly dependent for
their livelihoods on a stable and hospitable
climate. Many areas, including southern Australia
and parts of Africa, are seeing longer and more
frequent droughts as the climate gets hotter.
Hot, dry summers are fuelling massive blazes
across the high-latitude forests of Russia and
North America.
26
Increased Temperatures
Methane Hydrates, locked within the seabed at the
bottom of deep oceans could become unstable as
the sea temperature rises. Should that happen,
global warming could go well beyond current
projections leading to runaway climate change. It
is believed that methane hydrates may have been
involved in some of the most intense warming
periods in Earths history.
27
Increased Temperatures
As the Siberian permafrost melts Methane trapped
within the frozen bog escapes into the atmosphere
causing further increases in GHG concentrations.
Permafrost has warmed by up to 2c since the
1980s.
28
Habitat Damage and Species Affected
Climate change could kill more than a third of
the worlds plant and animal species by 2050. As
the world warms species are losing habitat and
unable to adapt to the rapidly changing
conditions. Some species may become less/more
abundant, disrupting the food chain.
29
Habitat Damage and Species Affected
Melting icebergs and glaciers means less ice for
polar bears to breed and reproduce on. It also
means more swimming for the bears, which requires
more energy and therefore more food for the bear.
30
Ocean Acidification
  • 1. Up to one half of the carbon dioxide (CO2)
    released by burning fossil fuels over the past
    200 years has been absorbed by the world's oceans
  • 2. Absorbed CO2 in seawater (H2O) forms carbonic
    acid (H2CO3), lowering the water's pH level and
    making it more acidic
  • This raises the hydrogen ion concentration in the
    water, and limits organisms' access to carbonate
    ions, which are needed to form hard parts
  • Populations of these organisms are limited,
    disrupting food chains

31
Ocean Acidification
The pH of the world's oceans is not consistent
across the globe. Researchers believe that areas
with relatively low pH (the purple areas on the
map above), such as the eastern Pacific, could be
the result of the upwelling of deeper, colder,
CO2-richer waters.
32
Effects of Ocean Acidification
Decreased amount of coral reefs, plankton, and
invertebrates Warm water coral reefs - Evidence
suggests that the calcification rates of these
corals will be reduced by up to 60 a reduction
of this magnitude could adversely affect reef
structures, as growth depends on corals' ability
to build faster than the skeleton is eroded.
Weaker structures are likely to be prone to
greater degrees of erosion from storms and heavy
wave action. Cold-water corals - cold-water
corals can provide vital habitat for several
commercially important fish species. Forecasts
suggest that about 70 of the corals could find
themselves under threat by the end of the
century. Plankton - These tiny organisms play
an important role in the marine food chain.
Several groups of plankton produce calcium
carbonate, and could see their distribution
curtailed by ocean acidification.
Invertebrates - the main impact is expected to
be thin or deformed shells. Juveniles have been
shown to be more susceptible than adults to
limited carbonate ions, which could have
long-term consequences as far as viable
populations are concerned.
33
Ways to Mitigate Human Influence on Climate
Change-Local level
  • Support renewable energy initiatives
  • Decrease demand for goods with high carbon
    footprint-buy locally
  • Improve insulation, use energy efficient bulbs,
    install skylights in homes
  • Recycle materials
  • Turn off lights when not in use
  • Shop with a canvas bag, limiting use of plastic
  • Wash clothes in cold water instead of hot

34
Ways to Mitigate Human Influence on climate
change-government scale
  • Urban planning-public transportation, close
    proximity of housing to town centers
  • Increase forested land
  • Utilize natural gas, produces 30 less CO2 when
    burned
  • Develop solar radiation management techniques
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