Is Global Climate Change Caused by Humans?

The primary contributor to climatic change is the accumulation of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere leading to changes in the global weather patterns. Global warming has been attributed in human and natural contributors. The prior includes activities like burning of coal, oil, and gas. Other activities like deforestation and burning of forests have also distorted the climatic patterns. Engaging in these activities poses a threat to the wellbeing of people and other living organisms; hence it is immoral. Besides, the practices have led to environmental degradation which constitutes the non-moral premises. The natural factors are occurrences like volcanic eruptions and aerosol release. Scientists have revealed that human activities are the largest contributors towards global warming. Besides, natural events mentioned rarely happen. Therefore, humans are the major cause of global climatic changes.

The first reason supporting the stand is that burning fossil fuel is the largest cause of greenhouse gases emission. Following the Industrial Revolution, people have exploited fossil fuel, particularly, in manufacturing plants that end up emitting poisonous gases into the air. When gas, coal, and oil from power plants and vehicles get consumed, there is an excessive release of Carbon IV Oxide and soot in the atmosphere. On the other hand, carbon absorbs sunlight; hence, causing local warming. Carbon IV Oxide forms a blanket over the atmosphere preventing sun rays from reaching the earth leading to a buildup of heat; hence, higher temperatures. Since all fossil fuels are made up of carbon, the end product is a significant amount of CO2 which has been identified as the greenhouse gas causing most of the climatic changes witnessed globally. Statistics indicate that when one gallon of gasoline is burned approximately 19 pounds of CO2 is released into space. The excessive amounts of CO2 in the air will cause global warming which lead to adverse environmental conditions like drought; hence people die.

The second argument regards the cutting of trees and burning forests, which has also led to climatic changes in the world. The rise of industrialization is also to blame for the destruction of forests for timber and fuel. Some of the benefits of trees in climate regulation include their ability to absorb CO2 from the air and utilize it in food processing (Photosynthesis). Therefore, eliminating the forests increases the amounts of CO2 in the atmosphere causing global warming. Similarly, trees are stores for carbon so when they are burned downCO2 is released back into the air. The figures presented as at 2011 revealed that poor use of land including loss of forests resulted in up to 23% of the total CO2 emissions contributed by human activities. This quantity equates to 17% of the total global greenhouse emissions. The destruction of forests eliminates some organisms making them extinct while the environment is degraded as it leads to things like soil erosion.

People against the idea that humans are the main cause of climatic changes argue that natural causes are the primary contributors. These include volcanic eruptions, sun rays, dust, and aerosols. Volcanic eruptions have also been associated with the massive climatic changes observed worldwide as they release tiny molecules into the atmosphere causing a cooling effect. For instance, the explosions that took place in Krakatoa Indonesia (1883) and Mount Pinatubo Philippines (1991) caused a reduction in temperatures for many years. The reason was that the particles mainly sulfur dioxide SO2 emitted prevented the sun’s energy from reaching the earth surface. The dark lava excreted from the volcano also has a high affinity for solar power and can cause local warming. The level of damage expected to happen when volcanoes erupt is not yet known with certainty. Besides, research shows that not all eruptions affect the climatic conditions. Thus, this factor might not necessarily be the main contributor to climatic changes.

Aerosols emissions into the air have also led to climatic changes in varying ways. Examples of aerosols are natural inorganic materials (dust and sea salt), natural organic materials (smoke and spores), and anthropogenic yield of burning items like ashes and dust. They can reflect sunlight to the earth surface causing a heating effect, which raises the temperatures. The aerosols are also capable of altering the temperatures through clouds. Thus, they also work in an opposite approach compared to the greenhouse gases that result in heating. The salt particles are responsible for the reflection of sunlight while soot present in black carbon aerosols absorbs sun rays. As a result, both cooling and heating of the atmosphere take place. Aerosols are categorized as natural influencers of climatic conditions; however, most of the resultant effects are triggered by humans. Therefore, for climatic changes to take place there must have been some people driven actions.

In summary, the current global weather has become unpredictable. The reason is the natural and human activities have distorted the climatic patterns. Although, the latter has largely contributed to the changes observed in the global climate compared to the natural causes. These natural factors include volcanic eruptions which do not happen most of times as is the case for human made aspects. Some of the human activities that have influenced climatic shifts are the clearing of forests and burning of fossil fuel. These operations have increased greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere leading to adverse effects on the environment. The current state of the world environment is worrying since the rate of gaseous release into the atmosphere has increased. Therefore, people should stop destructive activities and adopt environmentally friendly methods like use of renewable sources of energy.