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Penguins With Sunburns: An Argumentative Research Paper On Global Warming

2073 words - 9 pages

Global warming is a term that causes many to roll their eyes and, yet, drags others into a heated debate. Some believe the whole matter to be a fake. They think politicians invented global warming in order to become elected. Others "puzzle over how a whole generation could have sleepwalked into" (Billy 19) crisis. While many choose to ignore global warming, the earth's rising temperature must not be disregarded as the dreams of politicians and environmentalists.Some believe that humans do not aid global warming; they believe global warming to be part of the earth's natural cycles. "The climate is constantly changing, not just season to season but year to year, century to century, and ...view middle of the document...

These changes include "more intense rain and snowfalls, increased winter precipitation, more droughts, floods and heat waves" (Gelbspan, "Boiling Point" 25-26).Some argue that global warming will be beneficial to the environment. Warmer temperatures allow an increase in crop production. Higher crop production means less people will go hungry (Hopwood 13). While warmer temperatures permit crops to be sown in previously frozen lands, the increase in temperature causes increased flooding along coastlines and increased droughts, preventing crop growth (Effects 13).Global warming exists and causes radical changes in the environment."…glaciers are shrinking around the world. Artic sea ice has lost almost half its thickness in recent decades. Natural disasters are increasing rapidly around theworld. Those caused by the weather-such as drought, storms and floods -are rising three times faster than those-such as earthquakes-that are not." (Billy 21)Global warming increases the frequency and severity of storms such as hurricanes and typhoons. Some scientists say that "September [2004's] repeated battering of Flordia and the Carribean" (Billy 26) and the severity of 2005's hurricanes, mostly Katrina, Rita, and Wilma, are a foretaste of what may be to come. The storms pick up energy from warm oceans. As the oceans heat up storms, grow in intensity and threaten areas, which were previously too cold, see to such severe weather. (Billy 26)If the earth were indeed following a global warming trend, an increased hurricane season in 2006 would seem normal. In fact , the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration "called for a very active 2006 season with 13-16 named storms, 8-10 hurricanes, and 4-6 major hurricanes" (Milloy 1). They predicted wrong. The 2006 hurricane season closed with nine named storms and a mere five hurricanes. Not one of the hurricanes made landfall in the U.S. (2006 1-2).What happened? The forcasters did not consider the possibility of an El Nino. Gerry Bell of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center said, "It turns out that El Nino developed more rapidly that expected, and the atmosphere responded quickly" (qtd. in 2006 2). An El Nino occurs when warm water "pools" in the Pacific Ocean. This causes change in the atmosphere, which in turn, causes an increase of eastbound winds. "As a result Alantic hurricanes are weakened and pushed from the U.S. East Coast" (2006 2).Historically, an El Nino happens "every three to seven years" (Christianson 233) and alternate with La Ninas, which are caused by pools of cool water located in the Pacific (Gelbspan, "The Heat Is On" 143). As the National Center for Atmospheric Research's KevinTernberth and Timothy Hoar "pointed out…starting in 1976, El Ninos have popped up with a frequency unmatched in the last 113 years" (Christianson 224) The longest El Nino on record occurred in 1991 and "lingered" until 1995.Many scientists warn that a rise in sea...

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