CarbonDioxide and Global Climate Change Carbon dioxide is an important heat trapping gas that isreleased to the atmosphere through anthropogenic emissions such asdeforestation and fossil fuel combustion. It can also be released to theatmosphere through natural processes occurring such as respiration and volcaniceruptions. During burning of fossil fuels, carbon dioxide is formed becausecarbon mixes up with oxygen in the air. There are other heat trapping gassesthat contributes to Global Warming such as nitrous oxide, water vapor, methaneand CFCs. Although carbon dioxide is one of the most abundant gas contributorto the warming of the atmosphere, but it is not as active as compared to theother gasses such as methane and CFCs which is regulated by the Internationallaw because of how significantly it can contribute to the trapping of heat inthe atmosphere and the depletion of the ozone layer.
When greenhouse gasses arepresent, the heat from the sun that is radiated to the earth (short waveradiation) which is supposed to radiate back towards space (long waveradiation) is trapped and redirected at all directions and mostly (90%) areradiated back towards the earth’s surface which in turn makes the atmospherewarmer. According to a source that I have read, that there is a direct linkbetween carbon dioxide and global warming because carbon dioxide has beenconfirmed by several empirical evidences that it contributes to an enhancedgreenhouse effect. Less energy escaping to space at the wavelength of carbondioxide were observed during the last 40 years by satellites used to measureinfrared spectra. Surface measurement found that there are more infraredradiation going downwards which causes the warming of the planet’s surface.Because of the rise of greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere, there arevarious effects on the planet’s climate that are now occurring: some countrieslike the Philippines are experiencing extreme weather conditions, because ofwarmer temperature, it allows more evaporation and precipitation and some regionsbecomes dryer or wetter, ice on some places such as Greenland and Antarcticaare melting which causes the sea level to rise, some plants may grow vigorouslywhen level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases, furthermore, shiftingclimate patterns and higher temperature will change the regions where somecrops grows best and lastly, ocean acidificationwhere water in the ocean is becoming more acidic due to frequent release ofcarbon dioxide which the ocean waters absorbs.
There can be further detrimentaleffects the global climate change as predicted by scientist: temperature willcontinue to rise, global climate will perpetually change through this centuryand the next, more droughts and heat waves will likely occur, change ofprecipitation patterns, typhoons or hurricanes will have new records as thestrongest and biggest, arctic regions will be free of ice and by year 2100 sealevel will rise by up to 1-4 ft. Energysources now and for the futureSunis the primary source of energy in our current era, it has profound effects onthe earth as all organisms relies on it as the main source of energy. All formsof energy are derived from the energy that the sun provides. The sun powershumungous transfers of heat and pressure in weather patterns and oceanpressures, and this results to air current that drives the wind turbines toturn and heat from the sun prompts evaporation which brings precipitation tohydropower sources. Electricityis not an energy rather a carrier of energy.
It is a secondary source ofenergy. Electricity can be acquired through coal, nuclear fission reactions,natural gas, sunlight, wind and hydropower. Electricity has a wide range ofapplications making it versatile.Thereare 3 types of fossil fuel that are known: natural gas, coal and oil.
We dependon these energy sources to run a vehicle, to utilize amenities in our homes, togive power to establishments. Almost all things in the modern era utilizes thisenergy. This energy will soon diminish as long as we use it, which will be agood thing because it can help reduce the greenhouse gasses that are emitted.
Nuclearenergy is one of the great technological achievement of the 21stcentury, it is in which atoms of radioactive elements are broken apart intosmaller and release energy in the process. The released energy boils waterproducing steams that drives turbines which is being converted to mechanicalenergy that generates electricity. It currently provides 20% of totalelectricity generation in the United States and 9.5% of total energy consumed.Renewableresources is the notion of drawing energy sources from renewable sources. Whatmakes it appealing is that it doesn’t emit greenhouse gasses. This energy source cannot provide enough as asupply for large scale usage and capturing these energy is expensive and someare intermittent.
In spite of the hype around the renewable energy, many don’trealize that wind and solar energy has just made a tiny dent in the energy mix.Many people nowadays are starting to adopt green technology but if we want toeliminate fossil fuel in the future, there is still a big mountain to climb.There are many ideas for alternative sources of energy for the future, somecountries have tried to derive geothermal heat from magma, some ideas were”embeddable solar power”- putting solar panel onto windows of houses, utilizinghydrogen as energy source as it is a clean source, harnessing the power oftides and many more. SolarRadiation and Primary ProductionSolarradiation is the general term for electromagnetic radiation that is emitted bythe sun. This energy can be captured and utilized to produce heat, electricityusing various technologies.Terrestrialecosystems relies on the sun to bring upon energy to the earth that supportslife, growth and metabolism.
Plants, grasses, trees and etc are called primaryproducers, organisms that produce food that carries energy to the top of thefood chain. They manufacture through photosynthesis new organic molecules suchas carbohydrates and lipids from raw inorganic materials such as carbon, waterand mineral nutrients. These newly formed organic materials locks up energy inchemical bonds which provides energy accessible to heterotrophs (organisms thatconsumes rather than produce). Furthermore, plants are important carriers ofenergy from one consumer to another. The energetic and carbon-rich products ofprimary production energy to drive their metabolism while providing essentialcarbon-containing compounds that form the bricks and mortar of living cells. Energy,Carbon Balance and Climate ChangeEnergybalance may refer to the first law of thermodynamics which states that energycannot be created nor destroyed rather transferred to different entities, earth’senergy imbalance which is the difference of incoming shortwave radiation andoutgoing long wave radiation, or energy balance in Biology which measuresbiological homeostasis of energy in living systems.Throughthe increasing amount of carbon in the atmosphere, the earth is likely to continueto heat up for the next decades to come with more droughts to be experiencedand more extreme weather conditions to be recorded getting much higher thanbefore.
It is well known that since the industrial revolution began, the amountof greenhouse gasses released in the atmosphere increased. To compensate theincreasing levels of greenhouse gasses, we humans should take some actions toserve as counterbalance for this phenomena.Carbonbalance is the act of regulating the amount of carbon utilized. Capturing andsecuring carbon emitted from the global energy system or from other sources iscalled sequestration. This is a truly unprecedented technology the willneutralize the rise of temperature on the planet.