Global Warming, What is it?

Sophia Dababo, Journalist

Have you ever taken a moment to really think about what Global Warming is? Or why the earth is slowly starting to heat up while glaciers in freezing places like Antarctica are collapsing and melting? Global warming is the long-term warming of Earth’s climate system that has been seen from the pre-industrial period (between 1850 and 1900) as a result of human activity. It is mainly due to burning fossil fuel, which raises heat-trapping greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere. The terms are sometimes used interchangeably, whereas the other refers to both human- and naturally-caused warming, as well as the consequences for our world. The average rise in Earth’s global surface temperature is the most frequent measure.

Some people think that Global Warming is the same thing as Climate Change. Climate Change is the result of Global Warming. Climate change is the term used to describe long-term changes in the Earth’s climate. Human activities, especially fossil fuel burning, have increased heat-trapping greenhouse gas levels in Earth’s atmosphere, elevating Earth’s average surface temperature, as shown in changes in the climate from the early twentieth century. Global warming is the term used to describe the temperature rises caused by humans. To monitor and research past, current, and future climate change, scientists employ data from the ground, air, and space, as well as theoretical models. Global land and ocean temperature increases; rising sea levels; ice loss at Earth’s poles and in mountain glaciers; frequency and intensity changes in extreme weather such as hurricanes, heatwaves, wildfires, droughts, floods, and precipitation; and cloud and greenery cover changes, to name a few, are all evidence of climate change key indicators.

In comparison to pre-industrial levels, the Earth’s temperature has already increased by 1°C. Although this increase in temperature appears minor, it has a significant impact on the world’s climate. This is due to the enormous amount of additional energy required to raise the global temperature even little. This additional energy acts as a ‘force-feeding’ mechanism for the global climate system. 

Global warming is helping determine future climate expectations. Heat waves will come extremely frequently and temperatures will continue to rise as long as Global Warming doesn’t stop. A lot of people don’t take the time to think about Global Warming, what it really is, and how bad it will really affect our future.