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A Layperson's View of Future Technology and Society

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Future Technology

Future of









Future of Earth

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Global Warming

Global Warming

The National Academy of Sciences, a private organization of top scientists that advises the U.S. government on scientific matters, reported on June 22, 2006, that the "recent warmth is unprecedented for at least the last 400 years and potentially the last several millennia" and that "human activities are responsible for much of the recent warming".

The report goes on to say that from the start of the 20th century, there were sharp rises in the "greenhouse" gases, carbon dioxide and methane. These two gases are believed to be the main contributors to global warming, by trapping heat in the Earth's atmosphere, similar to the way that a windshield traps heat in a car.

What is producing enough greenhouse gases to change the climate of our planet? Since the industrial age began, factories, power plants, and cars have burned coal and gasoline. Spitting out an endless stream of carbon dioxide. We produce millions of pounds of methane by allowing our trash to decompose in landfills and from agricultural sources like cattle and fertilizer.

Scientists all over the world agree that humans are the cause of global warming and that it could have catastrophic effects. It is important for all countries to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases now, to limit the future effects of global warming.

As a society, we must break our dependency on fuels that cause pollution by supporting clean, renewable energy sources. Each of us can slow global warming by reducing the amount of energy we use and the pollution we produce as individuals every day.

The Impact of Global Warming

What effects will global warming have on the Earth and its inhabitants in the future? Are there any effects from global warming visible now?

Due to the enormous complexity of the atmosphere, the most useful tools for gauging future changes are 'climate models'. These are computer programs which simulate the climate's behavior.

Climate models are constantly improving based on both our understanding and the increase in computer power. However, climate models are just simulations and they can only be as good as the knowledge and skill of the people who create them. With that in mind, here are what some scientists are predicting as the potential consequences of global warming.

Earth

A number of geologists suggest that glacial melting due to climate change will release pressures in the Earth's crust, causing extreme geological events such as earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions.

Wind

The number of powerful and dangerous hurricanes could increase. Warmer water in the oceans pumps more energy into tropical storms, making them more intense and potentially more destructive.

Fire

Heat waves could be more frequent and severe. This could cause more heat related deaths. Warmer and dryer conditions could bring drought conditions and increase the risk of wildfires.

Global Warming Articles, Blogs and Web Sites

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Global Warming Articles
Title Source Date
Why climate change is inevitable The Week 02/14
Industry Awakens to Threat of Climate Change The New York Times 01/14
Long-Term Climate Warming Trend Sunstained in 2013 NASA 01/14
Even if emissions stop, carbon dioxide could warm Earth for centuries PhysOrg 11/13
World set to heat up despite clean-energy efforts, IEA warns PhysOrg 11/13
Pacific Ocean waters absorbing heat 15 times faster over past 60 years than in past 10,000 PhysOrg 11/13
Earth is warmer today than during 70 to 80 percent of the past 11,300 years PhysOrg 03/13
Brace Yourselves, the Drought's Not Close to Over Yet Smithsonian 02/13
Is the ozone layer on the road to recovery? ESA 02/13
A Cheap and Easy Plan to Stop Global Warming MIT Technology Review 02/13
Study Finds That Portions of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Are Warming Twice as Fast as Previously Thought NSF 12/12
Unprecedented Blooms of Ocean Plant Life NASA 11/12
Climate Change and Food Security – New E-learning Course Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations 04/12
How to feed the world in 2050: actions in a changing climate Youtube 04/12
Global Warming is Affecting Weather National Wildlife Federation 03/12
Climate scientists forecast permanently hotter summers Stanford University 06/11
Climate 'technical fix' may yield warming, not cooling BBC News 04/11
Climate Change Poses Major Risks for Unprepared Cities NSF 04/11
Ice Cores Yield Rich History of Climate Change NSF 02/11
Insuring the world’s poor against climate change UPI 06/10
Human Cause, Global Effect PopSci 05/08
Human-Caused Climate Change NASA 05/08
60 Minutes interview of James Hansen CBS 03/06

 

Global Warming Web Sites and Blogs
Title Description
Climate Change Science Overview EPA
Climate Reality Project Take action on the climate crisis
Global Footprint Network To enable a sustainable future
GLOBAL WARMING: Early Warning Signs Climate Hot Map
Global Warming FAQs National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
How to Fight Global Warming Natural Resources Defense Council
Hurricanes and Global Warming Pew Center
IPCC The Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change
Kyoto Protocol UNFCCC
PlanetSave Environmentally-focused blogs

 

References
Article Sources
Global Warming Article and animation by ffa
The Impacts of Global Warming Article by ffa
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