Global Warming Around the World taylor johnson & lea markley

Global Warming is a gradual increase in the overall temperature of the earth's atmosphere. This is generally attributed to the greenhouse effect, and is caused by increased levels of carbon dioxide, chlorofluorocarbons, and other pollutants.

Climate change is primarily caused by the growing amount of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere, often referred to as "greenhouse gases" (carbon dioxide, methane, etc). This is a result from human activities, such as deforestation, pollution, and burning fossil fuels.

Who/What Does it Effect?

  • Health impacts
  • Economic impacts
  • Forest impacts
  • Water impacts
  • Species and Ecosystems impacts

Health Impacts

  • High air pollution
  • Spread of diseases
  • Asthma
  • Death

As China Roars, Pollution Reaches Deadly Extremes

China is currently the number one polluting country in the world. This is largely due to it's high populations of 1.36 billion people and large dependance on coal-fired power plants. Coal-fired power is the dirtiest source of energy and the power plants release this high concentration of polluted air directly into their atmosphere with little to no filtration. Coal-power plants also release an extremely large amount of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide into the atmosphere, leading to acidic rain. This high level of air pollution has led to cancer being the leading cause of death in China. Around 400,000 people die prematurely due to outdoor air pollution. Due to high levels of acidic rain, only 500 million people have access to clean drinking water and large portions of their surrounding ocean is unsuitable for marine life. Although China is currently reaching an all time high economically, they are reaching dangerously high levels of pollution as well. “It is a very awkward situation for the country because our greatest achievement is also our biggest burden,” says Wang Jinnan, one of China’s leading environmental researchers.

Economic Impacts

  • Damage to property and infrastructure.
  • Lost productivity
  • Coping costs
  • Mass migration and security threats

Global Warming is Worse for the Economy Than We Thought

Scientists at Stanford and UC Berkeley have conducted a study about the economic impact that global warming has on the economy. They looked at data from 160 countries across a 50-year period from 1960 to 2010. The scientists found that an average local temperature of 13°C is economically ideal, particularly for agricultural productivity. That temperature roughly reflects the current climate in many wealthy countries like the United States, Japan, France, and China.

Global relationship between annual average temperature and change in log gross domestic product (GDP) per capita during 1960–2010 with 90% confidence interval, broken down by poor and rich countries, agricultural and non-agricultural GDP, and time frames (1960–1989 and 1990–2010). Source: Burke et al. (2015), Nature.

"If regional temperatures are cooler, then warming benefits the local economy, but past that peak temperature, warming reduces economic productivity." The study found that if we continue on the path of high fossil fuel consumption and carbon pollution, 77% of countries will be poorer in 2100 than they would be in a world in which we avoid global warming. As a result, some countries (5% to 43% of the world’s nations) might even be poorer in 2100 than they are today.

There is some good news, however. Colder countries, such as Canada and Russia, will experience economic benefits from global warming. However, most of their trade partners will suffer from slowed economic growth at the same time. The countries with hot climates, whose economic productivity will take a hard hit from further global warming, tend to already be poor (in regions like Africa, southeast Asia, and South America). This reinforces the unfortunate reality that poorer countries, which contribute the least to the problem, are the most vulnerable to the consequences of climate change.

Change in national GDP per capita in 2100 under business-as-usual warming (RCP8.5) relative to projection using constant 1980–2010 average temperatures. Source: Burke et al. (2015), Nature.

Forest Impacts

  • Forest dispersion and shifting
  • Forest fires
  • Rising tree lines
  • Forest disease and pest infestations

How a Changing Climate Will Double the Amount of Forest Fires in Canada

A new government report says that by the end of this century, a changing climate is expected to at least double the area burned each year by forest fires in Canada. The annual forest assessment of 2015 data by Natural Resources Canada says "a warming climate will contribute to a 50% increase in large fires, new tree diseases, and more insect infestations." Scientists say it is "difficult to link any single natural disaster such as a flood or fire to man-made global warming, but that the frequency and intensity of such events has been increasing and is likely to continue, especially in a northern latitude country like Canada."

Water Impacts

  • Decline in drinking water
  • Acid rain
  • Decline in irrigation supplies
  • Higher shipping costs
  • Disruptions to power supply
  • Effects on recreation
  • Melting Glaciers
  • Raising ocean levels
  • Floods

Iceland Springs Up Like A Trampoline

Glaciers and icecaps cover around 10% of Iceland. Due to global warming the glaciers have melted and retreated by 1 kilometer from the islands coastline. The rising in temperature due to climate change has the led the country to "rebound" from the earths crust due to a lack of pressure. Due to this lack of pressure, Iceland is rising in elevation by 1.5 inches a year. Although 1.5 inches does not seem like a lot, Iceland is also a hotspot for volcanic activity. As the glaciers melt and the earth rises this increases the amount of volcanic eruptions. Although Iceland is the number one least polluting country in the world they are receiving the most immediate effects of global warming.

Species and Ecosystem Impacts

  • Extinction
  • Disease
  • Increase in pathogens and mosquitoes
  • Damaged agriculture fisheries and habitats
  • Disruption of coral reefs and Alpine meadows
  • Acidic oceans

The Great Barrier Reef:A Catastrophe Laid Bare

One of the seven wonders of the world is dying. The Great Barrier Reef "stretches more than 2,300km in length and, between its almost 3,000 individual reefs, covers an area about the size of Germany. It is an underwater world of unimaginable scale." "1,600 species of fish, 130 types of sharks and rays, and more than 30 species of whales and dolphins, it is one of the most complex ecosystems on the planet." Over 2 million people visit this ecosystem making tourism a large part of Australia's income. Studies show that 93% percent of the reefs have been touched by bleach, and 22% has completely died. Coral reefs are sensitive ecosystems and die off when the water is too warm causing algae to take over or when water pollution is high. The death of this ecosystem is causing the death of hundreds of marine life creatures and plants. Actions toward improvement are in motion, but it is estimated that it will take around 1 billion dollars to improve Australia's quality of water and help save The Great Barrier Reef.

Country Pollution Index

Top 10 Polluting Countries

Donald Trump’s election could mean ‘planetary disaster’, environmentalists warn as UN climate summit begins

As mentioned previously, China is the leading polluting country in the world. The UN is extremely concerned in the fact that the future president of the United States does not believe in global warming. He believes that it is a "Chinese hoax". Trumps views have caused France to be concerned with the future of the Paris Agreement. The Paris agreement are solid actions for the entire world to enforce in order to keep the earth from reaching dangerous temperatures. Trump has discussed that he will remove the U.S from signing the agreement due to his ignorant disbelief in climate change despite the efforts of the current president, Barack Obama.

Climate Change Laws and Regulations

United States of America



The Climate Change Agreement in Paris

Effects That Will Continue to Happen if Global Warming Continues

  • Rise of sea level between 7 and 26 inches (caused by melting poles)
  • Floods and droughts will become more common
  • Hurricanes and other storms are likely to become stronger
  • Diseases will continue to spread

What You Can Do to Reduce Global Warming

  • Reduce, reuse, recycle
  • Use less heat and air conditioning
  • Drive less and drive smart
  • Encourage others to conserve
  • Plant a tree
  • Even making a presentation such as this and sharing it is a small way to contribute!


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