Friday, September 27, 2013

Blog 3: Climate Panel Says Upper Limit on Emissions Is Nearing


        The issue with Global Warming in the past has been a matter of reality, but finally due to extensive research, the acceptance that human activity has increased this process is finally starting to stick. The intergovernmental panel, the scientific body from which most governments are advised about global warming, issued five major reports; each of them identifying human activity has a primary cause for global warming. One report actually assigns a percentage, 90-100, that global warming is human-caused. Journalist, Justin Gillis, then reviews the reports for the "carbon budget". This states that by 2040 the trillionth ton of carbon will have been released if emissions continue at their current pace. These emissions are directly linked to industrial factories and forest destruction. These carbon emissions increase the greenhouse effect that leads to ice caps melting, rising sea levels, warming of the atmosphere, and in some cases extreme weather. A scientist at Oxford University, Dr. Myles R. Allen, reports that making changes to decrease our carbon emissions is technically possible but doesn't think that organizations will comply because the applications can be expensive. Despite efforts like the Kyoto Protocol, that sought to limit global emissions (not signed by either China or the United States), efforts still continue. Obama announced his intentions for limiting emissions under the Clean Air Act, that would require the industries that continue to burn coal for electricity to develop technology for cleaner emissions. Rising efforts have renewed hope for other countries and have pointed toward hopes for a global climate treaty in 2015.

          When global warming became a political issue, it also became a social one. Not only are scientists the ones supporting efforts to limit carbon emissions but so are the everyday citizens. Efforts like protests and buying from companies that also support the cause has become major trends. This idea has even affected the fashion world through the "ecofashion" or green fashion in which iconography that supports a cleaner world is shown through t-shirts, buttons, bags, etc. The main point is that advocating for a cleaner planet cannot just be a phase and it is going to take society to deem it unacceptable for some serious influence on the industries that are causing these carbon emissions.

Breanna Steinke
September 27 2013

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