Arctic ice and sea level rise has an impact regardless of global location. Warming and subsequent melting of the ice caps in the arctic and Antarctic circles, has effected global ecosystems from U. S to Bangladesh irrespective of their geographical locations and features. Rapid melting of ice sheet in the arctic and Greenland contributes extensively to the projected 0. 2 to 2. 0 meters of global rising seas by the year 2100. The real question however; what are the key factors that speed up this process that jeopardizes the lives of billions of people worldwide? Greenland is home to most of the Arctic’s land ice that is estimated to be in the region of 2. 96 million cubic kilometers – and it’s melting into the ocean. When inevitably, the entire surface ice thaws, the average sea levels will increase by at least 7 meters resulting in eventual flooding of coastal cities like Mumbai and Hong Kong on the on the other side of the world bringing catastrophic devastation to billions rendering them homeless or in a far worse predicament. (US Department of Commerce, 2009)
This surface thawing of ice sheets is not just limited to Greenland but has also drastically spread to the Patagonian peninsula, Russian Arctic, Alaska and Norway’s Svalbard Islands. The phenomenon is attributed to the fact that in warmer climates, oceans absorb heat from the ecosystem making it a lot less dense. This water follows the principal of expansive residual heat transfer to in turn heat the water molecules gradually increasing the overall footprint of the warmer water body that results in melting of more ice gradually raising global water levels. This overall rising of the water levels has substantially made the global coastal areas extremely vulnerable to natural disasters with catastrophes such as hurricanes and typhoons caused by differences in atmospheric pressures becoming more and stronger and recursive. Our collective society operates on the precedence that certain aspects of the climatic conditions have to be well integrated in the way we live and prosper. With drastic and accelerated climate changes, it is only natural that an imbalance in these conditions will make certain selective members of our society more vulnerable to the perils that lay ahead. These individuals can be classified anywhere from those who will be exposed to tropical storms and drought to older adults and immigrant communities facing malnourishment and scarcity of medical care.
Furthermore, professions and industries such as leisure, tourism and agriculture will also face devastating impacts resetting the socio-economic standards for the worse. ()Economic impacts of global warming will also be felt globally as growth zones may form due to land previously suitable for growing seasonal or yearly crop may become too arid, saline or wet. This would significantly alter the course of crop yield and generation cycles hitting farmers and industries dependent on the produce hard. Rising shorelines are also the cause of immense distress for inhabitants of coastal areas as projected data shows that inevitable mass migration inwards will require newer infrastructure specifically housing to be built, the cities that will resist nature will also have to invest heavily in dikes and other forms of water management systems. ()Environmental impacts however are perhaps the most important features to be considered and addressed moving forwards. In the documentary, it was discussed in great detail how acidification of water bodies due to absorption of carbon dioxide could jeopardize global ecosystems. Furthermore, more and severe hot days than previously recorded combined with more adverse and extreme weather conditions could spell danger for billions worldwide. Al Gore stated, ‘‘every boxer has a plan, until they get punched in the face’’ referring to the fact that the US, under the present government, has backed out of the Accord. If Donald Trump thought his decision would cripple the Paris agreement and global momentum on climate action, the reality one year later looks quite different. Explain this statement using 2 more recent examples. Trump administration’s lack of interest in fulfilling its responsibilities as the protectors of environment accords and agreements is not just reflected in the US pulling out of the Paris environmental accord, but also numerous other intensive and important measures that the US government has turned a blind eye to.
The roll- back of certain regulations that limited toxic mercury pollution, smog and carbon emissions emitted by power plants also paint a picture the ridiculous standards that the administration looks forward to upholding. A close aide of Donald Trump and now EPA’s leader; Scott Pruitt in a bid to win support from the 1% has made it his duty to roll back Obama-era Clean power plan, a plan that regulated staunch carbon emissions. Although Pruitt, in the process has become public enemy number one for environmentalists, and rightly so, his antics don’t seem to simmer down any time soon. (Michaelson, 2017)
Opening more land for coal excavation in the West and offering the largest gulf lease for fossil fuel excavation in the Gulf of Mexico; a whopping 77 million acres has also caused an uproar amongst the public as these plans will adversely affect the indigenous inhabitants and ecosystems. Such fossil fuel excavations are reminiscent of some of the worst disasters in human history like the deep water Horizon oil spill that killed countless and untold numbers of marine life and destroyed beaches forever. Drilling in forbidden and sacred lands may also become the next step in Trumps charter of economic reforms such as pristine arctic wildlife refuge, a plan that may destroy the lands forever.
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