About Global Warming
"There's no natural condition that we know about in a really long time where the greenhouse gas levels were anywhere near what they are now." -Edward Brock, Geoscientist, Oregon State University
Global warming is one of the most hotly-debated topics on the planet. It is the phenomenon that is slowly heating up the Earth. Earth's average global temperature has increased by 1 degree fahrenheit over the past century. This may not seem like much, but at the rate we are going, temperatures could increase by 6 degrees in the next century, which would change Earth's climate like never before, result in devastating natural disasters.
Global warming refers to an average increase in the Earth's temperature, which causes changes in climate. Climate refers to average weather conditions and includes both regular weather sequences (like the change of seasons) and special weather events (like hurricanes and floods).
A warmer Earth could lead to changes in rainfall patterns, a rise in sea level, and a wide range of impacts on plants, wildlife, and humans. There is a great deal of concern regarding the issue of climate change and global warming caused by human activities. What humans are doing on Earth is directly affecting the world in which we live. Excess pollution released into the atmosphere is trapped which, in turn, warms the Earth.
The Greenhouse Effect is the rise in temperature due to gases such as water vapor, carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, and methane trap energy from the sun in the atmosphere. If these gases were not present, heat could escape back into space and Earth's average temperature would be as much as 60 degrees cooler.