Global Warming For And Against Essay Sample
Global Warming: Causes and Mitigation
It is an indisputable truth that global warming has become a major challenge and a cause of worry to humans who are at risk of extinction, bearing in mind the rate of continual rise in the earth’s average temperature. It is even more worrisome that some governments are yet to come to terms with the fact that global warming poses a serious threat to humans and requires urgent action.
As this phenomenon undermines food and water security, environmental sustainability and a disruption in the delicate balance of the ecosystem, climate change becomes inevitable coming with its dire consequences.
According to World Bank sources, the Millennium Development Goals MDGs and its prospects are also threatened by global climate changes. The resulting changes in weather “such as shifts in the intensity and pattern of rainfall and variations in temperature” would probably decrease agricultural/food output as a result of the death of the infrastructure; hence environmental disasters, like drought or flood, would displace people’s means of livelihood leading to poverty, migration and diseases. (World Bank, 2010).
Global warming is indeed a major challenge for the world today. Although the figures may vary between regions, most people all over the world, however, agree that it is a serious problem requiring urgent attention. For instance, the World Bank 2010 development Indicators puts it succinctly:
“The poorest countries and regions face the greatest danger. Africa – with the most rain-fed agricultural land of any continent, half its population without access to improved water sources, and about 70 percent without access to improved sanitation facilities – is particularly vulnerable to climate change”. (World Bank, 2010).
In the United States, the views are “divided along ideological lines.” The Pew Research Center’s 2009 survey on global warming discovered that between the liberals and the conservatives, the former agree more than twice that global warming is a severe problem (about 66% vs. 30%)”. According to that survey, a similar divide is also evident in Britain. With those on the political left and those on the right putting a severity rate of 66% and 42% respectively. Germany, Spain and France have smaller ideological splits (Pew Research Center, 2009).
The world is already experiencing the effects of this warming with rising sea levels when the surface temperature warms up, melting ice from the glaciers, severe heat waves, and dangerous storms. Even drought, desertification and perceived extinction of animal life, goes a long way to show that global warming is not just a hoax.
Scientists believe these are mostly caused by man’s activities including the burning of fossil fuels thus, “releasing carbon dioxide, CO2 that traps heat within the atmosphere”. (World Health Organization, 2007). Also according to WHO source:
“the Earths’ surface has warmed by more than 0.8oC over the past century and by approximately 0.6 oC in the previous three decades.” With the continuous emissions of CO2, it is projected that the surface temperature will “rise by 1.1 oC to 6.4 oC over the 21st century”. (World Health Organization, 2007).
GreenHouse Gas, GHGs – causes of global warming are emitted in various ways apart from the combustion of fossil fuels in car, the CO2 gas it is “also released in landfills and agriculture (especially from the digestive systems of grazing animals), nitrous oxide from fertilizers, gases used for refrigeration and industrial processes, and the loss of forests that would otherwise store CO2”
Carbon dioxide is the highest cause of global warming among other greenhouse gases which also include: methane, nitrous oxide, and some other artificial gases. This has been on the increase as a result of industrialization and commercialization. Especially in China, the United States, the Russian Federation, India and Japan who are the world highest emitters of carbon dioxide. (World Bank, 2010)
Although the activities of man as regards to contributing to global warming are overwhelming and substantial, they are also caused by natural influences such as solar and volcanic activities
The importance therefore of mitigating the effects of global warming cannot be overemphasized as the consequence of not doing same could be very devastating.
While the majority of the world leaders agree to the fact that global warming is indeed a global challenge. They are, however, divided on the method of tackling this menace or “which country is trusted to do the right thing on this issue” (Pew Research Center, 2009).
The United Nations has been spearheading moves to tackling the menace of climate change. The Copenhagen Conference on climate change further raised the awareness to a high level and the desire to tackle the menace and produced what is now known as the “Copenhagen Accord.” While the agreements were lauded by many as a significant success, many others doubted the practical application.
But what the conference achieved which is seen as a bold step towards ending the menace of global warming was the resolve of developed countries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while adapting to the effects and to provide finance for doing same. The conference also agreed on a long-term plan of keeping the temperature below 2 degrees Celsius.
Whether these resolutions are adhered to remains to be seen. However, there are things we can do as individuals to reduce the rate of emission of greenhouse gases and the effects of climate change.
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Attitudinal change is the key to achieving this and being more environmentally friendly. Practical steps include the use of recyclable products and buying of goods with minimal packing as to reduce waste, using energy-efficient products, using less energy, heat and preventing air leakages in your room. Driving less and walking or riding to school and work. That not only reduces the emission of carbon-dioxide but also keeps you physically fit.
Also to further reduce the emission of greenhouse gases, one can plant trees. That is a very effective way of cutting down carbon-dioxide because during photosynthesis, they (trees) use-up carbon-dioxide and give out oxygen. Others include; conserving water and encouraging others to adopt environmentally friendly practices to protect our future.
Government at all levels should adopt long term measures towards sustainable energy and encourage their citizens to “go green”. The role of sustainable energy education here cannot be overemphasized as it would increase the awareness of global warming while it gradually re-orientate the masses and make them more environmental friendly. They should implement plans and international agreements on reduction of carbon dioxide emissions.
Developed countries should assist developing countries to mitigate the effects of global warming and in implementing adaptation measures to the adverse effect of climate change.
A decisive action must be taken by all stakeholders to stop the way we pollute the environment, preserve and handover a safe environment generations yet unborn.
We must all act. The time is now.
- World Bank. (2010). 2010 World Bank Development Indicators. A World Bank publication. Retrieved from http://data.worldbank.org/sites/default/files/section3.pdf
- Pew Research Global Attitudes Project (2009). Global Warming Seen as a Major Problem Around the World Less Concern in the U.S., China and Russia. Retrieved from, Retrieved from http://www.pewglobal.org/2009/12/02/global-warming-seen-as-a-major-problem-around-the-world-less-concern-in-the-us-china-and-russia/
- World health organization (2007). Global climate change: implications for international public health policy. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes/85/3/06-039503/en/
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Developing Strong Thesis Statements
These OWL resources will help you develop and refine the arguments in your writing.
Contributors: Stacy Weida, Karl Stolley
Last Edited: 2018-01-31 03:32:44
The thesis statement or main claim must be debatable
An argumentative or persuasive piece of writing must begin with a debatable thesis or claim. In other words, the thesis must be something that people could reasonably have differing opinions on. If your thesis is something that is generally agreed upon or accepted as fact then there is no reason to try to persuade people.
Example of a non-debatable thesis statement:
Pollution is bad for the environment.
This thesis statement is not debatable. First, the word pollution means that something is bad or negative in some way. Further, all studies agree that pollution is a problem; they simply disagree on the impact it will have or the scope of the problem. No one could reasonably argue that pollution is good.
Example of a debatable thesis statement:
At least 25 percent of the federal budget should be spent on limiting pollution.
This is an example of a debatable thesis because reasonable people could disagree with it. Some people might think that this is how we should spend the nation's money. Others might feel that we should be spending more money on education. Still others could argue that corporations, not the government, should be paying to limit pollution.
Another example of a debatable thesis statement:
America's anti-pollution efforts should focus on privately owned cars.
In this example there is also room for disagreement between rational individuals. Some citizens might think focusing on recycling programs rather than private automobiles is the most effective strategy.
The thesis needs to be narrow
Although the scope of your paper might seem overwhelming at the start, generally the narrower the thesis the more effective your argument will be. Your thesis or claim must be supported by evidence. The broader your claim is, the more evidence you will need to convince readers that your position is right.
Example of a thesis that is too broad:
Drug use is detrimental to society.
There are several reasons this statement is too broad to argue. First, what is included in the category "drugs"? Is the author talking about illegal drug use, recreational drug use (which might include alcohol and cigarettes), or all uses of medication in general? Second, in what ways are drugs detrimental? Is drug use causing deaths (and is the author equating deaths from overdoses and deaths from drug related violence)? Is drug use changing the moral climate or causing the economy to decline? Finally, what does the author mean by "society"? Is the author referring only to America or to the global population? Does the author make any distinction between the effects on children and adults? There are just too many questions that the claim leaves open. The author could not cover all of the topics listed above, yet the generality of the claim leaves all of these possibilities open to debate.
Example of a narrow or focused thesis:
Illegal drug use is detrimental because it encourages gang violence.
In this example the topic of drugs has been narrowed down to illegal drugs and the detriment has been narrowed down to gang violence. This is a much more manageable topic.
We could narrow each debatable thesis from the previous examples in the following way:
Narrowed debatable thesis 1:
At least 25 percent of the federal budget should be spent on helping upgrade business to clean technologies, researching renewable energy sources, and planting more trees in order to control or eliminate pollution.
This thesis narrows the scope of the argument by specifying not just the amount of money used but also how the money could actually help to control pollution.
Narrowed debatable thesis 2:
America's anti-pollution efforts should focus on privately owned cars because it would allow most citizens to contribute to national efforts and care about the outcome.
This thesis narrows the scope of the argument by specifying not just what the focus of a national anti-pollution campaign should be but also why this is the appropriate focus.
Qualifiers such as "typically," "generally," "usually," or "on average" also help to limit the scope of your claim by allowing for the almost inevitable exception to the rule.
Types of claims
Claims typically fall into one of four categories. Thinking about how you want to approach your topic, in other words what type of claim you want to make, is one way to focus your thesis on one particular aspect of your broader topic.
Claims of fact or definition: These claims argue about what the definition of something is or whether something is a settled fact. Example:
What some people refer to as global warming is actually nothing more than normal, long-term cycles of climate change.
Claims of cause and effect: These claims argue that one person, thing, or event caused another thing or event to occur. Example:
The popularity of SUVs in America has caused pollution to increase.
Claims about value: These are claims made of what something is worth, whether we value it or not, how we would rate or categorize something. Example:
Global warming is the most pressing challenge facing the world today.
Claims about solutions or policies: These are claims that argue for or against a certain solution or policy approach to a problem. Example:
Instead of drilling for oil in Alaska we should be focusing on ways to reduce oil consumption, such as researching renewable energy sources.
Which type of claim is right for your argument? Which type of thesis or claim you use for your argument will depend on your position and knowledge of the topic, your audience, and the context of your paper. You might want to think about where you imagine your audience to be on this topic and pinpoint where you think the biggest difference in viewpoints might be. Even if you start with one type of claim you probably will be using several within the paper. Regardless of the type of claim you choose to utilize it is key to identify the controversy or debate you are addressing and to define your position early on in the paper.