Global Warming / Climate Change
The definition as stated in Wikipedia is that, “Global warming is the rising average temperature of Earth’s atmosphere and oceans since the late 19th century and its projected continuation.” Since then the Earth’s average surface temperature has increased by about 0.8 °C or 1.4 °F. The term “global warming” and “climate change” are being used interchangeably. Climate change is a significant and lasting change in the statistical distribution of weather patterns over periods ranging from decades to millions of years. However, people often use “global warming” as it remains popular in the public discourse.
The main cause of climate change is the unlimited burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas which releases carbon dioxide in the atmosphere at a very fast pace. Carbon dioxide is the main driver for the greenhouse effect. It makes the greenhouse gases that keep the Earth warm get thicker and thicker that poses an exceptional threat to the environment and anyone who inhabits it. According to the International Energy Agency, the biggest climate polluter is the global power sector that generates around 40% of all global electricity from coal. It is responsible for the 37% of all human-made carbon dioxide emissions.
Impact to Us
Greenhouse gases on the atmosphere are greatly increasing because of human activities thus climate change also affects people and nature in countless ways; and it often adds the existing problems that have already put pressure on our environment. Climate change has made irreversible changes to the ecosystems and animals. The changes that are happening maybe too fast for the ecosystems and species to adjust that will lead to extinction. Climate change has great impact on our water, forests, food security, and agriculture. Some countries, especially the world’s small island nations may face obliteration from climate change and rising sea levels.
Effect on the Philippines
Philippines, a country that usually suffer from extreme weather events that leads to high death toll and economic losses. It’s a country that sits on the earthquake-prone Ring of Fire, on the path of typhoons that form in the western Pacific, visited by 20 storms per year, and has the biggest number of meteorological events recorded at 270. Philippines lost $660 million every year from the disasters. According to Germanwatch, a climate and development organization that analysed data from 1991 to 2010:
“This year’s analysis underlines that less developed countries are generally more affected than industrialized countries, according to the Climate Risk Index. With regard to future climate change, the Climate Risk Index can serve as a warning signal indicating past vulnerability which may further increase in regions where extreme events will become more frequent or more severe through climate change.”
Philippines, a hotspot for climate change disaster especially the danger for our agricultural resources because of severe El Nino and tropical typhoons. The spread of infectious diseases such as dengue, fever, malaria, cholera have also increased throughout the years. Climate change also strikes on the coastal zones and marine ecosystems that led to coral bleaching and fish kills. With global warming scientists warned that the Philippines could have a widespread scarcity of food by the year 2020.
By 2050, the WWF believe that all the energy needed could be attained from renewable sources. Renewable energy is generated from natural sources like water, wind, solar, biomass, or geothermal that shall replace the world’s dependence on fossil fuel based energy sources such as coal, oil, and natural gas. This will solve most of the problems in climate change and fossil fuel resources. But there are ways a person could do everyday to help prevent climate change, according to an article in ‘Earth 911’, here are some ways to do so:
- Change a light- Replacing a regular light bulb with a compact fluorescent one saves 150 pounds of carbon dioxide each year.
- Drive less- Walk, bike, carpool, take mass transit, and/or trip chain. All of these things can help reduce gas consumption and one pound of carbon dioxide for each mile one do not drive.
- Recycle more and buy recycled- Save up to 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide each year just by recycling half of your household waste. By recycling and buying products with recycled content you also save energy, resources and landfill space.
- Check your tires- Properly inflated tires mean good gas mileage. For each gallon of gas saved, 20 pounds of carbon dioxide are also never produced.
- Use less hot water- It takes a lot of energy to heat water. Reducing the amount used means big savings in not only your energy bills, but also in carbon dioxide emissions.
- Avoid products with a lot of packaging- Preventing waste from being created in the first place means that there is less energy wasted and fewer resources consumed. Reducing your garbage by 10% reduces carbon dioxide emissions by 1,200 pounds.
- Adjust your thermostat- Keeping your thermostat at 68 degrees in winter and 78 degrees in summer not only helps with your energy bills, but it can reduce carbon dioxide emissions as well.
- Plant a tree- A single tree can absorb one ton of carbon dioxide over its lifetime.
- Turn off electronic devices when not in use- Simply turning off your TV, VCR, computer and other electronic devices can save each household thousand of pounds of carbon dioxide each year.
Global Warming. Retrieved June 16, 2012, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_warming
Climate Change. Retrieved June 16, 2012, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change
Alave, Kristine L.(2011, December 5). Study: Philippines among countries most affected by climate change. Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved June 16, 2012, from http://globalnation.inquirer.net/20237/study-philippines-among-countries-most-affected-by-climate-change
What Can I Do To Help Prevent Climate Change? (2007). Retrieved June 16, 2012, from http://earth911.com/news/2007/04/02/what-can-i-do-to-help-prevent-climate-change/
The author would like to thank the guidance of her NatSci professor:
CRISENCIO M. PANER
CP : 0915-1429675 Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
•Ph.D. in Biological Science (candidate) in University of Santo Tomas, Graduate School
•M.S. Microbiology in University of Santo Tomas
•Italian Scholarship Grant in Restoration and Conservation of Artworks Attacked by Biological Agents at Istituto Centrale Per Il Restauro, Rome, Italy (January 1-June 30, 2004)
•B.S. Biochemistry in University of Santo Tomas
•Professional Teaching Certification Program (Major in Biological Science) in Caloocan City Polytechnic College
Book: Co-author in LET Reviewer in Biology, 2006-2010 eds. Published by MET Inc. ISBN # 97193249-6-1, sold in National Bookstores
•Understanding Museum Pests: The Molds. CFAD Atelier Journal, University of Santo Tomas, Vol. 2 No. 1, 2003-2004, pp. 80-83
•On the Conservation of 20th Century Color Photographs Attacked by Molds. CFAD Atelier Journal, UST., Vol. 2 No. 1, 2003-2004, pp. 106-113
•Witnessing the Glory of Italy in Its Art History and Ancient Spaces. CFAD Atelier Journal, UST, Vol. 3 No. 1, 2004-2005, pp. 55-72
•_______________. Panorama Magazine, November 13, 2005, pp. 12, 13, & 21.
•Deterioration of Paintings and Painting Components Caused by Microorganisms. CFAD Atelier Journal, UST., Vol. 3 No. 1, 2004-2005, pp. 91-94
•Microbial Deterioration of Painting Materials. CFAD Atelier Journal, UST., Vol. 3 No. 1, 2004-2005, pp. 94-97.
•Conservation of Paintings Attacked by Molds. In College Freshman English Book II. Agalabia, U., Aranda, R., et. al., pp. 124-125, UST Publishing House, 2004
•Today’s Restoration Establishments. CFAD Atelier Journal, UST., Vol. 4 & 5 No. 1, 2005-2006 & 2006-2007, pp. 95-99
•Indoor Air Quality of Beato Angelico Building of the University of Santo Tomas -Commissioned by UST (Nov. 2009-May 2010)
•Instructor 5, CFAD, IPEA, Pharmacy, CTHM, University of Santo Tomas SY 1995-Present
•Part Time Instructor, Our Lady of Perpetual Help College, Manila
Subjects taught: Food Microbiology (Lecture and Laboratory)
•Part Time Instructor, St. Paul’s College, Quezon City
•Part Time Instructor, Unciano Colleges and General Hospital, Inc., Manila
More About Prof. Cris Paner here.