The most troubling fact concerning global warming is that this is a phenomenon that is not showing any signs of abating. Take, for example, the fact that the average temperature on earth is increasing by about 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit annually. In addition, the rate at which this warming is taking place is also increasing. This century has also seen the hottest years in the last 4 centuries and perhaps even in the past few millennia.
Other troublesome facts about global warming include a steady warming of the arctic temperatures. For example, Alaska, eastern Russia and western parts of Canada are experiencing temperature rises that are twice that of the global averages. Ice in the arctic regions is steadily disappearing and it is estimated that in the year 2040 the arctic region may even experience its first ice-free summer. This will endanger the existence of the polar bear and the indigenous peoples of these areas, who are already badly affected by current changes in temperatures in their regions.
Glaciers as well as mountainous snows are melting too quickly for our good and an example of it can be seen in Montana Glacier National Park. This park, at present, has just a mere 27 glaciers which is a steep decline from the 150 odd glaciers that existed in the year 1910. The Northern Hemisphere has also begun to see spring coming a week early while the first frost of the season are beginning an average of a week late.
Nothing is Safe
Even coral reefs are not immune from the effects of global warming. These reefs are very sensitive to minor changes in water temperatures and are being destroyed by bleaching. Many experts say that such bleaching will increase in intensity and frequency in the next 5 decades during which time there will be significant rise in sea temperatures. Wildfires, stronger tropical storms and heat waves are other factors of global warming that are both worrying and which require strong responses from governments in every part of the world.
The worst thing is that all this havoc is being wreaked by human beings. Major contributors to these changes include deforestation, industrialization as well as pollution from excessive concentration of water vapor, CO2, methane as well as nitrous oxide. In addition, humans are contributing to higher carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and at alarming rates and when these gases remain in the atmosphere for many years (because plants and oceans are not able to absorb all of it) global warming becomes even more severe.
It is also important to look at current facts about global warming and what is going to happen to the planet and its inhabitants in the future. Sea levels are, for example, expected to rise by between seven and twenty-three inches by the end of the current century. A rise of a mere four inches is enough to flood most South Sea Islands and it could also cause swamping in many south Asian countries.
It is therefore time to act now, and acting decisively is certainly the need of the hour. Unless governments and world citizens take notice of these troubling facts about global warming, the future of mankind could very well be in jeopardy.