What is global warming? To wrap it all up, it’s increasing average temperature in Earth. Global warming is primarily a problem of too much carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere – it kind of acts like a blanket, pillow (a huge one), that covers the Earth and traps everything inside. CO2 lasts for a long time and evaporates quite slowly. The things that help us eliminate it – are the ones we cut and burn down to instead make plantations for food. Trees. If you already do not know, trees suck up carbon and release only oxygen, so not only it helps stopping the global warming, but it gives us something we are desperate to have, to be able to survive. But cutting down forests isn’t the only cause. We burn coal, oil, natural gas which also helps dioxide to accumulate.
The ozone hole
Let’s travel to Antarctica – we’ll focus on it from now on. The ozone layer has protected Earth from UV rays for nearly a billion years. It blocks the nasty rays away, so our planet doesn’t melt. BUT, because of the CO2, in some parts it started becoming narrower, which leads to the ozone layer having holes in it, and that leads to our precious glaciers melting. Now, what are the problems that will occur if we don’t do anything and the ice just fades away? Here are some:
· The sea levels will rise. Now, some of the people may think/say “Oh, it’ll just rise a bit, what’s the big deal?” They won’t say that again when it happens. It will rise so much, that it will cover MANY countries, and HUGE parts of continents. Since we still live in Lithuania, what will happen to our country? Our country isn’t mountainous, it is flat. Lithuania is next to The Baltic Sea, which means that a huge part of our country will be underwater. Just look at the picture, this is how Lithuania will look if the sea levels rise 80 meters only! I’m scared.
· Fresh water. About 60% of the fresh water (ice) is in Antarctica, and if it melts, it will combine with the sour (sea) water. BOOM, we have much less limited water supplies. The supplies will run out one day, and people will just drop dead out of dehydration. Lithuania isn’t an exception.
· Poor animals won’t have a place to stay. The animals that live in Antarctica are used to the cold climate, and the problems these poor souls will have aren’t just one:
1. They won’t have a place to stay. As I said, these animals are used to cold climate, which means everything would be just too hot for them.
2. The species will just disappear. We all love penguins, polar bears (actually they’re pretty dangerous), seals, whales? Well, all of them will just extinct. That’s it. No more cute animals. 🙁
Now, when you just heard all of these sad things that will happen if we don’t do anything, here are some things you HAVE to do to prevent them from happening.
· Recycle, recycle, and recycle. Not only you should recycle everything, and not just drop the trash together, you should also buy reusable things. If you do that, you should feel like the savior of our planet right now!
· Drive less. Try to not use cars as often as possible. If you live far away from your job/school, just catch a bus, you’ll help our planet. But if you live quite close – come on, drive a bicycle or walk on feet! Not only it’ll help Earth, but will also exercise your legs!
· Save electricity. When you leave your room, turn off the lights. When you have something turned on that really isn’t necessary to be, turn it OFF. It’s not that hard to just press a button or turn off a switch!
· Plant trees. A single tree will absorb approximately one ton of carbon dioxide during its lifetime. Just plant one!
· Last but not least: Encourage others! One person doesn’t do much, but if you slowly get the whole world (with the help of other people, of course) doing the same, we’ll make even our own planet going green! I hope you all want to survive, right? 🙄