EESA10H3 Lecture Notes - World Resources Institute, Ozone Depletion, Magic 2Ch

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18 Apr 2012
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HUMAN HEALTH AND EVNIRONMENT Lec 11: Climate change, Ozone Depletion and Biodiversity
GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE
The Earth’s natural greenhouse effect
-energy from the Sun warms the Earth’s surface
-energy radiates back toward space
-water vapour (clouds), carbon dioxide and other gases are heated
-they radiate heat (longer-wavelength) in all directions (space or warms the air and the Earth’s surface)
-greenhouse gases: water vapour, CO2, CH4, N2O
-it was concluded in a conference two years ago: human activity has led to the increased CO2 rate
Processes affecting increases of greenhouse gases
-fossil fuels:
-electricity generated by coal 42%
-transportation 24%
-industrial processes 20%
-residential and commercial uses 14%
-clearing and burning forests and grass lands
-raising large number of livestock (methane)
-planting of rice releases nitric acid and from nitrogen fertilizers
-inorganic feritlizers
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Largest emitters of CO2
1. China and Taiwan 24.4%
2. US 22.2%
3. European Union 14.7%
4. Russia 5.6%
5. India 4.9%
6. Japan 4.6%
7. Germany 3.1%
8. Canada 2.3% 4X the global average
Present problems
-20th century was the hottest century in the past 1000 years
-since 1861 the average global temperature of the troposphere has risen 0.7 degrees Celsius
-20 warmest years occurred since 1980
-glaciers and floating sea ice are melting and shrinking
-during the last century average sea level rose by 0.1-0.2m
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