Monday, 11 Jun, 2007 Environment

Ten Unnoticed Effects of Global Warming


The LiveScience Magazine has published a Top 10 global warming side-effects that not everyone knows about. Global warming is, actually, not only about ice melting in the Arctic and temperature rising. It could turn into very strange things. Here they are:

10. More aggravated and aggressive allergies (the "MAAAA")

People are experiencing more aggravated and aggressive allergy fits and, partly, experts blame the global warming. How are these things interrelated? Very simple: on one side there are changes in people's lifestyle, strengthened by pollution. The protection against allergens weakens and the results are allergies. On the other side - global warming. It made springs come earlier, thus plants bloom earlier too and produce more pollen. All of this results in a simple axiom: a longer spring equals a longer allergic season.

9. Change of the habitat

Small rodent forest animals are not to be seen on height we were used to see them for some time now. Probably, this happens because such animals as mice and squirrels move to higher elevations and, probably, this is also caused by global warming. A similar threat hangs over polar bears that live on sea ice, which gradually melts. What happens with this species, if their habitat disappears is not even a guess - it is a fact: they will disappear with the ice they live on.

8. The blooming ices

While everyone is concerned with the effects of the global warming across the places of human living, we forgot about those who live and bloom in the Arctic. Since the flora we used to see around us experienced difficulties, plants in the Arctic enjoy more and longer sun baths per year and since their usual habitat was 'under ice', they are eager to start s small forest on ice. Research has found higher levels of the form of the photosynthesis product chlorophyll in modern soils than in ancient soils. This fact demonstrates a small biological boom among the icy mountains.

7. Draining the lakes

Reports show at least 125 lakes disappeared in the Arctic, and only during the last few decades. Researches proved that the lakes have seeped through the soil. This happens due to the fact that the permafrost, a layer on the bottom of the lakes, which kept the waters in the basin, gradually melts. When the layer thawed out, the waters seeped into the soil. When these lakes disappear, the creatures, living in that lake, disappear too. A researcher compared this event with pulling the plug in the bathroom.

6. The Earth thawing underneath

Global warming is causing not only massive melting of the Arctic glaciers, but it makes the permanent frozen soils under the earth's surface thaw too. This process ends up in deformation of the grounds and no one can predict what form the upper layer of the earth would take. Among the after effects of these processes could be mentioned ruined building, railroads and highways.

5. "There will be only one"

Global warming tests everyone and if everything goes on as it does now, a natural selection will take place: "only the fittest will survive". With the early beginnings of springs and short winters plants bloom earlier (as mentioned in point 10), thus animals that wait until the plants' usual blooming time to start their migration might miss all the food. And only animals able to evolve and to reset their biologic clocks will make it to places of greenest grass and beautiful pastures. Ultimately, these species will be able to pass their genes to following generations, changing the genetic code according to current global situation.

Some traces of this kind of evolution can be already seen this year: in some regions, were the abnormal warm winter and an early spring have triggered a mass invasion of silkworm. These insects are eating everything green they see, thus destroying partly the crops and leaving forests leafless.

4. Lower density of the atmosphere

It is not a secret that emissions cause the most harm to our planet. The effects caused by carbon dioxide emissions do their dirty work even in the atmosphere's outmost layer. The air in the exosphere is very thin, yet still creating drag to slow down satellites, making engineering boost them up from time to time and bring them back on their orbit around the earth. However, the growing concentration of carbon dioxide in the exosphere makes this weak drag even weaker. When the carbon dioxide molecules collide in the lower layers of the atmosphere, they release heat, warming the air. Due to a smaller quantity of molecules in the upper layers, there is also less collision among molecules and the small amount of energy created radiates away. The conclusion is that with more carbon dioxide the more cooling occurs and the air settles in the exosphere. Thus the air concentration decreases, decreasing the drag with the satellites.

3. The growing mountains

After the beginning of the industrial era in the history of human race the mountains began a steadier growth. Although this fact might pass by unnoticed by hikers - it is a fact. The glaciers on top of the mountains have slowed down growth of the mountains with the immense weight of these masses of ice. Yet when they started to thaw, with the global warming as the main cause of this, the rocks are rebounding faster when there is nothing to push them down.

2. The memory doesn't remain

There are not so many 'live' monuments remaining, which prove the existence of ancient civilizations. These monuments are not as stable and strong as the engineering wonders of today. Thus the extreme weather and the rising waters might write the final lines in the book of history of these ancient monuments. The process has already started as floods have already damaged the amazing 600-year-old Sukhothai site - once the capital of the Thai kingdom.

1. Forests burning

Global warming means not only melting Arctic ices, but wild forests fires too. It was observed that over the past several decades more fires have deserted the countryside in the Western states of the USA. The forest fires are now more intense and they last for longer period of times. Experts say that the fact that now the spring come in the middle of the winter, the snow melts earlier, leaving longer periods for draught in the forests, which increases the risk of their ignition during this dry period.

Perhaps, people should not be so ignorant about this obvious problem of global warming, as even the leaders of the G8, on their last meeting in Germany, have intensively discussed the problem of global warming and harmful emission into the atmosphere.

Source: Top 10 Surprising Results of Global Warming

Powered by

Add your comment:

antispam code