Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Burning Fossil Fuels And It's Impact On Global Warming And The Earth

In today's lifestyle we are constantly burning fossil fuels and the effect that it is having on the ozone is a bad one. I went and gathered information about global warming and the depletion of the ozone and I found out that the biggest impact on this disaster is found in the burning of fossil fuels. Global warming occurs when chemicals, such as greenhouse gases, are released into the atmosphere causing a chemical reaction to take place in the ozone layer that breaks up the ozone molecules. The biggest problem that environmentalists are dealing with in relation to global warming is the burning of these harmful fossil fuels, which is mostly due to cars that run on petroleum fuel and release carbon dioxide emissions into the air. Carbon dioxide emissions, and other greenhouse gases, destroy the layers in the atmosphere by breaking up the molecules and leaving the ozone layer extremely vulnerable to UV rays from the sun. In addition to these emissions we find that chlorofluorocarbons actually cause the earth’s temperature to rise because these types of gases eat away the ozone layer, allowing the sun’s rays to heat the earth like an oven. Most of these greenhouse gases are found in fossil fuel emissions that cars burn off and release into the atmosphere, and the unfortunate thing is many Americans depend and rely on their vehicles to get then to and from their multiple destinations every day. This means an increase in fossil fuel emissions and greenhouse gases into the air, and due to the fact that America is still a country completely dependent on petroleum to power their vehicles, the result is the depleting of the ozone layer and global warming.

The atmosphere of the Earth is almost like an onion, there are many different layers that protect the surface from the sun’s rays and keep it at a habitable temperature. That being said, you could imagine how important the ozone layer is to the Earth and how catastrophic global warming would be to all of human kind. The depleting of the ozone layer is linked to greenhouse gases destroying the atmosphere, and the biggest contributor to this occurrence is the burning of fossil fuels linked with carbon dioxide emissions from automobiles. According to the Environmental Defense Fund “there has been a 20% increase of American’s carbon dioxide emissions from the burning of fossil fuels since 1990”(2010). They also state that, “U.S. autos emit more than 333 million tons of carbon dioxide each year, more than one-fifth of the nation’s total carbon dioxide emissions”(EDF, 2010). Imagine that amount of greenhouse gases eating away at the ozone layer due to automobile emissions polluting the air and notice how big of an impact cars are having on the environment. The ozone layer protects the surface of the Earth from harmful UV rays from the sun, but the greenhouse gases and fossil fuels that we are burning are depleting this protective shield. Regardless of the data, companies are still drilling for oil and producing cars that run on gasoline(petroleum) that emits these harmful gases into the atmosphere and destroys the ozone layer. Moreover, carbon dioxide is the main and most dominate greenhouse gas that depletes that ozone layer and causes this catastrophe that we are calling global warming. Research shows that automobiles are responsible for emitting carbon dioxide because they burn fossil fuels and pollute the atmosphere. These fossil fuels are responsible for the depletion of the ozone layer and the exposure of the Earth’s surface to harmful UV rays. Research shows that, “motor vehicles account for 80% of all transport-related energy use”(“Global-Warming-Statistics.org”, 2008-2010). As a matter of fact, more data shows that, “about 75% of the annual increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide is due to the burning of fossil fuels”(2008-2010). As you can clearly see the biggest contributors to the depletion of the ozone layer are automobiles and there emission of carbon dioxide and fossil fuels into the atmosphere.

The shocking truth about automobiles that environmentalists have researched is that there are, “232 million automobiles registered in the United States”, “600 gallons of gasoline is consumed by the U.S. each year”, and “12,000 pounds of carbon dioxide is emitted from one U.S. car each year”(EDF, 2010). Looking at this astounding data, global warming is bound to be a result of this cycle and the greenhouse gases that are being released into the atmosphere and eat away at the ozone layer. Sadly, given this information there are still millions of automobiles on the road burning fossil fuels and emitting carbon dioxide into the air, and the ozone layer is continuing to be depleted. Without that protective shield blocking Earth’s surface from the sun, humanity is going to start seeing rising temperatures and many other side effects in the process; some of these effects we are already experiencing in the present day. Furthermore, research done by the Environmental Defense Fund also shows us that, “45% of the world’s carbon dioxide emission is contributed by the U.S.”(“Cars By The Numbers”, 2010). The same research group also found data showing that, “30% of the world’s automobiles are in the United States”(2010). This seemingly small percentage is actually causing more damage than you’d think because we are raking up, “2.7 trillion miles on average, based on research done in 2004, that are being driven by U.S. cars and light trucks, which is equivalent to 10 million trips to the moon”(EDF, 2010). With all of those numbers rattling around in environmentalists’ heads you can see how 30% is a very large number in terms of the amount of greenhouse gases being released into the air and destroying the ozone. So these researchers and environmentalists are dealing with hundreds of gallons of gas per vehicle, thousands of pounds of pollution, millions of registered vehicles, and trillions of miles being traveled that are eating away at the ozone.

One of the major problems associated with ozone depletion is the dramatic change in the environment and life on earth. What with the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere this causes all sorts of problems for people and for everything on Earth’s surface. We are seeing glaciers melting and rising temperature on the Earth, as well negative health effects on humans, and animals losing their natural habitats. There is a direct correlation with greenhouse gases and the ozone layer, if these harmful gases keeping being emitted into the atmosphere Earth’s shield will be depleted to the point where everything on the surface of the planet will suffer the effects. Automobiles, with their contribution to this tragedy, are burning fossil fuels and emitting them into the air, becoming one of the main causes of the ozone depletion and global warming. Sadly, the world is seemingly unconcerned about this catastrophe and little head-way is being made on replacing fossil fuel burning cars with electricity, and other energy source, vehicles. Instead of worrying about the atmosphere and depleting ozone we are seeing very few “go-green” vehicles on the road, and instead of them being affordable for the average America, they are costing thousands of dollars to own one. But the reality is, the ozone is depleting, global warming is occurring, and the world is still burning fossil fuels at an alarming rate and releasing carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere without realizing the gravity of the situation.

Discussion Despite all of this data and research mankind is continuing to burn fossil fuels by driving these automobiles and emitting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. We are seeing an increase in Earth’s temperature as the ozone layer continues to be broken down by greenhouse gases eating away at it. The heat can’t be released into space without the ozone layer, so it is being stored within the Earth’s many atmospheric layers and heating the surface of the earth like an oven. The sun’s harmful UV rays are escaping through the depleting ozone layer and are causing all kind of problems for humankind on the surface of the earth. Given this information people are still driving fossil fuel burning vehicles every day, and no one seems to be worried that this is affecting the ozone layer and having an impact on global warming. There are alternatives been discussed and created, and we are seeing cars running on electricity but still there are millions of car running on petroleum. Even though America is coming up with alternatives to cars running on petroleum, there is still no urgent need to being substituting no fossil burning fuels to better energy transportation. Carbon dioxide is being released into the atmosphere at an alarming rate, and the ozone layer is being depleted by these chemicals with every pound of greenhouse gases we discharge into the air. It is prove with research and data that global warming is being caused by carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases eating away at the ozone layer and exposing the surface to harmful UV rays from the sun. Burning fossil fuels is a major contributor to global warming because they release these gases into the atmosphere and that destroys the ozone layer.



References:
Environmental Defense Fund. 2010. Cars By The Numbers – Global Warming. September 12,
 2010, http://www.edf.org/article.cfm?ContentID=6083
Environmental Defense Fund. 2010. Global Warming By The Numbers. September 12,2010,
http://www.edf.org/article.cfm?ContentID=5816&source=ggad&gclid=CMuCtd-agqQCFc...
Global-Warming-Statistics.org. 2008-2010. Facts About Global Warming. September 12, 2010,
            http://www.global-warming-statistics.org/facts-about-global-warming.html
Abhijit Naik. May 28, 2010. Ozone Layer and Global Warming. September 12, 2010,
 http://www.buzzle.com/articles/ozone-layer-and-global-warming.html

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