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Since the British explorer George Mallory died in the frozen arms of Everest in 1924, more than 200 more explorers have perished in the icy folds of the mountains.
2. They are usually simply left on the surface there, the year-round subzero temperatures preserving the bodies perfectly in a frigid cover of snow and ice. About two years ago, Mallory's body, along with others became exposed and some had to be covered with cairns.
3 2The Nepalese government has had to move in to evacuate bodies because there are no longer guaranteed free refrigeration services. The Nepalese make good money from Everest tourism but this new undertaker job is burning a hole in their budget and they don’t like it one bit.
4. The stories of the shearing of massive ice shelves in the arctic sound a bit academic but Everest is stark and commonplace and is shoved right up our noses.
5Planet Earth is heating up and it is thought that human activities play a major role.
The earth is flying around in extremely cold and dark space and the nearest source of external heat is 93 million miles away – the sun. Without it, we are left with
the sun. Without it, we are left with frozen planet and some flashes of heat from volcanoes and hot springs. Every cloudless day, the sun dumps about 375 Watts of heat energy on every square meter of the earth. Everybody feels the sun and we all know it as our primary heater.
But there is a subtlety about this you may never have thought about and understanding it is crucial to learning about global heating. When heat and light from the sun streams across space, it does not light or heat up everywhere along its path.
But there is a subtlety about this you may never have thought about and understanding it is crucial to learning about global heating. When heat and light from the sun streams across space, it does not light or heat up everywhere along its path.
What that means is that if you are in space with the sun beating on you, you will feel no warmth at all from its radiation and its light will be dim all around you still. (That is why the higher you go, the cooler it gets).
Warmth from the sun comes when the heat gets to the ground and is reflected back into the atmosphere where it is trapped by atmospheric gases or absorbed by land and sea. The critical factors in heating the earth therefore are land, sea and the atmosphere.
When people treat the subject of global warming therefore, they focus on these three and particularly on the atmosphere because it is the most fluid and mobile of all three, distributing heat from a local source to all other parts of the world.
About a quarter of the heat from the sun is reflected and radiated back into space almost immediately while the rest are used up for powering different life forms and whatever is left goes into heating up land and sea.
That is why it gets cool nearly as soon as the sun goes down every day, especially if there is no cloud cover, and by morning, it is significantly cool indeed. Energy from the sun generates a good quantity of Carbon dioxide (Carbon VI Oxide)
but this mostly serve as the essential raw materials for plants which they use for building basic carbohydrates through photosynthesis. In the end, there is a fine balance and no significant net change in terms of what we refer to as Global Warming –
the net permanent increase in the temperature of the earth as a whole.
6Global warming is not the local wave of heat people feel from time to time. Although it can be related, global warming is much more complicated. It is actually a permanent rise in atmospheric temperature due to the effect of heat trapped in the atmosphere by gases with special
heat-retaining capacity. These are called greenhouse gases because they act like a greenhouse – a house built with glass so that when heat comes in, it is trapped and cannot go out as freely.
The leading greenhouse gas is carbon dioxide and the more we produce that gas and its type, the hotter the earth becomes.
7Global warming is the key factor in climate change.
The surest way to generate carbon dioxide (CO2) is to burn things – things with a lot of carbon. In any case, nearly everything we burn - kerosene, cooking gas, firewood, petrol, diesel -
contain plenty of carbon and the result is the production of carbon dioxide. Combustion in the commonest sense is the combination of oxygen with anything. When oxygen combines with a thing, the reaction produces a lot of heat – and fire –
and the final waste product is carbon dioxide, carbon in form of black soot and some carbon monoxide. What this means is that the more we burn things generally, the more CO2 we produce.
21 .Virtually all of our industrial activities from the operation of computer servers to the launching of satellites into orbit generate a good amount of heat. The leading source of heat however are coal-fired electric generators. .
22. Immediately next are our cars and airplanes that constantly crisscross the planet by their millions. Other heating sources go on as a routine in the kitchen, gas is flared in oil drilling operations and farmers in Africa seasonally burn massive amount of organic products
23 It is important to highlight the chemical mechanism that cause the heating. It is not what you think, unless you are familiar with the scientific background of the scenario.
The real problem behind global warming is not the heat itself but COMBUSTION.
24.Combustion is the chemical reaction that occurs when things burn nd that reaction is generally about carbon reacting with oxygen to produce carbon dioxide.That is the reaction taking place is virtually all the types of combustion u have ever witnessed outside the laboratory
25 . It is also the product of the chemical combustion going on in our bodies - u intake oxygen to burn your food and the exhaust gas is just what it mostly is in cars - carbon dioxide!This is because carbon makes up the biggest part of most naturally occuing combustible things.
26. At combustion it chemically combines with oxygen and the product is this undesirable gas. The big luck we have is that plants intake this deadly gas, CO2 and combine it with water in the presence of sunlight to produce carbohydrates – and all out food from plants
27. When we burn things, the atmosphere around us is loaded with carbon dioxide, a heat trapping gas. The wind moves this gas and its heat from the local area of its production to anywhere else on earth, spreading the effect globally. The more the atmosphere accumulates,
27. the warmer it gets and we are talking in scientific terms here. We are not taking about something you can easily feel and say, ‘Oh, that factory is causing the town to the hotter’, no. The earth’s temperature balancing mechanisms are in much more robust than that.
28. From 1880 to 2012, records show that global temperature has increased by 1.7 degrees Celsius, a tiny increase you will never feel on your skin, but with alarming results on the earth and things that indirectly affect you
29. but directly affect your health, income and everything about you by and by.
Let’s now go into those effects. We have to begin by explaining to you that this earth we live in is actually meant for fishes and marine creatures.
30. It is a water planet, essentially. It has a core of hot, liquid iron encased in solid rock and the whole thing is wrapped in billions of tons of water. That water is in turn draped in a soft duvet of air called the atmosphere. Some luck played up though.
31. The earth is just at a precise distance from the sun to make its two ends, the poles so cold enough to freeze up a great part of its waters.
32. 12This is what made the appearance of land possible at all. Even at that, the sea still covers 70% of the surface of the earth. Trillions of tons of its waters are held back in storehouses of ice at the North and South Poles as well as on mountains
33. in the northern parts of the word called glaciers. Should even half of those ice fields melt, the level of the oceans will rise steadily. Coastal cities will feel it first as they will gradually get under water.
34.We have seen some of that in Victoria Island, haven’t we? How much heat do you need to melt ice? Very, very little. Every year , especially in the past 30 years, 390 tons of ice and
35.otherwise permanent snow have been melting yearly, all that water going into the sea and causing it to rise just a little every day. Just a 1 degree permanent rise in the temperature of regular wind systems can have serious implications and in fact this has happened
36. already to the popular Jet Steam global wind system that has implications for aviation. Jet Streams have become weaker in response to increase in arctic temperature since this wind system depends on the atmospheric temperature differentials between the tropics
37. temperature differentials between the tropics and the subtropical regions.
38. To bring this home, look at the wind systems over Nigeria. From late September to early February, the prevailing wind across the country comes in from the northwest. It is cold and dusty with a lot of negative implications for plant pathogens.
39. It sort of mops the land of a category of disease-causing organisms especially in our real agricultural regions. The wind also brings in fine dusts which are surprisingly fertile. From February to September, that wind weakens and
40. is replaced by the moist southwest wind coming from across the Atlantic. This is the wind that bears rains.
41. 15Now, as that wind hits the ground across the coast, if it finds land just a little hotter than usual, it will quickly rise (hot air rises) even as it continues to move inland.
42. This means delayed rainfall for that particular coastal region because the moisture in that air will end up condensing further inland and bring rains there. I have not examined the data (I suppose NIMET has full records) but it seems
43. there is delayed rainfall in the coastal areas of SW Nigeria these days. This could be a global warming phenomenon, activated by the scenario earlier described.
44. That type of climate actually exists just after Accra, Ghana. It forms a big loop of dryness around that region all along the coast from Ivory Coast and the system drops off before it gets to Lagos. I suspect Lagos is gradually getting caught in that loop of dryness
45. and if that is correct, it will later engulf all of coastal Nigeria with the possible exemption of the Bight of Benin. But the Bight of Benin also can be affected, just like the coast of Namibia. That coast is lapped by the sea, yet it remains a completely barren desert.
46. The impact of temperature on wind systems has immense results for the environment. It can change everything.
47. Now global warming is making sense to you! But we should quickly get back at the sun and see this from another basic perspective.
We should go back to the sun for the last time and complete its part of the story. The sun is actually a continuously exploding
48. thermonuclear bomb. As such, it produces and dumps on us much more than heat. It produces X-rays, gamma rays and deadly charged particles besides the visible light that we see. Those ‘beyond blue/violet light’ or ‘ultra-violet’ rays are effective in
49. destroying just about anything of value including the codes for making living things, the DNA.
50. Thankfully, we are lucky again and most of those rays don’t make it down here for two reasons. The molten iron at the centre of the earth acts like a giant magnet radiating out a huge field that stops the deadly radiation from the sun way out there in space.
51. The second is the mantle of a special gas called ozone that wraps the earth. Ozone is a super shield against the remnants of that radiation. Ozone does a little tiny bit more: when hit by the deadly radiation we earlier described, it gives off a blue hue
52. that’s why you see a blue sky in the day. It would be otherwise black as you look up at the sky in broad daylight! Now have you heard about chlorofluorocarbons? They are a group of chemicals we humans manufacture and they tear the ozone mantle we described earlier.
53. As you can appreciate by now, this is like setting the only blanket of a homeless man ablaze in winter.
54. 20Chlorofluorocarbons, or CFCs for short are gases composed of the gases, chlorine, fluorine combined with carbon and are present in your canisters of insecticides and refrigerants of fridges. That is why a lot of international efforts is being made to impose a worldwide ban
55. on such pesticides, propellants and refrigerants. 21CFCs destroy ozone, and lack of ozone means earth will be washed by dangerous rays which will cause cancers and many types of chemical reactions on materials on earth. Such reaction will cause heating and
56. generation of heat- retaining gases.
A little more global heating and all the ice will melt nd the whole earth will become a full marine environment. Two, and even before it gets so bad, there is a very narrow temperature tolerance band for both life and non-life things
57. And processes on earth. Just a permanent 1° rise in atmospheric temperature will radically affect life as you know it. It could disrupt the reproductive cycle of bees and other insects which are responsible for the pollination of flowers without which trees will not fruit.
58. It will affect fishing drastically and negatively as schools of fishes will have to migrate northwards and southwards as cooler waters preferred by fishes sink deeper to the bottom. Species which can neither adapt nor migrate will simply perish.
59. A permanent rise in river temperatures will cause profusion in the production of planktons – microscopic food of fishes. These will raise the oxygen use in the rivers and the result is fishes getting suffocated in rivers. And this has already happened
60. recently in Australia. Various epigenetic changes will take place in plants and animals that will significantly impact their usefulness and critical functions in sustaining human existence on earth. Temperature rise will affect the pattern of the cooling
61. and heating of the oceans and as a result trigger changes in the speed and direction of global winds. It is impossible to fathom the implications of this on aviation and everyday living as the seasons and characteristics of hurricanes and cyclones will be altered.
62. It will throw the earth into serious confusion - imagine a Category 1 typhoon suddenly hitting Lagos at 7 o'clock in the morning, sweeping cars from the Island into the lagoon behind and piling debris of cars and shattered houses from Victoria Island and Lekki onto Ketu
63. or even farther inland in Mowe! Islands like Escravos or Ibeno in can be simply washed away after just a brief warning. In fact the climate will change; the rains will come oddly and dry spells will burn up crops in the field.
64. Herds of cattle will starve and rains will dump enough water to wash away entire cities.
65. Literature and history will be altered and deep uncertainty will make planning and record keeping futile. Death will come to many as a relief and the human community on earth will end up a small bunch huddled in some high ground sheltered by rocks.
66. This is not one of the things technologies and innovation can save us from. The only sensible thing is to limit combustion right away. This is why people are talking about electric cars and generating electricity through solar means.
67. Our only help is to do all we can while we can to reduce combustion and save ourselves from ourselves.
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