Global Warming, realities and challenges

Global Warming, realities and challenges

By Edward Salazar Cruz

We are at a critical moment in Earth's history. To move forward, we must recognize that amid the magnificent diversity of cultures and ways of life, we are one earthly community with a common destiny.

“We are at a critical moment in the history of the Earth, in which humanity must choose its future. As the world becomes increasingly interdependent and fragile, the future holds both great risks and great promise. To move forward, we must recognize that amid the magnificent diversity of cultures and ways of life, we are one human family and one earthly community with a common destiny. We must come together to create a sustainable global society founded on respect for nature. , universal human rights, economic justice and a culture of peace ”.

Preamble to the Earth Charter

In the name of demonstrable Scientific Truth and under the celestial vault which we share, allow me to divide this reflection into the following points: in the first part, a modest diagnosis. In the second, efforts and searches and finally, the green vision.

1 Diagnosis

1.1. In June 1992 at the time of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development

SUMMIT OF THE EARTH ”in the summary of topics when dealing with the Atmosphere, four major binding environmental problems were raised:

· The planet's climate change: Consisting of the accumulation of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) that retain solar heat. Probably - the document said - they are causing a gradual increase in the average temperature of the planet. Possible consequences include rising sea levels that threaten coastal areas; desertification; poor harvests, extreme weather conditions; alterations in seasonal phenomena such as monsoons, and unpredictable rainfall patterns with extreme flooding.

· The Depletion of the Ozone Layer: Chlorofluorocarbons, other chlorine compounds and halons, form chemical reactions with oxygen that destroy the ozone in the stratosphere, which protect the planet against damage caused by ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Most of the CFC substitutes that have been developed so far also damage the Ozone layer. It is estimated that the depletion of the ozone layer is causing damage to crops, ocean plankton and the most sensitive ecosystems, with a higher incidence of skin cancers, cataracts and diseases of the human immune system such as AIDS.

· Acid rain: Due to air pollution, rain, snow, frost, fog and dust with an abnormal degree of acidity are produced. This is the most common form of cross-border air pollution and kills fish, plants and trees in lakes, rivers, and forests.

· Industrial mist or urban fog: Tropospheric ozone (found at ground level), carbon monoxide and other pollutants continue to worsen the warmth of the air in the world's crowded metropolitan areas, and are the cause or contribute to a number of respiratory and general health ailments, with often fatal results.

· The causes of climate change, the depletion of the ozone layer, acid rain and urban fog are human activities linked to:

- Burning of fossil fuels (oil, gas and coal in thermoelectric plants)

- Factories

- Automobiles

- Planes

- Heating boilers

- Burning of forests

- Industrial and dirty manufacturing technologies (petrochemicals.

- Chlorofluorocarbons are used in industrial, commercial and military applications, including refrigeration

- The air conditioning

- Aircraft and rocket propulsion

- Aerosol sprayers

- Electrical appliances and plastic foam [1]

1.2. Since then, important research has been carried out on the aforementioned topics. One of them surely known is Mogens Gallardo's doctoral thesis entitled "Global climate change" (UNIVERSIDAD DE CONCEPCIÓN, CENTRO EULA-CHILE, doctoral program in environmental sciences, June 1997), in which Gallardo after making an important scientific introduction to the theoretical bases of global climate change, the energy budget of the atmosphere, causes of global climate change (the greenhouse effect and radiation forcing) introduces us directly to the topic of climate changes predicted for the XXI CENTURY in which it tells us: “ The main concern present is determining how much it will warm the earth in the near future ". In the last decade, several complex general circulation models (GCMs) have attempted to simulate future anthropogenic climate changes. They have reached the following conclusions:

· An average global warming of between 1.5 and 4.5 ° C will occur, with the best estimate being 2.5 ° C.

· The stratosphere will cool significantly.

· Surface warming will be greater in high latitudes in winter, but less in summer.

· Global precipitation will increase between 3 and 15%.

· There will be a year-round increase in rainfall in high latitudes, while some tropical areas will experience small decreases.

More recent time-dependent models, coupling the oceanic and atmospheric components, have provided more reliable estimates, the most significant results indicate:

· An average global warming of 0.3 ° C per decade, assuming non-interventionist policies.

· A natural variability of approximately 0.3 ° C in global air surface temperatures, on a scale of decades.

· Changes in regional patterns of temperature and precipitation similar to equilibrium experiments.

In conclusion, the average global temperature could increase by 2 to 4 ° C by the year 2100, if global development continues at current rates. If nations do not act, the world could experience numerous adverse impacts as a result of future global warming[2]

1.3 The 2005 Human Development Indicators on Energy and Environment

As you know there are 177 countries on earth. Each Country in the 2005 Human Development Report is evaluated according to various variables and sub-variables. I have chosen 10 countries as an example where the Greens themselves have movements and parties to know according to the IDH-2005 what is the state of the question in relation to energy and the environment:

Data related to the topic of Climate Change - HDI 2005

CanadaUSAMexicoNicaraguaDominican R.BrazilColombiaPeruChileUruguay
Traditional fuel consumption (% of total energy needs)4,6%3,6%8,0%47,97,2%26,7%16,0%20,6%12,5%35,4%
Electricity Consumption Per Capita (Kilowatt-Hours)18,54113,4562,2804961,3262,1831,0199072,9182,456
Carbon Dioxide Emissions (Per Capita, Metric Tons)16,520,13,70,72,51,81,31,03,61,2
Carbon dioxide emissions of the world total) 1,924,41,8(.)Or, 11,30,30,10,3(.)

Data related to the ratification of treaties on the environment

CanadaUSAMexicoNicaraguaDominican R.BrazilColombiaPeruChileUruguay
Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, 2000NONOYESYESNOYESYESYES


Framework Convention on Climate Change, NY, 2000YESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYES
Kyoto Protocol of the framework convention on climate change, 1997YESNOYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYES
Convention on Biological Diversity, 1992YESNOYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYES

Source: IDH-2005, It is clear that the United States, on the one hand, is the country that has the most carbon dioxide emissions and, on the other hand, the nation with the least ecological commitments at the regional and planetary level.

1.4. Today in 2005 when we read the news and scientific reports at a global level they tell us about global warming:

  • The thaw of the Arctic began in 2005 ahead of time. The area covered by sea ice in the Arctic has been reduced for the fourth consecutive year. This month's reduction is the largest in more than a century, human-caused global warming is partly to blame, and the thaw could accelerate in the coming years. "September 2005 will be remembered as a new record for minimum ice in the Arctic," said Mark Serreze of the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) in Boulder, Colorado, United States. United.
  • September 19 the area covered by ice was reduced to 5.35 million square kilometers, the fewest since 1978, when satellite measurements began. It is now 20% lower than the average for the period 1978-2000. Scientists estimate the thaw rate to be 8% per decade, and at that rate, there may be no ice in the summer of 2060. what we are seeing is part of the increased greenhouse effect. By the year 2100 there will be an increase in temperature that will oscillate between 4 and 7 degrees Celsius.
  • NO ICE IN 2080 These latest data allow establishing a disappearance of 8% of Arctic ice per decade, a percentage that reinforces theories that the Arctic may run out of ice during the summer from 2080.
  • The effects of global warming will be amplified, as when the ice is replaced by a dark ocean, the surface of the sea will absorb more solar energy than it would otherwise reflect off the ice and return to space. "With all that dark water there will be an increase in the heat that the Arctic stores and therefore, when autumn and winter arrive, it will be more difficult for the ice to appear." "Later, the following spring, as it will be less ice will be more likely to be lost the following year. "The long-term decline of the Arctic has already begun. If warming persists at this rate, by 2100 the ice cap will have completely melted by summer.
  • Scientists link these phenomena with the accumulation of gases in the atmosphere. Most of the scientific community believes that these gases, which include the carbon dioxide emitted mainly by vehicles and the smokestacks of power plants, are responsible for global warming by trapping solar heat in the atmosphere. The greenhouse effect is also responsible for the growth of the hole in the ozone layer ...
  • In this tragic hurricane season, research increasingly links an increase in the intensity of tropical storms with global warming. Global warming increases the risk of typhoons and causes nearly 10,000 deaths a year in Asia. About 10,000 people in the Asia-Pacific region die each year as a result of factors associated with global warming, such as mosquito-borne disease. , as reported by experts from the World Health Organization (WHO). Likewise, the risk of typhoons, cyclones and floods in the area increases significantly.
  • "This number may increase in the next 50 to 100 years." Preliminary research suggests that global temperature growth is already heading to extreme levels in the region, including floods, droughts, and typhoons - for example, the incidence of storms in the western Pacific region had risen by 2 since the early 1980s. until the late 90s,
  • But the number of deaths due to various natural disasters - floods, droughts, storms - has increased to a number that ranges between 30 and 40 percent. over time, the population of the region will be more vulnerable to unfavorable weather conditions.
  • Global warming forces Scotland's sharks to leave their habitat:
  • The main storms, hurricanes, and typhoons (including Katrina, Rita, and the great tropical swells that hit the Caribbean and Mesoamerica and other parts of the earth, and these are not mere cycles of nature) that occurred in the Recent times in different parts of the world are intensifying and global warming would have a notable impact, although the study carried out by American scientists has not yet been confirmed. [3]

2 Efforts and searches

All the previous data since 1992, expert studies, scientific analysis and current world news in the large information networks tell us that the earth is changing precisely because of human activity itself, but this human activity itself has a specific name: Neo -Consumer capitalism, the increasing gap between rich and poor, increasing injustice, poverty, ignorance, violent conflict, militaristic and interventionist politics causes destruction to human life and the earth's ecosystems, The increase The population has overloaded the ecological and social systems, so that the support capacity is at the very limit, global insecurity and the maintenance of a policy of the great nations to favor and defend international corporations in their desire to loot land resources and encourage consumption. In short, the absence of political ecology in decision-making.

Therefore, when we ask ourselves, how do the greens see these issues that concern the earth and humanity with which we share the same common destiny? - We must recognize and raise the following:

2.1.Agenda 21, Rio Declaration, Framework Convention on Climate Change, Report of the second IPCC Assessment, The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC), RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE SIERRA CLUB among other international instruments constitute true sources, efforts, analysis Recommendations that must not only be recognized by the states, signed by executives and ratified by congresses, but also truly implemented from the most local, regional to the most national level. Greater investments must be made in the field of environmental safety for global sustainability. Which implies overcoming the economistic, militaristic and ideologizing vision of our great cultural - political and State traditions. It is not enough to create, formulate and publish statements without a real commitment. Beyond the protocols and fancy speeches are the real challenges.

2.2. Ecological and Safety Issues affect us all equally.

3 The Green Vision

In the World Charter for Global Greens, Canberra 2001, defining what it means to be green in the new millennium:

3.1. WE RECOGNIZE THE CONTRIBUTIONS AND SCIENTIFIC ANALYSIS WHEN THEY SAY: “Nine of the 10 hottest years in history were in the 1990s. The level of CO2 in the atmosphere is higher than at any time in the last 15 million years. The frequency of weather disasters is growing, killing thousands and displacing millions of people. The widespread bleaching and death of coral reefs, which first occurred in 1998, will become common within 20 years. Scientists from the intergovernmental panel on Climate Change (IPCC) point out that global warming is real, and that human action is the substantial factor in the change. The Earth is expected to warm between 1-5oC this century and the sea level will rise, which has already begun, for the next 500 years flooding many of the most populous regions on earth; the climate catastrophe is advancing unless we act now ”.

3.2. The Greens :

· Adopt the goal of limiting CO2 levels in the atmosphere to 450 ppm in the shortest period possible as requested by the IPCC. Developed countries will not only have to comply with the Kyoto Protocol (-5.2% of the 1990 levels for 2010 globally, -8% for the countries of the European Union, -6% for the US) but still when it is a step in the right direction it is largely insufficient; but also achieve a reduction between -20% to -30% by 2020 so that a goal of -70% to -90% can be reached by the end of the century. Furthermore, the action must include the reduction of emissions of the other greenhouse effect gases.

We urge the entry into force of the Kyoto Protocol consequently with this goal and we insist that the implementation rules lead towards a real reduction of emissions from industrial sources in developed countries, including a system of penalties for non-compliance.

· We will work towards the establishment of an international accountability and reporting framework on emissions for transnational corporations, linked to global carbon taxes and permitted global environmental charges.

We will work intensively to ensure that developing countries have access to the most efficient, sustainable and appropriate technologies with a determined focus on renewable energy and that they are in accordance with the climate change conventions to ensure that actions are comprehensive and global. ; the principle of equity must be at the core of climate change negotiations and action.

· We oppose any expansion of nuclear power and energy and will work to reduce it as quickly as possible.

· We will support a call for a moratorium on the exploration and development of new fossil fuel fields or sources.

· We oppose the logging and logging of old forests, pointing out that they are the richest ecosystems in fixed carbon on the planet, vital for indigenous people, rich in plants and animals and irreplaceable on any human scale of time.

· We promote the planting of trees of diverse species that are not monocultures, as a short-term measure to capture carbon, with others for the environment.

· We promote the imposition of taxes on non-renewable energy and the use of the funds generated to promote energy efficiency and renewable energies.

· We support research on the use of sustainable energy sources and the development of biological-ecological energy production.

· We promote energy efficient technologies and "green" energy infrastructure between and within countries and economies on a no-cost or minimum-cost basis. This is one of the economic costs of emissions from Western countries. [4]

Probably, some of our approaches have an immediate application, others in the medium term and others in the long term, but of something we are fully sure we require the consensus of society, companies, local and national governments, political class, civil society, professionals and scientists , workers and peasants, young people and adults and everyone to make the earth a possible place for life not only for the human community but also for ecosystems and as Boff, an intellectual from Brazil, says, speaking of the earth: “O la We care or we perish ”.

Thank you

* Author's conference on global warming in Ikito, Peru, Oct-12-15 / 2005
Edward Salazar Cruz
President MVE-Nicaragua
Professor at various universities in Nicaragua
In Philosophy of The science , Ethics, Globalization, Theology
Representative before the FPVA , the Global Greens


[1] United Nations. Earth Summit, Topic Summary, Rió de Janeiro, June 2 to 14, 1992, Page 5

[2] Gallant. Op-Cit. P. 12

[3] Sources: ACAN-EFE, BBC, CNN and other information networks in Google, news section.

[4] Global Greens. Earth Charter, Canberra, 2001, pp. 10-12

Video: UpFront - Reality Check: A climate change conspiracy? (May 2021).