The Arctic is a cold and far away place! And walruses are large and powerful... And indeed, man has caused global warming, which puts them at risk. Here is a case file to help you understand how and why walruses are at risk.
CyberDodo and Global Warming (1-50)
It is the increase of average temperatures and rise in the planet's ocean levels, which has been taking place for several decades.
From the start, we would like to point out that this CyberDodo case file does not intend to be exhaustive and to present all the aspects of this theme: this shall, of course, be impossible. Suffice it to say that the 4th report of the GIEC (Group of Intergovernmental experts on climate change IPCC in English), published in 2007, mobilised more than 2500 scientists and its summary conclusions consist of more than 100 pages.
You can also read it by clicking here (French version)
Why do we talk so much about global warming?
Because the consequences of these temperature increases (which are on the rise) are potentially catastrophic and a huge majority of scientists believe that this has been caused by human activities. It is therefore fundamental to inform and sensitise the world population so that we can adapt our life styles and particularly our consumption levels so as to limit this global warming as much as possible.
Our action today or indeed our lack of action shall have an unprecedented impact on generations to come. No-one should continue to ignore global warming, and it is with the aim of contributing to this increased awareness that CyberDodo is offering you a cartoon, this case file, quiz and games.
What are the causes of global warming?
According to all appearances, the increase of these greenhouse gases cause global warming. In this regard, by clicking here , you will be able to access the case file which CyberDodo has devoted to greenhouse gases.
Greenhouse gases are indispensable for life on earth (without it, temperatures should not exceed 18° Celsius), human activities created an imbalance which our planet had never before experienced, even if you go back several hundreds of thousands of years. How can this be confirmed?
Through the ice cores which scientists have studied, particularly in the Antarctic, which represent a veritable storehouse of climatic conditions over a very long period of time. By drilling deeper and deeper and with the help of increasingly developed analysis techniques, it is possible to know the weather conditions of 10,000 years or 100,000 years as well as we do yesterday's weather.
From these analyses and comparisons, it is clear that man's increasing use of fossile-based energy which began in the 19th century and did not stop increasing after that is the most probable cause of global warming. Fossil fuels, added to deforestation, which destroys carbon wells, cause desertification, etc., in other words, the lack of human respect for the planet which gave birth to us.
What could be the consequences of global warming?
It all depends on its intensity in the relevant region or population!
It is easy to understand that a person living in very cold countries where agriculture is a challenge and living conditions very difficult may be happy when temperatures go up. But increased temperatures shall in fact cause disasters with in particular the rise of water levels, increased desertification and profound ecological upheavals.
What is particularly difficult about global warming is that no-one can predict with certainty what will happen in the decades to come because numerous factors influence its progression. Let's start with our behaviour...
Are we in fact going to take the indispensable measures needed to limit global warming as much as possible? Do we give priority to non-polluting and renewable energy? Shall we stop erecting the untouchable dogma of ‘consumption' and ‘growth'? Shall we be capable of dealing with our waste, our pollution, our environmental footprint?
Will we be able to put a stop to this currently irrepressible need of rich countries to own many types of gadgets which we are constantly changing and discarding? Should developing countries in turn be wiser and understand that the whole world cannot adopt the current life style and consumption levels of the more well off countries? Shall we be able to balance the food requirements of poor countries and rich countries by focusing on sensible agriculture? At what levels shall the world population be able to grow?
These questions and even many others have made projections of average temperature increases up to the year 2100 increase from 2 to 8°! It is not difficult to imagine that the results will be the same whether we are talking about the lower or higher figures of this projection...
To try to appreciate the risk, let us remember that we have had to invent the term ‘climatic refugees', that is, human beings in their millions who are going to have to abandon their life styles due to upheavals which will affect their environment, where should they go? Who will be able to receive them, who will want to receive them? Who can receive them?
‘Global warming' is a subject which groups together multiple realities, because while temperatures are going to increase in numerous regions, in others it will drop severely. An increase in sea levels is to be expected, with also contradictory projections which go from some millimetres to several metres in the event of melting polar ice. Concretely, more than a billion people are directly threatened by this increase in ocean levels.
The intensity of these meteorological phenomena is equally expected to increase, and in fact, already throughout the planet there has been a significant progression in more dangerous episodes. According to a scary logic, they principally affect the poorest populations who are often the most exposed.
Global warming will equally affect animal and plant life with the risk of extinction for millions of species and has a major impact on biodiversity.
What are the solutions to the fight against global warming?
The first and most important, which is the basis for all the other solutions: to recognise that the phenomenon exists, that its consequences are potentially dramatic and that we have actually caused it!
Because the most terrible effects of global warming, whatever they may be, shall only be felt in a couple of decades and future generations have an inalienable right to a well preserved planet.
A global conscience should emerge; we should understand that we are one family which has to face an immense challenge, one single family which shares the same house: the human family on its small planet.
If we get there, if there is an increase in global willingness, then we will certainly be capable of slowing down global warming because the technical solutions already exist.
It is up to each of us to become involved, let us be the masters of our destiny and the destiny of those that will come afterwards... Furthermore, do we have the choice?
To see the cartoon on global warming, click here
To see the game on global warming, click here
To do the quiz, click here
To see the case file on greenhouse gases, click here
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