Weather and Global Warming

Weather is the name given to the changing conditions of the atmosphere, or air, which surrounds the Earth The weather is all around us, all the time. It is an important part of our lives and one that we cannot control. Instead the weather often controls how and where we live,what we do, what we wear and what we eat. Weather conditions include wind, storms, rain, snow and sunshine. People who study the weather are called meteorologist. Climate is often spoken about at the same time as weather, but it is something quite different. The climate is the common, average weather conditions at a particular place over a long period of time (Usually 10 to 30 years).

We learn about different climates around the world. Deserts have a hot and dry climate while the Antarctic has a very cold and dry climate. The hottest place on the Earth is Dallol in Ethiopia, where the average temperature is 34. 4°C in the shade. 2. Global warming is the term used to describe a gradual increase in the average temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere and its oceans, a change that is believed to be permanently changing the Earth’s climate. Even though it is an ongoing debate, it is proved by the scientists that the planet is warming. The Earth’s climate changes naturally over long periods of time. Scientists now think that these natural cycles of change have been over taken by a rapid rise in the temperature of the Earth’s atmosphere.

Global Warming is caused by the greenhouse effect. Greenhouses work by trapping heat from the sun. Glass panes let in sunlight but prevent heat from escaping so that plants can survive cold weather. ‘Greenhouse gases’ in the Earth’s atmosphere work in the same way. Without them the Earth would be too cold to sustain life. However, we are now experiencing an enhanced greenhouse effect, widely thought to be the result of large quantities of heat-trapping gases escaping into the atmosphere. These greenhouse gases include carbon dioxide, methane, nitrogen oxides and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and they are caused by human activities such as burning coal and oil, increasing road and air transport, burning down forests and rising cattle. Even a small increasing in temperature can have serious consequences, altering weather patterns and resulting in increased rainfall, storms or drought in different parts of the world. Rising seas levels caused by melting polar rise also threaten low-laying coastal areas. (Ozone) in the stratosphere absorbs harmful ultraviolet rays. Pollutants in the air destroy ozone, making the ozone layer thinner. Strong winds and intense cold of the Antarctic winter concentrate the effects of pollutants so that ozone is thinnest over Antarctic in spring (September and October).