Degree of severity of effects on humans and the environment due to climate change

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Geography global issues climatic hazards revision
Degree of severity of effects on human/environment due to climate change
Computer models suggest that if CO2 levels double, temperature will rise by 3
degrees C, when this last occurred London was underwater due to ice caps melting
and sea levels rising.
Arctic and Antarctic experience most extreme changes. UK isn't badly affected as
much as other countries in the Northern hemisphere due to the gulf stream.
However, models cannot predict the impacts on local areas.
Glaciers in Greenland have sped up as temperatures have risen as glaciers surfaces
have changed from being smooth to being covered in cracks and when calving
occurs the ice becomes thinner leading to more icebergs, which increases sea level
rise, meaning many areas around the world will be at risk from flooding.
Climate change may be happening already in the Arctic and Antarctic as sea ice is
melting quicker and it may be possible that future summers will have no sea ice at
all. This would means the albedo effect is reduced, so less heat is reflected and
more absorbed leading to faster warming.
In desert areas such as Las Vegas, drought is increasing and infrastructure that
secures these cities water supplies may not be able to cope in the future.
Other impacts include:
Pacific islands lost due to rising sea levels
Migration of animals to the Northern hemisphere
Severe impacts on marine environments- Coral reefs disappear through
ocean acidification due to more carbon dioxide.
Drying out of the Amazon rainforest
Mediterranean experiences regular summer heat waves
More extreme weather- more frequent/stronger depressions
Other extreme impacts as a result of a 4 degree C rise in temperature include:
Sea rise will effect coastal countries such as Bangladesh and Egypt
Disappearing glaciers
Melting permafrost will release more carbon dioxide which will increase
the rate of warming
Other extreme impacts as a result of a 6 degree C rise in temperature include:
Natural disasters becoming common
Deserts increasing rapidly in size
Coastal cities completely submerged
Extinction of marine life


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