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Global Warming How does global warming affect places like the tundra?
What causes global warming? The Earth naturally goes through cycles, warming up then cooling down again. Although, over the past 50 years the average global temperature has increased at the fastest rate in recorded history. Why? Carbon Dioxide and other air pollutants that are collecting in the atmosphere are trapping the suns heat and warming the earth. Coal-burning power plants are the largest U.S. source of carbon dioxide pollution -- they produce 2.5 billion tons every year. Automobiles, the second largest source, create nearly 1.5 billion tons of CO2 annually.
The Tundra The Arctic tundra is located in the northern hemisphere, encircling the north pole and extending south to the coniferous forests of the taiga. The arctic is known for its cold, desert-like conditions. The growing season ranges from 50 to 60 days. The average winter temperature is -34° C (-30° F), but the average summer temperature is 3-12° C (37-54° F) which enables this biome to sustain life.
How will climate change affect polar regions? Polar regions are expected to warm more than any other parts of the world. Polar ice sheets are some of the largest surface features on our planet. Any changes to them, however small, could have damaging effects. If the Arctic loses the reflective surface of ice and the dark Arctic Ocean absorbs more heat, the northern regions may warm even more rapidly.
How to stop Global Warming? Replace a regular incandescent light bulb with a compact fluorescent light bulb (cfl) CFLs use 60% less energy than a regular bulb. This simple switch will save about 300 pounds of carbon dioxide a year. Move your thermostat down 2° in winter and up 2° in summer Almost half of the energy we use in our homes goes to heating and cooling. You could save about 2,000 pounds of carbon dioxide a year with this simple adjustment. Protect and conserve forest worldwide Forests play a critical role in global warming: they store carbon. When forests are burned or cut down, their stored carbon is release into the atmosphere - deforestation now accounts for about 20% of carbon dioxide emissions each year.
Works Cited Petrone, Maurizio. "How To Stop Global Warming." Global Warming FACTS. Google, 2010. Web. 30 Oct 2011.. "Global Warming Facts, Causes, and Effects of Climate Change." NRDC. NRDC, n.d. Web. 30 Oct 2011.. "Climate Change." U.S. EPA. EPA, September 15, 2011. Web. 30 Oct 2011.. "The world's biomes." University of California Museum of Paleontology. California Academy of Sciences, 2004. Web. 30 Oct 2011.. "What's It Like Where You Live?." MBGnet. Missouri Botanical Garden, 2002. Web. 30 Oct 2011..
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