What Are the Consequences of Global Warming?

Global warming affects weather patterns, plants and animals, and society. Over the past 100 years, global warming is responsible for a 1.4 degree Fahrenheit increase in temperature. Human activity accounts for much of global warming.

Global warming causes extremes in temperatures. While observers might expect extreme highs, the process moves the jet stream from its normal location so that in the midst of global warming local areas often experience record breaking cold temperature. The overall warming increases glacial melt, affecting the height of the oceans and the acidity of the waters.

The environmental changes affect both plant and animal life. Temperature changes move the zones in which plants thrive, becoming too warm in some areas, while making other areas inhabitable where frost and freezing temperatures once killed plants. As the plant life moves to other areas, so do the animals. However, the areas are not always conducive to animal life so there is a threat of extinction to some species.

Socially, global warming affects agriculture. While the increase in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases the size of plants that farmers plant, the nutritional value decreases. Global warming also affects human health. An increase in uncertainty concerning food has the potential to spark global unrest.