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Solutions to Stop or Slow Global Warming


Solutions to Stop or Slow Global Warming

Photo: David McNew/Getty Images

Solutions to slowing or stopping global warming lie in mankind's ability to slow and stop activities that inject greenhouse gases into Earth's atmosphere.

Major sources of greenhouse gases generated by mankind, and related solutions to stemming the flow greenhouse gases, are:

Also read President Obama's Speech at U.N. Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

Burning of Fossil Fuels: Oil and Gas, Coal, Natural Gas

The largest single contributer to the rise of man-made greenhouse gases is the burning of oil and gas to power vehicles, machinery, and produce energy and warmth.

Per the Union of Concerned Scientists, "Motor vehicles are responsible for almost a quarter of annual U.S. emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), the primary global-warming gas. The U.S. transportation sector emits more CO2 than all but three other countries' emissions from all sources combined."

Solutions to reduce reliance on vehicles that burn fossil fuels include:

  • Taking mass public transportation whenever possible, rather than use of individual cars
  • Alternative fuels, rather than fossil fuels, in vehicles
  • Hybird vehicles, which are vehicles that combine two types of power, typically internal combustion engines , which burns fossil fuels, and electrical power
  • Vehicles that achieve high miles per gallon of gas consumed
Solutions to reduce reliance on fossil fuels to produce energy and warmth include alternative energy sources such as:
  • Solar power, which is usually generated by solar panels or a solar tower
  • Wind power, which is usually generated by groups of wind turbines
  • Biomass energy, which is derived from "lumber mill wastes, urban wood waste, forest and agricultural residues and other feed stocks" as well as waste from factories and landfills.
  • Geothermal energy, which is derived from steam and hot water found deep beneath the Earths surface
  • For others, see Top 7 Renewable Energy Sources by Larry West, About.com's Guide to Environmental Issues.

London newspaper The Independent asked in May 2007, "In the next 24 hours, deforestation will release as much CO2 into the atmosphere as 8 million people flying from London to New York. Stopping the loggers is the fastest and cheapest solution to climate change. So why are global leaders turning a blind eye to this crisis?"

The Independent continued on to dissect the challenge, and to propose one solution to this complex international dilemma:

"No new technology is needed, says the GCP, just the political will and a system of enforcement and incentives that makes the trees worth more to governments and individuals standing than felled. 'The focus on technological fixes for the emissions of rich nations while giving no incentive to poorer nations to stop burning the standing forest means we are putting the cart before the horse,' said Mr Mitchell."

(NOTE - The GCP is the Oxford-based Global Canopy Programme, an alliance of leading rainforest scientists, which is headed by Mr. Andrew Mitchell.)

"International demand has driven intensive agriculture, logging and ranching that has proved an inexorable force for deforestation; conservation has been no match for commerce.

"The leading rainforest scientists are now calling for the immediate inclusion of standing forests in internationally regulated carbon markets that could provide cash incentives to halt this disastrous process."

See other quick-reading articles in this series:

Also read President Obama's Speech at U.N. Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

Recommended Reading on Global Warming Solutions

More on the vast subject of solutions to slow and stop global warming can be found at the following by Larry West, About.com's Guide to Environmental Issues:

For in-depth reading about global warming solutions, the following websites are excellent resources:

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