There’s a lot of information about global warming out there, and conflicting sources can make you think a variety of things. Various websites, periodicals, and books can offer completely different global warming facts. The following list is a compilation of 10 scary global warming fast facts that will truly amaze and astound you.
Alarming Facts About Global Warming
That Will Amaze You & Your Kids
- Every single day, 70 million tons of carbon dioxide are released into our world’s atmosphere. That’s 1.4 billion pounds – yesterday, today, tomorrow, and every single day.
- The warmest years on record have been in the past 10 out of 12 years. Since record-keeping began in 1880, the planet’s 10 hottest years were all in your lifetime, between 1997 and 2008. (So yes, it probably did snow more when you were a kid.)
- 2008 saw the second-lowest summer Arctic sea ice ever recorded since satellites began keeping track in 1979, at 1.74 million square miles. This is 860,000 square miles below the average minimum seen in the summers from 1979 to 2000. (Summer 2007 saw the lowest levels ever recorded, at 1.65 million square miles).
- Ships for the first time can sail along the Northwest Passage above North America. Once a fabled passageway, melting Arctic ice from global warming has let this route become a reality for the first time in over 100 years.
- Arctic summers could be ice-free by 2040 or sooner, decades ahead of previous estimates. As this ice “mirror” that reflects sunlight back into space disappears, the effects of global warming will increase as the oceans absorb more of the sun’s heat. This melting ice will cause polar bears and other species to lose their icy habitat and eventually become extinct.
- 82% of glaciers have disappeared in Glacier National Park, Montana. Today this beautiful park has only 27 glaciers, compared with 150 in 1910.
- 500,000 cubic miles of ice would be lost if either of the rapidly melting ice sheets in Greenland or Antarctica completely melted. Dumping this much freshwater into the ocean would be catastrophic not only to low-lying areas, but it would also mess up the ocean’s complicated currents.
- 20 million tons of ice per day are lost by only one of the glaciers in Greenland. The ice melting from Greenland’s glaciers has more than doubled over the past decade, adding to the dangerous rise in sea levels. For those living in New York City – this amount lost per day is equal to the amount of water you and your Big Apple neighbors use for an entire year.
- Over a hundred million people will be displaced by just a 1-yard rise in sea levels. Many scientists predict that the oceans will rise at least this much by 2100. As more and more freshwater melts into the sea, this could greatly disrupt the ocean’s vital currents and, ironically, even bring a mini-Ice Age to Europe.
- Sea levels will rise by 20 feet if either the Greenland or West Antarctic Ice Sheets completely melt – 40 feet if both melt. Maps as you know them would be completely changed, as this would flood much of Florida, Louisiana, Manhattan, China, Bangladesh, the Netherlands, and many more areas.
How Can You Prevent
The Worst From Happening?
Author: Brown, Nathan. A Cooler Climate, 2008.