The issue of Global Warming has been discussed for decades, and within the recent years it has been not only a debate on a personal level, but on a political level as well. There are many arguments and disagreements in politics today, and probably even more to come in the future, but the matter of whether Global Warming is truly a big economical issue is one of the biggest sources of friction between the people and politicians today. On the scientific side of this issue there are multiple studies that have shown that since the 1950’s the Earth’s CO2 levels have been increasing much faster than they ever have in the past. Going as far back as 1896 with a scientist named Svante Arrhenius, he believed that by burning fossil fuels and releasing more CO2 into the atmosphere, the average temperatures of the Earth may rise. It wasn’t until about a century after that people began to believe Arrhenius’ publishings. In the 1970’s the public truly began to see climate change as an issue, but funding was few and far between.
In 1985 a group of climate experts from almost 30 nations began to plan a conference in Austria so that the world’s governments could come together and create a way to restrict greenhouse gases, the political leaders ignored their advice and the people barely even noticed. The political aspect on this whole debacle didn’t truly come into play until the late 1980’s. That summer was the hottest on record and people truly began to believe that global warming was real.
According to The Discovery of Global Warming – A History, corporations and people who opposed any governmental regulations then “began to spend millions of dollars on lobbying, advertising, and “reports” that mimicked scientific publications, striving to convince the public that there was no problem at all.” Due to the fact that there was still much uncertainty about the effects of global warming and the limited knowledge of the Earth’s climate in general, there was much debate on whether there should any regulations. Skeptical Science, a website dedicated to making knowledge easier to access, has researched and done many studies where published Climate Scientists have been asked their views on Global Warming. “Depending on exactly how you measure the expert consensus, it’s somewhere between 90% and 100% that agree humans are responsible for climate change,” Skeptical Science, 2016. A similar experiment was done by a large group of scientists who delved deep into 24,000 papers on the issue of Global Warming. They sifted through all essays and only recorded the ones with a specific stance on Global Warming, whether it was for or against it.
In total only about 4,000 of those papers had an open opinion on Global Warming, but the results of that data were certain, 97.1% of all of the 4,000 papers believed that Global Warming was real and that humans were the main cause of Global warming today. Their findings also corresponded with the findings of two men named Doran and Zimmerman. In 2009 the two men surveyed 77 Earth Scientists who had actively published papers on climate change. Out of those 77 scientists, 75 believed that a majority of climate change was human-caused. The graph to the right shows the general consensus of multiple studies having to deal with the contributors to Global Warming. The graph shows ten studies that have been conducted since 2000, all of which have been overseen by different scientists within the field.
The biggest amount of evidence that Climate Scientists have that helps them to show that Global Warming is real is the rising amount of CO2 levels in the atmosphere. The line graph to the side shows the sharp increase of CO2 levels since the Industrial revolution. These samples were taken from ice cores and contain data from hundreds of thousands of years ago. As seen in the graph the CO2 levels in the past have never exceeded over 300 parts per million, up until the 1950’s. As the chart makes evident, there have been fluctuations of CO2 levels in the past usually due to slight variations in the Earth’s orbit, thus changing how much solar energy the planet receives. Why would CO2 be such a big factor in climate change? Well, CO2 in its gaseous state, acts like a barrier and traps heat from the Earth’s surface in the atmosphere.
CO2 is also one of the biggest pollutants at this period of time, it is released during the burning of fossil fuels, so whenever we use oil, coal or natural gas in our daily lives, CO2 is being omitted. The political aspect of this source of conflict is among a majority of the Republican party. It’s not that a big number of the Republican party doesn’t believe in Global Warming, it may be something as small as thinking that human made pollution has either little to no effect on Global Warming as a whole. The clash comes when viewed by other parties and their views on the matter.
A survey done by the Pew Research Center shows the many aspects and interthinkings of a large spectrum of people, ranging from Liberal Democrats to Conservative Republicans. This particular survey shows how a majority of the Conservative Republicans don’t really believe that Climate scientists have enough data collected in order to form a thorough thesis on whether Global Warming is real and that Human-caused pollution is the main driving factor of the continuation of the problem.A main political figure today who can be seen with these types of beliefs is the current Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Chief, Scott Pruitt. In 2017 Mr. Pruitt gave a statement to CNBC that he didn’t believe that human impact was the main contributor to Global Warming.
“I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact,” Mr. Pruitt then went on to say, “So no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see, but we don’t know that yet, we need to continue to debate, continue the review and analysis.” Before Mr. Pruitt was the Chief of the EPA he was the Attorney General for Oklahoma, while he was in office he sued the EPA over a dozen times over the regulations of CO2.
Mr. Pruitt has a long history with the Global Warming debate and stands as a strong figure for people within the United States to trust.