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Global Warming Effects on Humans

Everybody these days seems to think they know all about global warming effects on humans. If you ask anyone on the street, they will likely say that emissions from vehicles and factories cause a greenhouse effect, which results in a warming of the earth’s atmosphere. Hence the term global warming.

What most people may not realize is that it doesn’t take much of a rise in temperature to cause catastrophic changes in the environment. Scientists have estimated that the total amount of sea ice has decreased by an alarming 30% since 1979. And the rate of melting sea ice is accelerating every year.

When the sea ice melts, it causes a rise in sea level. This translates into an enormous amount of water, with no place to go except inland. Many low-lying countries and cities could literally end up under water with a significant rise in sea level.

Global warming effects on humans include increased numbers of natural disasters such as extreme weather events. Hurricanes, typhoons, tornados, tsunamis and others fall under this category.

Some of the effects felt directly by the human body as a result of global warming include:

  • Heatwaves – these cause illnesses that are heat related, such as heat exhaustion, sun stroke, and death. People who are most susceptible to heat related illness and death are elderly people, the very young and people who are diabetic.
  • Extreme Weather Events – hurricanes, floods and tornados increase with global warming. They indicate an upset in the balance of the earth’s systems. With these weather disasters, humans experience emotional and physical trauma, injuries, illnesses and fatality. Some of these happen on very large scales, wreaking havoc for many people in one location, or even several locations.
  • Poor Air Quality – this is caused by air becoming stagnant at higher temperatures, and also by poor air circulation. Levels of smog are increased, and smog brings with it increased asthma attacks and lung irritations for all those who breathe it. Illness and death are common results of poor air quality, especially in large cosmopolitan areas where the amounts of emissions is also very high.
  • Plant Problems – the rise in temperatures combined with higher carbon dioxide levels allows some very obnoxious plants to grow quicker, produce more pollen and spread more vigorously. These plants include ragweed, stinging nettles, poison ivy and others. The pollen is a very aggravating allergen to many people, causing terrible allergic reactions. The weeds also inhibit plant growth of other desirable plants that could be for human consumption.
  • Psychological effects – these are a little more difficult to measure and quantify. When there are long lasting heat waves and little relief from the heat, people lose their drive and motivation. They become lethargic and lose hope that it will ever change. It makes quite an emotional toll. Also, when there are extreme weather events, poor air quality or allergy problems from the plants, all these cause an emotional drain. People can only put up with oppositional conditions for so long before they just give up.