The Sky is Falling! The Sky is Falling!


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We're all familiar with Chicken Little- the children's tale that tells the story of a chicken afraid that the sky is falling. How far off is that little chicken though? Could our sky really be falling- or just deteriorating before our eyes? 

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The Ozone Layer, a belt of natural ozone gas (made up of mostly oxygen), sits close to 30 miles above the planet Earth in a region called the stratosphere. The job of the ozone layer is to protect the Earth from the suns harmful UVB radiation. In simpler terms- the ozone layer acts like a layer of sunscreen for the Earth. Unfortunately, this means that without it we get burned. 

28630730.pngScientists and Environmentalists argue that the excessive amounts of pollution on earth are what's causing ozone depletion. An example of this pollution is chlorofluorocarbons (CFC), a chemical found in everyday household items like cans of hairspray and Red-Whip. 

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These CFCs are released and broken down into chlorine molecules when they reach the upper atmosphere. This chlorine is what's responsible for destroying the ozone layer (oxygen molecules). When oxygen molecules in the ozone get destroyed, more UVB rays get let into the Earth's atmosphere causing the familiar phenomenon known as "global warming". According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, one atom of chlorine can destroy up to one hundred thousand ozone molecules!  


After reading this blog you may be thinking, what does this mean for usWhile environmental problems like global warming and ozone depletion are very serious- there is no need to worry that the sky is falling just yet. National Geographic Magazine reports that since these findings in 1996, several countries have entirely banned CFCs. Scientist's believe that the amount of chlorine found in the atmosphere is actually depleting! It is estimated that chlorine levels will return to normal within 50 years if recent trends in environmentalism continue. What trends have you seen that you think contribute to the environmental protection movement? Do you believe in global warming? I would love to hear how some of you feel about the environmental threats being made to our planet! 

4 Comments

I agree that Global Warming is a serious threat that we need to handle. I think that one of the main reasons global warming is occurring is because at this time on Earth we are experiencing the highest populations and most technology we as a species have ever encountered. I believe that these two factors are the main contributions in global warming and unfortunately, I see them as somewhat unavoidable in order to sustain our population they way in which we live. This interesting article highlights some main causes and effects of global warming. One that I found very interesting is the hypothesis that methane from animals is a contributing factor. As a planet, we experience starvation widespread in many parts of the world so it's not like we can just get rid of animals--we need them to live. Seemingly, this is an unavoidable cause to global warming and the solution unfortunately seems kind of far away.

I actually don't believe in global warming, or at least not to the same extent as hardcore environmentalists. One reason being my dad is a mining engineer, therefore my tuition is being paid for by mining coal and delivering electricity to millions of people. I think global warming is a possible danger but the cooling and warming (in this case) of the earth's surface is nothing new according to Candler Wills in this article http://www.blueridgenow.com/article/20070304/NEWS/70305002?p=2&tc=pg

A 1,500 year heating-cooling cycle has "dominated the earth's climate for the past 11,000 years." So why the panic now? I'm sure I don't know all the details I could and I am fairly biased because I hear my dad's thoughts on this controversy but everything we hear about global warming in the news or conversation is biased to some extent and is going to be presented in a way that supports that commentators argument. The facts say thought "the present warming has so far amounted to about 0.8 degree centigrade, far short of the the two previous warmings" in Earth's history. So should we face the facts? According to history this is a natural cycle and will eventually return to a cooling stage.

I think global warming is a touchstone for personal preview of the world.Whoever has a snippet of environmental conscience should be at least pay some attention,if not grave concern,toward this issue. A few decades ago,the ozone depletion has caused a huge scientific sensation when remote sensoring images of ozone distribution were displayed across the timespan.It didn't take long for government on a global scale to outlaw Freon,in your context CFC,being used in refreigerators.It was until I read your blog that I came to know CFC exists in hairspray and stuff like that.But honestly speaking,I am relieved to see that CFC couldn't go too far beyond the bathroom.Imagine refrigerators of our parents' generation exhales tons of Freon into the air,the legislative control of CFC,at least in the US,has been responsible and prompt during recent years.

concerning the syntax of this post, it is the epitome of journalistic writing. first, you started off with a cultural anecdote then you described the problem and you closed with a positive not for the reader: awesome job. In regards to the post, I find this to be a very important environmental issue. global warming is a real occurrence that can be explained with basic science. also, couldn't manufacturers stop creating and distributing these CFCs not completely ban them but reduce the amount produced each year.

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