On March 28, 2012 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded "Evidence suggests that climate change has led to changes in climate extremes such as heat waves, record high temperatures and, in many regions, heavy precipitation in the past half century". In a past report they also concluded "most of the observed increase in globally averaged temperatures since the mid-20th century is largely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic (caused by human activities) greenhouse gas concentrations" via the greenhouse effect. The IPCC also reports that as early as 2020, between 75 million and 250 million people in Africa will suffer from water shortages, main Asian urban centers will be at risk for flooding, and many species will disappear from Europe.
The European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica determined that there is more carbon dioxide present in the atmosphere currently than at any time during the last 650,000 years. This refutes the skeptics of Global Warming, who say temperature and carbon dioxide levels are cyclical; the real reason for what is happening.
Arctic ice is rapidly disappearing, and the Arctic may have its first completely ice-free summer by 2040 or earlier. Polar bears and other native species are already suffering from the loss of sea ice from their environment due to the Greenhouse Effect.
2012 was the warmest year on record in the Continental United States and this was not by chance. We all on Earth can expect continuing significant changes in normal weather patterns. With these effects of Climate Change are the conditions that affect agriculture; including temperature, floods and draught, glacial melting, and increasing severity of storms on the planet. These conditions determine the capacity of the planet to produce enough food for the ever increasing human population, as well as for domesticated animals. Rising carbon dioxide levels will also have effects on crop yields(positive and negative, depending on location). We must be vigilant in our assessment of the impacts on agriculture in order to anticipate and adapt farming to maximize our agricultural production.
Don't be fooled by campaigns made by the Natural Gas Industry either. They are just as bad as the Coal Industry. Natural Gas is not environmentally friendly and actually leads to more greenhouse gas emissions due to fracking. "Fracking" is the when the gas companies drill and inject high pressure fluid into the ground in order to fracture rocks to release the natural gas inside. The problem with this is that a huge amount of methane gets released into the atmosphere with this practice. Methane, in equal quantities, is even worse than carbon dioxide for contributing to the Greenhouse Effect. Just watch the documentary "Gasland"-Parts I and II by Josh Fox and you will get the picture.
Overpopulation, combined with our dependence on fossil fuels, can only lead to catastrophe. We have to ask ourselves what the consequences are of having a large family in relation to the rest of the world and question yourself whether you are contributing to Overpopulation. We must get serious about encouraging limits on family size along with changing to renewable energy sources on a massive scale.
There are some people who say Global Warming is invented by the Media. The response to that can be done by asking yourself two questions: Who would benefit from spreading this message? Who are the people that have benefited while pollution is, and has been, thrown into our environment? Unfortunately, the reason for our man-made environmental situation is the same as it is for our current worldwide economic one: Greed. It is ironic that the greed of global bankers have forced people to turn their attention to the economy and away from the greed of people that will do anything to keep the public from using renewable energy.
The causes and effects of Global Warming are real. What we decide to do about it is up to everyone of us. The first, and most important, course of social activism we can take is to make a major shift to renewable energy sources. Wind power, solar energy, ocean energy, and geothermal power are energy sources we have to utilize on a major scale if we are to succeed in stopping this man-made climate change. The ecology of our planet is at stake. This is not something you would like to reminisce about and say: "If only we did something". Activism is the only answer.