Climate change is driven by the burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil, natural gas), coupled with human population growth.
Greehouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane are largely responsible for global warming.
The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased by nearly 50% since the beginning of the industrial revolution in the 1800s.
The human population, which reached 1 billion at the beginning of the 19th century, now stands at 7.6 billion and is expected to rise to 9.8 billion by 2050. Human population growth is driving the increase in the burning of fossil fuels.
The impacts of global warming, climate change and the continued growth in human population include:
Continued rise in sea levels and increased coastal flooding.
More destructive hurricanes and other storms.
Longer and more destructive wildfire seasons.
More frequent and intense heat waves.
More severe droughts in some areas and greater flooding in others.
Diminishing supplies of ground water in many areas.
Increased destruction of coral reefs and marine habitats in our oceans.
Increasing threats to agricultural production and food supplies.
Increased threats to human health from the spread of disease carrying insects and an increase in polluted air as atmospheric temperatures continue to climb.