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Effects of Global Warming

The impact of increased surface temperatures is significant in itself.


But global warming will have additional, far-reaching effects on the planet. Warming modifies
rainfall patterns, amplifies coastal erosion, lengthens the growing season in some regions, melts
ice caps and glaciers, and alters the ranges of some infectious diseases.
Some of these changes are already occurring.
Heat waves, droughts, and intense rain events have increased in frequency during the last 50
years, and human-induced global warming more likely than not contributed to the trend.
It is impossible to pin any single unusual weather event on global warming, but emerging
evidence suggests that global warming is already influencing the weather.

Changes in Weather
For most places, global warming will result in more frequent hot days and fewer cool days, with
the greatest warming occurring over land. Longer, more intense heat waves will become more
common. Storms, floods, and droughts will generally be more severe as precipitation patterns
change. Hurricanes may increase in intensity due to warmer ocean surface temperatures.
Rising Sea Levels
The weather isnt the only thing global warming will impact: rising sea levels will erode coasts
and cause more frequent coastal flooding. Some island nations will disappear. The problem is
serious because up to 10 percent of the worlds population lives in vulnerable areas less than 10
meters (about 30 feet) above sea level.
Between 1870 and 2000, the sea level increased by 1.7 millimeters per year on average, for a
total sea level rise of 221 millimeters (0.7 feet or 8.7 inches). And the rate of sea level rise is
accelerating. Since 1993, NASA satellites have shown that sea levels are rising more quickly,
about 3 millimeters per year, for a total sea level rise of 48 millimeters (0.16 feet or 1.89 inches)
between 1993 and 2009.
Impact on Ecosystems

.In some ecosystems, maximum daily temperatures might climb beyond the tolerance of
indigenous plant or animal. To survive the extreme temperatures, both marine and land-based
plants and animals have started to migrate towards the poles. Those species, and in some cases,
entire ecosystems, that cannot quickly migrate or adapt, face extinction. The IPCC estimates that
20-30 percent of plant and animal species will be at risk of extinction if temperatures climb
more than 1.5 to 2.5C.
Impact on People
The changes to weather and ecosystems will also affect people more directly. Hardest hit will be
those living in low-lying coastal areas, and residents of poorer countries who do not have the
resources to adapt to changes in temperature extremes and water resources. As tropical
temperature zones expand, the reach of some infectious diseases, such as malaria, will change.
More intense rains and hurricanes and rising sea levels will lead to more severe flooding and
potential loss of property and life.
Hotter summers and more frequent fires will lead to more cases of heat stroke and deaths, and
to higher levels of near-surface ozone and smoke, which would cause more code red air quality
days. Intense droughts can lead to an increase in malnutrition. On a longer time scale, fresh
water will become scarcer, especially during the summer, as mountain glaciers disappear,
particularly in Asia and parts of North America.
Ultimately, global warming will impact life on Earth in many ways, but the extent of the change
is largely up to us. Scientists have shown that human emissions of greenhouse gases are pushing
global temperatures up, and many aspects of climate are responding to the warming in the way
that scientists predicted they would. This offers hope. Since people are causing global warming,
people can mitigate global warming, if they act in time. Greenhouse gases are long-lived, so the
planet will continue to warm and changes will continue to happen far into the future, but the
degree to which global warming changes life on Earth depends on our decisions now.

Environment Management: Definition and Scope


Environmental management is a process concerned with humanenvironment
interactions, and seeks to identify: what is environmentally desirable; what are the
physical, economic, social and technological constraints to achieving that; and what are
the most feasible options (El-Kholy, 2001: 15).
Environmental management displays the following characteristics:

it supports sustainable development;


it demands a multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary or even holistic approach;
it has to integrate and reconcile different development viewpoints;
it seeks to co-ordinate science, social science, policy making and planning;
it is a proactive process;
it generally embraces the precautionary principle;
it recognizes the desirability of meeting, and if possible exceeding, basic human

needs;
the timescale involved extends well beyond the short term, and concern ranges from

local to global;
it should identify opportunities as well as address threats and problems;
it stresses stewardship, rather than exploitation.

Sustainable Development

Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without

compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.


It contains within it two key concepts:

the concept of 'needs', in particular the essential needs of the world's poor, to which

overriding priority should be given; and


the idea of limitations imposed by the state of technology and social organization on
the environment's ability to meet present and future needs.

Since the mid 1980s new branches have appeared on the evolutionary tree of
environmental management, including:

environmental law (see Chapter 5);


green business (see Chapter 5);
impact, risk and hazard assessment (see Chapters 8 and 9);
total quality management (TQM), which has led to total environmental quality
management (see Chapters 5, 7 and 8);
environmental standards (see Chapter 8);
eco-auditing (see Chapter 9);
environmental management systems (see Chapters 5 and 8).

There are three main approaches which can be adopted to try to do that:
1.

Advisory
through education;
through demonstration (e.g. model farms or factories);
through the media (advertisements or covert approaches the latter include subtle

2.

3.

messages incorporated in entertainment);


through advice (e.g. leaflets, drop-in shops, helplines).
Economic or fiscal
through taxation (green taxes);
through grants, loans, aid;
through subsidies;
through quotas or trade agreements.
Regulatory
through standards and laws;
through restrictions and monitoring;
through licensing;

through zoning (restricting activities to a given area).

To summarise, environmental management is faced with real-world challenges,


which include:

greed, corruption and foolishness;


knowledge and technical skills which are still too limited;
increasing numbers of people who demand more and more material benefits;
the time available to make real progress in resolving key environmental degradation
is probably limited (quite possibly less than fifty years).

Environmental management
Environmental management seeks to improve environmental stewardship by
integrating ecology, policy making, planning and social development, and whatever else
is needed.
Its goals include:

sustaining and, if possible, improving existing resources;


the prevention and resolution of environmental problems;
establishing limits;
founding and nurturing institutions that effectively support environmental

research, monitoring and management;


warning of threats and identifying opportunities;
where possible improving quality of life;
Identifying new technology or policies that are useful.
Environmental management may be subdivided into a number of fields, including
(Not in any particular order):
sustainable development issues;
environmental assessment, modelling, forecasting and hindcasting (using

history or palaeoecology for future scenario prediction), and impact studies;


corporate environmental management activities;
pollution recognition and control;
environmental economics;
environmental enforcement and legislation;
environment and development institutions (including NGOs) and ethics;
environmental management systems and quality issues;
environmental planning and management;
assessment of stakeholders involved in environmental management;
environmental perceptions and education;

community participation for environmental management/sustainable

development;
institution building for environmental management/sustainable development;
biodiversity conservation;
natural resources management;
environmental rehabilitation/restoration;
environmental politics;
environmental aid and institution building.

Causes of Environmental Degradation


levels of consumption of the population (i.e. lifestyle);
the type of technology used to satisfy consumption and dispose of waste

(Harrison, 1990);
Environmental conditions and/or environmental change.

The polluter-pays principle

"The polluter pays principle demands that the financial costs of preventing or remedying the
damage caused by pollution should lie in the undertakings which cause the pollution or

produce the goods that cause the pollution."


It is not the responsibility of government to meet the costs involved in either prevention of
environmental damage, or in carrying out remedial action, because the effect of this would

be to shift the financial burden of the pollution incident to the taxpayer.


The Supreme Court held that The Polluter Pays Principle means that absolute liability of
harm to the environment extends not only to compensate the victims of pollution, but also to
the cost of restoring environmental degradation. Remediation of damaged environment is
part of the process of sustainable development ."

The precautionary principle


The precautionary principle has (according to Kriebel et al., 2001) four central components:
1 taking preventive action in the face of uncertainty;
2 shifting the burden of proof to the proponents of a development;
3 exploring a wide range of alternatives to try and avoid unwanted impacts;
4 increasing public participation in decision making

Ecological Gap Analysis


Gap Analysis
A gap analysis is an assessment of the extent to which a protected area
system meets protection goals set by a nation or region to represent its
biological diversity.
All gap analyses should consider a range of different gaps in a protected area
network:

Representation gaps: either no representations of a particular species or


ecosystem in any protected area, or not enough examples of the species or

ecosystem represented to ensure long-term protection.


Ecological gaps: while the species or ecosystem occurs in the protected area
system, occurrence is either of inadequate ecological condition, or the protected
area(s) fail to address species'' movements or specific ecological conditions

needed for long-term survival or ecosystem functioning.


Management gaps: protected areas exist but management

regimes

(management objectives, governance types, or management effectiveness) do


not provide full security for particular species or ecosystems given local
conditions.

Steps in conducting a gap analysis