The Instigator
finn.b14
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
Hanate333
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

CO2 emissions are directly responsible for climate change.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/13/2016 Category: Science
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 355 times Debate No: 89603
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (5)
Votes (0)

 

finn.b14

Con

The Macquarie Dictionary defines the term "climate change" as- a significant change in the usual climatic conditions especially that thought to be caused by global warming.
This 'climate change' can be caused by natural or human induced impacts.

The global average temperature has risen by nearly a degree in the past 50 years. Scientists around the world have been recording temperature increases, raised ocean levels and melting of ice caps. All this is evidence that the earth is experiencing a "climate change".

Many people believe that this change is primarily due to the fact that our CO2 emissions have created more greenhouse gases. They believe that there is a relationship between the rise in temperatures and the rise in CO2 emissions.

Data shows an "association" between temperature levels and CO2 emissions but does not necessarily prove that increased CO2 levels are the most significant aspect of today"s climate change.

For something complex like the weather system, many scientists are needed to unravel the story behind climate change. While most scientists believe climate change occurs, not all agree on the extent and relevance of human activity as an influence on climate change.

While major international climate agencies all emphasise the critical role of CO2 emissions in climate change, others are not so sure.

For example, some scientists have conducted research that suggests that temperatures were higher than they are today, during the Roman and Medieval periods. These ancient civilisations would not have emitted CO2 emissions as we do today, so why did their temperatures rise?

Temperatures have risen and fallen for a long time. The National Centre for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) states that climate change over the longer term is mainly due to the amount of sun energy hitting the Earth. Slight changes in the Earth"s orbit and changes in sun ray intensity, can alter the temperatures here on Earth.

Even so, most scientists still emphasise the role of CO2 emissions in unprecedented, rapid global warming. The frank fact is that climate change cannot be stopped. It is completely natural.
Hanate333

Pro

Thank you for the chance to debate this topic. I am an avid believer that climate change is mainly man made, at least now.

Your first point was how even though data shows a correlation between CO2 emissions and temperature, carbon emission is not the largest factor. But according to the World Meteorological Organization (as well as NASA and countless organizations and scientists), CO2 is the largest factor of global warming. This study included natural substances like water vapor. The problem with CO2 is that it is a very abundant greenhouse gas which takes a long time to dissipate from the atmosphere. 65% of global emissions are CO2 emissions, making it by far the most abundant man made greenhouse gas. Even though it isn't as abundant as water vapor, it is much more effective at trapping the Sun's rays. Now, greenhouse gases are the largest cause of global warming, while the most effective and very abundant greenhouse gas is CO2. Here are some graphs:

From NASA, this is probably the most infamous graph as it shows just how drastic CO2 emissions have gone up.

(It won't let me post photos, so here is the link) http://climate.nasa.gov...

Enlightening, isn't it?

Now this concerns temperature rise at the same time as CO2 rise.

http://climate.nasa.gov...

This link should have the graph close to the top on the right hand side
Not only that, but a massive 97% of all scientists agree global warming is man made.
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Your second point was that temperatures were higher in the past than they are now (specifically, during the time of Roman civilization). While there definitely are natural cycles that rise and lower, Earth's temperature is accelerating at a much faster rate than any natural cycle before, and shows no sign of stopping like a cycle would. This is again, because of man made emissions, and the majority of those are carbon.
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Your third point was that global warming is mainly due to sun rays hitting the earth and heating it up. While sun rays hit the earth and that is what causes all weather, the amount of rays stays basically stable like the earths orbit. So when greenhouse gases are released into the atmosphere, they trap sun rays and warm the earth.

So the evidence shows clearly that global warming is mainly people driven, although natural cycles may contribute to the increase. The evidence shows clearly that greenhouse gases are the largest cause of global warming. The evidence shows clearly that CO2 is the largest greenhouse gas threat. Therefore, the evidence shows that CO2 is the main cause of global warming.

Sources:

https://www3.epa.gov...

http://climate.nasa.gov...

https://www3.epa.gov...

https://www.wmo.int...
Debate Round No. 1
finn.b14

Con

Before I begin I would like to initially reinforce the topic of the debate: CO2 emissions are DIRECTLY responsible for climate change. As the negative, I will rebut the affirmative as to why CO2 emissions (whilst adding to the heat of the planet) are not directly responsible for the changes we are experiencing on our Earth today.

The affirmative stated statistics such as- 'CO2 is the largest factor of global warming', '97% of scientists agree global warming is man-made', 'CO2 is the largest greenhouse gas threat'. Whilst these points may be tried and tested, they do not favour the topic when the phrase 'directly responsible' is included.

From what I gather, the affirmative believes that CO2 is speeding up the process of global warming. Whilst this may be true, in between the lines of this statement we can discover that another factor is actually CAUSING the process of global warming. As the negative, I believe that the cause is the fluctuation of the Earth's orbit (which the affirmative incorrectly stated as 'stable') and the consistent rise and fall of the planet's historical temperatures.

I stand by the points I raised in the first round and have now refuted the rebuttal put forward by the affirmative and regarded it as invalid. Does the affirmative have anything within it's case to state why my reason for global warming is incorrect? Do they believe that CO2 emissions are the initial cause of the Earth heating world-wide? By now, they should surely agree that CO2 emission are not directly responsible for climate change.
Hanate333

Pro

Before I make my points, I would like to address the mistaken Negative. I do know that the topic is "CO2 is the largest factor in global warming", and that is what I am arguing. I'm sorry if that wasn't made clear in my evidence, but if you look back you will find that I certainly did argue that point. Your evidence was arguing against CO2 being the largest factor, and as your opponent that is what I must counter. Now that it's out of the way, let's begin.

Negative thinks I only believe CO2 is speeding up the process of climate change. It most definitely is, and they are not mistaken in that. But not only is it speeding up and forcing climate change to continue, it is the main factor in this.

No matter what my opponent may think, my evidence clearly showed CO2 is the largest threat. Greenhouse gases are proven to be the largest contributor to global warming, and CO2 is the largest greenhouse gas. And according to the World Meteorological Organization, the US Environmental Protection Agency, NASA, the European Commission and thousands of scientists, CO2 is the largest factor.

Negative may say that fluctuations in the earths orbit are the largest cause. To say that fluctuations in earths orbit are the largest cause is a bold statement. I think that by orbit fluctuations, he means that it causes Suns rays to hit the earth more. But according to NASA, solar maxima is only .1 percent higher than solar minima on average.

To further my counter argument, if there had been an increase in solar output, both the stratosphere and troposphere would have warmed up. But instead, patterns show that the stratosphere has actually cooled. Meanwhile, land and the troposphere have been warming, which is no doubt due to greenhouse gases (particularly CO2). This shows that fluctuations in earths orbit, although drastically climate changing when they occur, are not occurring right now.

However, the effects of the Suns rays on earth are increasing. Not because of orbit fluctuation, but because of greenhouse gases that trap the Suns heat.

CO2 is directly responsible for global warming today. In the earlier graph, I showed how carbon emissions have increased drastically since the industrial revolution. I then linked a graph that showed temperature increase over the same time period. The fact is, since the industrial revolution, temperatures have drastically increased at a rate that would never have occurred without coal burning and that whole era. So CO2 emission IS directly responsible for global warming.

The negative, in their conclusion, called my points invalid. I say the exact opposite. I stand by my points, and the facts that went with it. I most surely do not agree that their case is correct. I have just shown why their case is completely wrong. CO2 was the initial cause of global warming, and this is shown in hundreds of studies and tests since that show the before and after the industrial revolution. The fact is, today CO2 is the largest factor and the cause, and I have all the sources to support it.

Sources:

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov...

And sources I cited earlier.
Debate Round No. 2
finn.b14

Con

To conclude my case I would like to point out the obvious flaws in the opposition's previous case. They stated:

"Before I make my points, I would like to address the mistaken Negative. I do know that the topic is "CO2 is the largest factor in global warming", and that is what I am arguing. I'm sorry if that wasn't made clear in my evidence, but if you look back you will find that I certainly did argue that point. Your evidence was arguing against CO2 being the largest factor, and as your opponent that is what I must counter. Now that it's out of the way, let's begin."

Once again I correct the affirmative on the correct wording of the topic. The topic of this debate is that CO2 emissions are directly responsible for climate change. Throughout their entire case the affirmative seems to be referring to their fictional topic of: CO2 is the largest factor in global warming.

The affirmative also stated that my evidence was backing this fictional topic. Whilst this may be true, proving that CO2 emissions are not the largest factor of global warming only adds to the overall proof that they are not directly responsible for the effects.

To clear confusion, the definition of directly responsible is: without anyone or anything intervening. Whilst the affirmative continued to provide arguments proving the existence of CO2 emissions as the largest factor, they did not provide any points stating the absence of an intervention.

There are many examples of other processes in our natural world that are speeding up the global warming. Some of these include methane emissions from cattle, deforestation and chemical fertilisers on crop lands. Although the affirmative believes that CO2 emissions play the largest role in heating the planet, they are not the sole reason behind the issue.

If the impossible event of a CO2 emission cease occurred, the Earth would still be heating up. Slowly but surely, the effects of the Earth's orbit and the causes mentioned above will continue to heat the planet that we live on today.

The affirmative also stated: "the effects of the Suns rays on earth are increasing."

In theory, this phrase mentions the effects on sun rays on Earth. Incredulously, even these sun rays play a role in global warming and further diminish the affirmatives picture of CO2 emissions being directly responsible.

In a surprising twist to the debate, the affirmative suddenly seems to understand the topic of the debate towards the end of their case and produces the statement below. Unfortunately, it is also flawed.

"CO2 was the initial cause of global warming, and this is shown in hundreds of studies and tests since that show the before and after the industrial revolution. The fact is, today CO2 is the largest factor and the cause, and I have all the sources to support it."

Cold hard evidence against the point brought up by the affirmative can be found in my first argument. Global warming is simply defined as increasing temperatures on our planet. Carbon dating and a myriad of other scientific tests show the heating and cooling of the planet well before the involvement of the Industrial Revolution. If the planet was heating up during Medieval periods, how can the affirmative say that CO2 is the cause of global warming when the people of the past had not even heard of the word carbon?

In finality, I am not denying the fact that global warming exists. I am not denying that CO2 emissions play a considerable role in the heating of our planet. However, I do deny the views of the affirmative in thinking the CO2 emissions play a sole role in global warming. There are many other factors that are also contributing to the heating of our planet.

In further expansion, I deny the politicians and organisational leaders within our world. The planet is heating up and it is effecting ecosystems and environments alike. Whilst we sit here and debate whether CO2 emissions are directly responsible, politicians all over the globe are doing the same. It is time to stop the debate and face the fact that although CO2 emissions have played a big role in global warming, the gradual heating of our planet is totally inevitable.

As an international force we need to combat global warming and thus climate change by investigating new methods of adapting to a changing climate. Cooling down the Earth by reducing CO2 emissions is a false statement because the Earth will continue to heat via its natural cycles which we as humans would be wrong to alter.

As the negative side, I strongly believe that CO2 emissions are not directly responsible for climate change. Thank you.
Hanate333

Pro

Hanate333 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by dr_sepheroth 1 year ago
dr_sepheroth
CO2 makes up 90% oh Chlorofluoro Hydrocarbons, and CO2 acts as an absorber so the SHC of our atmosphere increases and the Troposphere becomes less able to support a stable weather system, due to increase in cold and warm air intersecting each other at high altitude.
Posted by Hanate333 1 year ago
Hanate333
Nice win con! I kind of messed up and got carried away by the end of the argument, you deserve the win.
Posted by ZeldaMafia 1 year ago
ZeldaMafia
I have a query. If I were to accept this debate would It be necessary to cite my sources for my arguments and facts?
Posted by mmurph123 1 year ago
mmurph123
all evidence points to this being a fact. Just saying.
Posted by finn.b14 1 year ago
finn.b14
Anyone want to debate? Looking for an opponent who is willing to debate till the last round.
No votes have been placed for this debate.