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Is Climate Change man-made and is it a serious political issue?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/23/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 824 times Debate No: 46538
Debate Rounds (4)
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Climate change is caused by human activities and is becoming a serious problem worldwide.


Well climate change is not caused by human activities because because all throughout history the climate has changed. in august 2013 the arctic ice sheet was 60 percent larger than it was in 2012 and 5 years ago al gore predicted that the north pole would be ice free in 5 years. In my area we just recently went 75 days below freezing. Humans have no impact on climate change so we can not do anything to stop it.
Debate Round No. 1


I can understand why constant cold weather would create doubts, and yes the climate has changed all throughout history. But the facts remain that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, and carbon dioxide emissions have dramatically increased the last 50 years due to technilogical advances (factories, automobiles, etc.). Deforestation is happening more and more which also contributes to the problem. Overall polar ice caps have been melting faster and faster in recent years; in Greenland, for instance, the rate of ice loss has increased by nearly 5 times since the early 1990s. This has led to rising sea levels, which is hazardous to islands and coastal cities. The Pacific islands of Kiribati are already experiencing this as citizens have had to evacuate due to the rising sea levels. "If the sea level continues to rise because the international community won't tackle global warming, some or all of the people of Kiribati may have to come and live in Fiji," Fiji president Epeli Nailatikau said recently.

You point out that some of Al Gore's bold predictions have not been correct. Obviously climate change does not happen overnight. The full effects will not be felt soon. They are happening slowly, and all are hazardous to life on Earth:

-Increased acid rain, which is caused by air pollution and leads to negative changes in the pH of water ecosytem. This is deadly to many aquatic organisms.
-Melting ice caps, as I mentioned, which leads to rising sea levels, and is deadly for Arctic/Antarctic life as well as humans living on islands or coastal cities. We are beginning to feel these effects given the melting ice caps and the trouble occuring in the Pacific Islands.
-Loss of fresh water in places like Peru, where the Quelcayya ice cap is poised to vanish within 100 years and will leave many citizens without drinking water.
-Habitat loss which will lead to mass extinctions

These are just a few of the big effects of accelerated, human caused climate change.

I will address the point you made about your area experiencing constant cold weather. Like I said, climate change is a slow process ( though too fast for natural processes to handle) and there will still be winters in temperate climate areas. Many meteorologists have shown how the polar vortex has been responsible for the series of snowstorms the U.S. experienced recently, which is caused by the weakening of it by increased greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

One more point I will make, a common argument used is that climate change is a myth used so people like Al Gore can make money. Of course Al Gore has profited from his activism on this issue. But all the pollutant emitting corporations across the country (and world) make billions upon billions while contributing to climate change and hurting the environment. If the government were to crack down on pollution and take measures to protect the environment, corporations would have to make major adjustments. So who is REALLY benefiting from climate change awareness? (or lack thereof)


I don't think deforestation is happening in the us but maybe in other countries but everywhere I go all i see is trees. You agree that climate has changed all throughout history and you say that in greenland the ice is melting there has increased 5 times since the early 90s which i will not deny but are humans the cause of that? I don't believe so because like I said and like you agreed the climate has changed all throughout history. No matter what we do to prevent climate change nothing will work because we have a minimal effect on it.
As i said the arctic ice sheet is 60 percent bigger than it was in August of 2012.
The polar vortex has caused alot of snow storms in georgia, new york, and areas like that but it has not caused snow storms in my area. In my area lake superior gives us 250 inches of lake effect snow each year. Lake superior also hasnt frozen over since 1994 when it froze 94 percent. But this year it is already at around 90 percent.
I would also like to point out that earlier this year a Russian ship carrying global warming researchers to study ice loss in Antarctica got stuck in the ice because it was to thick.
Also last december antarctica just set the coldest temperature ever.
Debate Round No. 2


I will first address your previous arguments:

In regards to the Arctic Ice Sheet increasing from August 2012 to 2013, the article notes that scientists had predicted for less ice melt anyway. The extent of the sea ice was still well below the average for the previous 20 years. As I already stated climate change is NOT an overnight process! The fact remains that the Arctic sea ice has been overall decreasing in size in recent years. This is not sufficient evidence to reject climate change.

On the ship that got stuck in the Antarctica ice: As I have constantly stated climate change does not happen overnight. There will still be ice for ships to get stuck in. Even if it's slowly shrinking the ice in Antarctica is far from gone. Therefore this is not sufficient evidence to reject climate change.

Deforestation is a worldwide problem in places such as the Amazon rain forest and throughout Central Africa and Madagascar (to name a few). As the human population increases (at a very rapid rate) more forests are being removed. This is dangerous because large forests are crucial for producing clean air and reducing pollution.

On Antarctica setting the world's coldest temperature: As scientists have pointed out, record-cold temperature in one area of Antarctica doesn't disprove climate change. Antarctica is still the coldest place on Earth, and climate change does not happen overnight ( I cannot stress that enough )

Temperate climate areas aren't going to feel the effects of climate change nearly as much as the Arctic regions are. "Oh, it's winter and there's snow in my town" is not a good argument. That's the same as someone using a hot summer day to prove climate change.

Somewhere around 97% of climatologists believe climate change is real and man-made. These are people who spend there lives studying climate science, not talking heads in Washington or the average American citizen. On scientific matters, I would be much more inclined to listen to National Geographic rather than CNN or Fox News.

The facts are there. It has been proven that carbon dioxide is indeed a greenhouse gas. The human population has increased rapidly in the last 50 years, which leads to more industrialization, more pollution, more removal of trees. Arctic and Antarctic ice have been slowly melting in recent years, which can be attributed to the greenhouse effect. Climate change is not happening quickly, but far too fast for natural processes to handle. The evidence is there, it's a question of acknowledging that it's happening or denying it.


I do not deny that the climate is changing because as i pointed out it has been changing since the beginning of time. I just don't believe that its man made. I believe that no matter what we do to prevent it from happening it will not change a thing because we have such a minimal effect on it.
I disagree with deforestation and believe that if your gonna go into an area and cut an assload of trees you should also re plant an assload of trees. I am not saying that oh well there is snow in my town so there is not climate change but what i am saying is that the last few years the winters here have been colder and more snowy. I am expecting you to say again climate change does not happen over night.
Debate Round No. 3


The article you posted also said that 84% of scientists surveyed believe humans are to blame for climate change.

In the last 25 years, Arctic sea ice has overall decreased in size by about 1.5 million square kilometers. The human population has increased by about 3 billion people in the last 25 years. Population increase = More industrialization = More pollution. It is a fact that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas. Greenhouse gases trap the sun's heat in the Earth's atmosphere. The climate does change naturally, but these changes take much, much longer than 25 years. At the current pace, many large coastal cities are slated to be underwater within 50 years. While human driven climate change is a slow process relative to the human lifespan, compared to climate change driven by natural processes, it is far too fast.

When the vast majority of climate scientists, as well as organizations such as NASA and National Geographic, whose sole objectives are to research and analyze scientific matters, believe climate change is real and caused by humans, I feel inclined to listen to them. Given the evidence at hand, I side with them rather than a coporate-owned mainstream news outlet (Fox News, CNN, etc.).


Well ill just say it. you kicked my a s s in this debate but i still dont believe that humans are the cause of climate change.
Debate Round No. 4
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