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Global Warming: A Look at the Debate and Its Effects on the Canadian Region

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Global Warming: A Look at the Debate and its Effects on the Canadian Region

Introduction

Though global warming potentially affects everyone in the world (Bradford, 3), reports offer evidence that specific regions have been hit harder than others, and Canada, a land with unforgiving winters and winds, as well as unscathed beauty, is one such region that has felt the consequences of global warming (Ljunggren, 1). An international team of scientists discovered in 2004 that the average winter temperatures have increased approximately 3 to 4 degrees in Celsius over the past sixty years (Bradford, 22). Climate change such as the one noted here has serious consequences on weather (snowfall and precipitation), and can also lead to the thawing of permafrost, a rise in sea levels, and other related consequences that are arguably unconstructive to the environment and to the Canadian economy. Given the mounting literature which suggests that global warming is seriously affecting the Canadian environment, this discussion provides a background of the situation, explores the dynamics of global warming, in terms of how the issue has changed and will change in the years to come, and offers potential solutions.

Background

Even those entirely unfamiliar with the complexities of global warming are likely to conjure certain poignant images when the term is uttered: large glaciers buckling under the sun’s power, huge bodies of water receding from the land or disappearing all together, the vanishing of animals and their habitat, heat waves, and infectious diseases; the list can go on and on, but it is clear that, overall, global warming elicits a graphic picture of the sluggish death of the earth and its inhabitants.

However, although the topic of global warming is well-known, widely discussed and debated today, it was not until the 1980s to the 1990s when scholarly and scientific literature on the subject emerged from different fields, including oceanography and several of the Earth sciences (Johansen, xv). The issue as it pertains to Canada became increasingly visible during the latter part of the 1970s. As a point of fact, it was Canada that led that first world summit on climate change, known as the

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