How Does Global Warming Affect Species

Global warming, a phenomenon caused by the increase of atmospheric temperature due to rising levels of greenhouse gases, has become a major issue since the mid-20th century. As the global temperatures continue to rise, the impact and consequences of global warming to ecosystems and species become more evident. This paper provides a non-partisan analysis of the effect of global warming on species, and considers both the positives and negatives this phenomenon is bringing to the planet.

Climate change has an impact on species at different levels: the direct exposure to heat and rising temperatures, along with the many associated changes, such as extreme weather events, changes in land use and water availability, as well as ocean acidification that are believed to cause species extinction.

Short-term exposure to heat or extreme temperatures can cause direct mortality among species, such as those that live in coral reefs and other marine environments, which are sensitive to temperature variations. This is compounded by the increasing levels of pollution, which can damage sensitive ecosystems, and lead to an increase in rates of disease and death in certain species.

The most impacted species are those who live near melting glaciers and ice sheets, as they are more prone to extended periods of extreme temperatures, such as polar bears and most Arctic species; these animals, who require snow and ice cover to survive, are facing difficult times, due to the melting of their habitats.

Moreover, species that live in areas of heavy agricultural production are often adversely affected by the high concentration of fertilizer and insecticide residues, leading to a decrease in their reproductive and survival rates. The frequent burning of crops to clear land, combined with extreme droughts, can also cause longterm damage tosensitive ecosystems and species.

On the positive side, species living in areas of extreme cold may benefit from higher temperatures and the relocation of their habitats. For example, some arctic species, such as cod, have managed to spread to areas previously unable to host them due to their harsh environment.

The warming trend may also influence the virulence of certain diseases that are endemic to certain species. If a species has a lower tolerance to warm temperatures, this could lead to a decrease in disease frequency and intensity, as the temperature-sensitive organisms that cause the disease cannot survive in hotter conditions. This could help to reduce the impact of certain diseases on species over time.

Furthermore, while the air above is growing warmer, the ocean depths are becoming colder due to offshore currents. This reduced temperature could help to protect certain species that are sensitive to extreme temperatures and have adapted to living in cold temperatures, such as penguins, whales, and even coral reefs. Additionally, colder temperatures may increase the ability of some species to migrate to more hospitable temperatures and environments, leading to a healthier and more adaptive population.

In conclusion, global warming is having an undeniable effect on species, from direct mortality to increases in disease incidence. Despite this, species populations may also benefit from the changing climate in some ways, allowing them to adapt to new conditions and environments. Despite the uncertainty of the future effects of climate change, it is clear that species populations must be managed responsibly, to ensure their ability to survive in a rapidly changing world.

Ernestine Warren is a passionate environmentalist, author, and advocate for the protection of the Earth's precious resources. She has written extensively on the causes and effects of global warming, providing accurate information to help educate people on how to combat this major global problem. With a background in science and biology, Ernestine has the tools to help develop solutions that meet everyone's needs while minimizing environmental damage. Her hope is that each person can do their part for the planet and make a real difference to help reduce climate change.

Leave a Comment