Sunday, 30 March 2008

Global warming

2004 Q4d Explain how global warming can be reduced and how its consequence can be managed. (9 marks)

There must be a reduction in the amount of fossil fuels (r) used to make electricity by switching to gas instead of coal fired power stations. Using more renewable forms of energy e.g. wind turbines, solar power etc. would lead to a decrease in the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere (r) and therefore a reduction in global warming. World leaders need to meet their targets to reduce CO2 emissions (r) as agreed at the Kyoto conference. If deforestation was reduced in areas like the Amazon Basin there would be a reduction of Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere (r). Large areas are cleared each year by peasant farmers, cattle ranchers, timber companies, mines and the building of dams. Trees remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere as part of the process of photosynthesis and so there should be less deforestation more planting of trees (m) to reduce global warming.
Carbon dioxide emissions from vehicles are rising, more should be done to encourage people to use public transport (m) as this emits much less greenhouse gas per person than cars.
The higher temperatures associated with global warming will lead to a rise in sea level due to the polar ice caps melting. This will increase the danger of flooding in low-lying coastal areas. Sea defences will therefore have to be built (m). The types of sea defences are concrete sea walls, groynes, rip-rap and stone blocks which all help to protect areas from coastal flooding. Another managed retreat is to allow the sea to invade flat lowland areas (m) so that they become natural marshland again e.g. Wallasea Island, Essex.

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