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How is global warming a environmental issue?

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Global warming is an environmental issue because it affects the natural environments of various parts of the world.  It does so in ways that hurt humans directly and in ways that alter environmental conditions for nature.

Global warming brings about changes in the environment in many places.  There are many examples of how it does this.  It can melt the polar ice caps.  This would lead to higher sea levels.  Higher sea levels would flood low-lying areas of the world.   This would be catastrophic for many densely inhabited areas.  It would also be problematic for some forms of non-human life.  The melting ice might make it harder for polar bears to live.  Rapidly rising sea levels could drown coral reefs.  Warmer waters will also affect those reefs.

On the land, global warming could do things like affecting the patterns of precipitation.  It could increase rainfall in some areas or at some times of year and decrease it in other places or times.  This could have a tremendous impact on the sorts of plants that will grow in certain places.  This can affect human beings by impacting the kinds of agriculture that are possible in particular places.

Since global warming affects the environment in many ways, it is an environmental issue.

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How is global warming an economic issue?

Global warming can be seen as an economic issue in two ways.  It can be seen as economic in its origins and as economic in its effects.

Global warming is caused in part by economic reasons.  Our economy runs on energy.  The energy source that is most plentiful, most convenient to use, and cheapest is, at this point, fossil fuels.  Sadly, it is fossil fuel use that causes global warming.  Economic factors are a major reason why we are not doing anything about global warming at the moment.  Solutions to global warming are all expensive at this point and could harm our economies.  Therefore, we prefer not to take those steps because we fear the economic harm that could be done.

Global warming will also have economic effects.  For example, if sea levels rise and low-lying areas flood, we will have to replace the economic activities that went on in those areas.  As another example, if the Great Barrier Reef were to be killed by rising and warmer sea water, that area of Australia would be impacted by the loss of tourism.  Finally, if weather patterns shift, areas that are now good for agriculture might stop being good.  This would have economic consequences as well.

In these ways, global warming is an economic issue.

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How is global warming an resource issue?

Global warming can be seen as a resource issue in two ways.  It is a resource issue because resources cause it and it is a resource issue because it might affect some of our natural resources.

Global warming is a resource issue because it is caused by the sorts of resources that we have.  We need energy to run our modern economies and lifestyles.  However, there are not many good ways to get energy.  The most convenient and cheapest is fossil fuel.  This is our greatest energy resource, but it causes global warming.  If resources like hydroelectricity and geothermal electricity were more widely available, or if resources like wind, solar, or wave power were easier to tap, global warming would not be such an issue.

Global warming is also a resource issue because it can have an impact on our natural resources.  One of our major natural resources is land.  Global warming can deprive us of some of that land.  Rising sea levels would inundate areas that are near to sea level.  This would deprive some small island countries of their entire land area. 

Because global warming is caused in part by the resources we have (and those we don’t) and because it can have an impact on our resources, it is a resource issue.

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