In the world of sustainability, measuring and tracking carbon emissions is a critical component of any climate strategy. In this article, we explore what carbon emissions are, how they impact our planet, and why they are so important to track.
What are Carbon Emissions?
Carbon emissions are gasses created when we burn fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas. These emissions contain carbon dioxide (CO2), which is a greenhouse gas that traps heat in our atmosphere. This trapping of heat has resulted in global warming and climate change. If we don’t reduce our carbon emissions, the problem will only get worse.
How do carbon emissions impact our planet?
We all know that our planet is covered in water and land. But did you know that our planet is also surrounded by a layer of gasses? These gasses are called the atmosphere and are made up of 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen, and 1% other gases like carbon dioxide. This remaining 1% is known as greenhouse gases (GHGs).
GHGs trap heat in our atmosphere and keep our planet warm enough to support life. Without them, our planet would be too cold for us to survive. However, there are certain greenhouse gases that are doing more harm than good. Carbon dioxide (CO2) is one of those harmful GHGs. The burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas releases a lot of CO2 into the atmosphere which causes climate change. And climate change has been linked to a lot of negative effects on our environment like:
Sea Level Rise
Sea level rise is when the oceans get warmer due to climate change which causes them to expand. This expansion leads to the oceans rising up higher above our landmasses. This would be bad for humans since it would force us to move further inland away from the coasts.
When CO2 is released into the atmosphere it combines with water to form carbonic acid which then goes into the oceans causing them to become more acidic. This acidity harms marine life like coral which is already at risk due to overfishing and pollution.
WildfiresWildfires occur when dry vegetation ignites due to extreme heat or sparks from human activities like lighting fires or driving vehicles on dry ground. When there is a lot of vegetation that is dry due to high temperatures caused by climate change, wildfires can get out of hand quickly. In the US alone, wildfires have destroyed over
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