This paper is a representation of everything you learned about Academic writing, from paragraph structure to rhetorical strategies. This should be your best work, demonstrating your understanding of the recursive writing process and Academic essay construction. PLEASE READ THE WHOLE INSTRUCTIONS VERY CAREFULLY !!!
INSTRUCTION FOR THE FINAL REASUREACH PAPER.
This final paper is worth 40% of your overall grade. This paper is a representation of everything you learned about Academic writing, from paragraph structure to rhetorical strategies. This should be your best work, demonstrating your understanding of the recursive writing process and Academic essay construction. PLEASE READ THE WHOLE INSTRUCTIONS VERY CAREFULLY !!!
· Write an Argumentative paper focusing on the following TOPIC
· Climate Change
· Your essay should be narrowed and focused on a particular aspect of the broad, overlaying issue.
· This paper has to be 8 to 10 pages long.
· For this paper, you can use a maximum of 10 sources. Theses sources can be from wherever you like, as long as they are quality sources. ACADEMIC SOURCES IS GOOD
· You are allowed to use graphs and visuals in your paper. However, any visuals cannot take up the page length of the paper. For example, a paper that is 8 pages with visuals does not meet the requirement of an 8 page paper. Any visuals need to add to the length of the 8 page paper. So, if you have two graphs in a paper, your final paper should be at least 9 pages or longer.
How narrow and specific your topic is.
how argumentative your over-all paper is). Your Argumentation (How well you argue your claim and
The variety of the sources you used/how creatively you researched your topic.
How you use your sources to explain and back up your main claim and your sub-claims.
The logic and explanation of the proofs you use to back up your claim and sub-claims.
How you fully explain your claim and sub-claims so that the reader completely and utterly understands them.
How you use your sources fully, allowing for your sources to make your claim and sub-claims as clear as possible.
· Your over-all formatting and usage of MLA Style
· Your ability to write an argumentative paper using different Rhetorical strategies you’ve learned.
· Your ability to write a concise and coherent paragraph that is focused on supporting and explaining your sub-claims.
· Your ability to write a formal paper with few, if any, grammatical and sentence structural errors.
· The over-all professional presentation of your paper.
HOW TO WRITE AN 8-10 PAGE PAPER
-There are Three main parts to working on an 8-10 pages paper:
-Formatting and Style
-If you work on the paper in parts, the 8-10 page paper is more manageable.
-In order to make an 8-10 page paper work, you need to focus on Specifics and Details. The more specific you are and the more details you provide, the better your grade. It’s Quality, not Quantity. Because this is a longer paper, you will have to provide many more specifics and details than you are used to. The more specifics and details, the better your grade will be.
When working on your paper, you should break the paper down to its component pieces:
-Topic: What your paper is about, what the issue is.
-Claim: Your stance on the issue: What you want to push on your reader. This has to be proven.
-Subclaims: The claims that back up and support your stance.
-Proofs: How you prove that your subclaims are correct.
-You should understand your topic before you begin writing. It helps if you do research first, reading up on all the angles. The better your research, the better your paper (we’ll talk about this later). If you don’t know anything about your topic, or you think you do but you’re wrong, you’ll have to do double-work when you fix mistakes.
You should spend a significant amount of time developing your claim. The more sophisticated your claim, the better your overall paper. If your claim is too simple, your paper will be simple as well.
The Matrix and Plato’s Allegory have many things in common.
An All right Claim:
The Matrix and Plato’s Allegory have many things in common, and the movie does a good job at explaining what Plato meant.
A Good Claim: Plato’s Allegory comes up in a very unique way in the 1999 movie, the Matrix. It might seem like a simple action flick, but there is depth and meaning in what the movie tries to convey.
An Excellent Claim: Unfortunately, most people couldn’t care less about Plato’s Allegory. But many would be surprised to learn that the Matrix delves into the very essence of the problem, which Plato tried to address. Does it matter that there are gunfights and kung fu moves in between the philosophy? No, not really.
-These might be the most important parts of your essay. You’ll need a lot of good, solid subclaims to make this paper organized. You should think about what and where you are going to focus your attention.
-The Minimum amount of subclaims you should have is 6 for a paper this long. That means you’ll have 6 separate sections involving 6 different points of discussion and research. That is roughly 1 and a half pages per subclaim.
-The Maximum subclaims you should have are 10. More than that and you’ll either have to write more than 8 pages or you’ll have to rush through the points (which you shouldn’t do).
This is where you use exact quotes, paraphrasing and extended quotes. This is where you also cite your sources. Remember: EVERY TIME YOU USE AN OUTSIDE SOURCE, YOU HAVE TO CITE AND TELL ME WHERE YOU GOT THE INFORMATION FROM.
Subclaims and Proofs:
-The subclaim/proof relationship is easy to understand as long as you understand why you are using proofs. You are using proofs to back up and verify your statements. Your subclaims are weak and unimportant without a good proof (or proofs) to make them stronger, smarter and more reliable.
-Subclaims and Proofs:
Subclaim: Russia is at fault, both directly and indirectly, for the violence currently taking place in Eastern Ukraine.
Proof: Reports from Journalists from the New York Times.
More Proof: Reports from a Journalist from The Washington Post.
More Proof: An essay written by a Professor, detailing the issues in Eastern Europe.
More Proof: Speeches from President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry.
Subclaims and Proofs:
Most students simply give one proof. That is why most students receive a lower grade. Details and Specifics are the key. The more details and specifics I see, the better your grade. Typically, for every subclaim you have, you should plan to have at least three different proofs using evidence from good, strong sources.
A basic outline:
-Show and Explain the claim
Subclaims and Proofs
-Explain your subclaims and prove them using good evidence
-Showing the counterargument and then refuting it (you’ll use sources here too)
Research: The Academic Sources
-Pick sources that are short enough to read thoroughly (about 2 to 5 pages). You don’t have time to read long pieces.
-Make notes and use the best quotes and information from the source material. Just don’t pick anything. Take your time and use good, helpful information.
-Find one good quote and extended quote from each source. Think about where the quote should go and how you’ll use it.
Research: Other Sources
-Use strong, smart and reliable sources. Don’t waste your time with sources that make no sense and don’t matter.
-Don’t try to adjust your paper to fit the sources you’ve found. But don’t try and change the source to fit your paper. Your topic and the research either fits or it doesn’t. You can’t force it. Don’t waste your time. Move on and find a better source.
Research: Other Sources
-Videos on YouTube or television can be used as a source, but they are difficult to use and usually don’t contribute much to your paper.
-Don’t use sources in your paper just to fill up space. That is one of the major reasons students do poorly in a paper like this.
-Block Quotes shouldn’t be more than 5 lines long. However, you can break the Block quote up, or change the block quote to exact quotes.
Research: Other Sources
-Using sources to develop and flesh out your paper is the BEST way to make your paper longer in a constructive way. Your paper is only as good as the sources you find. USE YOUR SOURCES. Giving plenty of evidence shows critical thinking and sophistication. Not using sources looks lazy.
Formatting and Style:
-Write your introduction and conclusion LAST.
-Double check to make sure your sentences aren’t too long.
-The more paragraphs you use, the better.
-Don’t lose steam. The end of the paper should be as developed and well written as the beginning of your paper.
-Don’t waste the reader’s time.
Formatting and Style:
-Do all your MLA formatting after you finish your paper (the first draft). The last thing you should do is your work cited page.
-IF YOU DON’T USE AN MLA STYLE GUIDE, YOUR MLA FORMATTING WILL BE WRONG.
-When in doubt, Cite it.
-Sense you are using a lot of proofs, there should be a lot of citations.
Formatting and Style:
-Read your paper Out loud before you work on your second draft.
-Read your paper out loud before you work on your third draft.
-Don’t try and “sound smart.” It’s not the words you use. It is how you use them.
-Use a hard-copy when working on your final draft.
-Don’t trust Spell-check.
-This assignment is testing your time management skills. Budget your time wisely and this paper will be much easier.
-Take pride and ownership in your work.
-If you get stuck, try writing a new section. Don’t force yourself to work on a section that’s not cooperating.
-Your research is always smarter than you are.
THIS IS THE GOOD EXAMPLE FROM THE TEXTBOOK THE PROFESSOR THOUGHT US. IT MIGHT BE HELPFUL TO READ IT.
Thesis: Many people believe that Climate Change is a real problem and we should do something to stop it.
Opinion: I believe that Climate change IS a real problem and we should do something about it. (Weak)
Claim: Climate change IS a real problem and we should do something to stop it. (Stronger)
Opinion: I think Climate change IS NOT a real problem and we should do nothing about it (weak).
Claim: Climate change IS NOT a real problem and we should do nothing about it (Stronger).
-Both claims are not correct or incorrect. They are not true or false. They have to be proven.
People can have a difference of opinion. Also, people can disagree on whether a fact is true or not. However, it is your job to PERSUADE people that your CLAIM is correct.
Some Claims are easy to prove.
Claim: It is hot outside.
-To prove this claim, you go outside. If it is hot, then you are correct. If it isn’t, you’re incorrect.
Some Claims are very difficult to prove.
Claim: The United States should remain in Afghanistan for as long as it takes to defeat the Taliban and the terrorist the Taliban harbor.
-For this claim, you will have to PROVE it.
Fact: Climate Change is a real phenomenon.
Fact: Climate Change is a real phenomenon.
A Research Paper Outline
A majority of scientists believe that climate change is a new reality that poses significant risks to the entire life on the planet. However, some scientists label climatic change as a hoax, despite the many changes that can be seen, such as; the rising sea levels, melting ice, more frequent hurricanes and wildfires, and the earth’s average temperatures getting warmer since the advent of the industrial revolution. They posit that the changes are natural and are not caused by the excessive volumes of greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere. It has sparked debate, which has drawn my interest in this topic. The goal is to show that climate change is a reality and provide evidence to support the claim. Although some regions have not experienced its direct impact, climate change is a reality, because of the human activities, the rising sea levels, the melting glaciers, the changing weather patterns, and the earth’s rising average temperatures.”
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, human activities have in the last 150 years contributed excessive emission into the atmosphere. At the end of 2018, about 6,677 million metric tons of carbon had already been emitted into the atmosphere (Greenhouse Gas Emissions). In the US, the largest sources of the emissions are the transport sector and the burning of fossils. The human activities are poised to become more robust as the nation eyes rapid economic growth. It will require more energy, which means more pollution. As more gaseous wastes are emitted into the atmosphere, air pollution escalates resulting in vast volumes of trapped heat that makes the earth’s surface get warmer. In the last century, the earth’s average temperature has risen by about 1.0 F. The 11 warmest years happened from 1980 onwards, with 1995 being the warmest year on record (Sea Level). The development supports the fact that the increased air pollution results in the earth getting warmer.
Multiple changes have been experienced, especially in the American Southeast, which is projected to see severe effects in the coming several decades. Some projections indicate that the region will experience effects, such as the faster spread of vector-borne diseases, possible loss of the coastal land due to the rising sea levels, extreme weather patterns, and increased precipitation (Chapter 19: Southeast). The estimations are informed by future trends, which predict that a denser population, which will resulting in more pollution; hence, escalate the environmental and climatic effects.
Compared to the mid-20th century, the Southeast experiences more frequent disruptive weather patterns, including flooding and heavy downpours (Is Sea Level Rising?). The data collected in the last 60 years indicate that the region has seen significant changes as air pollution continues to rise. The US has no distinctive measures for addressing air pollution, which is widely considered as the primary contribution to the changes that have happened in the region. It is deemed the most vulnerable region, and the perceived risks resulting from climate changes are expected to escalate.
The rising sea levels and melting glaciers are an indication of climate change. According to the data collected by NASA in the last several decades, the sea level is rising by 3.3 millimeters every year. It is caused by the melting glaciers, and the expansion of the seawater due to the rising earth’s average temperature (Sea Level). The two changes indicate that the earth is experiencing warmer temperatures than it experienced two centuries ago. If the warming trend is not addressed through curbing air pollution, the sea levels will continue to rise, and more severe effects, such as losing the coastal lands will be experienced. Also, rising temperatures mean that the overall weather patterns will be disrupted. Currently, warmer weather patterns are now reported in North America, Australia, and Europe, which indicate the change that is poised to become permanent in the coming decades.
The findings above are supported by the report made by the National Ocean Service. The agency notes that in the last century, the sea level continues to rise at a rate of about an eighth of an inch each year (Is Sea Level Rising?). The agency has added that following the increasing rise, destructive storms will surge more inland than they did, which means more danger and destruction. In the US, nuisance flooding is expected to be about 900% more frequent that it was about 50 years ago. The changes indicate the risks that are faced by the coastal populations, especially those in the Southeast.
The National Ocean Agency asserts that the oceans absorb more than 90% of the atmospheric heat that is trapped in the atmosphere (Is Sea Level Rising?). The retention of such massive volumes of heat causes the changes, such as the expanding sea water and melting glaciers, resulting in the rising sea levels. The agency emphasizes that the problem can only be addressed if air pollution as a global problem can be addressed before the situation can escalate.
About 97% of scientists agree that climate change is real, while the rest 3% claim that the current changes are part of the natural processes that have occurred in the past. James Wang and Bill Chameides claim that the earth has been characterized by the ice ages for the last 2 million years. The ice ages last for about 100,000 years, and have warm periods that are shorter and last about 30,000 years. The warm periods are referred to as interglaciers, and the earth entered into an interglacier in the last 10,000 years. As such, the earth is just experiencing a natural process rather than a catastrophe created by human beings. However, it is imperative to note that the data that exist are not deemed adequately reliable, mainly due to gaps and the lack of consistency, which explains why some scientists do not fully find the data as credible and verifiable.
To date, a majority of scientists agree that climate change is real, and support their claims with the current changes, such as warmer temperatures, rising sea levels, and changing weather patterns. According to the studies done, the effects are primarily caused by the excessive emissions of greenhouse gases that are trapped in the atmosphere. However, some refute the claim and assert the earth is experiencing a natural process that is part of the overall cycle that has happened in the last 2 million years. They claim that the earth experiences interglaciers, short warm periods that last about 30,000 years, and it entered into one about 10,000 years ago. The rapid climatic and environmental changes being experienced point to climate change that results from human activities.
“Chapter 19: Southeast.” 20 November 2018. GlobalChange.gov. https://nca2018.globalchange.gov/chapter/19/. 17 August 2020. .
“Greenhouse Gas Emissions.” 11 April 2020. EPA. https://www.epa.gov/ghgemissions/sources-greenhouse-gas-emissions. 18 August 2020.
“Is sea level rising?” 10 September 2019. National Ocean Service. https://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/sealevel.html. 18 August 2020.
“Sea Level.” 04 August 2020. NASA. https://climate.nasa.gov/vital-signs/sea-level/. 18 August 2020.
Wang, James and Bill Chameides. “Are Humans Responsible for Global Warming?” 18 April 2007. EDF. https://www.edf.org/sites/default/files/5279_GlobalwarmingAttributuion.pdf. 18 August 2020.
May 11, 2020
How Global Warming is Poisoning Earth’s Biodiversity
The planet’s climate is rising due to human’s extensive emitting of greenhouse gases and
everybody knows it. This has many harming side effects that damage earths biosphere. The
biodiversity of plants and animals worldwide is threatened by various outcomes of global
warming. If changes are not made to diminish the amount of gases released into the atmosphere,
hundreds of thousands of species will struggle to survive and may even go extinct.
The burning of fossil fuel is emitting gases into the atmosphere, which keep heat from
escaping out and result in rising the temperatures on earth. This is threatening certain species that
live in colder climates. Sunlight is radiated onto earth and partially reflected back. That of which
remains within the atmosphere is used for heat. But greenhouse gases such as water vapor,
nitrous oxide, methane, and carbon dioxide (NASA) are blocking the heat from being released
back into space. Overtime, the climate experiences rise in temperature which has had a major
effect on earth’s biodiversity. There are both region- and taxon-specific estimates of biodiversity
loss that range from 0-54% (Hille & Lambers). Region specific loss is in places with endemic
species that are not spread aroud the globe. Australia, New Zealand, and South America (Hille &
Lambers) are the homes of many endemic species and are therefore at higher risk of biodiversity
loss. It has been estimated that if no changes are made to the amount of carbon emissions, about
1/6 of species will go extinct (Hille & Lambers). And the first step to achieve this, is decreasing
the emission of greenhouse gasses
The extensive amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) that is emitted into the atmosphere via the
burning of fossil fuels poses as a great threat to oceans and certain herbivores. Through
photosynthesis, plants have been very helpful in terms of absorbing the C02. For them, it is very
helpful and has “increased growth rate in many species” (Hoffman). But the increase levels of
CO2 have increased the toxicity levels in eucalyptus leaves (“Koalas at risk”), making it inedible
for koalas to consume. Ian Hume, emeritus professor of biology at Sydney University, studied
the effect of rising CO2 in the plant’s leaves’ nutritional value. He discovered a fall in nutrients
and rise in anti-nutrients, such as tannis (“Koalas at risk”). Prior to global warming the leaves
had already been low in levels of nutrients, which is exactly why koalas will sleep 20 hours a day
and conserve their energy (“Koalas at risk”). This discovery is very concerning, because koalas
diet consists of only eating eucalyptus leaves. It is limited even more, for the animas only eat 25
of the 600 species of eucalyptus (“Koalas at risk”). Hume fears that the decrease of nutrients in
the koala’s diet will lessen the production of offspring from annually, to only to every three to
four years (“Koalas at risk”). Koalas are already an endangered species and the emission of
carbon dioxide is accelerating their extinction. Unlike koalas, some parasitic species may
actually benefit from conditions of global warming, which threatens other species instead.
The rise in temperature in the North is allowing more diseases to spread faster and for
parasites to survive easier, “[modifying] host-parasite relationships” (Descamps). The seabird
tick lives is located in Northern regions of the Artic and Antarctica. Their survival depends on
the temperature of their environment, for they are not able to live in conditions below 12C
(Descamps). Climate change has been spiking temperatures all over earth, making it easier for
parasites such as the seabird tick to live longer and infect more Seabirds. The ixodes uriae and its
“close relatives, I. ricinus and I. scapularis” (Descamps) are also found in the polar regions and
have also been more prevalent in number. As the temperatures have been rising, the living
conditions for these parasite have improved, thus their population has been growing and they
feed off of their hosts for much longer. Seabird colonies are found in many locations such as
“kittiwake” and “Spitsbergen” (Descamps). A Seabird that has been infected by an ixodes uriae
can suffer from “lower body condition, breeding success, and even death” (Descamps). The
Seabird tick had not been found in the Spitsbergen location until 2007 (Descamps) and the
prevalence in the Ossian Sarfjellet colony had risen to more than 35% (Descamps). The study
predicts that if temperatures continue to rise due to climate change, it will reach up to 45% by
2100 (Descamps). If these predictions turn out to be accurate, then the Seabird populations of the
area will be at risk, for the ticks can affect its host at both an individual and population level
(Descamps). The ticks will be able to feed off of the birds and spread disease much quicker,
attacking the species overall. But the warming of earth is not only harming to a few bird species
in the Arctic. Climate change is affecting much more diverse ecosystems and therefore many
more organisms such as the oceans coral reefs.
Oceans’ temperatures are rising and it is harming marine life in many ways. Coral reefs
have suffered a great deal to due to climate change in many ways. Coral bleaching is one of the
most damaging outcomes of climate change and results in the greatest biodiversity loss on earth.
Coral bleaching is a term used to describe the dying off of coral species. This occurs when the
coral ejects their “zooxanthellae, a symbiotic photosynthetic algae that lives within coral tissues
and provides it with essential nutrients” (Hoffman). Their symbiosis is actually mutualistic and
involves the algae providing the coral with sufficient nutrient to survive while the coral offers a
safe habitat. When the algae experiences conditions such as high temperatures and pollution,
they are stressed and unable to survive (Hoffman). Along with nutrients, zooxanthellae provide
coral with their popular vibrant colors (Hoffman), and so the expelling of the algae leaves the
corals looking white, hence the term “bleaching”. As the coral lacks the nutrients that were
previously served by the algae, the risk of disease increases (Hoffman). Eventually, the corals die
as well and marine wildlife that depends on their reefs for habitat, food source, and protection
from predators remain vulnerable as well.
People will often times refer to coral reefs as “rainforests of the sea” (Cho) because of the
extensive amount of marine life that inhabit and rely on these ecosystems. Although “they
occupy less than one percent of the ocean floor, [they] are home to a quarter of all marine
species” (Cho). They are productive for both marine life and humans, providing for more than
500 million people in the world (Cho). The bleaching of corals therefore affects humans as well.
There have been a few “major bleaching events” (Hoffman) that have occurred in the Great
Barrier Reef in 1998, 2002, and 2006 (Hoffman) and in the Caribbean during the 1997-1998 and
2015-2017 El Niño. The repetitive occurrence of such events has had a massive impact on the
coral reefs ability to reproduce and recover from these bleaching events. According to “Terry
Hughes, lead author of a new study on coral bleaching” (Cho), it takes 10 to 15 years for coral
reefs to fully recover from a bleaching event and the frequency of these events is preventing
them from doing so (Cho). More than 80% of the Great Barrier Reef has already experienced
coral bleaching (Cho). As humans continue to attribute to climate change by burning fossil fuels,
they occurrence of coral bleaching will escalate and end up losing thousands of marine species
and thus shrinking the biodiversity even more. Global warming is accelerating the amounts of
CO2 in the air and affecting quality all wildlife, including plants.
As the photosynthetic plants in oceans absorb the CO2 the PH level has decreased
significantly (Hoffman). On a daily basis, oceans absorb 22 million tons of carbon making the
waters more acidic then they have been in 400,000 years (Cho). Once the water reaches a certain
level if acidity, the carrying capacity, meaning the maximum amount possible, of calcium
carbonate is reduced (Cho). This chemical is critical in the building of corals’ exoskeletons,
which ultimately the structure of the coral and protects it from eroding (Cho). Without its
exoskeleton, coral is vulnerable and survival rates are low. Eventually the plants die off and
abandon the thousands of species that inhabit them. If a significant amount of coral dies off, the
biodiversity of coral reefs will decrease (Cho). It is estimated that by 2050, only 15% of coral
reefs will have enough calcium carbonate to grow and function normally (Cho). And as if ocean
acidification affected calcium carbonate is not enough harm, it also increases the chances of
coral bleaching, as mentioned earlier (Cho). Katherina Fabricius, a scientist at the Australian
Institute of Marine Science, explains how several species of fish and other marine creates will
lose their habitat and fail to survive (Cho). Coral reefs, being one of the most biodiverse
ecosystems on earth would, should be prioritized when trying to maintain wildlife biodiversity.
We not only have to deal with the tragic consequences of our actions in the oceans, but on land
Global warming has also contributed to the frequency and intensity of natural disasters
such as storms, floods, droughts, and wildfires (Hoffman). The recent wildfires in Australia is
just one case of extreme events caused by global warming and that will greatly endanger the
planet’s biodiversity. In 2019 Australia experienced its most extreme and damaging wildfire,
with a total of 17.9 million acres being burnt (Resnick), 20 people being killed, and 2,000 homes
being destroyed (Gunia). Wildfires are not unnatural event to occur in Australia, being a dry and
hot continent, but climate change has altered them in the sense of them occurring on a much
larger scale and at abnormal intensities (Resnick). Habitats that typically would not burn did, like
the “subtropical rainforests along the Queensland-New South Wales”. Ecologists are concerned
with these areas having been affected because the climate has only risen approximately 1 degree,
but is estimated to rise up to 3-4 due to global warming (Resnick). Further fires, which will be
likely to occur in the future with the rising temperatures, will “jeopardize habitat stability and
place any recovering animal populations at even higher risk of extinction” (Gunia). Australia is
known to be “one of the great biodiversity hot spots in the world”. It is home to many species
that are only located in Australia and nowhere else on the planet. If a wildfire so damaging
occurred with only a fourth of the estimate change in temperature, imagine how much of the
ecosystem and its biodiversity will be destroyed and collapse in the next few years of climate
change. In the wildfire of 2019, dozens of threatened species along with hundreds of others were
affected by the fires (Resnick). Especially the “lesser-known species that live in small areas
[have] been totally engulfed” (Resnick) as their habitats have been burnt down and their
ecosystems completely destroyed. As these wildfire events will continue to occur and increase in
intensity, more and more animals will die and less of the landscape will remain to sustain the
surviving species, threating all with extinction.
During the Australian wildfire, an estimated 1 billion animals had died, according to
ecologist Chris Dickman at the University of Sydney’s Faculty of Science (Gunia). As
mentioned earlier, Australia is one of the “biodiversity hotspots” (Resnick) because of the many
native species that only inhabit one region on earth. According to the Commonwealth Scientific
and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) of Australia, the continents’ biodiversity had
been threatened by factors such as invasive species and habitat destruction (Resnick), but climate
change is the most threatening of all. In an interview with Sarah Legge, an “ecologist at Australia
National University”, she explains the effects of the recent wildfire on the animals and highlights
the extreme risk of biodiversity loss because of it. Australian animals that were already
endangered were brought to the “brink of extinction” (Resnick) as many of them died in the fire.
She describes it as “the beginning of the end for them”. Legge also explains that because of how
much land was burnt and damaged, several ecosystems in the area have either been completely
destroyed or will eventually collapse (Resnick).
Wildlife had been able to survive the rare and minimal fires, but the recent wildfire of
2019 was so extreme, that they were just not cut out for it. Fires would typically affect about 5%
of species’ distribution, whereas now 100% were affected (Resnick). And for endemic species,
these fires are all the more threatening, for as the fires spread and effect much more of the
region, all forms of habitat and food are destroyed, leaving the animals with no shelter and to die
of starvation (Resnick). Not only will certain species lack the resources required to survive, but
Legge says the fires will attract predators later on to hunt on their vulnerable and weak prey
(Resnick). This is behavior that scientists cannot yet explain but somehow predators such as
foxes and cats are “attracted to [the] fire-affected area” (Resnick) and will travel as far as 30
kilometers, knowing that their prey has no shelter and therefore protection. It is assumed that
they just notice the smoke and follow it to hunt.
An example of for such an animal is the Kangaroo Island dunnart, a small “mouth-sized
marsupial” (Gunia) located on Kangaroo Island. The species was endangered prior to the
massive fire and a remaining 500 are estimated to exist on the island (Gunia). Pat Hogens, a
worker of the “Kangaroo Island dunnart conservation with the non-profit Land for Wildlife”,
describes how he and his team found the landscape to be completely changed and the habitat of
the species destroyed (Gunia). Like many species, the Kangaroo Island dunnart will struggle to
survive with little to know food or shelter and being exposed to predators such as feral cats
(Gunia). Although climate change generally consists of warmer temperatures, too dry weather is
not the only problem that arises.
Along with a boost in “extreme events” (Hoffman) due to rise in temperature, a
significant rise in sea-level has been recorded and is expected to rise as global warming
continues. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has predicted a global sea
level rise (SLR) of 26-98cm by 2100 (Hoffman). The world has already experienced and
reported a significant rise in sea level in the past few decades. From 1993 to 2003, there has been
an increase of 0.31 +/- 0.7 a year on earth (Loucks et. al.). The Sundarbans mangrove forest in
Bangladesh has been victim of greater SLR, according to the SAARC Meteorology Research
center (SMRC), with 0.4-0.78cm (Loucks et. al.). If global warming continues its current course
and the SLR continues to grow, Bangladesh will experience 0.3-1 meters by 2100 (Loucks et.
al.). Such extreme and rapid rise of sea level are threatening to ecosystems and local human
civilians for several reasons. The people will be higher at higher risk of experiencing flooding
and storms, which harms the local wildlife and biodiversity as well. The “Sundarbans and its
biodiversity is critical to the survival of millions of Bangladeshis” (Loucks et. al.), providing
them with food and building supplies, fisheries, protecting the cities form cyclones, and its
vegetation taking part in vital carbon cycling (Loucks et. al.). This outcome of global warming
poses as a great threat to local wildlife as well, for unnatural amounts of water can destroy
habitat and therefore the chance of survival for many species.
Planet earth is the home of all humans, animals, and plants. The human species has been
destroying the biosphere by burning heavy amounts of fossil fuels and poisoning the air with
greenhouse gases. In the long run, this will have tremendous harmful outcomes on all forms of
life on earth. We need to change our habit of generating climate change to save the biodiversity
of our planet.
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