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Examine the Ecological Impacts of Global Warming for Arctic Areas. (15)

  • Date Submitted: 04/18/2014 08:32 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 50 
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In this essay, I will explain the ecological impacts of global warming for Arctic areas, to the trees, plants, natives and animals.

In recently, the 20% of solar radiation is absorbed from the ice caps, since the sea, plants and rocks have the low albedo. This is because of oceans are darker than ice and snow; it absorbs more energy than it reflects, which causes the warming effect. Due to warming effect, it melts more ice and creates a cycle called the positive ice albedo feedback, which in turn causes an increase in average temperature, and therefore increases ice melting even more, and so on. This negative feedback mechanism will also further greenhouse gas emissions by the thawing of permafrost. Beneath the permafrost found on arctic tundra, are thousands of gallons of methane, trapped there for thousands of years. As this permafrost begins to melt, the methane will be released, increasing the temperature and creating a similar feedback mechanism to the albedo effect stated above.

Increasing temperatures lead to the treeline moving north and to higher altitudes, causing a distortion in tundra ecosystems due to the warm climate and other plants competing and take over, permafrost thawing out, the change of the food chain due to the spread of species, such as spruce bark beetle in Alaska like competing with other animals can affect predators or preys. Increasing temperatures also lead to increases in the number of northern coniferous fires in Arctic Russia. Burning tens of millions of hectares each year causes the loss of 0.8% of the world’s coniferous. Boreal ecosystems are vital and accounted for 37% of the world’s carbon pool on land, and are effective at sinking carbon. Burning tens of millions of hectares can result in the release of carbon dioxide and reducing the amount of homes for species.

Increasing temperature has many effects on Arctic biodiversity including the northward movement of more southern species, shrubbing and greening of the land,...

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