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78
83
It is man made. It is a natural process.
Debate Score:161
Arguments:59
Total Votes:201
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 It is man made. (34)
 
 It is a natural process. (25)

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AltonSmith(111) pic



Is climate change man made or natural?

There has been an ongoing debate regarding the issue of global warming. Some have said that it is caused by human activity. Some have argued that it either does not exist or that it is a natural process.

Let the debate begin.

It is man made.

Side Score: 78
VS.

It is a natural process.

Side Score: 83
3 points

Considering the amount of change to our environment since the Industrial Revolution and especially since we learned how to manipulate petroleum into almost anything we wanted, I'm inclined to say it is man-made.

But even if only 10% of it is man-made, and the other 90% is natural, isn't it worth making some changes to save the planet? Sure, Earth will survive. Humans, on the other hand, are a lot more sensitive.

Side: It is man made.
Republican2(350) Disputed
2 points

isn't it worth making some changes to save the planet?

This statement assumes the planet needs saving. The carbon in the atmosphere is a drop in the bucket, and the carbon humans have put there is just a fraction of that.

Humans, on the other hand, are a lot more sensitive.

Homo sapiens, or at least primitive hominids, have been around for millions of years. In this time, there have been average temperature shifts upwards of 20 degrees sometimes for centuries at a time. Obviously, at this time man was not capable to making a meaningful contribution to atmospheric carbon. So far the biggest temperature change has been 3 or 4 degrees, and it's not even conclusive that it's carbon that caused it. There's not nearly enough being produced to cause significant ecological upsets.

Side: It is a natural process.
Skaruts(195) Disputed
4 points

Actually the carbon we put out there is not just a fraction of it. And it's not only the carbon that we are screwing. First, we burn extravagant quantities of coal. Did you know that coal is the worse there is when it comes to polution? Well, coal is carbon, put simply. Second, we cut off the major planet "lungs". Forests have the ability to convert carbon into oxigen, and we are removing them off the planet.

So, in short, more carbon, less forests = planet overloading in carbon and carbon not letting the heat escape.

So, no, it's not natural at all. (And this was just a simple way to put it. There's much more to it than just that.)

Homo sapiens, or at least primitive hominids, have been around for millions of years.

Remember that while species evolve, they tend to do it according to their environment. The planet temperature has ups and downs regularly, ever since we can know about, and the sun has 11 year cycles too. But the poles make up to it by mantaining or lowering the temperature on one side while the other heats up.

That is not being the case now, there's no compensation on one pole while the other heats up. They are both heating up. And the more they melt the faster/easier it heats up. It will become (if it hasn't already) a vicious cycle, in which the poles will allow even more heating, and the heating will melt the poles even more, repeat.

Side: It is man made.
monkeyboy142(76) Disputed
0 points

If it was not natural then why before humans where there massive climate changes.

Side: It is a natural process.
Spoonerism(831) Disputed
1 point

Nobody is denying that the earth goes through cycles of natural climate change as well.

The question is whether or not the climate change CURRENTLY being experienced is natural or caused by the changes to our environment by us. The fact that climate change CAN occur naturally has no bearing on whether or not THIS one is.

Nice try, troll. Also, learn to spell.

Side: It is man made.
2 points

Yes its true that the climate has change before, but they were all due to outside causes like meteorites or super volcano sending millions of tone of hash in the atmosphere blocking the sun creating a ice age .. The millions of tons of co2 and other gazes are having a adverse affect on the planet its just common sense, anything man made is going to have a effect on nature ..Look at the affect pollution has on the ocean and different fauna around the world. Its just easier to say that nothing we do affects the well being of the planet, if we did then we will have to stop it and thats not going to happen anytime soon ... People smoke cigarette knowing that it kills them if they dont care about they're own lives why would they care of the life of the planet

Side: It is man made.
1 point

It is natural but naturally very slow but humans have quickened it so nature can't keep up with it so lots of animals are dieing out!! We quickened it by releasing more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere

Side: Both
victor01(146) Disputed
1 point

"animals are dieing out"

Animals have been going extinct since the creation of this planet. Perhaps, its part of life. Part nature's cycle. Eventually, humans will go extinct as well. Nothing lives forever.

"We quickened it by releasing more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere"

You better stop breathing.

Side: It is a natural process.
chododo(63) Disputed
1 point

I do not mean breathing released carbon dioxide. We burn fossil fuels which release it, we get rid of marshes that hold a lot of a carbon dioxide releasing it into the atmosphere, it is not us breathing I disagree with.

I do believe that humans will go extinct and I know animals always die out but because of humans hunting animals (I have nothing against animals hunting, they hunt for food, humans hunt for fun and for trophies), getting rid of habitats and getting rid of animals food sources animal species are going extinct at a greater rate than they should be.

Side: It is man made.
1 point

I am actually writing a lengthy research paper on this topic for one of my classes. I have done quite a bit of research and I have to say that this topic has very mixed responses. A lot of people believe that climate change is brought on by humans. There are many scientific groups and politicians that agree with this, but then again there are also scientists and politicians that disagree. Carbon dioxide is, by many, thought to be one of the main greenhouse gases that effects climate change and global warming drastically. Many scientists have agreed that carbon is being released both naturally, but also by human activity. Human activity is however speeding carbon releases up. Carbon is released through cars, industries and through the burning of fossil fuels. Some scientist in fact have acknowledged through their research that over the last 150 years it is quite possible that a vast majority of the warming could be a result of the solar cycles and the radiation that reach the earth. They believe that the radiation from the solar cycles could effect us enough to increase earth’s temperatures (Pearce 38). (This is an excerpt from my paper, as is the following) Some of the groups that are well known for supporting that humans are the sole cause for global warming are: the National Academy of Sciences, the American Meteorological Society and the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (DiSilvestro 22-25). Science is very iffy, but I have to say that it is probably a mixture of both natural occurrences and human activity. The one that I feel is doing the most harm is us humans, we're releasing so much pollution in to the atmosphere.

Side: It is man made.
1 point

Don't forget that we also destroyed the biggest forests that would take care of most of the carbon, but now it's not doing much.

I also noticed you mentioned the theories about the sun. These theories are valid. But they spent the last 30 years testing all the available options, and they came up to the conclusion that CO2 it is. Everything else is regular, including the sun.

Take a look at this video so you can hear this being told by a scientist (Richard Alley - funny man lol)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9S_82BUshM8 (around 2:35 he starts talking about the 30 years stuff)

Side: It is man made.
1 point

it is man made, the significance of all the other cycles that effect the global cycles are minimal insofar as what is observed. The only change which has any possible significance is anthropogenic greenhouse gasses. - thus it is man made.

Side: It is man made.
1 point

actually climate change does happen cause of both man made and natural. but just if the human being would like to treat the nature better the climate exchange wouldnt be this fast.

Side: It is man made.
1 point

Everyone needs to stop this but without humans there was stil ice ages, we are poisining the earth slowly and you just need to open your eyes everyone! You are saying that co2 that humans release isent doing any damage what so ever - of course it is!! The earth has changed before and it has been punished, but know we are dameging it playing with the way it works its clear that if we are damaging it there wil be a climate change when we all have to suffer, because we made it happen at least if we dont damage such a thing then it might not happen for a long time but if it dose we wil survive it. Know, now were just damaging it worse so the cosequence's wil be worse and the consequence's will be coz of man-made actions not natural. And we might not survive.

Side: It is man made.
1 point

Apart fropm pumping co2 -mand-made cause, We are also destroying whats good for us and the planet cutting trees for exaple- we are getting faster at tearing this world apart, inside-out!

Side: It is man made.
1 point

Yes climate changes are usually a natural occerrence. But historic shifts show us how sensetive the planet is to greenhouse warming from co2 in the atmosphere.Humans continue to pump co2 skyward at an uprising rate so now it might be 10% but it wil surly rise and take over in the new century.

Side: It is man made.
1 point

Yes climate changes are usually a natural occerrence. But historic shifts show us how sensetive the planet is to greenhouse warming from co2 in the atmosphere.Humans continue to pump co2 skyward at an uprising rate so now it might be 10% but it wil surly rise and take over in the new century.

Side: It is man made.
1 point

It is a man made process interfering with the natural cycle. That has been proven as much as it possibly can. Ok, I'm going to clarify something people tend to ignore when discussing this issue: The only way to fully establish a cause-effect relationship, is to perform a controlled experiment, most preferably in a lab. There, you can keep all variables in check except two: the independent variable and the dependent variable. The independent variable can only then be directly linked to, the dependent one. You vary the independent variable, too see what effect, or if, it has an effect on the dependent one. (Human GHG-emissions ---> Climate Change)

Now, the data that supports man made climate change is gathered globally, and it is very strong. But of course, it can never, ever control every variable that contributes to changes in the climate. In that sense, when deniers tell: "prove it" or "it has not been 100% proven yet", they are actually demanding scientists to turn the entire earth into a lab, and control every variable except human activity, too see if the earth is still warming. Possible? In fantasy-land maybe.

So, to conclude: we have to admit we can never control the earths climate-variables, so the most plausible answer to this question, relying on the data of 97% of climate scientists, including every singe national science academy in the world, is that we are affecting the climate, and that we need to do something about his. I strongly recommend this hilarious comment from David Mitchell, who is basically pointing out the same thing. 3 minutes of clarifying genius.

The burden of proof
Side: It is man made.

The climate naturally changes over time, but humans are fucking it up even worse, adding acid rain and global dimming to the long list of bad shit that happens with the weather. If you disagree with science, you're probably wrong.

Side: It is man made.
0 points

It's natural to a point, but you can't say that we didn't hasten the process with our industrial gasses.

Side: It is man made.

Nothing a little air freshner can't fix. Air freshners work wonders on my....er.... my dog's gasses ; )

Side: It is man made.
8 points

I think it's a natural process that's being sped up by humans.

Side: Both
casper3912(1581) Disputed
0 points

Could you expound on your position please?

Side: It is man made.
8 points

Sure. Climate Change, for example: Global Warming, probably occurs naturally right. I think that we're speeding up the process (or making it worse) with CO2 pollution and such.

Side: Both
6 points

The history of our planet shows dramatic climate changes since its creation.

Side: It is a natural process.
5 points

I'm sure that we are effecting the climate to a certain degree, no pun intended, but it's very minuscule compared to the overall changes that have been happening since the beginning.

Side: It is a natural process.
casper3912(1581) Disputed
4 points

A minuscule affect can result in a great change. The weather(of which the temperature is one facet) is a chaotic dynamic system, slight changes in such systems can result in drastically different behaviors.

Side: It is man made.
5 points

The earth's climate has been changing ever since conception , long before man ever showed up.

Side: It is a natural process.
casper3912(1581) Disputed
3 points

Climate change happening naturally in the past tells us nothing about if current or future climate changes are man made or natural.

It is certainly possible for man to drastically affect his environment, take for example the ozone "hole".

Side: It is man made.
3 points

And it might be that we had an Ozone hole ten thousand years ago also , created by Mother nature, man effects the environment , this is true , man has never came close to doing what natural causes can do to Earth thoughand has done, not to say they wont.

Side: It is man made.
5 points

Just a really quick point, if one were to analyze the average temperatures from different eras, you can see it naturally elevates and drops. And just to throw it in cause it seems everyone else glazes over it, when the so called industrial boom happened, the very time where our CO2 output increased exponentially, the average temperature decreased for a number of years, then increased again... just saying, if i were to make a connection here, it would appear, to me, that during the highest increase of the so called cause of this can be linked to a drop in the average temperature of the globe...

Side: It is a natural process.
Grort Disputed
1 point

That was due to the smog created creating a temporary blanket that shielded the air from the suns rays. once the larger particles had disappeared, the chemical effect of it could take over, heating the earth. It is aided by normal global changes, but humans have clearly accelerated and affected how the global temperature changed.

Side: It is man made.
4 points

The earth has warmed and cooled numerous times. There is evidence of multiple ice ages that have begun and ended even before the smallest human populations originated on earth.

Side: It is a natural process.
casper3912(1581) Disputed
2 points

Climate change happening naturally in the past tells us nothing about if current or future climate changes are man made or natural.

It is certainly possible for man to drastically affect his environment, take for example the ozone "hole".

Side: It is man made.
AltonSmith(111) Disputed
5 points

It is indeed possible for humanity to alter the environment. However, that would require effort far beyond the industrial processes typically blamed for global warming. It is scientifically accepted that there are cycles in the Earth's temperature. The smallest portions of these cycles are about 40 years.

Alas, around the year A.D. 1860 marked the end of a cooler period widely commonly regarded as a minuscule ice age. Society's effect on greenhouse could possibly be a maximum of 0.3% of total greenhouse gases. Finally, it is evident that "greenhouse gases" such as carbon dioxide have been increasing since long before industry was developed by human society.

Side: It is a natural process.
2 points

Yes climate changes are usually a natural occerrence. But historic shifts show us how sensetive the planet is to greenhouse warming from co2 in the atmosphere.Humans continue to pump co2 skyward at an uprising rate so now it might be 10% but it wil surly rise and take over in the new century.

Side: It is man made.

How many ice ages have there been in the history of this planet? Before there were humans? And how many times have the glaciers receded (i.e., warmed up)? This planet is like a woman. It has its menstrual periods. She can be a cold, frigid, bitch in one second and she can get those pesky hot flashes the next. It's been that way throughout the millennium. ;)

Side: It is a natural process.
casper3912(1581) Disputed
3 points

Climate change happening naturally in the past tells us nothing about if current or future climate changes are man made or natural.

It is certainly possible for man to drastically affect his environment, take for example the ozone "hole".

Side: It is man made.

If the Sun were a basketball, planet Earth would be a marble. The Sun has a much greater effect on Earth's climate than man.

As far as the "hole" in the O-zone, I prefer the "hole" in the P-zone... but that's just me ;)

Side: It is a natural process.
3 points

all you have to do is look into the past ot ifnd the answer to this question.... if you wannt to see for yourself go to this link

Supporting Evidence: climate change throughout history (www.epa.gov)
Side: It is a natural process.
3 points

The opening question of this debate falsely assumes that human activity is somehow not part of an entirely "natural" process.

I think a better question is. Are we humans contributing in significant ways to making our environment uninhabitable?

I don't think there is anyone on this site who would seriously deny that we are.

Side: It is a natural process.
2 points

Volcanoes, natural forest fires, and CO2 deposit seepages in the ocean account for far more CO2 ejected into the atmosphere than we could ever hope to emit. There is one premise of global warming that I cannot understand giving that CO2 is the cause: if global warming is caused because radiant energy from the sun strikes the earth and is reflected but trapped by an increasing level of CO2 in the atmosphere doesn't that mean that less radiant energy gets in as well. I do believe these things work both ways, less gets out but why does the same amount still get in? Also fyi, the main greenhouse gas in water, it's clouds. Clouds account for much more trapping of radiant energy reflected by warming land masses and bodies of water as the day goes on than CO2 does.

Side: It is a natural process.
casper3912(1581) Disputed
2 points

Its because of different types of EM radiation I believe.

A different type comes in then what goes out, each type interacts differently with green house gases.

Side: It is man made.
2 points

Indeed.

Also, just because you can't understand it, Nautilus, doesn't make it incorrect.

Side: It is man made.
Skaruts(195) Disputed
2 points

Volcanoes aren't so harmful, but forest fires are. Forest fires do both CO2 emission and reduction of CO2 convertion agents (trees)...

Clouds are a small percentage of the water vapours in the planet. They have only a small effect. But it's true that water vapours are the greatest greenhouse gas. But at the same time, they have not been altered, so they can't be considered for this matter.

less gets out but why does the same amount still get in?

"They allow short wavelength solar radiation to pass through the atmosphere to reach the earth's surface, but absorb the longer wavelength heat that is radiated back into the atmosphere from the earth." - in http://www.brighthub.com/environment/renewable-energy/articles/81275.aspx

and btw:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9S_82BUshM8

Side: It is man made.
2 points

The normal climate cycles it's ebbed and flowed for hundreds of thousands of years.

Side: It is a natural process.
2 points

its natural. There's been ice ages. And there's also been times that antarctic is a rain forest.

Side: It is a natural process.
2 points

Everyone needs to stop this but without humans there was stil ice ages, we are poisining the earth slowly and you just need to open your eyes everyone! You are saying that co2 that humans release isent doing any damage what so ever - of course it is!! The earth has changed before and it has been punished, but know we are dameging it playing with the way it works its clear that if we are damaging it there wil be a climate change when we all have to suffer, because we made it happen at least if we dont damage such a thing then it might not happen for a long time but if it dose we wil survive it. Know, now were just damaging it worse so the cosequence's wil be worse and the consequence's will be coz of man-made actions not natural. And we might not survive.

Side: It is a natural process.
2 points

Apart fropm pumping co2 -mand-made cause, We are also destroying whats good for us and the planet cutting trees for exaple- we are getting faster at tearing this world apart, inside-out!

Side: It is a natural process.
1 point

I am not a scientist. This is just my opinion formed from reading various articles that both support and deny climate change being attributed to humans.

The problem with it being man made is that man hasn't been on the planet very long when compared to the age of the Earth. More often than not the data used to show that it is man made shows historical temperatures from times after human societies developed. But one look at temperatures some 600 million years ago shows that temps were slightly cooler at the poles than at the equator. And we still do not fully understand the relationship between the sun and earth. It is entirely possible that a slight change in the tilt of the earth on its axis and the sun being in a dormant stage could be the cause of ice ages. Or how about earth's orbit around the sun possibly varying a few degrees every 1,000,000 years or so.

My point being that it seems a little narcissistic of humans to think that our very short time of existence can have a huge effect on something as large as climate change.

Side: It is a natural process.