I used to think the global warming issue was just a scare tactic, that in reality, the earth is just going through her natural cycles. As I learned in Geology last semester, yes, the earth has gone through many ice ages and thawing periods. The CO2 levels fluctuate accordingly, high during warm melting periods and low when freezing. Over the millennia, these cycles have been very repetitive and consistent, kind of line teeth on a saw blade. That is, until now. Now we are thousands of years beyond the expected cooling period and CO2 levels are substantially (almost 1/3) higher than anytime in the last 750,000 years, and rising at a steeper rate than ever before. This is based on ice core and sea floor core samples that are a very accurate record of the atmosphere and climate over hundreds of thousands of years. Increased population of man and animals accounts for much of this increase in CO2 levels, since that is what we exhale. We really can’t do anything about that, but the other main cause of increasing CO2, and this unprecedented heating cycle, are industrial processes and burning fossil fuels. Our generation probably will never realize the consequences but if the current trend continues, causing sea level to rise more quickly than current rates, billions of dollars of coastal real estate will soon disappear into the ocean. I generally disagree with doom and gloom predictions because of the “self-fulfilling prophecy” effect, but I also recognize that this is a real problem, one that we can do something about. It is not a joking matter. Plant more trees. Stop buying wood products from the rain forests. Recycle aluminum. Did you know that aluminum mining destroys rain forests to get to the bauxite ore and to build hydroelectric plants for processing the ore? See: http://www.rainforestrelief.org/What_to_Avoid_and_Alternatives/Aluminum.html? Did you know this affects the whole planet since trees use CO2 and give us O?