Effects of Global Warming
Research findings from the previous section showed that the increased combustion of fossil fuels in the transport and energy sectors, as well as the industrial agricultural processes, led to the production of GHGs. Additionally, the World Health Organization affirm that gases such as carbon dioxide would last in the atmosphere for over a century, thereby, translating to the global warming phenomenon (WHO). One of the adverse effects of global warming, as reported by Zhang and Zhou (2020), are extreme weather patterns, which range from heavier rainfall and more frequent droughts to hotter heat waves and stronger hurricanes. In the study, the researchers reported that the warmer climate experienced in the densely populated areas in China were anticipated to experience intensified precipitation of up to 6.52% per degree of global warming. Additionally, the study reported that the dry spell period in the country was expected to increase with rising global temperatures.
A similar finding was reported by Nkemelang et al. (2018), who analyzed the expected changes in precipitation and temperature in Botswana, at increasing global temperatures of 1ºC, 1.5ºC, and 2ºC. Findings showed that at 2ºC, the country would experience longer periods of warmer day temperatures, colder nights, and increased precipitation levels. Pendergrass and Hartmann (2014) also reported that rainfall responded to global warming in two ways: an increase in both the total amount of rainfall received and the total rates of heavy rainfall. Therefore, more precipitation would not only be expected, and at a higher frequency. An explanation for the occurrences as reported by Trenberth (2011) posited that with the increase in global temperature, higher heating would lead to greater evaporation rates. At the same time, warming the air by 1ºC enhanced the water-holding capacity of the air by about 7%, thereby, leading to higher moisture and intense precipitation. On the contrary, however, the researcher argued that higher air temperatures led to increased surface drying and drought durations.