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Research by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) indicates that there has been a steady increase in global temperatures since 1884, with 2019 being recorded as the second warmest year since 1880 (NASA, 2020). Figure 1 below shows the consistent increase in global temperature over a period of 140 years (1880 to 2020).
Figure 1: Increase in global temperature from 1880 to 2020 (Source: NASA, 2020).
From figure 1, it was reported that global temperatures increased consistently over the last 140 years, with a 0.98ºC anomaly being recorded in 2019. Similar findings are highlighted by the United Nations Emissions Report (2019), which shows that the world is headed for an increase in global temperature by up-to 3.2ºC in the near future. These findings directly emphasize the need to establish the underlying causes of global warming and changes in climate. A confluence observed from the review of diverse research studies is that human activity poses the greatest threat to climate stability. The assertion is supported by Cook et al. (2013), who reported that there was a 90% to 100% consensus among the publishing community of climate scientists that the leading causes of global warming are anthropogenic. Feulner (2015) also confirms that global warming is caused by the interference of human activity with the climate system through changes in the use of land as well as increased emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs). For this study, we are going to consider the residential heating which forms part of the 33.6 % of greenhouse gas emissions by different sectors in the US where Massachusetts is a state, which is the area of interest. For this research, the subject matter will be the household emission which according to Mukhopadhyay (2013), consists of 82% CO2, 10% of methane, 6% of nitrous oxides, and 2% of other fluorinated gases.