The Effects of Climate Change on the Planet and the People
As years go by the more we get to feel the wrath of climate change. A word we have been hearing a lot since the 90s. A clear example of how gradual we are experiencing climate change is the rise of sea levels and the death of the Icelandic glacier named Okjokull at the age of 700 years.
Scientists predict that climate change will continue to increase the globe’s temperature each year. In return, it is said that the annual costs from the damages caused by global warming will significantly increase as years go by. What does this imply for the way we live?
The Rise in Temperature
As mentioned earlier, scientists project for a continuous increase in temperature for the coming years due to climate change. But how will this affect us? In the West, what used to have a cool climate is now experiencing excruciating weather. This in return has taken a toll amongst its residents as the heat is too much to handle.
Decades ago, regular insulation and heating were enough to keep everybody happy throughout the seasons. But now? Many institutions in the West have started to install air conditioning units to combat the heat. It is worth remembering that houses in the West are built to keep heat inside. The clear contrast between the architectural design and the current experiences people are having is a key indicator that things are beyond the point of normal now.
The abnormal rise of temperature will also affect or marine biodiversity. As the ocean’s temperature rises the risks of habitats being destroyed also goes higher. Fishes and other aquatic animals will migrate and even die in the process. It is projected that by the end of 2050, there is a significant decrease in seafood catch.
Frost-Free Seasons Are Longer
The rising temperatures, also imply that the earth will have fewer frost seasons. For us humans, it may be beneficial for agriculture and food production. However, it can pose detrimental effects on our biodiversity. Polar bears have been predicted to become extinct by the end of the century according to researchers. It’s not only polar bears that are in danger of extinction, but most Arctic species could be too. This decrease in frost seasons has affected the food supply for many species.
The Rise of Sea Levels
As the ice caps melt and the planet becomes warmer, sea levels are bound to rise. Rising sea levels can have devastating effects. To illustrate better, think of Venice. Venice is the city of canals and is famous for its floods called the “acqua alta”.
Venice has been good at fighting against the rising sea levels since the fifth century, but how far can this go? As sea levels rise, so does the acqua alta. Venice will be battling against nature in hopes to keep the city flood-free by the end of the century. Venice almost sunk before. There is no doubt that it can happen again.
Likewise, coastal cities are at higher risk of being underwater by the end of 2050. This is an effect that will have an impact on people’s quality of living. Many will be displaced or even worse die of the risk of these cities drowning.
How Do We Fight This?
For as long as the effects of climate change worsen, the more expensive it will be for us to live on this planet. For when we have passed the point of no return, all of our efforts will be redirected in funding innovations and solutions that constantly go against nature. Going against nature has its consequences hence why it is expensive.
Change must come from the biggest contributors to global warming. The carbon footprint individuals produce is significantly lower than what corporations produce, and yet the richer they get, the poorer the quality of living becomes.
In curbing climate change, massive changes will need to be implemented. Factories and industries are responsible for lowering down their carbon emissions to slow warming. At the same time, a lifestyle change for the way people live is also expected. Opting for the use of sustainable alternatives is encouraged.
Climate activists have been urging people to speak up. Many groups have also started advocating for climate justice from companies that harm the environment. For as long as industrial and other large corporations refuse to cooperate, the damages that climate change inflicts will become worse and worse each decade. It is easier to destroy than to fix or create.
But scientists have given us hope that if we can curb the damage we’ve inflicted by the end of 2050, there is still a chance for the earth to return to its healthier state.