A few days ago, it felt as if every corner I turned seemed to be the focus of the warm summer heat lingering in the air. Whether from news articles about various places around the world stuck in tropical climate, or the chatter all over from people still in their summer outfits yearning to show off their new fall wardrobe.
Winter might be approaching, yet autumn doesn’t know whether it is coming or going. Nature is confused by the changing climate.
Pinning any specific environmental event on climate change is tricky, but when surging heat, wildfires, and intense storms have been the topic of discussion worldwide over the last few weeks how can one ignore the signs? Warming global temperatures and the connected increase in weird and extreme weather events no longer can be considered a speculative theory about what might happen to other people in the distant future. Instead this summer has demonstrated that these changes are upon us now.
Glaciers are melting, sea levels are rising, cloud forests are dying, and wildlife is scrambling to keep pace. It has become clear that humans have caused most of the past century’s warming by releasing heat-trapping gases as we power our modern lives. Greenhouse gas levels are higher now than in the last 650,000 years. Humans have increased the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere by more than a third since the industrial revolution. Changes this large have historically taken thousands of years, but are now happening over the course of decades.
Climate Change is real and concerns us all, which is why it’s important to learn about and understand environmental issues.
Carbon emissions must fall to two tonnes of CO2 per person by 2050 to avoid severe global warming, but in the US and Australia emissions are currently 16 tonnes per person and in the UK seven tonnes!
I’m not going to ignore that in order to combat this mass scale change needs to come from the high corridors of power but at the same time we can all do our part in living a greener life and reducing our carbon footprint.