Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could all just pretend that climate change does not affect us? That there is no scientific evidence of any sort that could lead to the end our daily lives as we know them?
Then, we would still have other things to worry about of course. We would still have wars, conflicts, terrorist attacks and countries would still fight over resources and globalization.
But at the same time we would worry less about one thing at least. Our grandchildren would not have to remind us as a generation that stood back and did nothing to change something that is clearly going wrong. We would just acknowledge that scientists made a huge mistake when trying to prove the seemingly alarming issue of climate change. We would feel as if a burden has been suddenly lifted!
Personally, I think it would be the easiest way. To just picture everything as an illusion. On the down side, in reality not more than two mistakes were found in the last 22 years of scientific literature regarding climate change. The issue is as real as it can be. As a matter of fact, every 24 hours we release 90 million tons of global-warming pollution and in 2013 the Earth’s surface temperature has grown 0.37 degrees Celsius than the 20th century average.
The counter-argument would be that some data might not have been exactly accurate. As with what happened to a study done by the United Nations panel of climate change that exaggerated the amplitude to which the Himalayan glaciers are melting, information that was later found to be not entirely true.
On the other hand, not all the studies can be wrong. Science implies trial and error. The global warming issue remains and there are chances that even the scientists can underestimate (based on the information available) the scale at which the sea-level is currently rising due to the melting of the Arctic ice cap and of Greenland.
However, it can be quite difficult to explain the climate change situation when it comes to a particular location, as the data tend to be global. What can seem particularly cold in one place, from a global perspective can be in fact hotter than it used to be a while ago.
While some might use the cold weather that we are facing nowadays as an argument to prove that global warming is just a myth, science says that warmer weather at a global level, increase the oceans’ evaporation, thus having more moisture into the atmosphere, therefore leading to snowfalls and rainfalls that might confuse people into thinking there is nothing warm involved.
So where do people come into this situation? Well, our daily pollution captures heat from the sun and lead to the rise of the temperatures in the atmosphere. Because of our heavy reliance on coal, natural gases or oil, the pollutants (especially CO2-carbon dioxide) have been growing at a huge rate. We face more natural disasters than we did before, as storms get more aggressive, hurricanes more destructive and the oceans are rising. Seasons start to be confusing and species are in danger.
Even if movement are being done in order to deal with this issue, world leaders, celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and Jon Bon Jovi or governments help get the message across better, the world-wide civilization is still reluctant in doing something about it. Mentalities like “I’m too small I can’t do anything” or “If the other one is not doing it, why should I?” still prevent us from acting according to the situation. At the same time, when world leader like the United States and China cannot come to a consensus and sign a new law for the climate change, can we expect the other to act differently?
Change at a global level can be quite complex. While some think that a political solution would be the implementation of a global carbon tax, others might find it close to impossible when it comes to the actual implementation. Moreover, it is difficult to imagine the time needed for the world to change their habits and adopt an alternative approach to life. Just the changes that already started to happen affect millions of people, from the natural disasters to seasonal changes.
If up until now we have been busy facing other problems at hand, that always seem to be more important than “the weather”, I think that it is time for the climate change issue to take front stage.
Even if for some it might sound naive, I believe in individual change. We can start from there. It is our responsibility to force governments to act accordingly and to try to educate the people around us.
This is an issue that requires attention and it cannot be ignored. I don’t think that anyone would want to wait until the consequences become too severe to change. With a little bit of effort, that won’t be the case.
Written by C.C.