Earlier this week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released their updated climate change indicators. It’s a collection of over 50 measures to monitor climate change in six topics, such as greenhouse gases, oceans, and health and society.
The findings are not encouraging.
This video provides an informative summary of the key highlights from the indicators, which include more heat waves, increased carbon dioxide emissions and melting sea ice, rising sea levels, and more.
I’ve also spent the past several weeks watching the Netflix documentary series, Our Planet. Incredibly filmed, it showcases the beauty and wonders of nature. But it also drives home the effects of climate change on wildlife as it--and humans' direct impact--accelerate the extinction of native species.
Why Does All of This Matter?
Some would say that this information is simply meant to incite fear for no reason, that the world has always changed and humans have always adapted to those changes.
I would agree that we as humans have adapted to changes in our world and will continue to adapt. But we’re living in a different time than we were 200 or even 20 years ago.
Now, there are many more people (7.9 billion today compared to 1 billion people in 1821 and 6 billion people in 2001), and our sheer numbers mean that we have a greater environmental impact than we did in previous generations. Because there are so many of us, we compete for fewer resources on Earth, which exacerbates geopolitical conflicts that further complicate matters.
The question boils down to what type of world do you want to live in and what you want for your children and future generations?
Do you want to do nothing and live in a world where
Because of hotter temperatures year after year, you have to run the air conditioning for a longer period each day, causing you to spend even more money on electricity. And you or your kids won’t be able to enjoy the outdoors as much because the heat index will be at level dangerous to your health on a more regular basis.
Your home incurs damage more frequently because of a greater number of extreme weather events, which also costs you more money or may even force you to move.
Less beach area will put a major damper on your summer vacations. Less snow will ruin your winter ski trips.
We can see these things happening already in our lives. This is just the tip of the melting iceberg…
Or do you want to take action now to mitigate climate change and your effect on the environment?
The clock is ticking.