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Eleven Years to Armageddon Inevitability and Counting…

By: Alexander Mitchell/Content Editor

Put simply, we have about ten years to prevent the complete destruction of all life on earth. I am, of course, referring to the Climate Crisis.

For decades, we have been aware of the rising temperatures, increasing frequency of destructive weather disasters, the melting ice caps and the resulting sea-level rise, and many other signs that we must radically change our behavior to prevent the destruction of this planet.

What’s the Cause?

Every day, we pump more and more greenhouse gasses such as Carbon Dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere, due to the burning of fossil fuels like coal and oil. These gasses contribute to the heating of the planet by the process of the greenhouse effect. The light of the sun enters the atmosphere as short-wave radiation, but when absorbed by the Earth’s surface, it is reradiated as long-wave radiation, which the greenhouse gasses do not allow to escape. The result is an increase in temperature.

Why is this Bad?

Many point out the fact that the rise in temperature is just a few degrees, and they are correct. After all, the average global temperature has increased by only 0.8° Celsius (1.4° Fahrenheit) since 1880; why should we care? The temperature varies much more than that daily, after all. While this is correct, the temperature rise is a global average, not due to local cyclic events. On the global scale, what seems like so little is much more significant. For example, all it took to plunge the Earth into the last ice age 20,000 years ago was a five-degree drop! Additionally, an increase in temperature by that much is enough to melt the polar ice caps, the consequences of which are described below.

What are the Effects?

Though there are many, the major effects include:

  1. Temperature. The obvious result is a rise in temperature and an increase in frequency of heatwaves.
  2. Precipitation. Precipitation will not necessarily increase or decrease globally, but will become more extreme for certain areas. In other words, dry areas will get drier and wet areas will get wetter.
  3. Sea-level Rise. As a result of the melting ice caps, sea-level rise has become a major consequence. Already, flooding has become more common, and the sea-level has already risen by six inches. While that may not seem like much, coastal cities such as New York can be greatly affected by that little.
  4. Stronger Hurricanes. The frequency, intensity, and duration of hurricanes have all increased since the 1980s, and are predicted to continue rising due to Climate Change.

How will it effect this area? Mr. Floyd described, “…over time, the climate of this area will not only become warmer, but also more unpredictable…” He also mentioned that we have already seen changes; it already has been unpredictable, and also wetter.

How do We Stop It?

The solution is simple. We must cease to burn fossil fuels to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. How do we do that? We rely on the burning of fossil fuels for electricity, after all. At present, we do. However, if we support the use of renewable energy sources like solar and wind power, we can save this planet without giving up electricity.

One of the arguments against renewable energy is the cost. Many people think it will be more expensive for them. However, once the initial investment is made, it is more cost effective in the long run, for the sun provides much more energy than we need – for free!

Another argument is the fact that anyone in the fossil fuel industry would lose their job, which is true, but consider this: innovation can’t happen without that. For example, every time cars improve, many mechanics no longer know how to fix them, and either learn or lose their job. Should we just stop improving cars? Of course not! The same applies to energy production.

Mr. Floyd proposed an additional solution, saying “We need a way to take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere…”, also further explained that we already have started on that technology.

How Soon Must We Act?

Scientists have given us only eleven years to fix this problem. Past that, they predict it will be out of our hands, and the world’s destruction will be inevitable. The answer is clear: We must address this problem now. If we don’t, we face the imminent destruction of the only home we’ve ever known.

Will you challenge the fossil fuel industry, and upgrade to renewable energy, or will you leave the World to its doom?

 

Sources:

https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/world-of-change/DecadalTemp https://climate.nasa.gov/effects/

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Raider Reader Staff
Raider Reader Staff
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