What is climate change? It is not a relatively new concept, however it is a concept that often gets misconstrued. Most take it as this concept of global warming, but I do not believe these ideas, global warming and climate change, are one in the same. Global warming is a confusing phrase. Climate change is a better concept, and phrase. Phrasing makes all the difference, and climate change emanates an ideal of need for a new.
Debating this idea of global climate change is Al Gore, and in his film “An Inconvenient Truth,” explains his concept of climate change, its factors and its horrific effects. Gore goes forward explaining climate change is not all man-made, and partially a natural cycle. However, cycling does not usually alter from the norm, yet the temperatures are increasing astronomically and the effects are drastic. Drastically altering the world’s landscape. Helping create larger-than-life storms, like Hurricane Katrina, which destroy cities, towns and infrastructure. Resulting storms come from warmer oceans, and temperatures, allowing stronger, fiercer, winds and storms. Weather patterns are way off, and it all stems back to this idea of climate change.
A changing world is affecting civilizations all over, and consequences of our actions are starting to appear, and they are not pretty. For example, around the colder the regions of the world there is this concept of permafrost which is underground permanent frost, but it is melting; and it’s causing devastating effects on local infrastructure and populations. Just like how populations surrounding rivers are experiencing more, and more, flooding each and every year, like in New Jersey.
Centering around environmental infrastructure greatly affected by climate change, much of the world is experiencing these unfortunate consequences. Yet, it is our fault, our civilizations are expanding at a rapid pace to the point where we can see our population reach 20 billion by 2150. Currently, we are at 7 billion in population. How do we know what our world’s carry capacity is? It could be 7 billion, it could be 100 billion, but also 1 billion. Expanding at a rapid rate causes populations to crumble and environmental infrastructure to disintegrate. Disintegrating our world and its natural environment helps worsen climate change, and its effects.
Warming temperatures means more diseases can make its way to new areas, bugs can infiltrate new areas, destroy native populations and outcompete natural species. Take for example, the West Nile Virus this disease is becoming commonplace amongst more northern states earlier, and earlier in the year. Causing more to become sick with the illness.
Sickness is not the only problem though, our ice is disappearing. No, not our ice used in our drinks but the ice at the two poles. The video relates these two as “2 canaries in a coal mine.” First being the Antarctic, and the second being Antarctica, land based and sea based ice. The two will disappear just like the canaries that entered the coal mine to check for safety. Glaciers are disappearing, land shows its green side, and large pieces of ice shelves are breaking off and entering the sea and increasing sea levels.
Increasing sea levels are affecting our world’s cities. An exhibit put on by the MOMA, Rising Tides, displayed solutions to rising tides amongst the New York islands: Manhattan, Long Island (housing Brooklyn and Queens) and Staten Island. Architects were brought in to offer up solutions, and most reverted back to reinstalling nature, for its benefits. Making artificial reefs, revitalizing estuaries, and using bacteria to breakdown sewage, are all ideas amongst the architects. While these solutions are plausible they seem long off. Yet, the worst part about these ideas is that it would involve spending money on infrastructure; but republicans would never go for that since they think climate change is nothing but a theory. Those fools.
However, there are things in effect trying to change how the world sees and creates policy for climate change. Take for instance the Kyoto Protocol, it “is a protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC or FCCC) that set binding
obligations on the industrialized countries to reduce their emissions of greenhouse gases” (wikipedia). Creating obligations to reduce carbon emissions will indeed lower the effects of climate change, especially amongst glaciers and ice features. Decreasing the amount of ice introduced into sea lessens the likelihood of the world’s sea level from continuing to rise and drastically alter our seashores.
We need more change like the Kyoto Protocol, or like the UNFCCC is offering, but without progress our world will cease to exist as we once knew it.