Just 3 Minutes Away From Understanding Climate Change
If you’re like me, you don’t like spending a lot of time reading about things that aren’t fun. Or maybe you don’t have a lot of free time, period. You’ve heard about climate change. You’ve heard from the climate change doubters. You believe it’s probably an important topic, but it can be confusing sorting through all the information and misinformation, especially in the internet age.
Well, I managed to find the time to do some research and some reading, and sort through the mess. Here is what I discovered, wrapped up in a concise bundle that can hopefully be absorbed by many because it IS important! It is one of the most important things in our world… in our lives. There are no opinions here – just facts from reputable sources.
What We Need To Know
The earth’s climate has changed throughout history. Remember that whole ice-age thing? Most of these have been because of small and normal variations in the earth’s orbit that change the amount of solar energy we receive.
This current warming trend, however, is very real and is unprecedented in the last 1000 years and there is a 95% probability it’s caused by human activity. For example, this current warming trend is roughly 10 times faster than the average ice-age recovery has been. It has been proven that increased carbon dioxide and other human-made emissions in the atmosphere cause the earth to warm in response.
The earth’s surface and ocean temperatures have risen substantially over the last few decades. Our ice sheets and glaciers have retreated. Sea levels are rising at an unprecedented rate. Since 1950 the number of high-temperature events has increased while the number of low-temperature events has decreased. The acidity of the oceans has increased by 30% since the industrial revolution.
If we continue on our current path, average temperatures will continue to rise; there will be more heavy precipitation events; more droughts; more and stronger hurricanes; more flooding due to rising sea levels. On the positive side, the growing season in some areas will be longer.
Our energy use is behind most of the human contribution to the climate change crisis. This includes everything that uses any form of energy, but cars, trucks, buses, boats and planes account for almost half of air pollution, more than a third of greenhouse gas emissions, one quarter of air contamination and almost one-fifth of water toxicity. Cars are the worst offenders – and pollute our water and air through exhaust and road runoff. Electricity production and use; industry; residential and agriculture also facture in.
What You Can Do
Everyone one of us is just a drop – but an ocean is made up of drops, so every little thing we do collectively can make a difference. Below is a concise, succinct list… you can easily search for and find detailed examples for each:
- Look for any and all ways to reduce your transportation emissions. e.g. Drive an energy-efficient vehicle. Drive less. Cycle, walk, rideshare.
- Use energy and water (especially hot) wisely and efficiently. Use less. Hey Canada… we’re the largest per-capita user of energy in the world!! We need to get better – much better.
- Pay attention to what and how you eat. Eat less meat. Meatless Mondays?! Choose local. Don’t waste food. Choose sustainable seafood.
- Renew. Reuse. Recycle. Compost.
- Take action. Let our elected officials know what you expect. Join or support youth-led movements. Start a conversation – around the table or on the web… share this!!
“We use too much, too much of it is toxic and we don’t share it very well. But that’s not the way things have to be. Together, we can build a society based on better, not more, sharing not selfishness, community not division.” — The Story of Stuff
You may enjoy this contemporary classical music piece that I wrote and paired with VIDEO of our beautiful planet! 🙂 LIBRATION by Dennis Kalichuk
climate/nasa/gov NASA Global Climate Change davidsuzuki.org David Suzuki Foundation epa Gov. U.S.A. The Story Of Stuff