Climate Change: Why it Matters Now More Than Ever

Throughout history the climate has changed drastically from the civilization of humans. In the last 650,000 years many of the earth’s glaciers have started to melt since the last ice age, states NASA’s Global Climate Change: Vital Signs of the Planet.

   With many factories around the world there is an increase in carbon dioxide that is released into the air. As the world becomes more industrialized the carbon dioxide level has gone from 280 parts per million to about 417 parts per million in 151 years, according to NASA.

   As a result, greenhouse gas levels in Greenland and Antarctica have increased, and have been rapidly melting the polar ice-caps. While on land there is an increase of evaporation, where water vapor is taken from the soil and is stored in the air, which will result in droughts and more forest fires. 

   This problem has been widely known for decades, but still hasn’t been solved. The world’s climate is said to be nearing its tipping point, where it will be too late to mitigate or reverse a warming planet. “We can’t afford to wait two years, five years, 10 years — this is the moment,” said Alok Sharma, British minister in charge of the 26th UN Climate Change Conference, to the British newspaper The Observer.   

   Adding to the problem, scientists argue are in places like Brazil, where many new large cattle farms are being built that allow for a concentrated amount of methane to be created and released into the atmosphere.

   “In the Amazon rainforest there is a large deforestation that’s occurring in order to make room for cattle farms,” said DeGrand. Methane, from animal waste, is another harmful chemical being released into the environment.  

   Climate change can be controlled if citizens around the world take action. One action can be recycling. “Only about 13% is recycled on the global level,” states Ilija Acimovic, in  “29 Recycling Statistics We Need to be Aware of in 2021”. 

   One issue over recycling occurred in Lincoln, Neb., where DeGrand lived. “It was not required for people to recycle,” he said. If people didn’t separate garbage and recyclables, those recyclables were taken to a landfill. Once the landfill reached maximum capacity, Lincoln created a recycling system. 

   To curb greenhouse gasses which add to climate change, carbon tax is an idea set forth, where businesses had to pay if their company emitted high levels of carbon. Low carbon rates would equal low tax rates and high carbon rates would equal high tax rates, said DeGrand. Businesses disapproved of this idea because they could lose money.

   Recently, studies have shown that 97 percent of the world’s leading scientists agree that the global climate is warming up, and the cause is human civilization, states NASA.

  The scientific community is attempting to put a larger and louder voice to its dire message about climate change.

   “That message has become stronger based on evidence that scientists have collected,” said DeGrand. The message put out is now reaching a variety of ages and backgrounds, so younger generations can understand it. 

   Concerned scientists estimate that the world will cross the “threshold for dangerous warming (+1.5 C) between 2027 and 2042,” states McGill University, Earth Could Cross the Global Warming Threshold as Soon as 2027. Leaving a long lasting effect on Earth’s climate if there is nothing being done.