Climate change is here and it’s increasing at alarming rates. The IPCC report says it’s now or never. We must take immediate action to decrease global heating and prevent disaster. Here is everything you need to know.
We all saw the news headlines that said it’s “too late” or that “the end is near”. Well, it’s not entirely wrong, although there is something we can do about it. The IPCC report states all that humans have done in the last century that might speed up the end of civilization. However, there might be a way out.
Summary of the IPCC Report
The IPCC AR6 Climate Change 2021 report gave us a wake up call that had the UN chief saying “it is code red for humanity”. However, scientists say some affects of climate change can be reversed and there is a chance to avoid major catastrophe.
We all felt record breaking heatwaves, droughts and severe rain storms this year. The report confirms that these extreme weather conditions will only worsen if we continue down the road we are on. Basically, there is no time like right now to make changes to avert climate disaster.
The report lets us know that we have put 2,400 billion tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere since 1850. This concentration of gas hasn’t been present on earth in the last 2 million years. Even though we have progressed so much as a society and with technological advancements, we are going back in time to an unlivable climate.
The IPCC states that extreme heatwaves and heavy rains have become more frequent since the 1950s. Not only that, but droughts are increasing just as much. Additionally, major hurricanes and typhoons have increased since the 1970s.
It is very likely the sea levels will rise to the point where many coastal communities will flood and threaten millions of people by 2100. One key detail of the report is the expected rate of temperature rise as well as what that means for the safety of humans, animals and marine life.
The report points all the blame onto humans as we are the ones contributing to greenhouse gas emissions, deforestation and other forms of destruction.
What Does This Mean For Our Future With Climate Change
The future is in a 50/50 split. There is 50% chance that we all get our act together right now and make changes to our ways of life. This means we stop all greenhouse gas emissions and start using cleaner energy sources. Then burry any remaining releases using carbon storage or by planting trees to absorb them.
The other 50% chance is that we don’t do enough and the children born within the last few years could very well be alive to see the end of civilization. Some politicians have argued it’s too late and that humanity isn’t up for the task. This report shows that there is no more hiding for policymakers and that they need to act now.
In order to avoid complete disaster, only drastic cutbacks in emissions will help succeed serious and intense global warming. Additionally, IPCC offers an additional 50% chance of keeping the earth’s temperature below the 1.5°C threshold.
The urgency of climate change is undeniable. It is happening now and fast. The only way to combat it and slow it down is a society wide vision. We all need to make changes, do our part and demand change from our local representatives.
What can individuals do to fight climate change
It’s not a lost cause but it is an uphill battle. We all have the ability to make changes to our daily lives to help combat climate change. Additionally, we can all demand action from our local governments. Here some ways to get involved:
Learn More About Your Carbon Emissions
There is a lot you can do to reduce your households carbon footprint. Learn more about your emissions and how you can best reduce them by using a “carbon calculator”.
Contact Your Communities Representative
Write to one the elected representatives at either the local, state or federal level. Tell them you believe climate change is important and you support the implementation of a climate action plan.
Commute By Carpooling or Using Public Transit
Most travelling from a household vehicle is to and from work with usually only one person in the car. Carpooling or taking public transit are great options for reducing carbon emissions.
Plan & Combine Trips
Instead of taking small trips to shop or run errands, combine it all into one trip. Not only does this save you time but reduces the miles you need to travel. Even bring someone with you to run errands as well so that they can leave their car behind. Additionally, replace your vehicle with an energy efficient one with better mileage.
Driving more efficiently is another way to do your part. Always observe speed limits, avoid rapid acceleration and excessive breaking. Ensure you tire pressure is always up to date. This helps them last longer and is more fuel efficient.
Switch To Green Energy
Switch into electrically generated appliances with low or no carbon dioxide emissions. Contact your energy provider and ask for greener options. When you are shopping for appliances look for eco-friendly or energy star .
Climate change isn’t going anywhere and it will only get worse, unless we all make changes to our lifestyles now. It’s important to remember that it’s not only up to us but our elected officials and policymakers. Hold them accountable by demanding proper climate change plans.
Choosing a more sustainable lifestyle doesn’t just help the environment, it helps keep more money in your wallet in the long run. There are many ways that buying energy efficient appliances or using reusable every day items will help you save money.