Spooky Season might be over, but the predictions from the latest U.N. report are still here.
The claims from the U.N.’s newest climate change report have been circling the internet and social media. The gravity of hitting 1.5°C is difficult to wrap our minds around and too daunting to even acknowledge, but we can’t have that hinder us from understanding what is going on.
Though I’m not a researcher or a journalist, I believe we all have the responsibility to be informed so that we can have the knowledge to make change. So I began do my research and came across these informative resources:
1.Global Warming of 1.5°C by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change ( IPCC )
This is the first hand summary report that was released by the IPCC for policy makers to understand the effects of us reaching 1.5°C . It is a long read but some of the points that really struck me were:
Human activities have been caused to create approximately 1.0°C of global warming and we will likely reach 1.5°C between 12 to 24 years. ( A1. p.4)
We risk an irreversible loss of many marine and coastal ecosystems. Coral reefs will decline by 70-90%, just shy of the prediction of 99% at 2°C. (B4.2, p.10).
Currently disadvantaged and vulnerable populations, some indigenous peoples, will face disproportionately higher risks. Overall poverty and disadvantages will increase due to climate related risks such as urban heat waves, vector-borne diseases (ex. Malaria and Dengue Fever), famine, extreme weather events, increased class gap between the advantaged and disadvantaged, etc… (B5.1-7)
“Pathways limiting global warming to 1.5°C with no or limited overshoot would require rapid and far-reaching transitions in energy, land, urban and infrastructure (including transport and buildings), and industrial systems....These systems transitions are unprecedented in terms of scale, but not necessarily in terms of speed, and imply deep emissions reductions in all sectors, a wide portfolio of mitigation options and a significant upscaling of investments in those options” (C2. p.21)
“Strengthening the capacities for climate action of national and sub-national authorities, civil society, the private sector, indigenous peoples and local communities can support the implementation of ambitious actions implied by limiting global warming to 1.5°C (high confidence). International cooperation can provide an enabling environment for this to be achieved in all countries and for all people, in the context of sustainable development. International cooperation is a critical enabler for developing countries and vulnerable regions” (D.7, p.30)
The report also includes it’s own brief summary on p.32- 33 and I would definitely take a read over that as well.
2. A New Climate Tipping Point by The Daily
I try not to listen to the Daily too frequently, because it can be a bit overwhelming from th. But this podcast about the report was incredibly well done and gives you so much insight of 1.Why was the report conducted, 2. What they found, and 3. The best suggested solution from the report: The Carbon Tax.
Plus if you don’t have the time to read up first, this is a great starting point.
3. The world has just over a decade to get climate change under control, U.N. scientists say by The Washington Post
This article emphasizes the need for global collaboration to slow down the rise of climate change temperatures. I love that it goes over the passive language used in the IPCC’s climate change report in order that hesitant countries are more inclined to recognize the validity of their statements and more willing to do something.
Though they stress the urgency for global participation to start immediately, they end by saying “If we give up the goal and do not even try, we will certainly miss it a long way.” It’s better to begin the process of slowing climate change, than not doing anything at all.
I mean if NASA is confirms this is happening, we should definitely care.
Just kidding, but their article emphasizes how “A half degree averaged out over the whole world can mean much more of an increase in some locations and at certain times”. They also point out that combating climate change will be a multi-generational and multi-century commitment by stating “We want to see instant results. That's not something that's going to happen with climate change. You need to just keep pursuing it and know that generations down the road will reap the benefits”.
After reading these it is natural to feel an overwhelming sense of grief, anxiety, and hopelessness. But please be encouraged that it is normal to mourn and be angry, but channel that energy to create change. Use your emotions to engage with politics, the businesses you purchase from, and the individuals that surround you, because our world needs everyone to act now.
What other resources have you come across?
What are your thoughts on the matter?
Who can you share this information with?
Let me know!