There has been a lot of brouhaha on the issue of climate change for the past few years, which has degenerated into two distinct factions, either denouncing the concept or shoring up support for it. It is hardly an option now to be on the fence as the debate goes on. This very matter is reshaping not only the world of science but government and private sector policies as well. Hence there is no escaping its clout. Many of our world leaders today have taken sides so why shouldn’t we?
The Climate Change Concept in Itself
Global warming or Climate change, according to Merriam-Webster, is defined as the increase in temperature in the atmosphere that culminates in the melting of the ice caps in turn caused by the emission of gases from pollution. The gases emitted by our industrial actions, our lifestyle and even byproducts of our breath are the most culpable culprit in this case. The more these gases are exuded, the hotter the earth gets resulting in the melting of polar ice which consequently produces erratic weather conditions that can fast-track doomsday. Scary isn’t it?
James Hansen of NASA was the first one to use the word “Global Warming” in his report to Congress, and henceforth it caught on. The debate didn’t start with him though as there have been articles, journals, discussions, studies, and initiatives on climate change before his time, carried out by scientists and activists.
The green party later won a seat in the German parliament consolidating its popularity; the Brundtland commission was convened; the Environment Treaty was signed; the Kyoto Protocol; the Earth summit; Bali 2007; Copenhagen 2009; Cancun 2010; Durban 2012; Lima 2014 and several other conferences and meetings with the view to curbing the earth’s temperature increase by reducing the use carbon based emissions.
These initiatives have not always borne the desired fruits as most countries, and their leaders have divergent views on the authenticity of the concept of Global Warming and Climate Change. President Donald Trump’s walking out on the Paris Accords recently exemplifies this. Those who benefit greatly from the export of fossil fuels and industrialization, scientist who feel the environmentalist have very little proof of climate change, and governments who just can’t cough up the amounts needed for restorative measures are the main opposition to the spread of ‘warmageddon’ – a term devised by Dean Burnett in his article for The Guardian (2014).
Is the Sun Responsible?
Some say that the treehuggers have been too harsh on the human kind by naming us the single most avid source of greenhouse gases. The current feverish state of mother earth might be due more to natural millennial cycles than to the fumes from the factories in the sino-world causing global warming. The sun has been excessively harsh lately hence the spike in Celcius. The skeptics do recognize the role of man-made gases but think the effects of these barely add a Celsius. Those in favor say that we have done more to aggravate the heat-rays from the sun by depleting the earth’s natural reflectors with our amplified affluence.
Cities Under Siege
As for the effect of the melting caps on the coastal region, the non-believers of global warming and climate change say that there has been no case of total submersion of any coastal city at the magnitude portrayed in the movie 2012 yet. The predictions of the earliest conferences on climate change have failed to come to fruition as cities like Venice, Amsterdam and London are still standing. The environmentalists are cautioning against early jubilation though, as they claim to have evidence this watery apocalypse might still happen, considering the rapid rate at which the waters are rising (about 80cm every year).
Erratic climate conditions have been thrown into the mix. The climate activists warn that extreme summer heat and extra frigid winters will become wide spread as the world becomes warmer. The meteorological agencies point out the steady rise in temperature recorded around the globe and predict this might even cause hail storms, tornadoes and other weather abnormalities far from places where they have hitherto been endemic. The opposition declares these are very unlikely and these occurrences will still manifest with or without intense atmospheric heat. They also faulted the computers for climate predictions as “not always accurate”.
Other Climate Change Controversies
The environmentalists state that the climate change of our ecosphere is a resenting trend which began just a few decades ago. It is now accelerated by rising industrialization which the skeptics refuse as a ruse, saying there was once a time when the CO2 in the atmosphere was much more than it is now (about 10 times more) and the world was warmer. These periods they termed Medieval Warm Period.
While the acolytes of the theory believe that it is necessary to turn to greener measures in a bid to restore and preserve the vibrant biodiversity for posterity sake, the skeptics say it is a gratuitous cry championed by unscrupulous politicians and entrepreneurs wanting to dictate the market direction and put developing countries with high fossil reserve in check. The situation to the latter is not as alarming as is being propagated.
All quarters agree that a rise in global temperature gradient is ongoing. Whether it has anthropological origins or it stems from a more natural source, our planet is getting hotter – a trend we all agree is undesirable. Shouldn’t we play a part and allow mother earth to vent?