Often, when we talk about climate change, it seems like a far-off scenario. We talk in terms of saving the planet for future generations and predict disruptive sea level rise within the century. But the effects of climate change are already felt around the world; future changes will only intensify them. In 2017, I wrote a column called Warming Signs for Paste Magazine, explaining the science behind climate change.
Arctic Melt Reaches Around the Globe
A few days before Christmas, temperatures near the North Pole reached a melting point of around 32 degrees Fahrenheit—more than 40 degrees above average. The unprecedented temperatures are a bellwether for how climate change will affect the rest of the world in the next few decades. But they’re also an indication that these changes are happening right now, and affecting weather all over the globe. Read more.
Is Climate Change to Blame for Antarctica’s Meltdown?
Antarctica is, if you’ll pardon the expression, hot right now. There’s been plenty of news lately about enormous cracks in the ice shelf, glacier break-up and record-low sea ice. How do these recent changes relate to the larger phenomenon of climate change, though? Read more.
Would Painting Everything White Make the Planet Cooler?
High up in the Peruvian Andes, where a glacier used to stretch across the slopes of the Ayacucho region, one man made it his personal mission to bring back ice. It was an ambitious goal, to be sure, but even wackier was his plan: He would paint the peaks white. Read more.
Different Fish to Fry
Around the globe, fish are migrating to cooler waters north and south to the poles, and sometimes deeper into the ocean. By the end of the century, scientists estimate that 78 to 95% of the oceanic biodiversity will change in major ways. You don’t have to go to the tropics or the Arctic, though, to see how climate change is already affecting fish—and those who depend on them for food. Read more.
Climate Change Means A Sea Change for Fishermen and Scientists
Last week I wrote about how climate change is prompting a fish migration that will directly affect what’s served—or not served—for dinner. But these rapid marine changes won’t just affect our appetites; they also represent a sea change for the fisherman and communities that depend on the sea for jobs and income. Read more.
Cow Burps and Climate Change
When it comes to climate change and greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide often gets all the attention. It is the most prevalent greenhouse gas, but there are others to worry about, too. Methane claims the number-2 spot.
“Pound for pound, the comparative impact of CH4 on climate change is more than 25 times greater than CO2 over a 100-year period,” the Environmental Protection Agency reports. So where does all that gas come from? Read more.
Corralling Cattle Emissions Could Help Save the Planet
Last week, I talked about how some ruminant animals, like cows, are contributing to climate change. Now it’s time for the good news—how farmers and scientists are limiting those emissions. There are two main ways: changing what goes in, and managing what comes out. Read more.
Why Are Governments Killing Environmentalists?
Berta Cáceres was at home on March 3, 2016, when the gunmen stormed her house in Honduras and killed her. The attack likely didn’t come as a surprise for the environmental defender; before her death, she warned of 33 death threats and a hit list with her name on it. The murder made headlines around the world. Read more.
Climate Change May Cost Us Everything
One of the most urgent cases to be made for climate change involve the direct costs it will incur. Think of the damage disasters like Superstorm Sandy and Hurricane Katrina wrought—millions of dollars in reconstruction and lost assets. As storms increase in severity and frequency due to climate change, there is a strong business case to be made for addressing its present and future effects—and limiting emissions as much as possible. Read more.
More Wildfires Are One Sign of a Warmer Planet
On May 20, 2016, the first major fire in California began, sweeping across 3,700 acres in San Luis Obispo county. It was contained before harming anyone or damaging any buildings, but it signified the start of the state’s wildfire season. Before the year’s end, 6,938 fires would consume 565,070 acres in the Golden State alone. Read more.
Climate Change Means More Mosquito-Borne Illnesses Like Zika
In 2015, researchers made a startling discovery: a new kind of blood-sucker was living year-round in Washington, D.C. The Aedes aegypti mosquito carries diseases like West Nile Virus, dengue, chikungunya and, of late, Zika. Previously, the mosquito wasn’t known to live full-time any farther north than South Carolina—but it migrated up to Capitol Hill for year-round residence around 2011 or even earlier. Read more.
Calculating Your Transportation “Footprint”
Combatting climate change can sometimes feel impossible, especially for individuals. You might find yourself wondering what you could possibly do that would make a difference? Well, more than you’d think. The United States is responsible for about 16 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Finding ways to cut back on your footprint can have a huge impact. Read more.
Categories: Freelance Articles