Effect of climate change
The global Climate change, first recorded in the last century has finally reached a tipping point in the year 2020. We have seen exponential growth in temperature statistics. We are at a point where the effects of these changes will be felt by everyone around the globe. They effects will not be limited to rise in temperatures and subsequent melting of the polar caps. Effects like increased droughts, flooding and rise in natural disasters like bush fires and hurricanes will follow.
Subsequently, this will lead to widespread famine and migration of people, especially the coastal cities. The cost to property and human resources would be tremendous.The governments must act upon this now and understand the causes of the disaster. They must take proactive steps to reduce the effects of this disaster. Loss of property and human life is inevitable at this point. However our governments have a responsibility to spend on strategic planning to alleviate the issues and the upcoming distress that will follow.
Climate variation is affected by the emissions from fossil fuels such as Liquefied Natural Gas, Liquefied Petroleum gas and Coal. Also livestock farming, and the massive clearing and burning of rainforests have a role to play. It is important to note climate change is a natural and an ever-going phenomenon. This means that temperature on earth is subject to change and balances itself out over millennia. The other factors that may affect climate change are
a. The changes in energy emitted by the sun
b. The reflectivity i.e. how much energy enters the atmosphere.
c. The distance from the sun ofcourse ie natural changes in the orbit around the Sun etc.
Greenhouse gasses like CO2 and Methane restrict the heat of the sun. They do this by forming a blanket layer causing an increase in global temperature and rate of climate change.
Examples of climate-induced Bush Fires
The recent examples of disasters that have taken place globally include the Australian Wild fire. March 9th 2020 is also known as the Black Summer which drew attention from all around the globe. This was due to the effects that bushfires had on one of the most developed countries in the world. The bush fires spread across 186,000 square kilometers and hit major cities. Some of the effected regions are Brisbane, Sydney, and Canberra. They further trailed along the eastern coastline of Australia towards the south. The images of this fire are terrifying and our sympathies are with the survivors. It was reported that approximately 5800 buildings and 3500 houses were destroyed. The flora and fauna of this region may never recover from this disaster.
Another example of massive bushfires caused by the increased droughts and global change of climate is The California forest fires. It is a yearly event however in October of 2020, California witnessed the largest bushfire season. 4% of the 100 million-acre of land in California was affected by the roughly 8500 fires that took place. The cost of property and infrastructure lost is 1.8 Billion Dollars with 9200 buildings destroyed.
The November pollution rise in delhi
If the most economically progressive states in the world are beingly heavily damaged then what can we expect from India? Every year in India, during the Diwali season, we witness extreme levels of pollution. This is due to stubble burning in neighboring states such as Haryana and Punjab. Last year the Air quality index or AQI of 900 was seen in certain regions of Delhi. The AQI index is not even designed for such high levels. It is quite evident that conditions are not suitable for humans to live in.
Effect of climate change on wildlife
Bushfires directly affect wildlife by destroying the areas and killing millions of animals. However multiple other factors are acting simultaneously across several geographical areas. We see a change in seasons causing an effect on the hibernation and migration patterns of animals as well as the breeding seasons. There is also a change in the hydroperiod that is the availability of water due to higher heat levels. Of course, the incidence of tornadoes, droughts due to drier conditions also affect them. Directly causing a shortage of food and damaging their natural environments.
These changes in turn will cause the migration of animals, insects, reptiles, etc into human habitation like farm villages to procure food and water. This will lead to more distress for the economically backward, farmers of India. According to the United Nations report, almost 1 million animal species are on the brink of extinction due to the effects of climate variation and these statistics will only get worse.
Effects on agriculture
The effects on agriculture, livestock, and fishing in the coming years will be catastrophic for India. The majority of citizens directly rely on farming for their economic needs.
The fishing industry is extremely dependent on the well-being of the ocean ecosystem which will change with increased temperatures. The ocean life will therefore either die or migrate to locations more suitable for their survival. The agriculture industry is extremely dependent on seasonal rainfall, around 75% of the agriculture in India is dependent on rain. The Kharid season ( July to October) which usually has abundant water supplies has seen droughts in recent years. While the Rabi season ( October to March) which was highly dependent on monsoon has seen higher temperatures with erratic rainfall. This has caused distress to the poverty-stricken families all across the country who need information on the new climate pattern. They will be unable to cope otherwise.
As of now, we are not in a position to correct the mistakes made throughout last century. The only steps we can take are to learn from our past. We must join forces to aim for a more sustainable future, and to stop damaging the planet any further. We must use sustainable sources of energy and stop destroying the planet. Meanwhile we need to plan for the trials to come in the future. Sustainable sources of energy like solar, wind, and geothermal have been widely accepted in several countries in Europe. However each of them have their unique geographical necessities. For example Norway has spent heavily on wind due to the high wind energy available in the country. We must use our geography to our advantage like Rajasthan for solar energy and our vast coastline for tidal energy.
The response of industries
The change we desire and the shift towards these sources of energy can only happen if the industries do so, for example, Tesla company has recently built the Gigafactory in Shanghai, China, which is an 865,000 square metre facility powered completely by solar energy. Tesla also builds automatic electric cars to show how batteries can replace conventional hydrocarbon fuel and still provide the cars of the future. The CEO of Amazon and the richest man on Earth, Jeff Bezos also pledged 10 billion dollars to create a fund that would fund organizations and companies to explore alternative methods and for the widespread adoption of known methods to combat climate change and its effects. Businesses joining this common struggle are an inspiration and will have an impact that will exponentially improve the rate at which we can shift to a better and more sustainable global standard of living.
This issue is one of the biggest ones that our generation will witness. It is our collective responsibility to pressure governmental and business organizations to take our climate seriously. We must take inspiration from Climate change activists such as Greta Thunberg. Who on a global stage, promoted the fact that human civilization is going through an existential threat and urged the leaders of all countries to take responsibility. We must all take responsibility and leave behind our petty wars, as all of this would have been for naught, if we fail to win against this potential doom. The world waits for the Glasgow climate change conference in November of 2021 in hopes that the world leaders cooperate and take definitive actions to help make the world a more sustainable place by global cooperation by encouraging and aiding all countries in reaching their goals for sustainable development in the future.