Climate Change Reply Post

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Post 1:

  1. Climate change is the greatest issue of our time.

I strongly agree that climate change is the greatest issue of our time. The impact of climate change on human beings and the environment at large has increased over the last ten years. The loss of land and livelihood has led to increased poverty, displacement, and insecurities that have triggered social tensions and competition for scarce natural resources. Environmental degradation, natural disasters, and extreme weather patterns deplete fisheries, disrupts harvest, spur infectious diseases and erodes the livelihoods of both plants and animals. The dignity of human beings has been lowered significantly due to the alarming rate of emissions, poor water quality and the increasing food shortage due to the encroaching salinization of land. A country like Kiribati in the Pacific region is forced to relocate to other islands due to the increasing water temperatures and salt in the freshwater supplies. We continue to experience typhoon of unprecedented force destroying the entire community in recent times.

2.Nations contributing the most greenhouse gas pollutants must pay reparations to nations where human impacts are most felt.

I strongly agree that nations contributing the most greenhouse gas pollutants must pay reparations to nations where human impacts are most felt. Countries contributing the most pollutants should take responsibilities for their actions by compensating for the impact caused by their actions. This will help reduce carbon emissions because it’s costly to compensate calamities like typhoon Haiyan and therefore force such countries to adopt safer technologies that are environmentally friendly. We must realize that global warming is the consequences of the piling greenhouse gas emissions in the Earth’s atmosphere largely caused by industrial activities in the industrialized countries. Therefore, the historical and present responsibility of developed nations in causing global warming is through reparations to the affected nations. The level of emission between developed countries and developing countries are not at par and therefore cannot be treated equally and therefore reparations can be used to bridge this gap. You cannot tell developing nations in their attempt to Industrialize to reduce greenhouse gas emission in the present period, yet your historical and present-day emission is way above the recommended levels. And thus, to bridge these gaps and creates a level playing field, nations contributing the highest greenhouse gas must compensate for the effect of their actions to countries where human effects are most felt.

Post 2:

1) The world has a wide array of issues and everyone has different opinions on which issues rank at the top of the list and ones that rank on the bottom of the list . Personally for me, I strongly agree with the statement that climate change is the greatest issue that we are being faced with currently. Climate change is completely anthropogenic meaning that it is human caused. This is primarily caused by fossil fuel burning of coal, oil, and natural gas (CQ Researcher, 2013). Us, the humans inhabiting this planet, have started a ticking time bomb. We have witnessed the effects of climate change while others have experienced first hand. Carbon dioxide emissions are currently at a 400ppm. This is the highest level it has ever been at. The melting of ice caps, rising sea levels, extreme weather, and intensity of storms such as hurricanes, are all example of climate change occurring right now (CQ Researcher, 2013). I care deeply about the environment and it is sad to see the destruction we are causing to it. Humans aren’t the only ones that live here. Plants and animals also live here and unfortunately are being led down a path of destruction as well. Increasing surface and ocean temperatures are affecting the life on this planet in a negative way. Increasing temperatures can stress out an ecosystem, such as coral reefs. With rapid changes occurring, it leaves no time for plants and animals to adapt to these new, warmer temperatures. Habitats are also being lost. As ice caps melt, polar bears and walruses, are left with less ground to hunt and rest (Blue Planet II, 2017), ultimately leading them to fight for their survival. I am mentioning the effect climate change has on life besides humans because unfortunately there are a lot of climate change deniers and those who view the world in an egocentric perspective. Small changes can have drastic effects. A slight increase or decrease in temperature can change wind and current/weather patterns, and like seen in history, could plunge a continent into a small ice-age (CQ Researcher, 2013). Global climate change is the world’s most pressing issue as a multitude of other issues arise from it. Economical, ecological, and social factors all need to be taken into consideration. As environmental problems continue, rising sea levels and increased storms will force people to move to other locations which could already being dense in population. Increases in droughts could lead to food and water shortages. With these shortages, conflicts could easily arise as people will fight over who owns water. If resources run dry, people may be out of a job, meaning more people would need to rely on government aid, if there is even any. So although there may be more prominent issues that others think are more important, I beg to differ. If we don’t start making a change to renewable energy, carbon taxes, and a healthier lifestyle, the warming of the globe will only continue to occur and start to cause a chain reaction: you push one domino down and soon fall the others. We should be protecting this planet, but instead we are destroying it. The question I always ask myself is “what will it take for our current political party to realize that climate change is not a hoax?” How can we expect other countries that are apart of the Paris Climate Agreement to uphold their sustainable development goals, but the United States pulls out and is a major carbon dioxide emitter? It doesn’t make sense.

3) I do believe that the United States should amend immigrations laws to allow for climate refugees. Living in the United States, we witness and experience effects of climate change, but places such as the Republic of Maldives, Fiji, Palau, and more have experienced them first hand. Rising sea levels have already led inhabitants to migrate more inland, while others have had to build their homes on stilts so that water can flow under. With the increased intensity of storms, like the United States encountered with Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Harvey, the aftermath can leave thousands displaced but also leave areas flooded because of rising sea levels. Areas like New Orleans, San Francisco, Rio De Janeiro, and more can become submerged in water by the end of the century if climate change is not slowed down. Refugee’s should be allowed access so that they are safe and aren’t in danger. Allowing refugee’s into the United States would lead to overcrowding, but this is a consequence that we must accept. We are such a heavy-relier on fossil fuels that we contribute more than enough emissions into the atmosphere. It is not fair to the refugee’s of the islands of Palau and many others that their home, history, and culture are being destroyed while we are not being affected as much. Climate change is a serious issue and if the United States can’t accept the consequences of government funding and overcrowding, then they should really start to change their gears towards renewables so that people don’t have to vacate their homes and so that we can save the planet. We only have one planet, but we are living as if we had one and a half earths.