The New York Magazine article by David Wallace-Wells begins with this statement:
“It is, I promise, worse than you think.”
He goes on describing climate change and how it will affect us this century. Some points:
-Heat temperatures and humidity, especially in the tropics, will rise above levels that our body systems can handle, expect death rates of animals and humans to rise, especially among children and the elderly.
-Oceans will not only rise, they will become more acidic, further damaging coral reefs which we depend on for biodiversity. Expect a fishing crisis this century.
-Fish will not be the only food shortage. Drought will make once arable land useless for crops and unfrozen lands won’t have rich soil to help us out.
– Disease will spread quicker with mutations we cannot expect. One example: There is bacterium in the Siberian ice, which can unfreeze and be ingested by animals and spread to humans. It’s not science fiction.
-Conflict will occur as people compete for dwindling resources. Look for more war and strife this century.
-If you think the recession was tough, get ready for more economic hardship. Remember reading about the Dust Bowl? Now imagine that situation becoming standard in many populated areas.
Needless to say, it is a massively discouraging article, especially as we read this week that the US wants to open more coastal water for oil exploration.
The takeaway: It is not too late to care. Support scientific R&D, live a ‘greener’ life, support organizations and businesses that care for our planet, educate yourself on the issues, and vote for candidates who are concerned about the environment.