By Jason of Nigi Nigi's
To be healthy, you should live in a healthy environment. However today our planet is suffering from Global Warming, which may convert our Earthly climate into a very unhealthy place to be.
Remember man has evolved and now resides in what is termed “A Goldilocks Planet“ - that is a planet where the environmental conditions are conducive to life - from basic bacteria to ourselves - Homo Sapiens. If the environmental conditions change, just slightly, the complete ecosystem, which can adapt only, according to Darwin’s theory of evolution, over millions upon millions of years, will collapse. The Earth is such a Goldilocks planet - conveniently located, on an elliptical orbit, with an average of ninety three million miles from the sun. So the earth is set in a very thin fragile zone in space, where it’s temperature and the amount of sunlight received is life promoting – and life tolerant. Also the size of the Earth and its rotation give it its gravity level and the changing of night to day, while the moon (Earth’s Luna satellite) controls the Earth’s seas, changing tidal oscillations plus levels of its ground water.
We are part of the animal kingdom, continuously breathing in oxygen and breathing out carbon dioxide. Just consider! another billion or two people are predicted to expand Earth’s human community within the next generation. When will it end? In a carbon balanced environment (including you) animals breath out carbon dioxide which is then, in a perfect world, breathed in by plant life. This natural cycle of life is termed the “Carbon Cycle“.
According to Al Gore - The Ex Vice-President of the US and an avid environmentalist backed by a consensus of approximately 97% of all scientists - states the sky is a very thin layer of air surrounding our Earth into which 110 million tons of fossil fuel gases of Carbon dioxide is entering this protective zone, every 24 hours. This added carbon dioxide causes the thickness of this vital layer of air to increase which acts like a thermal blanket around the entire Earth, sealing in the heat which normally radiates out to space.
However, the world’s economy is currently totally dependent on fossil fuels (petroleum, coal and natural gas) all of which when used (burnt) produce harmful carbon dioxide gases in abundance. In the short term it’s not possible to divert the world’s economy from these reliable sources of relatively cheap energy. Thus, what is the long term solution - there may be many - but all need to be fully researched and expedited into operation. This will allow the world’s economy to wean itself away from its reliance on fossil fuels. At the current time the burning of fossil fuels is on the rise - as the world’s population actually grows with everyone on earth demanding to consume more material things.
Remember every combustion process generates harmful CO2 (Carbon dioxide) - be it in a power station that generates electricity, in a car that generates CO2 exhaust gases, in burning trash, cooking, even smoking cigarettes - all these processes generate harmful carbon polluting gases.
Global warming is the long-term rise in the average temperature of the Earth’s climate system. Global warming and Climate change are often used interchangeably.
Question: What are the possible causes of global warming?
Increased Carbon dioxide entering the atmosphere over the last 50 years from fossil fuels (coals, oil, gas) has caused an increase in CO2 in the atmosphere which acts like a barrier trapping heat in the entire environment (earth, sea and atmosphere).
Climate scientists are predicting that if the current trend of the Earth’s atmosphere changes there will be at the end of the century a temperature rise of approximately 3 degrees celcius which would result in mass extinction of plants and animals (including man).
Related facts confirmed by arduous research such as:
The CO2 level in the atmosphere is 3 times higher than at any point in the last 400,000 years - this information is gained by analyzing arctic ice and tree core samples.
The average global land-ocean temperatures have risen since the industrial revolution, starting in the 19th century, by almost 1.0 degree celsius.
These changing weather patterns will affect every part of our ecosystem - from farming, fishing, animal breeding and migration patterns - the list goes on and on - it will be a changing world. In every part of the world it’s the weather that dictates a healthy diverse ecosystem that promotes our luxurious lifestyle.
Currently 90% of the global heat build-up is entering the oceans. Remember it’s warm sea masses that create typhoons - thus since the oceans are warming so typhoons are becoming stronger and stronger, and therefore more frequent and destructive.
Climatologists claim that in a warming climate weather conditions will become more and more exaggerated. So if in the past, an area suffered prolonged dry seasons in the future that area is likely to suffer prolonged droughts - or it can go the reverse way - with severe flooding.
Every year around the world the air and sea temperatures are increasing.
In the recent past this has been a gentle yet continuous trend - but in the future it may well become a drastic dramatic change - a dangerous shift.
Sea level rise and its irrefutable evidence illustrated by excessive beach erosion to low level islands, for those who live close to the ocean this is an endless curse that’s eroding the very soil under their feet - and with it their economic and cultural survival.
One sad effect of climate change is its adverse, in fact, catastrophic effects on low laying islands - for example, the thousands of small islands that form the archipelagos of South-East Asia (including the Philippines and Boracay) and even worse in the Pacific regions. Many of these flat, low terrain, islands are currently suffering noticeable beach erosions, which will eventually eliminate them totally. The average global sea level rise is currently approximately 3 mm per year. Peeking into the looking-glass of the future - this means hundreds and hundreds of low elevation islands are destined to be totally submerged within the next fifty years. This will not happen to Boracay nor most of the Philippines, since most of the inner areas stand at substantial high elevations. But in the Pacific many low level islands have already, within living memory, vanished. Some of these islands originally sheltered majestic trees that have thrived in that area for the last two hundred years - all now underwater.
For many people today climate change is not just a topic of academic dinner party discussion it’s something that’s eroding away their very existence.
The effects on the world’s wildlife is immeasurable - and the effects are as diverse as Polar bears enduring the disappearance of their ice shelf hunting grounds to Pacific turtles whose beach breeding grounds no longer exist. Practically every animal species is affected by the current accelerating climate change. These are the innocent ones - they did not cause the carbon dioxide poisoning of the Earth - but they are certainly suffering from its effects. Be they a humble ant or a roaring elephant, climate change may bring about the eventual demise of their entire species.
Initially many climate experts voiced the opinion that the so called climate crises was fake news, a myth, which could not be scientifically proven. However, over the last 10 -15 years all the evidence concerning the subject has convinced the vast majority of scientists that climate change is indeed a reality. And it’s a harsh reality humanity must face in a timely fashion. Or all life forms on this planet will be threatened, in the next 1-2 hundred years with extinction.
So the important question is: what future worldwide changes can we anticipate due to climate change with an increasing global temperature?
A further rise in global air temperatures of 2-3 degrees maybe attainable within this century
More violent storms - The Philippine Weather Services - just introduced a new storm category - Signal No. 5 - with wind speeds during typhoons exceeding 200 kph
More heat waves and more punishing droughts
Rising sea levels, more beach erosion
Increased polar ice glacier melting
More plant and animal extinctions due to their inability to adapt to this fast-changing environment.
Major disruptions in food cultivation and distribution.
Ice glaciers that have existed for millions of years are retreating - snow line elevations are getting higher.
Methods to combat climate change:
Quickly and drastically reduce the emission of fossil fuel exhausts into the atmosphere.
Rapidly increase energy supply from sustainable clean energy - solar, wind and hydropower.
Change people’s diets to include a high percent of plant-based foods while simultaneously reducing animal-based foods.
Afforestation - maybe organizing “massive“ new forests in currently arid lands holding tens of billions of trees, for example the Sahara Desert and the Australian Outback - with the water coming from solar powered desalination plants processing seawater. And reforestation of over logged old forests.
Population control - this obviously is very controversial - but China achieved
This for a fifty year period via its “One Child per Family Program“.
Thus if you “LOVE“ the earth and are thankful for its blessings - what are you going to do to help save it. According to past US. President Teddy Roosevelt - complaining about a problem without posing a solution is called “Whining“. You could be utterly selfish and since global warming will only reach a destructive level, long after you’re dead - you could retort - “so what“ and do nothing and go on your selfish way. Your level of concern and positive commitment is up to you. The level of your commitment will be an accurate reflection of your character.
What can a private person do? While still trying to live, experience and enjoy life to its fullest.
What can you “personally“ do to help in saving the Planet - the third rock from the Sun - it’s your home - it will also be the home of your children’s children. I suggest you reflect on the following:
Firstly understand the problem, its generation and the urgency of its needed solution - and the repercussions if a solution is not urgently implemented. Don’t stick your head in the sand.
Help others understand the problem - become an active advocate in guiding others to assist in its solution.
Question your lifestyle - are you a wasteful consuming glutton?
Consume less - Consume only what you need to live an active, progressive, healthy and enjoyable life, because everything you consume most likely has contributed to Global Warming in its production and distribution.
When purchasing food etc. minimize the selection of wasteful packaging. When purchasing long-term use items - such as furniture and tools etc. make sure they are high-quality items that will last a long time before needing replacement. Stop using drinking straws - drink straight from a clean glass.
Minimize waste, segregate your garbage, reuse useful items over and over again, when possible.
Do you feel content with your contribution?
When purchasing electrical power operated items ensure they operate at maximum efficiency, thus consuming the minimum of power.
Understand and encourage the use of renewable energies - solar - wind - tidal power.
Question luxury or fashion purchases - that are not really necessary. They may be attractive, desirable and titillate the senses - but are they absolutely necessary?
Question and evaluate the lifestyle of the rich and famous - For example do professional footballers need a guaranteed $100,000 per week for trying to kick a bag of wind between three sticks? - the world in my opinion, should question its value system - while others struggle to find a bowl of rice to eat. Has commercialism gone mad?
Is your garden a pile of unsightly trash - or could you plant a carbon sequestrating tree -that will absorb carbon dioxide for the next twenty years. Your long-term rewards of planting a tree maybe seasonal bearing fruits or latterly timber for home use.
Turn off electrical lights when areas are not in use.
Via social media you can play your part in educating your friends and family as to the damages of climate change and your recommendations where we can all help.
The list of ideas to save energy is endless and is therefore left to your ingenuity.
Remember a hectare of farm land can produce three times more edible protein via plant cultivation than it can via animal farming. This may also introduce people to a healthy “Mediterranean Diet“ lifestyle. This is extremely important since simultaneously with changing global weather the Earth is expected to accommodate a fast-growing population, which is predicted to reach nearly 10 billion inhabitants within the next 70 -100 years.
No one or no society has the right to be wasteful.
Invention, development and operational application of alternative sources of “clean“ energy are making slow steps in replacing fossil fuels - for example solar panels, wind and tidal turbines. Only in the last few years have these alternative sources of energy been readily available at a capital cost which gives about a 5 year return on investment compared with the consumption of fossil fuels. Unfortunately most likely when an alternative renewable source of energy becomes available and cost effective - then the price of crude oil may drop to again regain its competitive edge. So one has to look purely beyond the economic issues and recognize that to socially encourage the use of alternative, more expensive, clean energy sources may need to be subsidized, while the cheaper fossil fuel sector may simultaneously be penalized via incrementally higher taxation.
The philosophical question was once posed - “Why is man on Earth“. The endearing response was “it is only a creative, caring man who can look after the millions upon millions of other animal species that share our planet. The ant cannot save the lion, and the lion cannot save the ant, but it’s possible that a clear-thinking charitable man can save our environment and in doing so, save the ant and the lion.”
Remember recognizing the problem is the first step. And if this problem is dire and urgent then the response has to be equally draconian and urgent.
Just consider this - a sufficient amount of solar energy reaches our mother planet (Earth) every hour from our mother sun to fulfill the world’s total energy needs for a full year - and the Sun’s energy is in the form of clean unpolluted energy - thus it’s up to man’s ingenuity to harness this formidable supply into saving the planet while surging man’s well-being into unimaginable wealth.
Hopefully the day soon arrives when solar cells are produced, not as small individual panels, but in a high speed factory, as a continuous strip of highly efficient rolls of energy producing cells - at low cost. The only organization that can encourage and mandate such developments must be governmental in nature.
Currently, via International agreements, a compromising target of allowing the global temperature to rise by 1.5 over the next 50 years, has after much discussion, bickering and finger pointing been generally accepted aim.
The issue is extremely complex, and extremely large - literally worldwide, it literally affects all of us -it’s universal. When planning on making efforts to tame climate change we must be careful of not opening a Pandora’s box of unforeseen harmful effects, while minimizing social disruption and economic hardship - so it should be guided by a tremendous amount of research, double-thinking and enacting laborious time consuming safe guards.
To offset this dramatic climate change a colossal effort must be made by all concerned - the World Government (the U.N), individual Governments, N.G.O’s, Corporations, Foundations, Associations in joint collaboration with private persons. The Earth’s environment and climate are termed a “Goldilocks’ Zone“ which is a zone containing an environment where life from bacteria to humans are sustained. This environment is extremely fragile and at present is under threat by Global Warming. If this warming phenomenon continues or even accelerates this planet is doomed, within a hundred or so years to become like our sister planets in our solar system near lifeless.
The academic argument among scientists is not that is climate warming occurring “Yes or No“. Today the evidence, which accumulates daily, basically has convinced everyone that global warming is a reality. However, the argument as to its cause is still hotly contended. Some scientists blame it on the recent pollution of the upper atmosphere by man-made fossil fuel pollution. While the contrary view is that it’s a natural long-term event with little contribution made by additional man-made carbon in the air.
Hopefully it’s the former view and that it’s man-made. If that’s the cause then man will have the opportunity to correct it and save the planet. If the latter argument is true, then the world maybe in for a very rough future.
Maybe it’s time humanity, under the jurisdiction of a “Just World Government“ limits the Earth’s human population, so that a long sustainable world population can be “organized“ to the benefit of all (including the animal and plant domains).
Many important issue exists today - but if climate change is a proven accepted fact, that within a few generations it will lead to a “doomsday scenario“ then this issue which if not addressed may eradicate life on earth within the next hundred years, must surely be the most important issue facing humanity today. Expeditious action is thus imperative.
Will the very air we breathe become “like a hot chili“ too hot and humid to inhale - will the flowers wilt - will the animals keel over - is man himself destined to become a toasted rice crispy?
It is sad to contemplate that Mother Earth after millions upon millions of years of nurturing man and a multitude of animal and plant species, may within the next 100 years be unable to offer shelter and protection to her children. It’s an ignominious end to something that was truly blessed.