Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, the global temperature has steadily risen over one degree Celsius. Coincidentally, carbon emissions have risen the perfect amount to explain this rise in temperature, in the same amount of time. Unfortunately, only the few who choose to believe in the practice known as “science” recognize this phenomenon and are willing to do something about it. Others are not quite as enlightened and hide in the wording of the issue.
Here’s the problem with the term “global warming”: It tricks climate change naysayers into thinking that climate change is solely the rise in average temperature. It makes the exclamation “And they say global warming is real!” seem more valid when there’s snow outside. The term itself really isn’t the issue. The real problem is the ability we carry to turn a blind eye to the so obviously dying Earth.
In the case that you are one of these naysayers, “global warming”, also known as climate change, is the drastic change in global and regional climate and weather patterns. This change can come in variations of extreme cold, extreme heat, and an increase in storms of multiple varieties. Hence, the temperatures in the Midwest that have been lower than those in Antarctica. The coldest and most southern place on Earth.
You see, this science fiction sounding polar vortex that’s consuming the Midwest isn’t just some fluke. Nature doesn’t lash out in this way without being prompted. The past three years are the hottest on record! The north pole has seen temperatures higher than freezing within the last year! Why are there climate change deniers but no earthquake deniers? Why do we apply and believe facts regarding certain issues, but not others? There is no logic here. It just doesn’t make sense.
There are multiple problems that are hindering the recognition of this very real threat. One is that it does not give us instant gratification to save the planet. Results are not immediately noticeable. Rather, picking up trash or choosing to ride your bike will be reflected in the state of the Earth fifty years from now. Your recycling will be seen by your children and your children’s children. But because we are naturally selfish beings, this isn’t our first thought. Our first thought is about how far away the nearest recycling bin is, or how tiresome biking a couple miles will make you feel in comparison to driving your car.
The thing is, acting like this won’t impact us in our own lifetimes is ignorant. Even now, people have died as a result of extreme weather and climate. Twenty-one people lost their lives in the recent Midwest polar vortex. Denying the looming threat of the end of the world does not make it disappear. In fact, it only increases the problem.
In the event that you want to create a better planet for the children of the future, consider educating those around you. Try using the term “climate change” in the place of “global warming”. Drop some facts on the ignorant, feed some needy brains. Don’t forget, the world is ending, life is short, make a change.
By Maeve Cawley