climate change as driver of change

Climate change and extreme weather is radically changing our world

One of the most ignored globally and gigantic drivers of change right now is climate change. The man-made and extremely fast rising levels of carbon dioxide and other gasses in the atmosphere, that has now reached a level unseen in the last 400.000 years. The scientists predict that climate change will create a whole new level of super-storms, extreme temperatures, rising oceans, all destroying fires and changes in the landscapes, mountains, rivers and in the weather, like nothing we humans have ever seen

Drawing of a climate change monster
Climate change and extreme weather in the near future will most likely be one of the most demanding challenges humans have ever faced

Learning from the year without summer

In 1816 the volcano Mount Tambora, out in the pacific Ocean, suddenly exploded and filled the atmosphere with dust reaching so high up in the atmosphere that the whole planet was affected by the event – creating what has been called “the year without summer”  This single volcano eruption was enough to change the weather all around the world, creating global famine, freezing cold, rain, winds and drought on the other side of the planet in Europe. Revolutions, wars and migration exploded as people fought hard to stay alive and feet their families under this new and sudden change in temperature and weather patterns.

Luckily we haven’t had another huge volcano eruption on top of the climate changes we humans have created over the last around 150 years.

But as our technology and research and knowledge about weather patterns gets better, we realize just how fast the global climate can change for years, even if just one volcano erupt on a far away. small pacific island.

Today scientists work to collect ever more data and make ever more precise descriptions and models about what is most likely to happen over the next hundred years or so  debating, just how bad it will be, trying to predict if climate change will raise the global and local sea levels  more than an inch, a yard, a feet. If sea-level rise will only flood Manhattan, Copenhagen or Shanghai… or all of our coastal global power centers. Most estimates expect a sea level rise up to one meter ( 3 feet) during the next 100 years. But if all the ice on Greenland melted that figure would rise to around 7 meter ( 23 feet) – enough to create a world very, very different from today ( link National Geographic)

When extreme weather becomes the norm

Gradual and steady climate change is not only about slowly rising temperatures and sea levels going up a few inches. It is not only about the gradually melting polar ice and the disappearing snow-caps on the mountains, that feed the farming areas in the valleys in summer.  Climate change is as much about its dark shadow twin: Extreme weather – a more unpredictable, fierce, hot-tempered and fast moving twin, that comes out of the blue, like lightning from nowhere, hitting hard and sudden with wind-speeds faster than cars can drive, filling huge rivers in hours, tearing everything in its path in pieces and destroying places in minutes, that it took centuries to build.

Where scientists believe it might take 100 years for climate change to raise the local sea-level three feet. Extreme weather can create all-destructive flood surges of more than 30 feet in a day, a storm surge that can swallow more coastal cliffs, rocks, cities and land in a few hours than normal weather do in a hundred years.

Extreme weather can also leave a place without water for a year, turn up the temperature to a level where forests self-ignite and burn in an unstoppable way for weeks. And transform rivers in a few hours to all engulfing killer floods, dragging everything with them down to drown it in the sea.

Nobody is listening to the experts

It used to be “breaking news” every time a new nation-wide piece of Antarctica floated off into the oceans, but today nobody hear the deep, low grinding sounds of the next moving mountains of ice, making their way across to the sea.

With our earplugs in, we are too busy watching music videos on YouTube, or looking at adorable cute talking animals on Netflix. We have become deaf to the alarming sounds of climate change happening on a global scale.

How it will alter the global weather dynamics is way to complex to that the experts can agree about the exact details. Instead they sit at conference after conference showing each other their latest research data and slides of even more alarming statistics, while nobody else listen in.

The global media statistics show that stories about climate change is not on the radar of most media today and there is a drop in the amount of stories covering climate change and questions asked about it.

What each of us can do to get ready for the impact of climate change

But how to face climate change is not so much about what the experts know or how much the press writes about i. It is as much about what the rest of us do and how we prepare for the climate changes that Science has predicted will hit soon and hard.

And there are a few very simple and necessary changes in our individual lives, each of us need to create, both to slow down climate change, but also to get better odds at surviving it – as it will more likely than not hit us all.

Five most important steps to face climate change:

Eat organic, local and green

Just changing our diets to a more healthy, green, simple and plant-based menu of primarily organic, local produced food will drastically diminish our carbon footprint, compared to now.  But more than that it will reconnect us to the places we live and the people who produce our food and will secure our drinking water, boost our immune systems, lover our health bills, the amount of medicine we take AND make us happier.  Not much not to like there alone.

Drop the car

Cars, roads, the whole lifestyle based on cars is something of the most destructive this planet has ever seen. The cars make us lonely, lazy, buy more than we need and way more than we can carry, throw most of it out and buy even more.

Roads and parking areas take up land from important farm areas, and the huge shopping malls destroy local city life. The alternatives: walking, biking and using public transportation can solve much, much more than just giving us a healthier and less polluting transportation logic.

Live simple and more outdoors

Learning from hiking, actually going hiking a few times a year is one of the best ways to learn how to appreciate not to bringing more than you can carry, not using more than you need. It really works. Living simple, in less space, but in a higher quality of being, is what this is all about. You don’t need a king-size bedroom – you need to sleep well, and that is something entirely different.

Found green innovation

Green innovation and more sustainable alternatives and start-ups are facing some really hardcore commercial oil, mining and other global profit interests, that have made a lot of money out of making us spend and waste more than we need. And they are not going to want this any other way. So the new alternatives need all the help they can get.

Promote women’s rights

When women get educations, responsibility and power they very often act in more sustainable ways than men – and when getting better knowledge and educations women will also get fewer children, slow down the global population growth,  and make sure their children take better care of the planet.  Securing Women’s right and education could change everything on Earth for the better of all.

Sources:

https://climate.nasa.gov/

http://www.ipcc.ch/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change

How many people will be flooded by Sea-level rise:http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=9162438