December 18th, 2015
Image Source: citi
Unpredictable. Harsh. Erratic. Now-a-days in talking about weather, one only has to mention these three catchwords, and it serves as an ice-breaker in a conversation. Even the most disconnected person knows weather has changed most unnaturally, and the people who wouldn’t know what is global warming will also assert in unison weather is no longer how it used to be. If you tell the listeners that climate change is due to global warming then the obvious reaction is either the conversation will end or you will be seen as a know-it-all or a hyperventilating fool worrying over things which are not as important as other urgent issues of world crisis. I guess it is the same when a scientist or an environmental activist talks about climate change and though the masses can stand by their findings, the government is either too busy, or laidback or uninterested in the issue. And the climate experts are termed as fanatics, attention-seekers, hoax callers, and doomsayers making an avalanche out of a snowball!
We have seen the documentaries with sights of white ice caps disintegrating; polar bears barely standing on patches of glaciers; cartoons and caricatures are resplendent with the message of global warming, then why despite its tolling bells there is no reaction other than screaming words. The problem has been disseminated down to the grassroots yet the solution to climate change is either half-baked or none at all. Eminent scientists, dignitaries, celebrities and social activists have put in their minds, energy and resources to highlight the emergency of the situation. True, climate change might seem as an inconsequential matter just like seeing an ice cap from some distance but the experts know that in the times to come if the problem is not addressed, we are going to be hit by an iceberg for sure! Findings are there, speculations are there, simulations have been worked out, so the article will not say anything new but get down to basics to sum up a strategy in tackling global warming on an individual level.
Global Warming: Myth or Fact
So the gases which can trap heat are being accumulated in the environment by the generous use of fossil fuels, certain agricultural practices and waste management, and also due to the personal as well as industrial uses of energy and other human-induced activities etc. The heat which is supposed to leave the planet is but overloading in the atmosphere due to the green house gases as carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide. The end result the temperature is soaring high and the planet in order to adjust is going through drastic and damaging changes. Floods and droughts, habitat loss and animals facing endangerment, melting glaciers and low-lying areas in danger of getting inundated, health concerns , migration and security risks, and many deadly reverberations of global warming have split the world into two- those who believe it is happening and those who do not.
Experts are divided on the issue to whether call climate change a myth or a fact. This ambiguity will drive a common man insane on should he do something about or carry on without any regard to combating global warming. It is said that with or without global warming, climate is bound to change. It is kind of inevitable, they say. So isn’t it a best strategy is not to debate about its being a myth or fact but to be prepared.
Climate Change: Something is Not Right
The changes we see around us are too hard to ignore. It is not anymore a question of myth or fact but how to adapt in a sustainable fashion.
If deforestation is making soil is weak, causing soil erosion and sand storms, then aforestation should be the solution. Does it really matter if it is a myth or fact, as we all know it’s happening around us and we are certain about it.
If smoke from power plants, for instance, is causing air pollution (smog), then it has to be contained by the use of better alternatives like renewable sources of energy. Myth or fact, pollution is happening.
If the rising temperatures are making life very uncomfortable and even fatal, then thinking of controlling green house effect is quite logical, isn’t it. Now whether the high temperatures are due to global warming or not is not the question but how to adapt to the change and find ways to maintain equilibrium and ensure it.
Rainfalls have become irregular which is very evident. That puts a lot of pressure on water resources which will deplete if overused. So an action on this is urgent without arguing over its factuality or myth. Also, during heavy rain falls, the overflowing of sewer systems dirty the drinking water supply which we all are witness to. Wasting energy to link it to climate change would be ineffective rather than finding ways to adapt, adjust and find ways mitigate the loses.
Pests which would otherwise be checked during winters reproduce more as the rise in warm seasons is conducive to their growth.
And countless other consequences can be highlighted to show something is not right about the climate. These cases might have happened in earlier times but it is the frequency of these episodes in the contemporary time which is scary. Hence, weather-related or sun-related or human-related, the world is witnessing a drastic change. Did it happen before or did it start happening after industrial revolution? The argument of the article is to stress on adaptation than scepticism. It is productive to investigate the reasons of the change but dismissing the changes we see around us is dangerous. The government will do what it can, but these issues will be taken seriously only if we see to it ourselves.
The Logical Approach
Try on an individual level to reduce your carbon footprint, conserve energy and resources which we use every day and the myth or fact ambiguity will not matter. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Do not use polythene bags, stools of stray animals or pets should be cleaned, use CFL, drive less and try carpooling, plant a tree, and facilitate the government in cleaning the environment by inspecting the sanitation of your colonies and neighbours. These are common
lessons we hear day-in and day-out but our contribution is limited to hearing and not putting our knowledge into action. If we do the latter, what will happen is clean environment – habitable, sustainable and aesthetic along with availability as well security of resources – drinking water, food, clean air etc.
Be prepared, sensitised and aware. And do something as humanely possible to take care of your surroundings. The need is to make it a habit/routine/common activity and if it has to be made into a ritual so be it.
Finally Does It Really Matter?
It is sad but not unexpected that climate change has become so politicised that it has led to digression and deviation from the important issue. What is required is back to basics strategy and this needs to be adopted in the schools, workplace and homes. See around, recognize the drastic change and use energy reasonably to mitigate and effectively adapt to the change. The result will certainly be sustainable biosphere which is the answer we want than knowing is it myth or fact. Practise caution first and let the question of climate change being myth or fact a second fiddle.