Climate Change Crisis; It’s Time to Change

Climate change is an issue that is being disregarded and overtly denied by some United States legislators and others around the world, but climate change is not a partisan issue — it is a crisis that needs to be dealt with immediately.

The world will begin to see the impact of climate change within the next 11 years, according to a report released by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in 2018.

To combat this crisis, scientists are calling for changes including phasing out coal and transforming the carbon footprint of our food sources. However, energy demand around the globe increased by 2.3 percent in 2018, which has led to coal plants having higher emissions than ever before, according to a report by the International Energy Agency.

The annual report by the IEA focuses on the trends in energy and emissions in 30 countries, including the United States. Although countries turned to renewable sources of energy, those sources were not enough to meet the demand, so they turned to fossil fuels. This drove up the use of coal, which according to the agency, met almost 70 percent of the demand.

Coal plants in Asia were the driving source for coal emissions, exceeding 10 billion tons of CO2.

Fossil fuels were also in demand due to weather conditions and drove global carbon dioxide emissions up for a second year, by 1.7 percent, according to the report.

“To date, coal emissions are responsible for around 1/3rd of the increase in global temperatures since pre-industrial times – the single largest source of this growth,” the IEA wrote in a tweet on Monday.

It is horrifying that even with the use of renewable energy, countries still continue to use fossil fuels exorbitantly.

“To me, all this reflects the fact that climate policies around the globe, despite some limited pockets of progress, remain woefully inadequate,” Michael Mehling, deputy director of the Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said in a Washington Post report by Chris Mooney and Brady Dennis.

How are climate policies around the world even allowing this?

Lawmakers tend to only think “in the now” and do not anticipate the consequences that surface when decisions are made, and with the Senate rejecting the Green New Deal on Tuesday — an ambitious climate change legislation that was brought on by progressive Democrats such as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. — something still needs to be done and party politics needs to be taken out of this.

The deal asked for the U.S. government to take a stronger position in cutting carbon emissions, along with other ideas to combat climate change, but Republicans saw the proposal to reduce dependence on fossil fuels as a far-left and unrealistic idea.

All Republicans in the Senate and four Democrats voted against the Green New Deal, and the Washington Post wrote that to “avoid an intra party fight on the issue, 43 Democrats — including those who introduced the Green New Deal — voted ‘present.’”

“This might sound like a neat idea in places like San Francisco or New York, the places that the Democratic Party seems totally focused on these days,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said in a Washington Post report. “But communities practically everywhere else would be absolutely crushed.”

It is ridiculous to say that communities would be “absolutely crushed.” People need to adapt or there will be no need to adapt anymore due to the deterioration of our planet. Young Americans and young people across the globe are petrified that this planet will not be livable because of climate change. They have the voices that need to be heard and listened to.

To put it simply, don’t we want our successors to enjoy this planet and not watch it crumble to pieces?

Not only do changes need to be made, radical changes need to be made. We only have one planet. It should be treasured. A person wouldn’t dare destroy their iPhone or new television set, but will accept the destruction of the only livable planet in our solar system.

There are also numerous news reports stating that officials in the White House are putting together an advisory panel that is aimed to counter the scientific evidence behind how humans contribute to global warming.

Not only is this dangerous, but it can be detrimental to every person on this planet — the climate crisis is not a joke. The science simply cannot be countered.

This anti-global warming idea comes straight from the top of America’s executive branch, and he still continues to deny that it exists.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s ignorance regarding climate change led to the United States withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement because adherence to the agreement that was created to control and reduce greenhouse emissions would impact jobs in the U.S., specifically employment in coal mining.

The world needs to come together to make sure this planet is not destroyed due to our complacency and unwillingness to change. It’s time to step into reality and listen to the voices of young people. This crisis will reach a critical point, but legislators who can change it now won’t be here to see it.