The results of climate change are a lethal combination of rising temperatures, extreme weather events, melting glaciers, and rising sea levels. And while some may deny the effects of climate change, more and more people seem to be catching on to the idea that, unless we change things, all of our lives are at risk. The question is, has this renewed interest in our planet’s fate come too late to fix our current problems, or will climate change get better?
Will climate change get better?
The answer is still up in the air. According to the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF), some individuals, organizations, businesses, and governments have begun to recognize the serious impacts caused by climate change and are working to minimize the damage. At the same time, many are still laboring under the misconceptions that climate change is some sort of conspiracy meant to undermine governments and business interests around the world.
Nevertheless, no matter how much people want to ignore what’s happening, there is clear evidence that something needs to be done. The Australia and California wildfires, the devastating tropical storms, and the dwindling islands of the South Pacific are all signs that the effects of global warming are growing more and more severe over time.
What solutions are currently improving climate change?
According to the WWF, renewable energy technologies like solar, wind, and battery power are becoming much more advanced and affordable with each passing year. Wind and solar already beat out fossil fuels in many parts of the world, and this makes them more profitable and desirable to businesses that may not have been so keen to adopt them a few years back.
If those improvements and adoptions remain steady, that could be enough to halve emissions from coal and oil-powered electrical generation by 2030. The only way this happens, however, is if governments step in and drive progress forward. Otherwise, the business and industrial holdouts that are sticking to their old ways will continue to pollute, undermining the progress made by eco-conscious portions of the population.
Do scientists think climate change is getting better?
While many scientists urge people to continue the fight against climate change, many are cautiously optimistic about what has already been done. Climate scientist Michael E. Mann recently spoke to The Guardian about the positive impact President Joe Biden is likely to have in the so-called Climate War.
According to Mann, President Biden’s first 100 days in office have seen climate policy implemented into every government department, resulting in major increases in clean energy projects, decreases in fossil fuel subsidies, and the cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline. All of these are miles above what previous administrations have achieved, but are they enough?
Many scientists don’t think so, though they often emphasize hopeful messages to the public even as they throw out stark warnings regarding worst-case scenarios. According to InsideClimate News, the assumption is that by bringing our CO2 global emissions down to net zero, we will effectively stop any additional warming.
It’s an uplifting theory, and it’s bolstered by a new scientific understanding that climate stabilization could come relatively quickly once we meet the 2030 goals set by the Paris Agreement. The problem is, those goals aren’t exactly on track to being met.
How can we ensure that climate change gets better?
Activism is the key to meeting our climate change goals. We need to continue to work together to repair the damage that has been done. Every single person is going to need to get on board for those emissions to meet net zero. Thankfully, impassioned activists like Greta Thunberg are leading the charge against the slow-moving governments and businesses who still don’t seem to understand the urgency.
Make no mistake, the climate crisis is still here. Climate change has happened and will continue to worsen for as long as we continue to ignore the signs. It will only get better if we rise to meet the challenges that will return it to a state of normalcy — and if the people in power listen.