The planet is getting hotter. Maybe not right away, but by the year 2100 the average global temperature will be between 3.5 to eight degrees higher than it is now. There are two dangers behind this statistic.
The first danger is that hotter temperatures will cause a lot of damage to the planet and to its population. Glaciers will melt, sea levels will rise and there will be more heat related deaths.
Communities living on or near the water should begin to build floodgates now, or they’ll end up living in rivers, as the rising sea levels are going cause to more flooding in select cities.
Warmer climates will see an increase in unusually hot days as well as more heat waves. A heat wave in New York City this past July caused 19 deaths. This number will be much higher in the coming years, particularly among the elderly, sickly and poor.
The second and scarier danger behind the rising temperatures is, as Bittle and Johnson say in Who Turned Out the Lights?, the increase in degrees “sounds minor” to the average person. Many people translate five-degree warmer temperatures to mean slightly less miserable winters. Some don’t recognize a difference at all.
People need to start thinking about the planet and our future generations, but the biggest problem is that many don’t know the basics. Until SMPA195, I knew a lot less about the environment, and am learning that small changes have large impacts on the globe. It’s time for everyone to start looking at the bigger picture.
– Samantha Stone