I have been re watching episodes of Cosmos: A Space-time Odyssey and here’s one information that I think every earthling should know: climate change is happening and its effects are being felt already. The signs are all over the planet and we have to take this seriously. We can’t deny this anymore, science has proven it and has data to show.
One the effects of climate change is the melting of the ice caps in the polar regions. Most people ignore this, they felt that it has no direct effect to their lives. We should think again.
Scientists call this the “positive feedback mechanism”and here is one simple way of explaining it. Ice is the brightest natural surface on earth, which reflects incoming sunlight back to space while open ocean water is the darkest surface which absorbs sunlight and gets warmer which melts even more ice which exposes more ocean surface to absorb even more sunlight. The shoreline in the Arctic Ocean is warming at an increasing rate. It is ice free during most of the year that leaves the shore more exposed to erosion from storms (which is also getting stronger, another effect of climate change). Because Arctic region is warming, the permafrost is thawing and its contents eroding. The thawing permafrost is releasing carbon dioxide and methane (a more potent green house gas) into the atmosphere which makes things even more warmer. And this vicious cycle continues unless we change our ways (some scientists believe we reached the point of no return) but I am an optimist.
So why should we care about these things? Simple, those huge ice caps that are melting, they raises sea levels. Cities that are nearby a large body of water will have a huge problem. Even those places that were previously above sea level will ended below and just imagine what will happen to those below sea level. Great cities could be swallowed up by the rising sea levels.
Also think about those inhabitants of the polar regions like penguins and polar bears, they are slowly facing extinction due to our carelessness.
If you bother to read studies on the effects of global warming and melting ice caps in particular, you’ll know more and maybe think of how you can help the environment in your own ways.
I sometimes think that we humans will be the cause of our own extinction. Not nature, nor asteroids, nor aliens (I just have to add that up). We are on our way to self-destruction and we are too stubborn to admit it. I just hope that we put to good use all the technological advances, resources and brilliant minds we have to solve this problem we created. I have read this before and this gives me hope: