The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

Climate change’s effect on earth is detrimental, being overlooked

Kaden Rhodes
Photo by Kaden Rhodes

The 28th United Nations (UN) Climate Change Conference was held Nov. 30 to Dec. 12, 2023 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. This conference concluded with an agreement that, according to the United Nations,  it is the “beginning of the end” of the “fossil fuel era.”  

An article by Aljazeera said, “the final text was able to secure a majority consensus within the 200 attending countries to include language to ‘transition away’ from fossil fuels, which are responsible for nearly 90 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions.” These conferences are vastly important due to the fact that the decisions made dictate if and what actions will be taken to overcome climate change. The United Nations also said that these meetings have created global milestones in regard to the climate movement.

Climate change involves long-term shifts in temperature and weather patterns across the globe. The European Union said, “burning fossil fuels, cutting down forests and farming livestock are increasingly influencing the climate and the Earth’s temperature.” These practices increase the amount of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere. The additional gasses lead to the “greenhouse effect,” which causes the warming of our planet. According to NOAA Climate, “Earth’s temperature has risen by an average of 0.14° Fahrenheit (0.08° Celsius) per decade since 1880, or about 2° F in total.”

Earth’s temperature has risen by an average of 0.14° Fahrenheit (0.08° Celsius) per decade since 1880, or about 2° F in total.”

— NOAA Climate

Climate change first started being recognized as a significant problem in 1988, as “global warming and the depletion of the ozone layer became increasingly prominent in the international public debate and political agenda,” according to the United Nations. However, climate change can be traced back to the early 1800s. Carbon Brief said “the instrumental temperature record shows the signal of rising temperatures emerged in the tropical ocean in about the 1950s. Today’s study uses the extra information captured in the proxy record to trace the start of the warming back a full 120 years, [it first emerged in] the 1830s.” 

In 1896, a paper by Swedish scientist Svante Arrhenius predicted changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, forecasting potential alterations in surface temperature through the greenhouse effect. Infamous scientist, Guy Callendar also contributed greatly to the discovery of the warming of the planet. UK Research and Innovation said, “in 1938, steam engineer Callendar began painstakingly collecting records from 147 weather stations across the world. Doing all his calculations by hand, he discovered that global temperatures had risen 0.3°C over the previous 50 years.”

The primary effects of climate change include hotter temperatures, more severe storms, increased drought, a rising ocean, loss of species, limited food, health risks, frequent pandemics and poverty and displacement, according to the United Nations. All of these consequences are actively occurring all around the world, and it is up to humans to turn this around. As reported by NASA, the graveness of effects caused by climate change depends on future human activities. More greenhouse gas emissions lead to more climate issues and extensive damaging effects across our planet.

Despite these effects already taking place, a clock in New York City shows that there is still time to make a difference. According to the Climate Clock, the numbers on the clock count down the scathing time window remaining for humanity to act on the ravages of climate chaos. Many want to reverse the effects of climate change and begin working towards a better future for our planet. The Pew Research Center said, “overall, 37% of Americans say addressing climate change should be a top priority for the president and Congress in 2023.” 

Simple actions one can practice to promote change include eating less meat and dairy, cutting back on vehicular transportation, reducing energy use and respecting and protecting green spaces. One can also support projects working toward reversing climate change, such as Project Regenerate Australia, GM’s Carbon Neutral Plan and Business Alliance to Scale Climate Solutions, all of which can be found at the Project Management Institute. Although more can be done, there has been improvement — according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, “across the country, efforts to adapt to climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions have expanded since the last National Climate Assessment in 2018.”

Climate change is a drastic problem, but despite the research and facts, it still continues to be ignored by many, as AP News said, “experts are ignoring the worst possible climate change catastrophic scenarios, including collapse of society or the potential extinction of humans, however unlikely, a group of top scientists claim.” Portions of society aren’t even aware that climate change exists — according to Yale, “Roughly 40 percent of adults worldwide have never heard of climate change, according to an analysis of global climate change awareness and risk perception published in Nature Climate Change.”

There is a significant amount of evidence scientifically proving that climate change is real. As reported by Study Smarter, the evidence for climate change is the records of change in climate through thermometer readings, recordings of earlier spring, glacier depletion, reading the rise in temperature from reading ice cores, rising of sea levels, the ocean warming in temperature and ocean acidification. Additionally, NASA said, “scientific information taken from natural sources (such as rocks and tree rings) and from modern equipment (like satellites and instruments) all show the signs of a changing climate.”

One may ignore the facts due to the anxiety it can bring, but it is real and happening. According to The Guardian, “since the climate crisis is not something we can deal with in the moment, and most people don’t even understand it fully, we often choose to ignore it as a way to protect our emotional selves.” Despite this, the more it is ignored the worse climate change will get — as time passes, the condition of our planet will gradually worsen. As reported by the Washington Post, “the world is likely to pass a dangerous temperature threshold within the next 10 years, pushing the planet past the point of catastrophic warming.”

What do you think about climate change? Let us know in the comments.

View Comments (1)
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Natalya Horstmeier
Natalya Horstmeier, Staff Writer
Sophomore Natalya Horstmeier is a staff writer for Southpaw and Bearing News. She loves cooking, reading, coloring and plants. She has 2 dogs, 2 cats, and is about to adopt a new kitten.
Kaden Rhodes
Kaden Rhodes, Staff Photographer
Junior Kaden Rhodes is a staff photographer for Southpaw and Bearing News. He loves rock climbing, weightlifting and driving.

Comments (1)

All Bearing News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • M

    M SmithMar 10, 2024 at 5:29 pm

    Great Article Natalya. I’ve been on Greta Thunberg’s side of this since the beginning. Now I can add your name to the list. Well done.