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  • This is a simple explanation of Climate Change, based on an article in the New York Times.

  • The average temperature on the surface of the planet has already increased 1.7 degrees

  • Fahrenheit since 1880, which may not seem like much, but think about it this way, the

  • heat from human emissions is roughly equal to 400,000 Hiroshima atomic bombs exploding

  • across the planet every single day.

  • Future generations are in big trouble. But for now it will continue to get warmer and

  • storms will grow more intense, with longer periods of drought in between.

  • But longer-term, if emissions continue to rise unchecked, the climate disasters will

  • be so severe they will destabilize entire nations, send millions of refugees across

  • borders, cause widespread extinction of most species on Earth, and melt the polar ice caps,

  • leaving most of the world’s coastal cities several feet underwater.

  • All this could take centuries, but something like the sudden collapse of agriculture would

  • trigger immediate chaos in society.

  • Best case is we get our act together and begin to rapidly bring emission levels down; meanwhile,

  • Earth turns out to be less sensitive to greenhouse gases than we currently believe, plants and

  • animals adapt quickly, and major technological breakthroughs help society limit emissions

  • and adjust to climate change.

  • But, these are all the opposite of what were actually seeing, so the only thing in our

  • control is to limit emissions using all available tools and best behaviors currently at our

  • disposal.

  • Worst case, the collapse of food production causes spiraling prices and -- as our capitalist

  • utopia breaks down -- billions starve as our world gets violent and messy real quick--kind

  • of like a zombie apocalypse, but with extreme hunger spreading chaos instead. So, yeah,

  • still just like a zombie apocalypse. This would be coupled with the melting of the Antarctic

  • ice sheet, leading to rapidly rising seas that would force us to abandon many of our

  • greatest cities and all of the social and scientific progress that we were making within

  • them. Adding insult to injury is the fact that many of the emissions were emitted while

  • building these now abandoned, underwater metropolises.

  • If emissions continue unchecked, were looking at a total rise of between 80 to 160 feet,

  • which would occur if all the ice in the polls melted. So the oceans will rise, the real

  • question is how fast? Scientists only have Earth’s history to base their predictions

  • on, which suggests that the rate has occasionally hit 1 foot per well have to

  • adapt to an altered coastline sooner or later, but probably much sooner than later. Because...

  • Computer forecasts only give us a range of future possibilities, the most important evidence

  • comes from the study of past climate conditions which clearly show that every time the amount

  • of carbon dioxide in the air rises, the Earth warms up, ice melts, and the ocean rises.

  • What’s important to remember here is that we are in uncharted territory--humans are

  • pumping carbon dioxide into the air far faster than nature ever has before us.

  • Scientists have been publishing strong evidence that warming is making drought and heat waves

  • more frequent, causing heavier rainstorms, and more severe coastal flooding. But while

  • the Internet has made us all more aware of weather disasters in distant countries, it’s

  • hard to prove these are all directly made worse by climate change

  • Canada and Russia both have vast, frozen lands, and could see some economic benefits from

  • a warmer climate. Putin and the Russians have been reluctant to make ambitious

  • climate commitments. But expect that to change as these countries realize they will be swamped

  • by millions of refugees from less fortunate nations.

  • Libertarians and other political conservatives do not like the policies proposed to fight

  • climate change and have chosen to try and block them by actively undermining the science.

  • This effort has been funded by the oil and coal industry, who favor making money above

  • all else.

  • As more resources are devoted to solving the problem, our chances at big technological

  • breakthroughs are improving, but we still should be spending about three-times as much

  • money as we currently are on these efforts according to several in-depth reports.

  • You can reduce your carbon footprint by doing things like plugging leaks in your home insulation,

  • installing a smart thermostat, taking public transit, taking less airplane trips, buying

  • an electric car, and putting solar panels on your roof. A big one is eating less meat.

  • But what’s really needed is for you to speak up and exercise your rights as a citizen,

  • because strong, collective action through state and national policies is how well

  • make the most impact.

  • Considering that weve been ignoring scientistswarnings since the 80’s to limit emissions,

  • were pretty late in the game. But weve finally reached a moment where nearly every

  • country in the world agrees this is a huge problem, and seem ready to commit to taking

  • at least some kind of action. Leading corporations will continue to make bold promises to do

  • their part, low-emission technologies will improve, and many states and cities will go

  • much further than any goals set by their national governments. The United States, the world’s

  • biggest economy, is finally starting to move aggressively, and China, the world’s largest

  • emitter, is beginning to recognize that it needs to do the same, as many of its megacities

  • cities will be underwater if the seas rise too high. But it’s up to us, the ordinary

  • citizens, to continue demanding our political leaders tackle climate change, the hardest

  • problem that humanity has ever faced.

  • So like and share this video to help it spread. A special thanks to Justin Gillis of the New

  • York Times for putting together the original article, which is linked in the more info

  • section below.

  • Until next time, thanks for watching TDC, I’m Bryce Plank.

This is a simple explanation of Climate Change, based on an article in the New York Times.

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Climate Change Explained

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    richardwang posted on 2015/12/02
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