Friday, April 1, 2016

Acting on Climate

How many more “Hottest Year on Earth” will we have before we take the warnings to heart and make some significant moves? Your guess is as good as mine now that the Supreme Court has blocked the Obama Administration’s efforts to regulate coal plant emissions and be a leader in Paris climate agreement policies.
The U.S., as the world’s second largest contributor to CO2 emissions, should and is expected to lead the efforts in climate change mitigation. Now that this is temporarily (hopefully not permanently, but you never know how this election will turn out) off the table, other countries may likely assume that the U.S. is not committed to protecting our planet and will postpone their efforts to reduce energy consumption and emissions as well.
Most cities in the world experienced higher than normal temperatures. The first half of 2015 alone saw some of the strangest weather events and while a “lag time” must be allowed for all relevant factors to be considered, long-term data suggests a strong link between climate change and these events. There is far too much evidence to keep ignoring these signs and doing nothing.
If you’re as frustrated with the inaction of governments and larger agencies, you may be wondering what you can do to make a difference.
So, how can you help? The good news is there are lots of ways:
Minimize your carbon footprint. You can do a bunch of different things to meet this requirement from leading a low carbon lifestyle to limiting your reliance on fossil fuels. Here are a few: use public transportation whenever possible; change to more efficient light bulbs throughout your home; unplug electric devices and appliances when not in use and turn off lights when leaving a room; insulate your home; set your thermostat to 68°F in the winter and 78°F in the summer; eat locally produced and grown foods; minimize water consumption; recycle and reuse.
Offset your carbon footprint. Offset what you can’t reduce. You can plant trees, but donating to agencies that improve forest management and protect standing forests is good, too. You can calculate your footprint as well.
Hopefully the EPA will soon be able to do its job and regulate emissions. While the agency’s powers are limited, however, we can and should help!!
What are you doing to fight climate change?

1 comment:

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