Climate Change

We hear it so much that it feels like a buzz word but it is far from it. Climate change is a real and serious issue; but isn’t the climate always changing what exactly is climate change? Why should we care? Well, the earth’s climate has changed throughout history. Most of these slight changes are caused by small variations in the Earth’s orbit, but climate change as we know it today is characterized by an abrupt increase in the years temperature and is estimated to have gotten 1.2 to 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit warmer and just the last century. 10 out of the last 13 years were the warmest on record. 97% of climate scientists agree that this new tendency is not caused by the variations of the Earth’s orbit. But rather very likely caused by human activities. That means you me and since the Industrial Revolution, we have come a long way humans-built airplanes faster car developed remarkable technology and learned how the natural resources around us can be used for our benefit.

Although this has led to many wonderful inventions and advancements like the ability to take a plane halfway around the world and also means we’ve increased our consumption of natural resources and in turn release a lot of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Greenhouse gases occurs naturally, but in excess can be dangerous to our planet. Modern human activities have increased the release of non-naturally occurring greenhouse gases because we have stepped up our demand for burning fossil fuels. The composition of greenhouse gases traps heat radiated from the Sun.

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waves are more obvious to humans because of their immediate impact and they’re sharing of the images in the media. Climate change as we know it today is change in our Earth’s overall temperature with massive and permanent ramifications. Although its consequences can be Planet threatening, science still believes that there are things we can do on a personal level to help.

Recycle and reuse things walk or use public transportation to get to work. Turn off your electronics when you’re not using them. Eat less meat. while you’re at it eat more locally grown vegetables and foods and last but not least spread your knowledge and concerns about climate change with others. When it comes to climate change the main takeaway is that it’s real and although we are part of the cause we can also be part of the solution.

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We’ve been burning more and more fossil fuels like oil and coal which release CO2 to power our homes factories airplanes and cars. There’s also a lot more of us the global population has tripled in the past 70 years and we’re consuming more products from animals that release another pollute called methane. So, all those gases are released into the air and when sunlight gets into the Earth’s atmosphere some of the heat gets trapped and the planet gets warmer. That’s why they call it the greenhouse effect, but the concern is not that the Earth is getting warmer. It’s that it’s happening far too quickly.

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Sea levels are rising about three millimeters a year because sea water expands as temperatures get warmer melting ice sheets and Glaciers also add trillions of tons of freshwater into our oceans.

People around the world already losing their homes and if things carry on Millions more of us will have to pack up too: entire coastal cities could be underwater within 80 years like Miami in the US or Osaka in Japan entire island nations in the Pacific could completely disappear.

Now there is a plan to slow all this down. Back in 2016 world leaders signed the so-called Paris agreement and the big plants is the cop temperature is rising by 1.5 degrees or a maximum of two before the year 2100 so countries set their own Targets on how much CO2 they emit. But here’s the thing three years after the agreement Global CO2 levels are still going up.

 

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So where does that leave us? Us well, there’s only so much like riding and light bulb replacing that you and I can do every day, but the truth is that it’s those everyday things that are going to change anyway, even coffee could run out if farmers can grow it. So, the expert advice is that it’s down to all of us to change our ways and shake things up or Climate Change is Going to Do it For Us

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Biden will rejoin the Paris Climate Accord. Here’s what happens next

PUBLISHED FRI, NOV 20 202011:51 AM ESTUPDATED FRI, NOV 20 20201:27 PM EST
Emma Newburger@EMMA_NEWBURGER

KEY POINTS

  • President-elect Joe Biden will reenter the U.S. into the Paris Climate Agreement, the global pact forged five years ago among nearly 200 nations to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.
  • Upon rejoining, the U.S. will likely be expected to provide a climate target that is updated from the Obama administration’s goal and a plan to reduce domestic emissions from the power and energy sector.

The U.S. is the world’s second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, behind China, and is seen as key in the global effort to reduce the effects of climate change.

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WILMINGTON, DE – NOVEMBER 19: President-elect Joe Biden answers a reporter question after he delivered remarks at the Queen in Wilmington, Delaware on Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020. (Photo by Salwan Georges/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

The pact is a nonbinding agreement among nations to reduce emissions and keep the increase in global temperatures well below 2 degrees Celsius, or 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit, compared with preindustrial levels.

Global temperatures have already risen 1.2 C, or 2.2 F, since preindustrial levels, and the atmosphere is on track to warm up by 1.5 C, or 2.7 F, over the next two decades.

Warming at 2 degrees Celsius could trigger an international food crisis in coming years, according to a 2019 report from the U.N.’s scientific panel on climate change. The general consensus among scientists is that the climate targets that countries are attempting to meet under the Paris accord are not sufficient.

The next round of U.N. climate talks is set to take place in Glasgow, Scotland, in November 2021, when countries are expected to submit new, more ambitious 2030 targets — and all eyes will be on the U.S.

Rebuilding trust with nations

The U.S. is the world’s second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases behind China and is seen as key in the global effort to reduce the effects of climate change.

“U.S. leadership and the U.S.-China bilateral agreement to cut CO2 emissions were key to getting the Paris agreement on track,” said Mahowald. “Continued U.S. involvement and leadership is key to any effort to stop climate change.”

Biden has said that the U.S. will recommit to its emissions reduction goals under the accord and lead the effort to get other countries to improve their climate goals.

The former vice president has plans that extend beyond Paris, including a $2 trillion economic plan to invest in a transition from fossil fuels to clean energy, cut carbon emissions from electric power to zero by 2035 and reach net-zero emissions by 2050.

The more heat they trapped a warmer Planet gets in our planet gets warmer. We begin to feel the effects. What if climate change is biggest victims to our oceans? Oceans regulate the earth’s temperature and provide 50% of the Earth’s oxygen and climate change has increased the global temperature of the oceans by more than point. Three degrees Fahrenheit since 1969. Although a warmer ocean might seem inviting a beachgoer. It actually has devastating consequences for supporting life at Sea. One of those consequences is ocean acidification a direct effect of increased dissolved CO2. Since the late 18th century ocean surface acidification is increased by 30% a higher Rest and content means calcifying species like oysters and clams shallow water corals are at risk putting the entire ocean food web at risk.

This is bad news for the 1 billion people relying on the ocean as its primary source of protein. Climate change is also caused the sea level to rise just in the last century sea levels have risen six point seven inches, but the rate in the last decade is nearly Double. Sea levels have reason because as the ocean gets warmer, it swells. On top of that glaciers and ice sheets are melting and article was 36 cubic miles of ice between 2002 and 2005 and since 1994 each year on average, the Earth is lost 400 billion tons from its glaciers.

That’s like an ice cube 7 and half kilometers on a side, 4 miles on a side melting and flowing into the sea. When all that ice melts, it fills up our oceans and just like filling up a bathtub the shores can’t hold all that water and coastal regions get flooded. Troubling signs of climate change are increased extreme weather events, natural disasters, like floods tornadoes and deadly heat

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LET’S TALK ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE

People are calling it the crisis of our time and it is. But it’s easy to get lost in the story. The science is dense and politics gets in the way. World leaders are meeting in Madrid to talk about the climate crises and how to slow it down. They are under pressure from Millions of people around the world calling for concrete action. So, what exactly are we doing wrong? And how do we fix it?

There are the levels of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere over hundreds of thousands of years. But this spike in carbon dioxide at the very end. That’s a golf during the Industrial Revolution. We started breaking CO2 records in 1950 and we haven’t stopped since why well scientists say there’s a 95% chance that human activity is the cause.

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The UN says that right now our world is about 1 degree hotter than pre-industrial times. That’s around the year 1800 which is okay. In fact, the UN says if we warm by 1.5 degrees before the end of the century, we should be fine. The UN even says two degrees would probably be all right, but again the problem is speed because right now we’re on track to hit one point five degrees in only ten years and if we don’t slow that warming down it could mean catastrophe within my lifetime and maybe yours too and we’re already getting a taste.

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In some ways. We’re going backwards. The US One of the world’s biggest polluters have pulled out of the Paris deal Russia and China are accused of not giving themselves ambitious Targets in the first place. Turkey and Poland want to build more power plants that use coal and then there’s the Skeptics. On the other hand, there is positive momentum. There’s more awareness and some countries are making progress India Morocco and The Gambia have massive renewable energy projects.

But experts say that what is needed now is an even bigger push to change everything about the way we run our world.

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“Climate change is here climate change is happening. We are Well into the sixth mass extinction event”!! “… millions of people are likely to suffer watching food and water shortages out which is now in its 10th year is a phenomenon that’s here to stay.” We don’t have any medicine to stop Climate change”

……“The United States will cease all implementation of the non-binding Paris Accord and the Draconian financial and economic burdens the agreement imposes on our country….

President Donald Trump

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The Washington Post | The Washington Post | Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden will reenter the U.S. into the Paris Climate Agreement, the global pact forged five years ago among nearly 200 nations to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.

The move will come after President Donald Trump formally withdrew the country from the climate change agreement on Nov. 4, which was the earliest possible date under its terms. Biden said he will bring the U.S. back into the accord as early as February.

Here’s a look at what rejoining means for the U.S. and the world and what could happen next.

What the Paris Agreement does

While the official U.S. exit from the accord further isolated Washington from the rest of the world, it won’t necessarily have an immediate impact on international efforts to mitigate climate change and implement the framework of the agreement.

However, nearly every country in the world is part of the agreement. Of the 195 countries that signed the agreement, 189 countries officially adopted the accord, and no other country besides the U.S. has abandoned it.

“Since the U.S. has one of the biggest economies in the world and has contributed the most to climate change, it is incredibly important that the U.S. return to the Paris agreement,” said Cornell University climate scientist Natalie Mahowald, a lead author of the 2018 U.N. report on climate change.

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How the U.S. will rejoin

Biden will not need Senate support to rejoin, because the accord was set up as an executive agreement. Biden’s administration will just have to send a letter to the United Nations stating the intention to rejoin, and the official return would take effect in 30 days.

Once the U.S. officially returns, the agreement requires countries to set voluntary targets to reduce domestic emissions and create stricter goals in coming years. The accord has also implemented a binding requirement that countries accurately report their progress.

For instance, 75 CEOs last year urged Trump to stay in the accord. Major corporations including Apple, Google, Goldman Sachs and Royal Dutch Shell signed a statement that argued it would strengthen their competitiveness in global markets and allow the U.S. to be a leader in developing technology that curbs carbon emissions.

Globally, the U.S. will have a great deal of work to do to catch up with other nations that have already unveiled bold climate initiatives. China, the world’s biggest carbon emitter, has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2060, and the E.U. has vowed to go carbon neutral by 2050.

The United States Will Rejoin the Paris Agreement. What’s Next?

Biden vows to rejoin the international accord the day he enters office—the first step in making up for four lost years of climate progress.

By Helen Santoro Reporter, Audubon magazine

December 08, 2020
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On November 4, the United States officially left the Paris Climate Agreement, a global pact created to reduce carbon emissions and prevent the worst impacts of climate change. It was the culmination of a promise President Donald Trump made on the campaign trail, but took his entire term to complete due to process and paperwork.

The country’s withdrawal, however, will be short-lived: On the very same day the country exited the accord, President-elect Joe Biden vowed to rejoin. “Today, the Trump Administration officially left the Paris Climate Agreement. And in exactly 77 days, a Biden Administration will rejoin it,” he tweeted.

The U.S. exit didn’t break the treaty; it requires that 55 countries representing 55 percent of global emissions enjoin. Today, even without the world’s second-largest emitter of carbon dioxide, the treaty has 188 countries representing 79 percent of emissions. Still, Trump’s actions sent a troubling message to the world: The U.S. does not care about the perils of climate change and won’t work with other countries to collectively reduce the amount of heat-trapping gases released into the atmosphere.

“The Paris Agreement is an essential part of the climate-action landscape,” says Katharine Mach, a climate scientist from the University of Miami. “Our success in these efforts is dependent on fundamental cooperation.”

Biden’s promise to rejoin the agreement signals that climate change will be a significant issue during his presidency. He has already laid out an ambitious plan to tackle America’s emissions, and reentering the Paris Agreement is one of his many steps. It’s an easy step: Once Biden sends a letter to the United Nations stating an intent to rejoin, the U.S. can officially return after 30 days; he doesn’t need Senate support. The greater challenge will be implementing policy to get the country on track to reduce emissions after four years lost to a pro-fossil fuel agenda.

Adopted in 2016, the Paris Agreement includes 189 nations (if you include the United States) that have agreed to keep global temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees Celsius, or 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit, above preindustrial levels. Study after study has shown the dangers of a warming world, including increased risk of droughts, loss of biodiversity, and sea level rise. To reach this goal, each signatory is required to submit national plans, known as nationally determined contributions (NDCs), every five years to limit emissions. They must also regularly report on their climate actions and whether they are on track to meet their NDCs. The United States, which has contributed 25 percent of all greenhouse gases produced by humans since 1751, pledged that by 2025 it will reduce its emissions by 26 to 28 percent of 2005 levels.

The country is not currently on track to meet those goals. The Trump administration not only rebuffed the Paris Agreement, but has also actively dismantled many government environmental programs, including those that aim to address climate change. “The problem has been urgent for the while, but these past years further heighten the urgency,” says Sarah Lester, a marine scientist at Florida State University who studies climate change impacts on fisheries. “It’s a really big threat and something that we need to be taking seriously. The U.S. should really be a global leader.”

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The Horned Lark is threatened by wildfire and spring heat waves, both worsened by global warming. Photo: Evan Barrientos/Audubon

The country’s biggest nationwide success at reducing emissions, tragically, has been the COVID-19 pandemic. This year the United States is likely to emit around 20 percent less greenhouse gas than in 2005, surpassing the nation’s 2020 NDC target. However, these declines are due to the shutdown of many carbon-emitting activities, including air and automobile travel, and are not sustainable, nor are they significant enough to hold warming below 2 degrees Celsius.

Rejoining the Paris Agreement alone won’t address these shortfalls because NDCs are voluntary and not legally binding. After setting emissions goals with the international community, country leaders must enact domestic policies to meet them; the agreement won’t be successful if the biggest culprits don’t live up to their commitments. Over the past four years, other nations’ progress has varied, but many of the top emitters are significantly off track from reaching their targets, according to the Climate Action Tracker. China, for example, announced this September that the country will stop releasing carbon dioxide before 2060, with a peak in emissions before 2030. This promise still puts China behind the standard set by the Paris Agreement for nations to stop emitting greenhouse gases by 2050. The European Union, which promised to cut emissions by at least 55 percent from 1990 levels by 2030, will likely fall short as well. Sweden, Portugal, and France have reached 77 percent, 66 percent, and 65 percent of their 2020 targets, respectively. Bulgaria, Ireland, and Poland have reached only 26 percent of their targets, or less.

Once the United States rejoins the agreement, making up for lost time will require new, more ambitious NDCs and a clear plan for reaching these targets. This will likely take time, as Biden will need to pick aggressive goals that are both in line with reaching net zero by 2050 and achievable, says Kate Larsen, lead energy and climate researcher and director of the Rhodium Group, an independent research organization. He could announce the nation’s new NDCs next November at the UN Climate Change Conference. How he’ll reach those goals, however ambitious, will be tougher. On the campaign trail Biden proposed a $2 trillion climate plan, including Congressional legislation. If the Republican Party holds the Senate, it’s unlikely he will be able to spend as much as he hoped, but he can still pass executive orders to reverse many of Trump’s ordinances and further regulate coal-fired power through a more complicated rulemaking process, Larsen says.

“The quickest emission reductions in this decade are going to come from the power sector,” she says. Coal consumption is already on the decline and is being replaced with methane gas and renewable energy. Continuing this trend could “get us quite a long way towards reaching our goals,” she adds.

Even with a new administration, reaching the nation’s climate targets is a major challenge, but Larsen is hopeful. Over the past four years, states have continued to push forward, and energy markets are changing more quickly than anticipated. “I think the momentum is still there,” she says. “We just need to find the right levers to accelerate it.”

More from CNBC Environment:
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Joe Biden’s climate change agenda faces an uncertain future in the Senate

During Barack Obama’s presidency, the U.S. vowed to curb emissions between 26% and 28% below 2005 levels by 2025.

The country has not come anywhere near meeting that goal, and progress essentially halted during the Trump administration, which dismantled more than 70 major environmental regulations in four years.

Upon rejoining, the U.S. will likely be expected to provide a climate target that is updated from the Obama administration’s goal and a concrete plan to reduce domestic emissions from the power and energy sector.

More broadly, the U.S. will have to rebuild trust with other nations in the agreement, especially after Trump’s legacy of climate change denial and his official withdrawal from the accord.

Trump’s rollbacks of a slew of environmental regulations and exit from the agreement shocked international allies and scientists. It also prompted some U.S. states, cities and corporations to part ways with the administration and move forward with their own climate plans.

“My hope — and expectation — is that President Biden will indeed reenter the Paris Agreement quickly, spearhead a re-energized and much more ambitious U.S. commitment and take an intelligent and responsible role in the global effort,” said Appalachian State University environmental sciences professor Gregg Marland, who tracks global carbon emissions.

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