The climate is still changing

By: Kimberly Gray

Climate change was a popular conversation that got dropped due to COVID-19 news and then by the 2020 election. But, that does not mean that it is no longer an issue. Climate change is still a problem, even if it is not at the top of everyone’s list.

            Climate change will affect everyone in a negative way if it is not controlled. This is not limited to hotter summers and colder winters. It goes beyond these events.

            “The climate affects our everyday lives,” junior Ecology Club member Alyssa Angiolieri said. “An example would be a farmer needs rain to grow his crops. When the climate starts changing and there is no rain, then there are no crops. This year’s harvest for farmers was terrible because we didn’t have a lot of rain this year. No crops means no food for us and no rain means our ecosystems can become damaged.”  

            People who are concerned about climate change will be glad to hear of a piece of legislation that could help lessen the effects of climate change in coming years. It is called the Green New Deal.

            The Green New Deal was proposed by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) of New York, to help the United States reduce its carbon footprint in coming years.

            “The primary climate change goal is to reach net-zero greenhouse emissions in a decade,” Jessica McDonald, a writer for factcheck.org, a non-profit organization that works to monitor factual accuracy to consumers said. “’Net-zero’ means that after tallying up all the greenhouse gases that are released and subtracting those that are sequestered, or removed, there is no net addition to the atmosphere.”

            While net zero greenhouse gases for the United States is the main goal of the Green New Deal, this is not the only goal in mind. Within 10 years, the Green New Deal hopes to secure healthy food for low-income communities, invest in infrastructure, create jobs within the renewable energy field and reduce air and water pollution.

            “I love almost everything about AOC’s ‘Green New Deal’,” Angiolieri said. “I think if it were enforced it would be very effective. We need to convert to clean energy which is one of her goals. Part of the deal is to also restore ecosystems which is also just as important. Using non-renewable energies damages ecosystem and, as mentioned before, affects climate change.”

            Not everyone agrees that the world is in crisis due to the changing climate. Some scientists do not think that humans are the ones to cause climate change.

            “A report found more than 1,000 scientists who disagreed that humans are primarily responsible for global climate change,” Encyclopedia Britannica reported. “The research on 11,944 studies actually found that only 3,974 even expressed a view on the issue. Of those, just 64 (1.6%) said humans are the main cause.”  

Not all the news is bad. With COVID-19 flooding main-stream media outlets, some new advancements that have been made did not receive much media attention

“There was a satellite that was launched to monitor and collect data on rising sea levels,” science teacher Mr. Angelo Testa said. “This will help us understand the influence climate change has on rising sea levels.  This was a collaboration of US and European effort to help us understand the effects of climate change on a global level.”  

While technological advancements are what are going to effect the most change, individuals can make an effort as well.

“Some ways people can help is by switching little things,” sophomore Rory Damico said. “Like, instead of driving the five minutes to school or work, walk or ride a bike. If it’s raining, ride a bus. If you don’t want to do those, carpool with some friends. If there are less cars on the road, there will be less carbon emitting into the air. Small things like that are how you can help.”

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