Scientists fight an uphill battle in climate crisis

Scientists have tried their best to instill a sense of urgency in the population to take action to promise a longer lasting planet.


Mr. Bowne

  The world is coming to an end.

  At least, that’s according to the news. Reporters are constantly harassing readers with a heartbreaking outlook on the health of the world’s climate. However, change is not happening fast enough to slow down the climate crisis. 

    Although many are reluctant to acknowledge the deepening climate crisis, uncontrolled fires in the Amazon, the Arctic, and in Siberia have drawn the public’s attention to the urgency of climate change. The fires in the Amazon remain the most tragic for, as the Yale School of Environmental Studies discovered, the Amazon stores 25% of the world’s carbon. Once the carbon stored in the forest is released, global warming will quicken drastically, leaving parts of the Earth uninhabitable. 

    After the G7 summit this past August, public pressure caused government leaders to invest over $20 million in fighting the fires in the Amazon.  President Trump was not involved in the discussions resulting in the decision to lend Brazil the tools to fight the wildfires. As the president continues to recite his rhetoric about the “expensive hoax of global warming,” he has taken down vital laws regulating unhealthy levels of pollution.

   It began when the United States withdrew from the Paris Climate Agreement in 2017. The United States climate policies, once restrictive, are gradually being dismantled, therefore becoming ineffective in the fight to slow climate change. The Trump administration also quit regulating methane leaks, ended requirements for energy efficient light bulbs, and weakened habitat protection by opening protected lands to oil drilling.  

      I spent a week over the summer hearing from experts about the state of the media and the depreciation of the political climate at the World Affairs Council in Philadelphia. Although the course was centered around the increase of populism, each speaker warned attendees that we should not fear the political climate as much as we should worry over the climate crisis. 

   One such speaker, Oliver St. Clair Franklin, Honorary Consul of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, did briefly discuss Brexit and how British citizens feel about Britain leaving the European Union; however, Franklin mainly asserted the idea that no matter the political turmoil throughout Europe, the world needs to come together to speak about how to slow the diminishing health of the climate.

    Britain committed to reduce emissions by 2050 to “net-zero,” meaning human pollutants will be removed or at least negated from the atmosphere. Pollution will be reduced through the use of LED light bulbs and hydrogen central heating while technology continues to advance to make the “net-zero” plan attainable.

   Although admirable, Britain’s plan alone is not enough to negate humanity’s impact on the climate. As a world power, the United States needs to follow in Britain’s footsteps and institute stronger environmental procedures, not continue to dismantle the laws that have succeeded to protect the environment.  

   Experts who have spent their whole lives studying the state of governments and learning the inner workings of the art, understand that we all have to take action. Governments cannot simply institute policies about issues their citizens care about. Governments need to inspire the masses to make a change. 

    Scientists have tried their best to instill a sense of urgency in the population to take action to promise a longer lasting planet. Yet, without the help of the government, it is almost as if scientists are fighting an uphill battle.