We normally think of how fossil fuel emissions affect our planet, our weather, and how this relates to our safety. This report puts a microscope over the devastating human costs of climate change. It says that an estimated 350 [image-1]million people are already impacted by climate change, an amount that could double by 2030 if nothing is done. Its expected that over half a million people will die each year from global warming related disasters by 2030.
With more intense hurricanes, rising sea levels, eroding shores, increased wildfires, floods, and unpredictable weather patterns, we could expect that Floridians are some of the folks most affected by climate change. As we enter this unpredictable hurricane season, there is much reason for concern and more than enough evidence to call us to action. However, this report shows that weather-related dangers threaten our neighbors in developing countries most severely. GHF also highlighted the disparate reality that these countries only contribute about 1% of the worlds total global warming emissions.
So, is there hope? Yes. But change doesnt happen on its own.
A water rights activist in Flow repeated the famous Margaret Mead quote, Never doubt th[image-2]at a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. Her sentimentone of speaking truth to poweris as applicable there as with any of the major obstacles in our lifetime. Global warming is one of our generations greatest challenges and weve got to act to make our countrys leaders act.
Right now, Congress is ignoring the science on global warming and is being swayed by major oil and coal lobbyists (these dinosaurs are putting forth their biggest push for survival yet). What is it going to take for them to realize that burning coal and oil is not healthy for children, our planet, and other living things? Eventually, theyll be forced to take climate change seriously, but how many lives will have needlessly suffered by then? The GHF report tries to put a number on that and it reminds us that this struggle is global, shared between us and millions we will never know, rich and poor, in every hemisphere-- it is all of ours and we must fight together, to win it, to survive.
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Have you ever heard the Vietnam-era quote, war is not healthy for children and other living things? It is a staunchly obvious and painstakingly reasonable appeal that cuts to the ethical core and casualties of war. I read an article this week that reminded me of it, but instead of war, the murderous culprit in this story is climate change.
A new report by the Global Humanitarian Forum (GHF) says that global warming already kills about 300,000 people a year. If that projection is not startling enough— or if you have more of an economic mind, and are not much swayed by stacks of human figuresthe report also says that climate change costs around $125 billion in economic losses annually.