We apparently exceeded the time allowance for reversing what we did wrong with our planet. The ‘Paris Agreement’ is the last hope we have to save our planet and our species. This agreement includes 179 nations and each of them promised to cut down on their carbon dioxide emissions in order to prevent further heating of the Earth. The goal is that we don’t reach a temperature that is 2ºC above the pre-industrial level.
Is it too late?
According to a study publish earlier this week, it may not be enough. It seems that even if all these nations commit and do what they promised, we would still face a hot Earth in the next decades.
The planet’s average temperature will rise with 4 or 5ºC above the pre-industrial levels which will increase the levels of the sea by something between 10 and 60 meters. As you can imagine, this would be disastrous. Flooding of the areas close to oceans and seas, a high risk of coastal storms, coral reefs extinction, all of this could happen by the end of the 21st century or even earlier.
Point of no return
We listened as scientists warned us but we preferred to maintain the same lifestyle simply because we were more comfortable like that. That’s why, even if all carbon emission stops, the world would still heat up by 2ºC. Immediately, we would report the melting of glaciers, the rainforests would start to die and the Arctic summer sea ice will disappear.
These effects will launch others because carbon that is currently stored will be released, thus further increasing the Earth’s temperature. It really is like a game of dominoes. Tip one piece over and the whole thing starts tumbling down.
What can we do?
If we want to stop this, we must act, NOW! We need to put more focus on enhancing biological carbon storage. We need to conserve our biodiversity, improve how we manage our forests and carbon-capture systems need to massively develop. Only by doing this we could at least stop at the 2ºC and maintain some hopes for the future.
Laura grew up in a small town in northern Quebec. She studied chemistry in college, graduated, and married her husband one month later. They were then blessed with two baby boys within the first four years of marriage. Having babies gave their family a desire to return to the old paths – to nourish their family with traditional, homegrown foods; rid their home of toxic chemicals and petroleum products; and give their boys a chance to know a simple, sustainable way of life. They are currently building a homestead from scratch on two little acres in central Texas. There’s a lot to be done to become somewhat self-sufficient, but they are debt-free and get to spend their days living this simple, good life together with their five young children. Laura is an advocate for people with disabilities.