The Ticking Time Bomb of Planet Earth
Elise May, Critique Editor
The careless and thoughtless actions of humans with pollutants are causing the end of the world as we know it, also called global warming. Despite people who naively argue otherwise, the unfortunate evidence builds up and we are left with the undeniable fact that our globe is failing. According to new research from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), severe effects could take place as early as 2030 (pbs.org). These effects can include glaciers melting, coral reefs retaining permanent damage, more endangered and extinct species, and more extreme weather conditions such as hurricanes and droughts (nationalgeographic.com).
Global warming is defined by Dictionary.com as “a gradual increase in the overall temperature of the earth's atmosphere generally attributed to the greenhouse effect caused by increased levels of carbon dioxide, chlorofluorocarbons, and other pollutants.” The thought that I, and everyone else on the earth, has a big part to play in the destruction of the world we live in is enough to horrify me. With the new information put out from the United Nations on October 8th about our 12 year deadline, I was really struck with the magnitude of the matter. I had heard about the growing concern on the issue of global warming, but it never struck me as something specifically important to me living in the early 21st century. I could never bring myself to care enough to actually do something small in my life to mildly impact the outcome. I thought that if I ignored it long enough it wouldn't be my problem any more or that I would be dead long before it really made a significant difference. However, as a 15 year old in 2018 I would be approximately 27 years old in 2030, which is fairly young. For me to ignore this matter would be equivalent to me completely turning my back back on the Earth.
As a Christian, shouldn’t one understand and act out their calling to protect and preserve God’s creation even more? Why then do people often feel so inclined to apathetic tendencies concerning the damning of the globe that sustains each and every one of us? Why do people give so much weight to little disputes or trivial matters that will quickly pass away- and that are simply dividing people, instead of working together to make a difference against common adversaries? So often it can be thought that as a single person in a wide world, anything you do will not truly matter. On the contrary, change doesn’t begin without single persons acting on their own. Without each individual working on their own to change what they can in their own life, nothing can be changed for everyone’s lives.
Stemming from this, some simple actions an individual can take to counteract global warming are: stop wasting water, eating all the food bought, buying less meat due to the amount of energy and water it requires in its creation process, buying better light bulbs such as LED bulbs, monitoring plug usage of fully charged and rarely used devices, driving a more fuel efficient vehicle and maintaining it, walking places as often as possible, using a renewable energy source in your home, buying energy efficient appliances (that have the Energy Star label), and maybe most importantly is speaking up and spreading the word (nrdc.org). As Americans, we are so often ingrained in our ways of life that it can be difficult to change patterns such as the frequent use of cars; as cars are one of the leading pollutants. If one is to be dedicated to their future and the future of everything around them as stewards of the planet, then global warming need to be taken seriously, and serious changes need to be implemented as soon as possible.