“Taken as a whole, the range of published evidence indicates that the net damage costs of climate change are likely to be significant, and increase over time” – Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
The effects of climate change are already happening now. Glaciers have been shrinking, the ice that formed on rivers and lakes are breaking apart earlier than they used to, the ice of the sea in the arctic is melting, sea levels are rising and we’re experience longer and more intense heat waves. This is all due to anthropogenic causes, not natural. We caused this.
We’re causing endangered animals to become even closer to extinction. Polar bears are referred to as the poster animal for climate change, since the destruction of their habitat melting due to global warming. They aren’t the only species in the Arctic that are being threatened with extinction because of us. The entire Arctic ecosystem is being destroyed because of us. The other species there, like copepods, seals, and walruses are having their home destroyed.
Figure 01: A polar bear on one of the melting ice caps in the Arctic (Source)
Scientists have also said that climate change is wreaking havoc on many other species on the planet, with a variety of birds and reptiles that are sensitive to large changes in temperature. One of the primarily examples referred to by scientists, is the “Golden Toad”. The Golden Toad is usually found in central America, due to global warming, it has become extinct. This is only going to get worse with more animals becoming extinct unless we act now.
According to the third national climate assessment report, which is a report produced by the Global Change Research Program in the US, the follow long-term effects if we don’t act to stop global warming:
Figure 02: The potential future effects of what global warming can lead to. (Source)
The members of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, have recently passed an agreement that aims to prevent these from occurring. This agreement is known as “The Paris Agreement”, is meant to signal the start of us protecting our planet & the future inhabitants.
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Available at: http://climate.nasa.gov/effects/
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