POLITICAL FOCUS: United Nations commission warns climate will be unfixable by early as 2030

Ben Hume, Staff Reporter

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a damning report on the state of our global ecosystem on Monday, Oct. 8.

For years, climate scientists have been warning the world about the impending disaster of global warming and the “point of no return,” a theoretical point at which the Earth will be too warm for climate change to be reversed. The IPCC report gives us a timetable for a point of no return, at the minimum just 12 years until the damage is permanent.

The report was the first to be commissioned by the newly created Paris agreement signed in 2015. The IPCC predicts a global increase of 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit (1.5 degrees Celsius) in average temperatures by the year 2040. The report lists a number of potential impacts and associated risks, some of which include “hot extremes in most inhabited regions…heavy precipitation in several regions…and the probability of drought and precipitation deficits in some regions.”

These are the impacts that can be found in just the first paragraph of the associated risks subsection of the report — there are five more paragraphs after this describing everything from increased ocean acidity to stunted economic growth across the globe.

The evidence is clear, and the world seems to know what’s coming. There will always be naysayers, many of which reside in our very own country, but they are beyond help. The real issue we face is the issue of the United States’ lack of any moral compass.

If you can remember back to the beginning of this administration, you might remember the first issue our president saw fit to tackle was former President Barack Obama’s decision to sign on to the Paris agreement. Since then, every single member of the international community has signed the agreement. Aside from the U.S., Syria was the last country to join, which they did in November 2017.

Following that decision, President Donald Trump led the way in relaxing pollution regulations on coal-fired power plants, even though this decision has still led to another 40 plants shutting down and no new plants planned. Trump ended the war on coal, only to show the world we don’t care a lick about the battle against the end of the world.

Several news sources have filled the media with calls to action, how each individual can do their part. You’ve surely heard the drill — recycle, compost, use reusable water bottles, reusable grocery bags and so on. All of these suggestions are very valuable, but at the end of the day, the thing we need most is to hold our own government to much higher standards. We used to be the world’s leader in science and intellect, the first on the moon and the best educated.

Here we are now, last place in the one thing that matters — caring about the Earth that we destroyed. We can’t even find politicians with enough backbone to see past their own coffers and to look at just how long we have left to save it.

So, I implore you to vote for people who will care for our pale blue dot, the only home we have, before the damage is too great.