The year 2020 has introduced to the world the notion that selfishness will not be sustainable in our futures. And for many in a world where most of its citizens spend many of their waking hours in pursuit of worldly riches, it has come as an eye-opening shock.
Now it is certainly possible that our species will continue its unwavering selfishness into the abyss. We have proven time and again throughout our history on this planet that the interest of the few outweighs those of the many.
What the COVID-19 virus has proven to all of us is if we are to survive as a species, we must have a serious attitude adjustment. Aside from the virus, we are on the verge of eliminating most of the plant and animal species that allow us to flourish. These are sources we cannot live without as they provide us food, medicines, the very air breathe. The planet’s largest producer of oxygen, the Amazon Rainforest, is in real danger. The fires that have been burning for over a year may be worse in 2020. It’s too early for a verdict, but as of now, threats to the Brazilian Amazon are growing virtually unchecked while the COVID-19 pandemic deepens. As the virus spreads, land grabbing is rampant and there is no sign of deforestation slowing. On the contrary: numbers skyrocketed during the first quarter of 2020.
It has also brought home a particularly important lesson. Put aside politics and listen to the scientists. When you ponder this, it will make sense. What do politicians know about? Go ahead, take your time. Are you still struggling for an answer? I figured as much. Let us compare them to scientists who attended the best of our universities, spent decades researching their specialties, and did so not in the pursuit of fame and fortune, but of knowledge which the world can benefit from. Seriously, how can this even be an issue?
Unless every person begins to do their part to salvage this planet, our world is on the brink of extinction. Even today as I write this article 39 out of every 1,000 children will die before they reach the age of five. And this from preventable illnesses like diarrhea, pneumonia, and malaria. One-third of the urban population on earth is living in a slum where disease if far more likely to spread.
But this virus is just a warning to us all. Aside from the very real possibility of more deadly viruses in our future, global warming is by far the biggest threat to everything living thing on this planet. What we now know is that climate predictions from as far back as 50 years have proven accurate. All the past modeling of climate change has been accurate to date. And the climate predictions for our near future indicate a world where few species may survive.
In the World Meteorological Organization Statement of 2019, the United Nations Secretary-General stated: “Statement by the United Nations Secretary-General Climate change is the defining challenge of our time. Time is fast running out for us to avert the worst impacts of climate disruption and protect our societies from the inevitable impacts to come. Science tells us that, even if we are successful in limiting warming to 1.5 °C, we will face significantly increased risks to natural and human systems. Yet, the data in this report show that 2019 was already 1.1 °C warmer than the pre-industrial era. The consequences are already apparent. More severe and frequent floods, droughts and tropical storms, dangerous heatwaves and rising sea levels are already severely threatening lives and livelihoods across the planet. We are currently way off track to meeting either the 1.5 °C or 2 °C targets that the Paris Agreement calls for. We need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 45% from 2010 levels by 2030 and reach net zero emissions by 2050. And for that, we need political will and urgent action to set a different path. This report outlines the latest science and illustrates the urgency for far-reaching climate action. It brings together data from across the fields of climate science and lists the potential future impacts of climate change – from health and economic consequences to decreased food security and increased displacement. I call on everyone – from government, civil society, and business leaders to individual citizens – to heed these facts and take urgent action to halt the worst effects of climate change. We need more ambition on mitigation, adaptation, and finance in time for the climate conference (COP26) to be held in Glasgow in November. That is the only way to ensure a safer, more prosperous, and sustainable future for all people on a healthy planet.” Click here to read the whole report.
This does not consider the mass migrations that will occur due to the natural disasters that will ravage rural areas and the rising ocean levels where 70% of the population of the earth live. The metropolitan areas will be consumed by this migration. World hunger will soar, regional wars will be on a global scale, and a sense of doom will descend on humanity.
To put all this in perspective, a betting man would not put favorable odds of survival for a baby born in 2020 to make it through the 2050s. Unless of course drastic action is taken immediately on a global scale. None of this takes into account this will have on all the systems we rely on today. Banking, healthcare, jobs, and the economy will be drastically affected if not completely obliterated.
I have written this article with the intent to not only educate but to scare the crap out of you. This isn’t some “thing” a politician can lie his way out of. The last 50 years of scientific data have proven that climate change models work. So my question is simply this. What are you going to do about it?