Something is happening to our planet, something that we may not be to do anything about it if we wait too long.
Today is Earth Day, a day when people pledge to eat less meat, carpool to work, unplug unused electronic devices, and take other steps to help save the Earth. But the scary truth about Earth is that we’re already too late to prevent much of the damage, and the future is bleak in preventing it from getting worse.
Google’s much publicized Earth Day Doodle highlights the changes that will need to be made in order to get Earth back to where it was. It shows the story of a fox who dreams about an Earth damaged by pollution and climate change, and after waking up, takes a number of steps to clean up his act.
Scientists overwhelming believe that humans are behind an alarming warming trend, with carbon dioxide emissions threatening to cause widespread famines, intense storms, flooding, and a host of other crises int he coming decades. We’re already seeing the negative effects of climate change: coral bleaching threatens wildlife on the Great Barrier Reef, for example.
Reversing course will take major action. Countries will need to drastically reduce emissions in order to keep temperatures from rising more than 2 degree Celsius over the next century. Unfortunately, while some actions have been taken to tackle the threat, a large percentage of people don’t even believe that climate change is real.
In a 2016 Pew Research Center poll, only a third of Americans say they care a great deal about climate change. Only 24 percent of Republicans said that, and with the party’s big wins of the presidency and in Congress this past November, party leadership is working hard to roll back environmental measures passed by the Obama Administration. The head of the Environmental Protection Agency flat out denies that humans are causing global warming.
So the big question in the coming decades, as the Earth’s climate change crisis deepens, is if humanity will recognize it in time, or if it will be too little, too late.