Nations of all different backgrounds, races and creeds came together as a worldwide effort, in an attempt to get the world’s leaders into gear to fight climate change.
On the days of Sept. 20 and 27, protests popped up in the public eyes in cities everywhere. Even here on the Fullerton College Campus, students filled the quad with chalk murals showcasing climate change and its impacts.
The strikes were inspired by youth leader and activist Greta Thunberg’s Fridays for Future movement. The movement was put into motion by Thunberg, who is a 16-year-old activist from Sweden. The young activist would spend school days in front of the Swedish Parliament, in protest at the lack of effort by her government towards the climate crisis.
The idea that humans could change the world’s environment, is not a new concept. In the early 1900s and prior, scientist and philosophers all pondered humans’ role and impact on the world around them.
In fact, in 1895 Swedish chemist Svante Arrhenius ran test to determine if a decrease or increase of Co2 levels would proportionately impact global temperature. He found that temperature increased proportionality to higher Co2 levels and vice versa to decreased levels of Co2.
“The best science, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, tells us that any temperature rise above 1.5 degrees will lead to major and irreversible damage to the ecosystems that support us,” said United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres.
In June of 1988, NASA scientist James E. Hansen popularized the term global warming when he testified to congress regarding the Earth’s climate.
“Global warming has reached a level such that we can ascribe with a high degree of confidence a cause and effect relationship between the greenhouse effect and the observed warming,” Hansen said.
Scientists, average Joes and even the Pope recognize this as a serious problem that is impacting the world we live in. Then why is it we see little momentum from governments around the world in solving this global crisis?
On Sept. 23, 2019, the UN held an international climate summit. In their deliberations, 65 Countries agreed to cut greenhouse to net zero by the year 2050. Along with that, 70 countries agreed to accelerate their plans by 2020. Nations were not the only entities to join the effort, businesses as well as sub economies like California have thrown their hat into the ring.
While the summit led to unprecedented unity from leaders around the world, President Donald Trump made a brief appearance and had nothing to say.
As people of the world proceed deeper into to the unknown future of humankind, the Earth will always be our home in the universe. This is regardless of our personal ideologies when it comes to the debate over climate change. People of the world should want to strive to maintain our home for the generations of humanity to come.