An Overview of Climate Change Effects

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Climate change will affect everything from infrastructure to weather patterns. Photo Credit: Some rights reserved by EnvironmentBlog on Flickr.

Climate change affects everything from infrastructure to weather events. Photo Credit: Some rights reserved by EnvironmentBlog on Flickr.

The different possible ways of how climate change might affect the world  range from the major issues (extreme weather events, infrastructure failure, etc.) to the less urgent ones (putting favorite foods such as coffee, chocolate, etc. at risk). But whether climate change is a matter of cold scientific calculation or a moral issue for our generation, its effects are increasingly being felt and observed.

National Geographic boils it down to a quick list of six ways climate change affects the world today and offers an overview  of the  wide array of consequences a planet’s changing climate entails.

A warming planet can expect to have perceptible disruptions on several aspects, primarily in agriculture. Changes in average global average temperature and atmospheric conditions will cause decline in some crops while causing an increase in others. In some areas like California’s Central Valley, most crops will likely suffer a sharp drop in yields due to factors like decreased bee pollination and shorter cold seasons. Climate change will also affect not only food production but food processing industries as well due to water and energy issues.

Climate change will also accelerate the loop of emissions that has rising temperatures  growing populations and energy demands locked in a vicious cycle. Changes in precipitation levels and extreme weather events will also impact power generation systems in many areas,  increasing demand for energy that might lead to even greater and more dangerous dependence on fossil fuels.

Outdated infrastructure built to deal with the last few centuries’ climate patterns will have a hard time keeping up or even standing in the face of today’s changing climate. Transportation routes for food, water, fuel and other necessary commodities can be disrupted by infrastructure failure. Extreme weather events that pounded many parts of the globe last year exposed infrastructure vulnerabilities and have alarmed authorities to the possibility of more similar episodes in the future.

NG states that climate change is expected to exacerbate atmospheric ozone up to ten parts per billion. Increases in atmospheric ozone have been linked to a harmful decrease in lung function. Dirtier air might cause more cases of asthma especially in cities and other urban areas. Airborne allergens might also cause more severe allergies from higher carbon dioxide and pollen (from longer pollen seasons).

Mega cities and highly populated urban areas could become more dangerous areas to live in than suburban areas. This is due to outdated infrastructure vulnerability to extreme weather events and peak demands, where a major failure could instantly impact millions of lives. This has already been observed in different instances last year from Hurricane Sandy devastated New York to power grid failures in India, as well as many others.

Climate change as a global issue transcends political preferences, individual sides of argument, and polarized opinions. The many ways climate change affects our lives demand that we see it not only as a mere idea but as a global, relevant, and current issue that requires our wise choices and effective course of action.

Estel M.
About Estel M. (339 Posts)

Estel Grace Masangkay is a creative writer who enjoys outdoor trips and nature activities. She is passionate about sustainability and environment conservation. Follow Me @Em23me.

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