Goal 13 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals is about Climate Change. The rapid growth of the world’s technology and production side-lined environment for several decades in both the 19th and 20th centuries. Excessive use of fossil fuels to power up machines and run power plants and manufacturing units has resulted in increased greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
Greenhouse gases absorb and emit radiant energy within the thermal infrared range, causing the greenhouse effect. This trapped heat by the gases increases the temperature, keeping the planet warm even when there is no sunlight or source of heat energy.
The goal emphasizes taking immediate actions to protect the planet from climate change and its impacts. Every country across the world is experiencing drastic effects of climate change.
According to UNDP, greenhouse gases are almost up by 50% than in 1990. The last decade, 2010-2019, recorded the hottest temperatures to date.
Global warming is causing long-lasting changes to our climate system that threatens irreversible consequences if we do not act. Climate change continued exacerbating the frequency of natural disasters, such as massive wildfires, droughts, hurricanes, and floods, affecting more than 39 million people.
The effects of climate change are not just the rising temperature of the planet or the environment. There are severe economic and social repercussions of climate change as well. The annual average economic losses incurred from climate change and climate-related disasters are in billions of dollars.
The human impact of geophysical disasters is almost 91% climate-related has taken the lives of 1.3 million people leaving 4.4 billion injured.
Simple practices like preserving natural resources could be helpful to sustain them for a long time. Switching from non-renewable resources for power and electricity to renewable sources like solar and wind could reduce the pollution and greenhouse gases emitted to the environment. Using electric cars, public transport, and bicycles to run errands and travel would reduce your carbon footprint and reduce pollution to a great extent. These environmental practices could save millions every year.
Governments and citizens across the world have been taking active decisions and great initiatives to keep the greenhouse gages in check. The Paris Agreement, built upon the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), was adopted at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, in December 2015 by the members of the UN. It brought all nations together to fight climate change and adapt to its effects to keep the temperature rise this century below 2 C°.
There are laws to protect the environment and preserve natural resources, but it’s time to improve protective measures and laws about climate change. Governments must realize the intensity of the situation and its impact on the planet and humankind. We, as citizens, must emphasize renewing and making better policies to protect the planet from catastrophes that lie ahead while safeguarding the activists who stood up and spoke their hearts out to convey the significance of climate change.
Climate change is a serious issue, especially with everything the world is facing today. Even if the damages are extensive, it is not too late to work on reversing them. 2020 saw carbon reduction in the atmosphere up to 8%. It happened because the lockdown kept everyone inside while the entire world was still functioning. The nature rejuvenated itself while the mankind suffered. It is time we prioritize mother earth over materialistic requirements and undo the damage we did. Climate Change is an urgent issue and the world should treated it like one for there is no planet B.