In September, American novelist Jonathan Franzen published an essay for The NewYorker, titled “What if we stopped pretending” in which he writes that climate change is inevitable and that environmentalists and climate change activists are delusional for trying to stop it.
Many scientists and climate experts have said that if our planet warms by another two degrees Celsius, we could reach the point of no return and would be facing serious disasters with our ecosystems. Franzen says it is time to stop pretending that it isn’t going to happen.
His essay went viral, inspiring widespread condemnation. Several experts say that we still have time and that we can still save our planet if we all contributed to doing so, which would involve not only reversing the trend of the past three decades, but according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or the IPCC, we would also have to approach zero net emissions globally in the next three decades.
Franzen said that reaching this goal of cutting out all emissions globally would be so hard to accomplish that it is essentially unrealistic.
“Hardly a day seems to pass without my reading that it’s time to ‘roll up our sleeves’ and ‘save the planet;’ that the problem of climate change can be ‘solved’ if we summon the collective will. Although this message was probably still true in 1988, when the science became fully clear, we’ve emitted as much atmospheric carbon in the past thirty years as we did in the previous two centuries of industrialization. The facts have changed, but somehow the message stays the same.”
While most aren’t ready to give up on trying to prevent climate change just yet, everyone certainly agrees that we need to come up with ways to adapt to it at the same time, making some adjustments to minimize or prevent the damage that could be caused by it.
During climate change, storms, floods, droughts, and earthquakes will become more common and more severe as precipitation patterns change.
We could minimize the effects of this by building stronger structures that can withstand these conditions, such as buildings that are earthquake resistant, or floating structures to withstand the flood.
Agriculture will become vulnerable to extreme conditions and even growing swarms of crop-damaging pests in a warmer climate. One possible solution is to build large indoor farms that will protect crops and livestock from any threats.
There are many things that are already being done globally to adapt to this, for example, In 2010, the Maldives went through a tragic rise in sea levels. In response to this, they worked with an architectural company Waterstudio.NL, to build a floating city so rising sea levels are no longer a problem. This company is also building a city in The Westland, located near The Hague in Holland which contains floating social housing, floating islands, and floating apartment buildings. This is a very good form of adaptation and Waterstudio.NL aims to build many more floating structures in areas where floods will be more common during global warming.
If we do not adapt and keep things the same way, the effects of global warming will cause extreme damage and will cost us more to rebuild and adapt after the damage has been done.
Cover Image: PXhere