Whether you believe global warming is a threat to Planet Earth, a myth, or a colossal hoax perpetrated on the people who inhabit our planet, it is perhaps the most important issue of our time.
The winter of 2012-2013 was a cold one. Even the spring was unusually cool in much of the country. It has made many Americans shake their heads in disbelief at the dire warnings of global warming that continue to come out of the scientific community. The whole colder-winters-caused-by-global-warming thing is counterintuitive to most of the general public and even to some scientists. The result is that the number of Americans who believe global warming is actually occurring has dropped seven percentage points since the fall of 2012.
Some people believe that climate and weather is the same thing. When a significant snowstorm hits or if it is unusually cold for a period of time, they believe that global warming is just a lot of silly hysteria. Of the people who think global warming is actually happening, only 49 percent of respondents to a recent survey believe that it is mostly caused by human activities.
The reality is the world’s climate system is changing and it is mostly our fault. Our planet is growing warmer. It is a science fact and it is measurable. The evidence is collected from observing average temperatures that are increasing globally in ocean and air temperatures, melting ice and snow, and rising sea levels. The challenge is in convincing the public and policy makers. Tomes have been and are being written in an effort to get across how serious the problem is, but it is impossible to convince everyone. (Think of Columbus and the flat world vs. round world hypothesis.) But the human race of today’s world is savvy and knowledgeable and will, hopefully, search out the truth. We will sort through all the hype and misinformation and conspiracy theories and come to our own conclusions.
If you or your loved ones have no progeny to inhabit Earth after you are gone, there’s no reason to overly concern yourself about global warming. Sure it’s a big problem, but not one that we can’t adapt to and live with in our lifetime. However if you are concerned about future generations and have any doubt about global warming, you may want to proceed with your life as if it is a fact and watch that carbon footprint you are leaving behind. What could it hurt? If you are right and global warming is a fact, future generations will thank you; if you are wrong, then no harm has been done. However if global warming is fact and we do nothing, there may not be any future generations to contemplate the thoughtless actions of their irresponsible ancestors.