People are experiencing the significant impacts of climate change, which include changing weather patterns, rising sea level, and more extreme weather events. The greenhouse gas emissions from human activities are driving climate change and continue to rise. They are now at their highest levels in history. Without action, the world’s average surface temperature is projected to rise over the 21st century and is likely to surpass 3 degrees Celsius this century—with some areas of the world expected to warm even more. The poorest and most vulnerable people are being affected the most.
Scientist warns that if no immediate action is taken, it will not be possible to keep global warming at the level of 1.5 degrees higher than pre-industrial levels. It is vital to start taking action now to combat climate change and closely related environmental problems such as deforestation, general environmental pollution, or excessive water, materials or energy use. We cannot wait for to sign legal agreements and then struggle to enforce them on their populations and multi-national enterprises, rather, everyone should start taking action now. But, before anyone does this, they must be aware of their contribution to climate change and environmental problems of the world.
One important short-term action to decrease the human impact on environment and climate is:
- Raise awareness among consumers and producers regarding their environmental footprints, including not only the direct effects of their production and consumption actions on the environment but also the indirect effects. Direct effects, for example, are the emissions associated with driving a car, leaving the water running while brushing teeth etc.. The indirect effects, however, are much larger in scope. These include all the environmental impacts, e.g. material extraction, water and energy use, carbon or methane emissions, that occur during each step along the global production chain of the consumption goods. Once consumers and producers see the link between their activities and resulting environmental degradation, they are more willing to take further actions.