Earth Day is fast approaching.
In honor of our ever-amazing planet, we thought it was important to mention the rapid, life-threatening effects of climate change that lie ahead in our near future.
Sure, we know there are plenty of climate change skeptics out there, but the facts don’t lie. Well-respected scientists and journalists have recently come to some terrifyingly legitimately-sounding conclusions.
As Bill McKibben, prominent green journalist, author and distinguished scholar, puts it:
The Arctic ice cap is melting, the great glacier above Greenland is thinning, both with disconcerting and unexpected speed. The oceans are distinctly more acidic and their level is rising. The greatest storms on our planet, hurricanes and cyclones, have become more powerful. The great rain forest of the Amazon is drying on its margins. The great boreal forest of North America is dying in a matter of years. [This] new planet looks more or less like our own but clearly isn’t. This is the biggest thing that’s ever happened.
What will our children and grandchildren think of us, the generation that allowed these atrocities against our planet to take place?
Climate change is real.
If you were to take a relative look back at Earth during the 1950s, you would notice that there were two-thirds fewer humans than there are now. There would be about 90 percent more fish and 40 percent more phytoplankton in our oceans, over a million various species of animals and plants that have since gone extinct thriving in the wild, and twice as many trees flourishing in the soil.
Ancient aquifers would carry three times more fresh drinking water, there would be 80 percent more ice covering the North Pole and you know those billions of tons of plastic that plague the planet? Non-existent.
The list literally goes on and on. But we haven’t seen anything yet.
If current trends in global warming continue unchecked, not only will the human species be at risk, but many of the world’s most well-known and historically significant cultural landmarks — including the Glacier National Park in Montana, the Statue of Liberty in New York City and Venice, Italy — could be destroyed.
“When people think about climate change, most of the time they’re thinking about ecological or economic consequences,” Ben Marzeion, an assistant professor at the Institute of Meteorology and Geophysics at the University of Innsbruck in Austria, told Live Science. “We thought it would be interesting to add another dimension to that: the cultural implications of climate change.”
Check out the slideshow above for six places you need to visit before climate change destroys them.
Happy Earth Day!
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