What is Climate Change?

Climate Change

WWF (World Wildlife Fund) explains Climate Change as follows:

Global warming – doesn’t mean we’ll all just have warmer weather in future. As the planet heats, climate patterns change. It’ll mean more extreme and unpredictable weather across the world – many places will be hotter, some wetter, others drier. We know the planet has warmed by an average of nearly 1°C in the past century. That might not sound much, but on a global scale it’s a huge increase and it’s creating big problems for people and wildlife.

Those of us who were born in the 70s or earlier know that the climate is changing – getting more intense, more furious and more destructive. 

We can still remember the time when the monsoon rain only wreak havoc at the end of the year, and we more or less know when to expect the drought.  Nowadays, drought and the rainy season come and go as they please.  Earlier this year, the temperature got so low here in Malaysia that we did not even need to turn on the fan at our homes – who could have guessed that?

Man-made Climate Change is an undeniable fact.

The banner below explains climate change and its effects:

Climate Change Info-graphic
Info-graphic credit to: www.climateandhealthalliance.org

As stated by WWF above, Climate Change is not a small matter.  According to The Global Climate and Health Alliance :

The 2009 UCL-Lancet Commission stated that “climate change is the biggest global health threat of the 21st century”.  The impacts of climate change on human health and well-being are being felt today. These effects are both direct – through extreme weather events, food and water insecurity and infectious diseases – and indirect – through economic instability, migration and as a driver of conflict. Rigorous epidemiological research carried out by the WHO has demonstrated that even the relatively modest warming seen between 1970 and 2004 resulted in detectable effects on human health, with an estimated 140,000 extra deaths per year attributable to climate change at this time. A more recent analysis suggests that as many as 400,000 deaths are attributable to climate change in 2010, with a significant increase in this figure expected by 2030.  – The Global Climate and Health Alliance

Note : ‘140,000 extra deaths per year attributable to climate change’!

And the figure keeps increasing…

Have a look at the charts, pictures, etc, provided by Global Climate and Health Alliance, 2013 in www.climateandhealthalliance.org .  The Global Climate and Health Alliance is an alliance of stakeholders in the health sector who wish to tackle climate change and to protect and promote public health.  If you’re an educator or even a parent, their materials could really help you a lot in disseminating the information to our younger generation.

In case you yearn to read more about climate change, especially if you doubt it, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group II has prepared a comprehensive report.  IPCC is a scientific intergovernmental body under the auspices of the United Nations and represents the most authoritative scientific understanding of climate change.  More than 740 scientists from all over the world have been directly involved, as well as 1729 expert and governmental reviewers and the reports draws on peer-reviewed evidence produced by thousands more scientists.

You can find the report HERE.

But if you’re like me who can’t seem to digest lengthy scientific writings and prefer to read the shorter version, the Global Climate and Health Alliance has prepared a briefing report that summarises and interprets the 2600++ pages of scientific literature presented by the IPCC-WG2.  They’ve also developed film and series of infographics to explain the health implications of the IPCC-WG2 report.

You can find the report that summarises some of the IPCC’s key findings, discusses their implications for health, and provide recommendations on the way forward HERE.

I hope we can all lend a hand in healing mother earth.

– What is Climate Change?

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