TED Conversations

Huey Freeman

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Why is there not enough being done in terms of reducing our impacts on climate change?

The issues regarding climate change have been on the rise in the media world (well the non-bias media at least) in the past few months.

1) There is 95% certainty that human activity is the cause of global warming.
2) Carbon dioxide is at an unprecedented level since the last 800,00 years.
3) Sea levels are expected to rise at a faster rate than the last 40 years, and
4) Over the last 2 decades, the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have been melting at an increasingly high rate, as well as glaciers receding in most parts of the world.

This is not the only thing that catches the eye when it comes to polluting the environment. As we speak, football fields worth of land is being destroyed, in particular the Amazon rain forest, due to the need for expansion of agriculture and fertile land. This not only causes the highest amount of biodiversity loss, but is also one of the biggest contributors to release of GHG (greenhouse gases).

Fortunately there are alternatives. In fact, alternative and renewable technologies world wide are just waiting to be embraced...
Sadly, little action is being implemented by leaders world wide to really curb our fossil fuels consumption.

What in the world is it going to take to wake people up? Or even world leaders for that matter? Should there be more consequences not meeting targets for GHG reductions? Less subsidization in fossil fuels?

Let me know your thoughts!


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    Nov 26 2013: 1) you need to be careful about overstating the actual IPCC findings " There is 95% certainty that human activity is the cause of global warming" The IPPC actually says ther is a 95% probability that human activity is the major contributor. So ther's 95% probability that 50% of the warming is from us. By misrepresenting the IPCC you just give people ammunition in the arguement. To your question, the fact that obesity is the major contributor to health problems in western countries and yet we just keep getting fatter would suggest we will start taking climate change seriously when people we know start dying.
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      Nov 26 2013: Its over half of the observed average global temperature. But it is this percentage of warming that has had the biggest impact on the rising warming trends observed by climate scientists. So there's not much that changes if i had stated the first point differently, because there is still an unprecedented amount of warming due to human activities.
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        Nov 26 2013: Transmitting power from one side of Texas to the other is hardly a long way. Don't believe the hype, if Texas was where I live it would be the second smallest mainland state. It's not even 1000km from one side to the other.
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        Nov 26 2013: Look at a map of Australia. Perth, Alice Springs and Darwin are all a long way from anywhere. Where the distances are small there isn't room for the wind farms and where there is room for the wind farms the distances are too big.
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          Nov 26 2013: Im not going to sit here and try to explain down to the detail of how energy could be implemented exactly in your area, that takes strategic observations of the land, and the best available renewable energy resources to fit certain regions (some places are better for wind, others better for solar, tide, wave etc.).

          But the main point here is that solutions to problems such as energy transportation of wind farms are being implemented and hypotheses are being tested. Knowing the nature of technology, it's only going to continue to improve and become more efficient. Either we embrace it, or continue to fight it.

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