When people say they are trying to keep their heads above water, normally it is used as a figure of speech to describe having financial difficulties, just enough money to cover living expenses for yourself and your family if you have one. With the rise of climate change that term will be taken literally. With rising sea levels a lot of cities are in danger of being under water. Its already a problem with millennial not being able to afford to purchase housing on their own and are moving out of their parents at a much older age than the past generation. With the amount of student loan debt, staggered wages, and the skyrocketing prices of housing its already becoming hard for the younger generation to start living on their own. Now the worry for the future is if areas are even going to be habitable.
Over the past century, the U.S temperatures have increased. Scientists have been observing the rise of sea level since the late 18th century. As it continues to rise it will threaten homes, especially ones that border the coast, and infrastructure. New Jersey is the 3rd fastest warming state in the country, it has a temperature of 2.23 degrees Fahrenheit. The Garden States abundance of water makes increased humidity, which means more heat, warmer air has the potential to hold more water vapor. Water vapor is potent greenhouse gas, trapping heat in the atmosphere that would otherwise disappear. Senior citizens are more vulnerable to flooding and loss of power in their home. The sea level in N.J rises at the shore faster than the global average. From Sandy Hook to Cape may it rose up to 4 inches because of compaction of sediments cause by natural effects and groundwater withdrawal. There is a prediction that in the end of the century there will be at least 20 communities in the state to be underwater, along with others being completely surrounded by the seas.
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s to do list- Devise a coordinated response to adapt to increasing sea levels, eroding beaches, increased flooding, and climate change.
He plans on launching a plan for coastal resiliency, new approaches to development along the coastlines and waterways are to be considered. There are things to take into consideration.
- How is an area of people going to plan for an orderly retreat from the most flood-prone areas?
- How can new development be sited and built to withstand future storms and rise in sea levels?
Its important that the generations that are already here take care of the communities and society in general for future generations to come. So, they can benefit from the same resources and opportunities that we once did and maintaining a safe and healthy environment is one of them. For decades we’ve been in repetition of our bad habits causing environmental damage over and over again which is going to leave the future generations with no choice but, to clean up the mess that was carelessly left behind, if thats even possible. In regards of climate change the damages will become irreversible and we need to act now before its too late. Scientists have been warning us for decades about the dangers of climate change to humanity. They’ve been calculating how the release of carbon dioxide will lead to the warming of our earth and how the use of renewable energies have increased only by 3.6% from the late 1990s to 2017. If the use of emissions continue to grow, resulting into nations around the world to consume more energy, than we are putting humanity at risk of facing a “point of no return”.
Here is what needs to be done in order to fight against the problems of climate change that shall no longer be ignored:
- STOP, denying that climate change is real and the devastating impact it has on the world.
- Discontinue paving over underdeveloped land and construction of buildings that increase flooding and carbon footprints.
- Don’t put infrastructure in public places, in order to prevent natural areas from development. So, therefore taxpayers’ money will go to protecting the natural environment instead of the development of establishments.
- Increase government spending on Everglades restoration projects in order to prevent the damaging impacts of sea level.