The UN are congregating today in the largest environmental summit since 2015’s Paris treaty. The summit begins with a warning that we are the last generation that can prevent climate change and its detrimental impacts. Representatives from almost 200 nations are to meet in Poland for the next 2 weeks, aiming to establish a global strategy for tackling climate change. The summit was called for in response to this year’s startling environmental news: the past 4 years have been the hottest on record, and global emissions are set to rise once again, when the aim is to cut them in half by 2030. According to scientists’ advice, we need to increase our climate change efforts by 5 fold if we are to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees. The effects of global warming have already been experienced by several nations worldwide. This year, we have witnessed environmental disasters including (but by no means limited to) wildfires in Europe and California, and floods in Japan and India. This year has also seen the birth of serious changes in consumer habits, with many individuals dedicating more thought to their personal environmental impact. Effective? Perhaps, however if we are to effectively begin to tackle the effects of climate change we must call for changes in legislation and industrial practice. According to Adriana Opromolla, at NGO Caritas Internationalis, “transformation is possible, but political will is needed to make it happen.”
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