Climate Literacy and the Plan for Clean Power
Earth Day, which is celebrated every year throughout the world on April 22nd, was first established back in 1970. Even then, people were beginning to understand that the way we lived was having a huge impact on the environment around us. As the years have passed, the focus of Earth Day – to raise awareness and support for environmental protection – has grown more and more important. This is in large part due to the skyrocketing population growth and the fast advancement of certain technologies over the past few decades, which combined together have had a negative impact on the environment in a number of ways.
Although more people, businesses, and organizations are taking steps to reduce their carbon footprint due to the fact that doing so can actually help them save money as well as save the environment, Earth Day is still vital to raising awareness. Especially as scientists the world over have expressed their growing concerns about climate change.
What is Climate Change?
The climate is the typical weather that any given place experiences at certain times of the year. Climate change occurs when an unusual weather pattern emerges. For example, if an area that usually experiences heavy rainfall every spring goes through a lengthy drought during that period, that is considered a climate change. However, there is also the earth’s climate change. This usually refers to the earth’s usual temperature.
The climate of the earth has changed naturally over the course of its existence. In fact, there have been times when the earth has been cooler than it is presently. These periods can last thousands to millions of years. Scientists who have been studying the earth’s climate have discovered that the earth has been growing warmer every year and that it has increased by one degree Fahrenheit in the last hundred years alone.
What Causes Climate Change?
Climate changes have happened before – even before human beings came onto the scene. Climate change often happens naturally. For example, the distance of the earth from the sun could change minutely and affect the earth’s climate by the amount of energy the sun releases in that smaller proximity. But the reason why climate change has become such a hot topic recently is because we are the ones that are currently causing it. This means that the climate change the earth is undergoing is not natural.
Many of the things that we do every day – from driving vehicles to heating and cooling our homes to cooking our food – require energy. In the last few centuries, we have obtained that energy by burning coal, oil and gas. Burning these energy sources results in the release of gases into the air. These gases heat the air around the earth up, which in turn is what is causing the climate to change so quickly.
Why Does Climate Change Matter?
One degree may not seem like a lot to worry about – we barely notice a difference of one degree in the temperature outside or inside. But it can have a huge impact on the earth’s environment. That one degree has already caused snow and ice to begin melting in areas where it wouldn’t normally have melted. This, in turn, has resulted in the ocean levels beginning to rise. As you can imagine, the warmer the earth gets, the more ice and snow will melt – and the higher the ocean levels will get. This can pose a dangerous problem to people living in coastal areas.
Scientists from all over the world believe that if we continue down the path that we are headed, the earth will continue heating up at an even faster rate over the next hundred years. As this happens, we will begin seeing irregular climate changes throughout the world. For example, summers in one area may get longer while an area that experiences little snowfall during the winters may suddenly experience blizzards. There may also be an increase in severe storms, from hurricanes to tornadoes and more. Not to mention the little issue in regards to the rise of the ocean levels.
Why Does Climate Literacy Matter?
Although many people are aware of climate change, there are still millions of people all over the world who aren’t. Even amongst those who are aware of climate change, many don’t believe that it will have that big of an impact on the environment; they see it as a natural change in the planet that is not affected by human energy use.
This includes those with vested interests in the energy sources we consume, such as oil and gas companies. They tend to deny that climate change will have an impact on us and that we have an impact on climate change because of energy saving technologies, such as solar power, are their direct competition.
Because of this, educating people about climate change is essential to helping to curb our contribution to it and to prevent climate change from causing serious problems around the world.
In fact, this year’s Earth Day will be focusing on climate literacy. The Earth Day Network plans on launching a campaign for global climate literacy by 2020. Their goal is to ensure that every student throughout the world will be climate literate by the time they graduate. The hope is that they will, therefore, make a positive contribution to the earth’s environment by helping raise awareness for climate change as well as making an effort to curb it.
How Can You Fight Climate Change?
There are many things that you can do to fight climate change on your own that will certainly benefit our environment, such as by taking steps to make your building more sustainable and energy efficient.
For example, you could upgrade your heating system by replacing that old furnace with a geothermal heating system or a solar heating system. You could even implement an automated building system to help cut down on wasted energy throughout your entire building. However, raising awareness of climate change is important as well. The most effective way to do this is to get directly involved.
One option is to donate money to various organizations focusing on climate literacy, such as the Earth Day Network. Another is to keep yourself informed about climate change and to inform others as well. For example, sign up to Earth Day Network’s newsletter to stay up-to-date on current news regarding climate change. Read up on climate change when you can and share it with others. Sharing content regarding climate change on social media with your followers and friends is an excellent way to spread awareness as well as to help contribute to climate literacy.
Doing everything you can to reduce your energy use is an important way to help benefit the environment as well as reduce your overhead costs. As Earth Day approaches, do your part to learn about climate change and what you can do to prevent it by looking into ways that you can make your building more energy-efficient. Visit us at BOSS Controls for more information regarding climate literacy as well as information about how our Smart Plugs and Atmospheres® software can help reduce your building’s impact on our climate.