On the Issues

As technology expands its impact on people’s everyday life, more of us understand the cost of being aware of the truth that surrounds us. In this particular case, the truth to discuss is the environmental one which is of great importance to the survival of not only the plants, animals, and ecosystems but human survival as well. The topic on environmental and climate change has been both relevant and talked about since 1970, yet many governments, companies, and corporations have taken at least 30 years to take serious action towards committing to find environmentally friendly ways to keep their business.

Nowadays the discussion on finding a renewable source of energy, food, and supplies have taken the urgent tone. The reason why the tone has escalated that much is because the truth about our reality is getting to close and to fast to the term catastrophe. The most recent report on climate change was shown in the UN Environment’s sixth Global Environment Outlook (2019), and it showed in its GEO report how urgent and drastic changes will need to be made in order to prevent one million species to disappear, worsening of shortages, and more devastating wildfire.

Climate Change Consequences on People, Green Agreements, and Goals for this Century

As the time to face the consequences of our reckless actions is imminent, hundreds of scientists, peer reviewers, institutions, and partners have come forward to inform the rest of the world that we can still change our fatal destiny. In other words, we still have time to right our wrongs and lowering the global temperature. According to GEO and Nasa, since 2001, the warmest years of the planet have accompanied the new millennium; in fact, the year 2016 ranks as the warmest on records. The consequences of these high temperatures have caused, on the one hand, more intense heat waves, glaciers to shrink precipitating large chunks of ice on rivers and causing an accelerated rise on the sea level.

On the other hand, the impact on cities, countries, and their economy is measurable; for instance, in Houston, Florida and Puerto Rico which have been devastated by these natural disasters recently. These disasters such as floods, for example, have been persistent and ubiquitous not only in the United States of America but also in Asia where thousands of land crops have been flooded, which means that the economy of many farmers and cities have been severely affected. In addition, and as incredible it may seem, even though the consequences have directly affected the economy, and well-being of thousands of people, many governments around the world refuse to strongly commit to lowering or eradicate the cause of millions of dollars of expenditures for natural disasters.

Nevertheless, in 2015 many countries agreed to work towards lowering the earth temperature below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels to the end of the century and also to gathering efforts to limiting the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius. This international agreement was well received for many countries which worked to set their own goals to contribute to the general goal. The bad news is that in 2017 the President of the United States Donald Trump announced that the U.S would cease all participation in the Paris Agreement on Climate Change Mitigation. The United States of America is one of the top greenhouse gas emissions countries due to companies such as Chevron, ExxonMobil, and Peabody Energy.

Companies Destroying the Environment for Profit

These companies that constitute the Oil and Coal Industry are responsible for disastrous oil spills, air contamination, and death of probably thousands of people. Even though they have been fined for hundreds of millions of dollars for the damage they are causing to ecosystems, and drinking water, they have been reluctant to make significant efforts to move towards renewable energy.

In addition to it, companies that pollute the ocean with plastic are also located in the United States and these are Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Nestlé, Danone, Procter and Gamble, and Colgate-Palmolive. In regard to other economic sectors, the transportation industry is responsible for 29 percent of the 2017 greenhouse gas emissions in the United States; the Electricity production sector falls second, and it accounts for 28 percent of greenhouse gas emissions and in place number three the industry is responsible for 22.2 percent of 2017 greenhouse gas emissions.

All these companies as Chevron, ExxonMobil, Peabody Energy, Coca-Cola, Nestlé and Procter and Gamble continue today to emit important greenhouse gas emissions and plastic pollution thanks to the removal of environmental regulation from the government and so keeping the American economy growing. However, the story that lies behind “America First” is an environmentally damaging one that keeps putting the world a bit closer to natural disasters. Nowadays is known that companies such as ExxonMobil have funded multiple organizations denying anthropogenic global warming; nevertheless, many other companies and government are taking more concrete action to invest in renewable energy, and environmentally friendly products that fill the needs of the market without contaminating the world we live today.