As October 31st rolls around, fear turns into fun! All the freaky thrills you’ve kept hidden away for the past 364 days come crawling back out. The unhealthy obsession with Reese’s Pieces, the horror movie binges, and the same devil costume you have been wearing to college parties every year are just dying to make their annual appearance!
Except there is one horror, a bone-chilling, hair-raising menace that will make an appearance this Halloween and the rest of the year . . . or maybe, if you are really unlucky, the rest of your life.
We’re talking climate crisis, baby!
This Halloween, you can scare yourself and your friends with these rattling facts about the deteriorating world around us!
Climate change is already happening and its detrimental to human life.
Global climate change is occurring, right now. The observable effects on the environment can be seen across the world. The ice sheets are ripping from their restraints, sea levels are rising, wildfires are blazing and temperatures are increasing rapidly, both above and below the waterline. Scientists are confident that global temperatures will continue to rise for decades to come; a direct result of greenhouse gasses that are produced by human activities. The jumps in temperature will likely feed the more drastic effects of climate change, negatively impacting air quality and crop production, increasing the spread of infectious diseases, and threaten freshwater deposits.
It all comes full circle: humans created the mess and now we are going to live with the consequences.
The 20 hottest years on record have been in the past 22 years.
The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) collected the research that was released in the 2018 United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, stating that the 20 warmest years on record have occurred in the last 22 years. This is an upward and long-term temperature trend. 2015, 2016, 2017,2018 and 2019 had some of the highest temperatures since 1880.
Skeletons in your closet? The oceans got them, too.
The ocean absorbs large quantities of heat as a result of the increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, mainly from fossil fuel consumption. The ocean is acting as a shield, protecting humans from some of the more rapid changes in climate. Without the ocean acting as a buffer, temperatures across the globe would already have risen much more than what we are currently seeing. However, ocean warming leads to deoxygenation, or a reduction in the amount of oxygen in the ocean. The increasing temperatures paired with ocean acidification, or the decrease in pH of the ocean due to an uptake of CO2, affects marine species and underwater ecosystems.
Coral reefs are one of the ecosystems that are particularly vulnerable to changes in sea temperatures. Mass coral bleaching events and infectious disease outbreaks among corals are already occurring. The consortiums of color and biodiversity of the reefs are being boiled into limestone skeletons; graveyards replace ecosystems.
The worst impacts of climate change could be irreversible by 2030.
The IPCC warned the public that we are a ticking clock; we have ten years to prevent the worst impacts of climate change. We must cut our emissions in half to even attempt to avert catastrophic impacts that are bubbling over our boiling pot of a planet. Despite this fact, little has changed in regard to our greenhouse gas emissions, and that is terrifying.
If you are not scared, you should be.