How Climate Change is Having a Negative Impact on Our Ecosystem.
This term's topic for our blog is Biodiversity. More specifically species biodiversity, genetic biodiversity, and ecosystem biodiversity. When researching ecosystem biodiversity one of the main issues within that topic was climate change. I feel as though climate change is a topic that has been talked about for years. You may be thinking; “Yes I have heard this all before. The shrinking of land, the possibility of having to redesign the world map, and the extinction of polar bears. Always remember to turn out the lights when you leave a room.”
However there are many factors within the climate change issue that I feel many people may not be fully aware of.
For example, a drastic change in weather could play a major role in a person's health. The increase in extreme weather events, such as storms could heighten the chance of flooding, and high winds. That in and of itself could be dangerous for not only people, but their property as well.
On the other end of the spectrum warmer water temperatures could increase the chance of unhealthy air and water toxins. Changes in things like temperature, precipitation patterns, and extreme events could help the spread of diseases. Some of these diseases include salmonella, as well as other food poisonous bacteria. These bacterias grow much more quickly in warmer weather. Diseases such as these can cause gastrointestinal problems and in severe cases even death. Other diseases that could become a problem are water borne diseases that stem from flooding or heavy rainfall. The heavy rains can cause overflows from sewage treatment plants into fresh water systems. Not only will that contaminate the water we may drink, but it can also cause contamination to specific food crops, because of the pathogen-containing feces.
While you read this you may be thinking, “This is all very important, but I am no genie, how can I control the weather?” Well, the answers to your questions may be things you are already familiar with, or find yourself doing.
Some of these efforts include, reducing car emissions, by car pooling with co-workers, using public transportation, and driving slowly and steadily. Another way you could help is by installing a water-saving shower head, thus taking shorter showers. Also drying your clothes on the line, instead of using a clothes dryer. Now, I am aware that we all live in different areas of the world, and using some of these helpful tips could be harder for some. I for example, live in the city and there is no where for me to even hang my clothes outside. However, there are plenty of helpful tips that lend themselves to those in urban areas as well as rural areas. I personally, do not have access to a car in the city. As a result, I find myself walking, or using inexpensive means of public transportation.
So while there are certain areas in which some of these tips are not as useful as others don't be discouraged, everyone has the ability to contribute in one way or another. In conclusion, it is important to remember that when we take on these tasks in an effort to try and stop climate change in its tracks, we are not just "trying to help the polar bears" or cut down on our electric bill, we are also trying to greatly benefit ourselves as well, because although we may not consider ourselves to be a part of an ecosystem, we are. The negative impacts of climate change do not just put other animal species at risk, but us as well.
Here are some of the resources used in this blog post:
Photo Credit: blogs.plos.org