The various societies face different challenging choices on how to quickly respond to the consequences of future climate change. Present strategies include reducing in great quantities emissions, the capturing of carbon dioxide, geoengineering and adaptation. Some of these strategies which could be combined up to certain extents, carry lots of different environmental risks, and as they could possibly present different societal consequences. Climate science has a role of informing decisions by providing best possible knowledge of climate outcomes. Not forgetting the different consequences of alternative action courses which we shall be discussing all through this article so as the better know and understand the different options addressed to climate change all round the world and their consequences.
We all can join hands in creating and developing more strategies so as to conserve the Earth. This we shall do by finding and implementing the different ways to reduce climate change some of which we shall be discussing below. In the process of looking for ways to reduce climate change and the different risks from future induced human climate change will basically be based on the combination of four main broad strategies;
a) Emissions reduction: this is an effective climate change mitigation strategy. Here we talk of reducing climate change through the reduction and if possible stopping the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere especially carbon dioxide and methane which are leaders in the domain.
b) Sequestration: Here we are referring to the removals of great quantities of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere in to permanent biological, oceanic and geological reservoirs as a way of reducing climate change.
c) Adaptations: Adaptation as a way of reducing climate change has to do with the human beings adapting and coping with the climates as it keeps on changing in either planned or unplanned ways as long as it is of good shelter.
d) Solar geoengineering: we need large scale engineered modifications and limitations of the amount of sun light reaching the earth. This is done in attempt to disrupt the effects of the ongoing greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere as a way of reducing climate change.
Each of the above does embodies a large suite of specific options, with their associated costs, risks and benefits. All of the above strategies can all affect each other, as an example doing nothing to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases would obviously lead to increased expenditures in adapting to climate changes. Thus increasing chances of future resort to geoengineering. If in case the world should decide on maintaining warming to less than 2 degrees Celsius being above preindustrial. Then future commutations in carbon dioxide emissions would also have to be capped 30 years’ worth of the current emissions.
There is a variation in estimates of carbon in fossil fuel reserves, but all have agreed that these reserves are several times larger than the carbon cap of a 2 degrees Celsius warming limit. As a result such a carbon cap or even a significant one can only be made if a majority of the available fossil fuel reserves are kept unburnt. If we have carbon dioxide captured and permanently sequestered then nitrous oxides, methane, halocarbon gases together with aerosols of black carbon also have serious warming effects and a reduction in great quantities of their emissions would reduce the warming rate. No matter what their combined contributions can do, it would always remain inferior to that which carbon dioxide can do on its own alone. As a result the reductions cannot meet a gaol such as 2 degrees Celsius warming limit.
There exist many ways of reducing the emissions of carbon dioxide and other global warming agents including a shift in energy supply away from dependence on fossil fuels, efficiency domestic energy, industrial energy, sectorial energy and service energy. We can also have a reduction in overall demand through better designs in systems. With efficient reductions in the emissions of methane, nitrous oxides, and gases of halocarbons together with black carbon aerosols as a good way of reducing climate change. The uptake of all these options is actually happening now as multiple studies have all shown they can expand in an effective way. Principally there are two interventions that could relax restrictions on future emissions but with lots of significant risks, uncertainties, costs and limitations.
One would obviously be removing carbon dioxides in great quantities from combustion exhaust streams, from the air and sequester it deep underground, in deep oceans, trees or soils in isolated areas. Such an activity of removing can hold carbon in its storage for many centuries without releasing any of it. These carbon sequestration strategies face logistical, technical and economic challenges.
Another possible intervention as a way of reducing climate change would be to reduce the Earth’s net absorption of sunlight rays for example by generating an efficient stratospheric aerosol layer. Shields could be placed in space so as to block most of these rays coming from the sun as a way of reducing climate change. But this measure can increase surface warming by the increasing greenhouse gas emissions. But placing shields would possibly do nothing to stop ocean acidifications. This would need a constant maintenance in perpetuity, and would obviously carry multiple risks of adverse additional consequences on the global scale. Our present understanding of the climate doesn’t permit us to understand fully the implications of such actions.
Some climate change is actually inevitable so some adaptation would be needed so as to cope with such inevitable climate change. Under the light of any realistic future emissions scenario, some additional future global warming is actually inevitable. So we need to develop effective adaptation strategies. So adaptation is needed right now in response to the different climate changes that have already occurred. The stronger the intensity of carbon dioxide emitted in the atmosphere the stronger the adaptation measures which shall be needed in the coming future. Human and the ecosystem have limits in their adaptation capacities particularly in less developed or developing regions of the world.
One cannot provide a solution to a problem without first understanding the problem itself. So in the prevention of global warming we must understand its cause and finally bringing out remedies or preventive methods so as to fight against it. We can define global warming in a general way as an increase in the average temperature of the earth’s atmosphere, more precisely an increase in sustained manner great enough to cause changes in the global climate.
The present average temperatures of the globe are higher than they have ever been for the past millennium, with the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere remarkably above all previous records which were taken over time. In this century, global warming is the main talk of the town, with all its undesired effects already brought to daylight by recurring events of massive annihilating droughts, floods, and ravaging cyclones all over the whole globe.
Significant environmental issues
Because global warming is a phenomena not clearly independent but linked to other environmental issues, It is of primary importance to understand the whole chain of environmental issues so as to better mitigate global warming.
- Depletion of the ozone layer
- Loss of global biodiversity
- Climate change
- Industrial emissions
- Exploitation of natural resources
In other to prevent global warming all the above should be well understood and correctly managed. Let us discuss some preventive methods against global warming.
The amount of pollutants entering the atmosphere leading to global warming can be decreased greatly thus lessening global climate change by the activities of recycling of materials. Thereby reducing the amount of raw materials an industry needs to use for the creation of new products actually slows down the cutting down of trees and emissions of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Each and every one should do their best in reducing waste by choosing reusable products instead of choosing disposable ones. Another efficient way is buying products with minimal packaging thereby reducing amount of waste, whenever possible one should recycle plastic, paper, newspaper, aluminium cans and glass.
Reducing oil dependence
One of the major causes of global warming is the burning of fossil fuels into the atmosphere which is a serious harm to the environment because of the world’s dependence on it . So as a way of preventing global warming the world can promote and adapt to the use of electric cars which take the place of vehicles possessing highly polluting internal combustion engines.
As a way of reducing gasoline consumption ethanol fuel made from corn can be used.
Drive smart and drive less
Talking of driving less is directly talking of less emission of pollutant gases which would increase global warming, and as a result saving the amounts of gasoline. Biking and walking are not just great forms of exercises but also contribute greatly in preventing global warming so it should be encouraged by all local authorities. Each and every one should make sure during driving the car is running efficiently.
Plant a tree
A tree per person is important because trees are efficient in reducing global warming through the process of photosynthesis where they absorb carbon dioxide and send out oxygen in return. But there exist very few plants to fully counter the increases of carbon dioxide mostly caused by automobile traffic, manufacturing processes and other human activities on Earth.
Greatly confronted with the costs and consequences of inaction to climate change, there has been a need for the mitigation of climate change. Governments have reached an international consensus that global emissions have to be cut down in a significant way. So many countries are therefore working towards an international framework for quick action. OECD did simulated a number of possible scenarios for striving reductions in GHG emissions alongside with their environmental and economic impacts as compared to those of baseline scenario having no new policy action as a mitigation method of climate change.
Aimed at illustrative purposes, economic issues all involved in the designing of a comprehensive tactic so as to reduce emissions are hereby explored primarily by examining just one mitigation reference scenario. This reference scenario actually stabilises GHG concentration levels at 550 parts per million of carbon dioxide. Major changes in production and behaviour tactics would greatly be needed to achieve GHG mitigation at its lowest possible costs, mitigation is archived by bringing both a reduction in energy intensity of GDP together with the intensity of carbon energy actually used.
Most economic responses come from the power sector which is currently the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions, as the emissions of carbon become more expensive, the nuclear power generation, which emits no carbon, thereby becomes increasingly more attractive indeed. From the reference mitigation scenario power coming from renewable energy like wind and solar will obviously have an increase strongly in percentage terms. Present available technological alternatives in the industry are less easily noticed and identifiable, and as a result an increase in carbon prices would eventually induce change in consumption outlines.
The transport sector of course is the most challenging in the sense even large changes in emission costs appear to have just modest impacts at their levels. Greenhouse gas build-up in the atmosphere where much of it is being driven by man and his activities is already affecting in an alarming way the global climates.
Under the present projections, there shall be a continuous increase in the concentrations of GHGs, assuring the continuity process of global warming, a call for climate change mitigation strategies. There is the uneven distribution of the costs of both the climate change and abatement action across regions and different sectors. This is done so as to support climate change mitigation strategy of abatement. All incentives to participating in abatement frameworks are heterogeneous. Different approaches and instruments maybe of good help in providing lots of support for action. Any strategy put in place to fight against climate changes has to be credible and flexible thus adapting to all conditions. There is the existence of credibility which is essential because no strategy no matter how it has been well designed will succeed if the people lack confidence.
One of the most effective ways of to blunt climate change is reducing carbon emissions from electrical generations. This is because decarbonisation takes place more rapidly in electricity generation than in the industry. The U.S. agency in charge of environmental protection did proposed power plant rules, which were published in June 2014. They were anticipated in order to accelerate shift of natural gas thereby providing sufficient incentives to encourage the positioning of industrial scale storage and carbon capture for coal fired plants.
For the upcoming 20 years, investments annually in renewable energies, electricity and nuclear generation with carbon capture together with storage have been projected to rise by 147 dollars billion. Another climate change mitigation strategy has to do with all the countries in the world fighting climate change together and at the same time.
Adaptation policy: issues and needs
Adaptation must proceed at several levels in order to be most effective. However for this effort to bring forth positive results, they must be guided and supported by national policies. These efforts collectively meet a wide range of interconnected needs, briefly being;
Information: All effective strategies must relie on the best data available on the severity and nature of possible impacts over different timeframes.
Capacity: one of the priorities should be strengthening capacities in both technical and planning disciplines which are most relevant to understanding all potential climate impacts thus devising possible response strategies.
Financial resources: All poorer countries would obviously require resources to improve capacity thereby undertaking specific adaptation measures thus coping with all impacts as they occur.
Institutions: Adaptation and knowledge about the changing climate situation should be integrated across all existing institutions.
Technology: In the mitigation of climate change, success in adaptation depends greatly on access to technological developments suited for specific needs and adaptation of changing climates.
Let us not sit behind fold our arms and wait for climate changes to occur before we come forth looking for ways on fighting it. The best remedy to this situation is prevention which we can all join hands to make a difference and make the world better for us and the coming generations.