The number of victims of global warming is in the tens of thousands. They are dying of deadly heat and hunger, dying in armed confrontations caused by the exorbitant warming of the planet.
Indirect murder – this is how the impact of global warming can be called, which significantly adds to the list of victims from the direct influence of the heat. The inevitable drought from rising temperatures in poor countries leads to lower or loss of crops, food shortages lead to hunger and higher prices, the struggle for resources escalates into armed conflicts.
Leading scientists warn – climate change can turn our planet into a desert in a few decades, and this is at best. At worst, they will make it uninhabitable.
June 2021 set many temperature records – in Eastern and Northern Europe, Canada, Siberia, and some Asian countries. In North America, the first month of summer was the hottest on record, according to Copernicus, which tracks climate change over the long term. Europe is in second place, only slightly yielding its leadership. IN Canada extreme temperatures have killed more than 700 people.
According to the unanimous opinion of experts, the hot summer of 2021 is evidence of global warming, heating of the atmosphere due to the greenhouse effect. Frederick Otto, a professor at the Institute of Environmental Change at Oxford University, notes that deaths from heat waves are “slower” than, for example, deaths from tsunamis or hurricanes, and says:
“There is absolutely no doubt that climate change has played a key role here. People rarely fall dead in the middle of the street. They are dying quietly at home, from poor insulation and lack of air conditioning. “
Numerous studies allow linking death from heat with climatic changes, as well as realistically assess the scale of the disaster. According to scientists, the number of victims of extremely hot weather would have been less than one and a half times, if not for global warming. A large-scale study of 70 climatologists and epidemiologists from 43 countries concluded that human-induced global warming is responsible for 37% of total heat deaths. In countries such as Colombia and Ecuador, this percentage reaches 75!
According to the World Health Organization, in the period 1998-2017, about 160 thousand people died from the heat in the world. That is, tens of thousands of people could have survived if not for extreme climate change.
Tip Palmer, professor of atmospheric physics at Oxford University, notes that the terrible June heat in Canada and eastern Europe cannot even be compared with the hellish hell that is observed in tropical and subtropical countries:
“Not only the heat, but also the humidity there reach such a level that the human body in such conditions is simply not able to support life. We must admit that in the developing countries of the world, hot periods will not be compared even with what we saw in Canada. Extreme weather will be much more intense there and will claim many more lives. “
He argues that in conditions of high atmospheric pressure, even a small natural increase in the level of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere can lead to a temperature increase of several degrees, and in just 2-3 weeks. And in abnormally hot weather, this can be critical.
The indirect effect of heat is much more deadly than the direct one, and people help it in this. Standard chain: heat leads to drought, drought leads to crop failure, crop failure to hunger. Further, the struggle for resources and conflicts begins. Climate change and the rise in conflict, as well as migration from warmer regions, are closely related, as research has convincingly shown.
For example, one of the main reasons for the “Arab Spring” (2010-2012) was precisely the drought. It, plus the lack of fresh water, caused inflation, unemployment, migration of residents, mass protests and, ultimately, a full-scale civil war in Syria. For 10 years of hostilities, about half a million people have died there, 200 thousand are missing, 1/3 of them are civilians. The mass exodus of refugees from the countries of the Middle East and Africa is based on the same long-term climatic changes, which has also been proven by studies.
What lies ahead for humanity? The forecasts are extremely disappointing. Scientists say: compared to the current average annual temperature of 11-15 ° C in most regions of the world, in 50 years this figure will increase to 29 ° C, that is, it will actually double. If the forecasts turn out to be correct, exactly this temperature regime will prevail on a fifth of the land area of our planet by 2070. The authors of a large-scale study, which involved scientists from Britain, Denmark, the Netherlands, the United States, Japan, China and Uruguay, warn:
“Global warming will have a significant impact on entire ecosystems, as well as seriously affect human health, livelihood systems, food security, water supplies and economic growth in general.”
Whether humanity will be able to survive in such conditions, in principle, is a big question. The researchers believe that if the planet warms up at the same rate, it will simply be unsuitable for human life. And only a few decades later.
Brian Hoskins, professor at University College London and founder of the Climate Change and Environment Institute, warns that the reality could be worse than forecasts:
“Climate models describe the future in which we will find ourselves in a fortunate set of circumstances, if we are lucky. And the estimates put in them may turn out to be too conservative. “
The Paris Climate Agreement, which was adopted 5 years ago, tries to contain the rise in average annual global temperatures. The agreed limit is 1.5-2 ° C. However, this is an average figure, and the warming up of our planet is uneven, experts pay attention, and the land heats up much faster. In England, for example, summer temperatures have already increased by 2-3 degrees, and in Canada, the June temperature immediately exceeded the records of previous years by 5 ° C.
Air conditioners are a real salvation from abnormal heat. But there are several “buts” here: their pollution of the atmosphere and the greenhouse effect warms up the planet even more, and the failure of power grids, as average temperatures increase, due to the consumption of large amounts of electricity will occur more and more often.
And the heating of the planet goes on at an alarming rate. Every year its snow and ice cover is reduced by about 90 thousand square kilometers. In those countries where the water freezes in winter, this happens later, and spring and the melting of ice occurs earlier. Baroness Worthington, one of the authors of the UK’s Climate Change Act, admits that the point of no return is about to be passed and it will not be possible to find a way out of the climate crisis:
“If earlier we said that scientists are worried about the current situation, then they are no longer worried. Now they’re seriously damn scared. “