Who does climate change impact? You may think that you can avoid its effects for the foreseeable future. Unfortunately, climate change isn’t a distant problem that the next few generations have to handle. It’s already started to influence our lives. What do these implications look like now – and how can we expect them to grow?

Take a look at how climate change impacts may evolve over time.

Why Does Climate Change Happen?

In a nutshell, the term “climate change” refers to how the Earth’s average climate continues to fluctuate. A historically cold area like Northern Canada may experience a warm, sunny week. That occurrence doesn’t indicate climate change impact itself. What happens if those weather patterns become more common? When mountain glaciers shrink and ice caps melt, it’s apparent that the location’s climate has altered.

The greenhouse effect isn’t unnatural. It helps our planet stay warm enough for human and animal inhabitation. But when we burn excessive fossil fuels, it’s those actions that create climate change. As a result, our planet becomes a little warmer – we’ve almost doubled our carbon dioxide output since the Industrial Age. The world’s oceans, land and air experience harm when this process happens.

If our environment takes on more and more stress, it’s more difficult to sustain human life. We can’t continue about our days when our daily practices don’t work anymore. How are we supposed to import goods when our sea levels rise? There are many reasons why climate change affects humans.

1. Our Communities

Those who live on coastlines may experience massive changes within their neighborhoods. Our world’s sea levels have continued to rise steadily since 1880. We can attribute this increase to a few factors. As ice sheets melt, they add more water to the oceans. Additionally, the oceans’ volume expands as they become warmer. As a result, it’s more likely for Americans to live near floodplains these days – even if they don’t reside near the sea.

Aside from floods, it’s evident that other natural disasters may increase, too. Droughts may happen due to rainfall changes, while higher wind speeds lead to more wildfires. These occurrences impact communities around the globe.

2. Our Health

While climate change impact can happen within our communities, it’s also evident that our health may undergo implications as well. Because fossil fuels contribute to climate change, it’s no secret that particles from those gases lead to pollution. For instance, many human activities create smog that impacts urban areas. Those pollutants give way to respiratory diseases that kill millions every year.

Unless we take drastic steps to fix these problems, it may become harder for people to thrive within their own communities. It’s also apparent that we can link climate change to mental health issues throughout the United States.

3. Our Resources

The planet’s agriculture system depends on specific environmental conditions. Without water, we’re unable to grow and process fruits and vegetables. It’s also hard to feed livestock and poultry when there’s limited water. It’s not a stretch to say that our livelihood depends on water, especially when it comes to our food sources. Unfortunately, there’s a direct link between climate change and water scarcity.

It all comes down to rainfall. When a location experiences excessive rainfall, there’s bound to be floods that wipe out different crops. The opposite can happen when there isn’t any rainfall for weeks. The conditions impact our food and water supply. By 2040, there’ll be nearly 600 million children who live with extreme water stress. What do you do when your food and water sources dry out?

These issues already affect people worldwide. If we don’t come up with a solution, it’s clear that many will suffer.

We Can Take Measures to Fix Climate Change

It’s true that climate change impact has already begun to affect our lives. If we take specific measures to reduce our fossil fuel creation, we can enjoy a healthy future. It’s all up to how we come together as humans to make a difference.

 

Bio: Emily is a sustainability and eco-friendly living blogger. You can see her work on her blog, Conservation Folks, or follow her on Twitter.