Rising waters, drought of hope

world, the science is there. The oceans are rising and our climate is changing. Ask a Californian, a citizen of a state who is experiencing one of the worst droughts in history. Ironically it looks like Florida (another victim of the climate calamity) might have some water to spare in the years to come. Perhaps, instead of extending the Keystone Pipeline, we should build a water pipeline from Florida to California.

If 90 percent of doctors said they found a cure for cancer, you would believe them. If 90 percent of economists said the economy was crashing, you would believe them.

When 90 percent of scientists say climate change is real, you must believe them. It’s not just the 90 percent; NASA and NOAA, two of the premier scientific institutions within the United States, have stated clearly that climate change is occurring and humans are adding to it.

The global average temperature has increased by more than 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit in the last century; that is a fact. This trend obviously coincides with our carbon emissions, which began to skyrocket during the end of the 19th century, during the advent of the industrial revolution.

This is more than just a coincidence. Well, sure, 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit does not seem like very much, but it is. The impacts have been monumental; our oceans are rising slowly but surely and are becoming more acidic; glaciers from the Himalayas to Alaska have been melting and there is no sign of this process slowing down.

Some researchers even argue that glaciers in the Himalayas could disappear as soon as 2035. Arctic sea ice is melting as well, in the last 30 years it has declined by roughly 10 percent. Glacier National Park has gone from 150 glaciers in 1910 to a mere 30 today. This is no longer a theory or myth. This is a crisis.

And we are not acting fast enough. In the period of 1990 to 2013, carbon dioxide emissions in the United States rose a whopping seven percent. Given the statistics provided above this should horrify people.

Oceans absorb roughly a third of carbon dioxide emitted and this is more detrimental than you could imagine. This process acidifies our oceans and decimates our reefs. On a microscopic level, this process is capable of weakening zooplankton, which could be a cataclysm for the marine food web. This is an impending disaster.

Obviously this comes down to immediate change. What can you do? Vote. As of February 3 2015, 56 percent of congressional Republicans denied climate change. Why, you ask, would they do such a thing? The 163 climate change deniers in our congress have received campaign contributions adding up to over 58 million dollars. Vote.