Global warming is a human-made problem, and climate change caused by greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions greatly affects the way we develop. In an extreme but likely scenario, it could end human life in its entirety.
This is why we see increased efforts to raise awareness about individual actions that can be taken to take care of the planet, preserve environments and reduce the advance of climate change. Of course, that is only at the citizen level, and although it is true that every grain of sand is an important contribution, what about the countries of the world? ¿How countries address climate change? In the end, it is the decisions of the nations that will make a truly significant change.
Both world organizations, as well as many of the nations of the planet independently, have taken environmental political actions to stop climate change. And although very important and well-known agreements have been signed, such as the Paris Agreement, these initiatives are not enough.
Each country must take environmental matters responsibly, as the consequences would affect the economy of each state and the planet’s environment would not be balanced.
- 1 Climate change and its effects
- 2 Global well-being: political actions to address climate change
- 2.1 Political actions of the United Nations (UN)
- 2.2 General political actions
Climate change and its effects
In the current scenario, the hand of man destroys and exploits ecosystems 70% faster than they take to recover. The exploitation of ecosystems and the processing of resources to transform them into products are one of the major causes of environmental pollution.
As the atmosphere deteriorates from carbon dioxide and GHG emissions, changes in the climate become more pronounced. The consequences of climate change harm everything from the balance of the environment to the development of human life, be it urban or rural.
An increase of at least 1 ° in the planet’s temperature would result in:
- A rapid melting of the glaciers and, consequently, an excessive rise in sea level and its consequent floods in several places.
- Abrupt droughts, which would affect both already desert areas and areas that have managed to resist with little water.
- More constant rainfall.
Consequences of not acting on time
These climatic changes would disadvantage the subsistence of plants and animals, would affect agriculture, fishing, tourism … they would affect the economy of the countries in general. Cities would be hit by heat waves and the demand for water would be very high, so high that it could not be sustained.
It is estimated that if immediate action is not taken to stop climate change, the planet’s temperature could rise by up to 3 ° C by the end of this century, and the consequences of that would be drastic for future generations. The deterioration of the Earth would reach an insurmountable point.
In order not to reach that point of no return, nations have taken a series of political actions to combat climate change.
Global well-being: political actions to address climate change
Policies to address climate change can be divided into two: the actions taken by the UN, as the main world organization, and the actions that have been taken independently in several countries to reduce their impact on the environment.
Political actions of the United Nations (UN)
The United Nations (UN) since has always taken the initiative to take care of the environment.
In 1992, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was carried out, whose main objective was to establish the guidelines to control GHG emissions, maintain the balance of ecosystems and ensure food production.
In 1995 the Kyoto Protocol was activated to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. And in 2015 it was determined that human activity is the main cause of climate change.
For this reason, on April 22, 2016 the Paris Agreement was proposed and approved on the same day, which 175 world leaders signed who pledged to take the necessary measures to prevent global temperature from rising
more than 2 ° C at the end of the 21st century.
But the work of the United Nations does not stop there. Aside from global agreements, the UN has also taken initiatives for climate change awareness with its United Nations Environment Program (UNEP).
With the same intention of caring for the environment, the Food and Agriculture Organization works together with several countries to improve their producing resources so that they can continue to be used, reducing their negative impact on ecosystems.
The industrialization of developing countries is a direct blow that favors the deterioration of the ozone layer, so the UN is also in charge of financing projects that address climate change in developing countries with its agencies, such as the Fund for the Global Environment.
General political actions
It is true that each country has addressed the issue of climate change from their own points of view and their way of life, but analyzing the measures taken by each nation it can be seen that there are many similarities in policies around the world.
Collective transport, or use of vehicles with a low level of emissions
The intention of public transport is that each person can move around the city without the need for each person to use private cars, as this would result in much more traffic and more toxic gases released into the environment.
This also entails the provision of alternative routes for other means of transport that do not harm the environment, such as bicycles.
Financing citizen projects
In this way, local projects are promoted with the intention of preserving the environment and it is not only dependent on the projects and policies of government entities.
Taxes for harmful fuels
For more and more people to opt for biofuels derived from biomass, the use of fossil fuels will have a higher cost due to its effect on the environment.
Reveal the energy consumption of each building
It would be equivalent to energy saving. By making public the energy consumption of each building, citizens will feel committed to reducing it, since human competence and concern for the environment come together in this action.
Creation of green taxation
In many countries natural resources are exploited indiscriminately, so these institutions would be in charge of promoting an economy that is environmentally friendly, sustainable, and penalizing those most harmful actions.
Reduction in the use of plastics
The plastic production process is complex, and plastic litter is a serious problem for the oceans and for ourselves. This measure encourages citizens to opt for biodegradable products and pushes industries not to use plastic as packaging.
Trees are the lungs of the planet. Each country is obliged to promote reforestation days for the resources of the forests they have used without giving anything back to the environment.
We are at a critical moment in which it is not optional to follow the speeches of politicians who say they do not believe in climate change. Actions and policies to conserve the environment are on the table, it is up to everyone to think about and take care of their planet.