CLIMATE CHANGE - Background
It is time to end the U.S.'s addiction to fossil fuels and other climate
Climate change is one of the most serious environmental challenges to face our planet. Urgent action is needed if we are to avert the threat it poses to many species and habitats, and to people's livelihoods. More cars, more factories, and more power plants all are changing the climate.
TIME'S UP! is asking you to take part in an energy revolution. To go from a world powered by nuclear and fossil fuels to one running on renewable energy. Human caused climate change is a reality. Fortunately, there are proven energy solutions we can put to use today to provide sustainable development and energy for all. Will this energy transformation occur rapidly enough to avert the worst effects of a warming world? You will help decide the answer to that question.
For more than a century, people have relied on fossil fuels such as oil, coal and gas for their energy needs. Burning these fossil fuels releases the global warming gas carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Other, even more potent, greenhouse gasses are also playing a role, as is massive deforestation.
While there are still uncertainties, particularly related to the timing, extent and regional variations of climate change, there is mainstream scientific agreement on the key facts:
- Certain gasses, such as carbon dioxide, in the atmosphere create a "greenhouse effect", trapping heat and keeping the Earth warm enough to sustain life as we know it.
- Burning fossil fuels (coal, oil, etc.) releases more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Although not the most potent greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide is the most significant in terms of human effects because of the large quantities emitted.
- Carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere are now the highest in 150,000 years.
- The 1990's was most likely the warmest decade in history, and 1998 the warmest year.
If our greenhouse gas emissions are not brought under control, the speed of climate change over the next hundred years will be faster than anything known since before the dawn of civilization. Governments need to reward renewable and non-polluting forms of energy with contracts and tax breaks for businesses and incentives for communities, non-profits, and individuals that are working towards reducing the U.S.
dependence on fossil fuel and other climate damaging technologies. TIME'S UP! environmental group has been working on reducing greenhouse gasses for close to 20 years educating New Yorkers about renewable energy sources. TIME'S UP! volunteers have been working together on creating and expanding population of bicycle riders which then become bicycle commuters; Our beacon of campaigns around non-polluting transportation have spread throughout the east coast of the United States.
There are a lot of other organisations who work on climate change and it's effects: