The Pandemic and Climate Change: The Connection
The pandemic is humanity’s wake up call. So, too, is climate change. The world has experienced a pandemic not seen in a 100 years. No country has been spared from disease. Travelers from one country with high rates of Covid have caused outbreaks in counties with low rates of infection. A delta Covid variant that is more transmissible and deadly has spread from India, where only 5% of people have been vaccinated. Until all countries work together and achieve high vaccination rates the pandemic will be difficult to bring under control.
At the same time the Pacific Northwest has set numerous temperature records, as high as 121 degrees, since record keeping began nearly a hundred years ago. A heat wave of this magnitude is a one in a 1,000 year event according to a recent analysis by a team of climate scientists (See https://www.worldweatherattribution.org.). Such temperature extremes, fires and floods have been occurring all over the world, in the last two decades. The alarms have been off for some time.
Greenhouse gases, like the virus, recognize no borders. The emissions from one country affect the entire world. As with the pandemic, it will be impossible to bring climate change under control unless all countries work together and reduce emissions. Humanity has received its wake up calls. Whether we wake up in time is still an open question.