Image from DALL·E. Top: Earth flooding and on fire due to climate change.
California is hotter than it has ever been. In 2020, temperature records were broken by heat waves that now last longer and are more frequent. These hot and dry conditions fuel wildfires to historic proportions. As we enter fall, we are still experiencing these heat waves, raising questions about why this is happening.
Halfway across the world one third of Pakistan is submerged underwater. This unprecedented flooding has impacted 33 million people, killed at least 1,500, and washed away 45% of the country’s crop land. The immense flooding has displaced the family of Pakistani Californians, such as former Washington student Heba Kibboua, who said, “The floods have made it quite difficult to keep in touch with [my family] especially since the power plants are [in] a crisis. When we are able to talk with them they tell us about how it’s hard to leave their homes to get daily groceries, commute to work and go through with daily tasks.” The quality of life in the underdeveloped country of Pakistan has greatly declined.
So what’s causing these floods? Why wasn’t Pakistan prepared as a nation? A heavier than usual monsoon season combined with political turmoil caused the damage of these disastrous floods. The country, undergoing a political takeover and removal of the prime minister, was structurally unfit to organize flooding preparations.
But what does this have to do with the heat in California? The answer is that these natural disasters are being caused by global warming. As educator and environmentalist Johnny Cruzen points out, “Greenland, Europe, and Australia have all been undergoing historic wildfires.” As Cruzen explained, the poles are absorbing more heat than ever, changing the flow of heat from the equator to the poles, which adversely changes wind and weather patterns.
The immense change in weather patterns is the largest impact of all climate change. As Cruzen said, “these global disasters are nothing compared to the jeopardization of food production caused by changes in weather patterns. You can’t possibly feed the 8 billion humans on this planet in a climate apocalypse.”
So what is anyone doing to prevent this? The climate issue is separated into two main problems. One is our scientific ability to innovate and produce cleaner technology. The second is the campaign to inform and convince people that it is important to implement such green measures. Joe Biden passed a 300 billion dollar green infrastructure bill; however the oil industry is spending a large amount to fund a misinformation campaign.
This issue is the exact reason Johnny Cruzen works as a substitute teacher informing every class he substitutes for about how they are the victims of climate change. He preaches how our generation has to start a social uprising, to reform our world to be able to subdue the effects of climate change and provide sustainability for tomorrow. The drive to save the environment isn’t only a technological struggle, it’s a humanitarian movement.
Zahi Imaduddin is a senior at Washington High School. He was born and raised in Fremont, California, and this is his first year at the paper. He hopes to discuss the intersections of technology and psychology and how technology shapes culture. His hobbies include coding, cooking, creating 3D art, and working out. He hopes to study computer science in college and eventually start a company. With a strong interest in the ocean, he hopes to one day sell all his belongings and live on a boat.