Even though I was born in the United States to acquire citizenship so I could travel the world freely, I still consider myself to be full Yugoslavian. Both sides of my family come from the Balkan region of the world, which include countries like Serbia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina to be exact. As of late, I would have to say that climate change is taking quite a toll on the European countries, including the Balkan region. The constant burning of fossil fuels is increasing greenhouse gases resulting in a heat-trapping effect that could be detrimental for years to come. We began seeing the serious effects of global warming back in the summer of 2003 when record breaking heat waves were documented killing roughly around 70,000 people. Later it was stated by Bob Berwyn author of the article Europe’s Hot, Fiery Summer Linked to Global Warming, Study Shows that a landmark climate attribution study in 2004 determined that the buildup of greenhouse gases from burning fossil fuels made the extreme temperatures of 2003 at least twice as likely as they would have been a world with no human-caused greenhouse gases”. He has also said, “The scientists from universities and research institutions in Europe and the United States, said they are more certain than ever that human-caused global warming is a key driver of the extreme heat”.
The image shown above represents a map of the precipitation patterns engulfing the Balkan region of Europe. As you can see the percentages vary between zero and let’s say 500 to be exact, we can point out that the Balkan region received a record-breaking percentage of precipitation during the month of April back in 2014. This map gives us an idea of how great this impact was and how it actually affected that region of Europe
I would have to agree with this gentleman, there is not enough awareness on this issue so as a result, people are willing to continue destroying the land which they live upon and not worry about the consequences that may arise later on in their lives. It is sad to see all the data and information that was collected over the years be scrutinized especially when researchers and scientists are willing to sacrifice their lives to make those who are unaware aware. In the midst of it all, people still do not find these matters serious enough for them to act on their own. They continue to live a carefree life believing that the earth shall protect them forever. As far as the Balkan region is concerned, where most of my family lives, climate change is expected to result in an increase in severity and frequency of droughts and heat waves, which may cause significant impacts on several areas in the West Balkan region. Agriculture and fisheries are the main resources for food production and are also among the most vulnerable areas to the climatic changes in the Balkan region with their huge water demand and narrow climatic position. Not only have droughts and heat waves affected the Balkan region but major flooding back in the early months of 2014 have left people in disarray. Leaving many people homeless and taking their livelihoods away from them. People do not understand that these natural disasters take quite a toll on a person’s mental health. Forget about physical health which can be cured in a hospital, it would be much harder for a psychologist to cure a person’s mental health after living through such a catastrophe. It is hard to start life again after something like this has consumed you. Many people cannot relate because they were not put in the same position, so instead of trying to relating to them, we should find a better solution – like raising awareness of the worldly situations instead of voicing their tragedies to the public. More action needs to take place and fast.