Climate change as we know it is affecting everything. From small insects, birds, plants, and humans, are all impacted by climate change. For us humans it is impacting us on a wider scale, economically and culturally. One of the ways climate changes are impacting us is on agriculture, city dwellers and the poor economy.
As the Earth surface heats, increasingly, as time moves forward it is becoming extremely difficult to grow and maintain healthy agriculture farms. It is affecting both crops and livestock farms across the states. Agriculture is important to maintain because it provides food for the community. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, climate change presents real threats to U.S. agricultural production, forest resources, and rural economies. From an article on the website climatechange.chicago.gov, with the rise of temperature it is becoming challenging to grow healthy crops. Some of these challenges are extreme temperature, drought in some areas, and invasion of weeds and pests that strive under warmer temperature. Crops are not the only thing affected by climate change. Livestock are also important because Americans consume more than 36 million metric tons of meat and poultry annually.
Climate change can impact livestock in a few ways:
- Heat waves affecting cattle and chicken can increase livestock loses
- Drought can affect those farmlands making it harder to have drinkable water for livestock
- Prevalence of parasites can grow with warmer and hotter climate
Society is finding ways to mitigate the impact of climate changes upon farmlands. Ways in which farmers can mitigate the impact is by having efficient irrigation and investing in renewable energy. Climate change not only affects farmlands but also the city dwellers. Its ironic because the city is one of the main contributors to global CO2 emissions. According to United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) cities are responsible for 75% of CO2 emissions. Cities with populations of millions of people are now vulnerable to severe weather events especially extreme heatwaves. Heatwaves are dangerous especially in the city where heat is greater because of poor air quality. People can be directly impacted by the heat that can cause injury or death. Infrastructures can be damaged causing expensive repairs over time. Infrastructures such as roads, bridges, and buildings around the city. Other extreme weather events can be rain and tropical storms which can cause flood damages to infrastructures. Causing injury or danger for those can become a health crisis.
That being said, big cities such as New York attract a lot of tourism. With intense heat it can be uncomfortable for tourists to travel to certain locations and the likelihood of certain diseases such as malaria can re-emerge because of the increasing heat.
Climate change also impacts rural and poor towns globally. Drought is affecting the poor communities on a dangerous scale. Many people are starving because it is increasingly harder to grow and cultivate crops. Mercy Corps, a non-governmental humanitarian organization, stated that undernutrition is the largest health impact of climate change in the 21st century. The number of undernourished people in the world has been increasing since 2014, reaching nearly 690 million — almost 9% of the global population — in 2019.
Hurricanes are getting stronger every year and sea-levels are consistently rising, forcing climate change refugee numbers to increase. Charity organizations such as Cool Earth are finding ways to help poor communities adapt to climate change by providing better ways to access a water supply, funding nutrients for healthy soils and building infrastructure to help with the weather.
Earth is our home and wether we are rich or poor we must all come together to find ways to help our planet. We must find better energy resources to mitigate global warming. If we continue as we are now it might be too late.
How climate change is going to affect cities, urban spaces. (n.d.). Kinder Institute for Urban Research | Rice University. https://kinder.rice.edu/urbanedge/how-climate-change-going-affect-cities-urban-spaces
Foodwise. (2022, October 30). 10 Ways Farmers Can Fight Climate Change : https://foodwise.org/articles/10-ways-farmers-can-fight-climate-change/
Climate Impacts on Agriculture and Food Supply | Climate Change Impacts | US EPA. (n.d.). https://climatechange.chicago.gov/climate-impacts/climate-impacts-agriculture-and-food-supply
Poor and Vulnerable Countries Need Support to Adapt to Climate Change. (2022, March 23). IMF. https://www.imf.org/en/Blogs/Articles/2022/03/23/blog032322-poor-and-vulnerable-countris-need-support-to-adapt-to-climate-change
Climate Change and Its Impacts on Tourism. (July 1999). David Viner and Maureen Agnew