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My Take On Climate Change

As we start 2024, we are staring in the face of adversity on all sides. From the greatest political divisions, to horrific wars and humanitarian crises and cost of living hitting all-time highs, human civilization seems to be falling apart at the seams. With this, debates are spreading about the environmental issues that seem to be peaking at the turn of this century. There are many who don’t believe the climate is changing and others who do believe it, but in order to win this battle with climate change humanity must work together as one. Whether we want to believe it or not, the climate is changing at a very rapid pace. With the world being so divided, the chance of all countries working together to save our planet is slim, so we must begin adapting to the new world that we exist in and its new climate.

There is no better place to really visualize this changing climate than New York City. I reside in Queens, which is the largest borough of New York City and one of the most vulnerable to rising sea levels. Rising sea levels are an effect of the changing climate leading to much larger storm surges and increased flooding risks. Queens is home to the Rockaway Peninsula which is only about 0.75 miles in width between the Atlantic Ocean and Jamaica Bay. According to a 2017 study by the NYC Dept. of City Planning, the Rockaway Peninsula could see constant flooding during high tide by 2050. Also, most of the shoreline in Queens and Brooklyn surrounding Jamaica Bay is or was marshland and sits on or below sea level. As a resident of southeastern Queens, we experience flooding whenever there is a large storm. The waters from the Idlewild salt marsh covers the roads, overwhelms the sewers, and inundates people’s homes.

 

image: https://weather.com/news/news/storm-surge-hurricane-sandy-isaac-20121227

Hurricane Sandy 2012 Sandy’s storm surge triggered the evacuation of close to half a million coastal residents.

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