When you’ve lived in the same place for the last twenty years or so, ask yourself if the weather has changed over the years – more storms? More drought? Bigger and longer-lasting wildfires? Other extreme weather? Did you ever ask yourself why “100 year storms” and “500 year storms are occurring more frequently than every 100 and 500 years respectively? How is that statistically even possible?
When you watch the news and learn that grape growers in California are changing which grapes they plant because they are noticing hotter temperatures trending in their vineyards and want to be able to grow grapes that will thrive in ten years, do you think they are being political?
When Greta Thunberg, who has actually read the various climate change reports that many countries and many, many scientists have researched and written, travels by sailboat across the Atlantic Ocean to present at the UN and plead with officials to change their nation’s policies, do you think that is just child’s play?
Why am I talking about this now, the day after Christmas? The answer is because I was just reading the itinerary for our upcoming trip. In it, the company lets us know that the naturalists are going to point out where Climate Change has changed the environment we are going to be in. Just like that. No “possible” no “maybe” – just “this is different than it used to be and we know what we are talking about because we do this every day”.
It’s political you say! It doesn’t really exist!
Well, I’ve got news for you: we travel the world and for years have been talking to locals wherever we go. They are not Democrats, they are not Republicans; most are not even Americans. In Alaska, if you go to Mendenhall Glacier, you sit through an informational video and afterwards, with much dramatic effect, the movie screen raises and behind it appears a curtain. The curtain parts and the fantastic view through the window is….a pile of rock. No beautiful glacier – oh wait, it’s over to the far right. That is how far it has receded since this theater was first built not so long ago.
If you go to Africa, and are hoping to see the snowy peaks of the legendary Mt. Kilimanjaro, the locals will glance toward the mountain’s direction and wistfully remark, there is not nearly as much snow as there is supposed to be on the mountain top this time of year.
If you go to Costa Rica, the tour guides who hike the volcano rim each and every day will tell you they used to have to wear gloves every day to do their job. No more.
If you go to Colorado, the rangers will tell you that they are finding animals moving elevations to adjust to the new weather patterns.
These people have no political agenda, no skin in the national game. They are just living their lives and making observations. Look around you, open your eyes – absorb what you see and hear. How much will it take before you get it?
That is all.