Listening to Professor Emanuel of MIT speak about the history and revolutions behind the study of climate science was not only enlightening and informative, but fascinatingly provoking as the subject matter in contemporary terms pertains to one of the most serious issues facing humanity now and going forward into the future. Going from understanding how the earth revolves around the sun (which helped scientists discover the number of glacial periods our planet has seen) to understanding how the greenhouse effect works, we have accumulated a large swatch of knowledge over the centuries. And as Professor Emanuel argued, many of those discoveries and subsequent revolutions came as a result of people simply being genuinely curious about why certain things occurred around them, and then went in search of answers.
A similar argument could be followed for when looking at how we as humans understand our current issues facing us in the world of climate science. We have known for decades now that climate change has been directly affected by the actions of humans, and that not only as the Earth continues to warm at an alarming rate, certain weather patterns have begun to change as well. Large storms and hurricanes are starting to become more frequent, long periods of drought have been seen across the U.S. and throughout the world along with raging wildfires the likes of which have not been seen (particularly in California). All the while the sea levels continues to rise and billions of people will soon be threatened by the fact that their homes near sea-level could very well be under water in the near future. These are all daunting prospects, and they only seem to made worse off by the fact that so many people in our country not only see any reason to do anything about these issues, but even flat out deny the existence of them and of man-made climate change.
Despite this seemingly unstoppable combination of imminent threats from climate change and complete denial from one of two major American political parties, I have some hope in what Professor Emanuel pointed out during his lecture. When humans are faced with certain challenges, they’ve become pretty good at finding ways to still not only survive through such adversity, but eventually thrive as well. We’ve seen revolutions in this field of study for years, and it will only continue with such an urgent and pressing as climate change truly is to humankind. Whether it be in finding ways to block the sun slightly from the Earth, change how reflective the oceans are to bounce some of the light back into space to help cool our planet, or who knows what, people will discover how to overcome this incredible obstacle. For if that is not the case, humanity will surely suffer because of it, and this time period will be looked back upon as when humans had the chance to save our planet and our existence.