5 questions every climate activist hears

Our climate is changing, it’s a fact. Unfortunately some people refuse to accept this, usually because those in power or media outlets with an agenda involving themselves becoming richer dispute this. Climate activists will often have the spotlight shone on them and will inevitably be grilled by people who don’t necessarily believe the truth.

Here are five questions they usually have to contend with and five very real answer:

How can the Earth be getting warmer if it’s cold outside today?

This is by far the most common question. The planet’s climate is a very complicated system and while it is irrefutably becoming warmer there will be unusually cold days and there will be abnormally high snowfall, just as much as there will be incredibly hot days. The important thing to remember is that climate and weather are two very different things. As one swallow does not make a summer, so does one cold day not disprove years and years of scientific research.

What about the “global warming pause”?

Also known as the global warming hiatus, there is mixed opinion about this. It refers to the period between 1998 and 2013 where it was thought that warming had slowed down to a lower level than previously. It wasn’t claimed that it had stopped altogether, so the name is a complete misnomer, but a catchy buzzword was indeed used. Warming has continued, it will just sometimes be quicker and sometimes be slower.

How can scientists predict climate change if they can’t always predict the weather?

Again, weather and climate are two completely different things. Weather is full of moving and shifting microsystems and it is notoriously difficult to predict. Climate is a different beast altogether and scientists have years and years of data to prove what they are saying. Simple extrapolation shows that it will continue to become warmer, but the timeframe might not be as easy to predict.

How do we know it’s because of us, and not a natural cycle or the sun?

This is a good questions. There were ice ages and heatwaves long before we turned up. One thing’s for sure though, we haven’t helped it. Plundering resources, increasing CO2 emissions and deforestation have all been proven to be harmful to the planet in the long term and have undoubtedly accelerated the process. It is near impossible to prove this to a climate sceptic without having a second Earth where we never did any of this to compare it to.

Is it too late to do anything?

It’s never too late to do something. It can’t be stopped now, it’s gone too far, but we can slow it down. How? Plant more trees, drive less, throw less litter away, there are numerous ways. If more and more people try and do something, it is possible that this planet might survive for a few more generations.

If you care about helping the environment, look up groups that are near you and join today.