The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has reported that the atmosphere has, on average, warmed 1.8°F since the Industrial Revolution (with the majority of that caused by an exponential growth in the use of oil, gas and coal after the 1950s). If greenhouse gas emissions continue at their current rate, atmospheric warming will reach 2.7° F (1.5° C) around 2040 — a little less than 20 years from now. Doing nothing will place us in a reality with no historical precedent. The state of Florida must take the lead and act where it can.
The famines, floods, heat waves, wildfires, hurricanes, and tropical cyclones that have dominated the news recently will increase in number and ferocity.
The world's coral reefs will decline by 70 to 90 percent from their current levels.
- Many marine and coastal ecosystems will crash beyond the point of recovery.
Humans can still prevent the worst effects of climate change. In order to keep worldwide warming as low as possible:
- Emissions need to decline rapidly across all of society's main sectors, including buildings, industry, transport, energy and agriculture, forestry, and other land use.
- Coal needs to go.
- Transportation needs to be electrified.
- Buildings need to become more energy efficient.
- Protecting and restoring natural systems such as forests to capture and store carbon can play an immediate key role in slowing catastrophic global warming.