With warmer temperatures, people will increasingly rely on air conditioning, notorious for using lots of energy. This means the average electricity bill will rise in cost. To make matters worse, shifting weather patterns will also affect hydropower stations, forcing those who rely on the renewable source of energy to pay higher prices or revert to the greenhouse gas-emitting sources that already contribute to climate change.
Blackouts and electricity shortages
The occasional power cut is an inconvenience, but imagine if they happened all the time. That’s likely to be the reality if climate change continues at its current rate: mass use of air con combined with dwindling sources of energy means our supplies will not be able to keep up with demand, and we’ll have to live without electricity for long periods.
Droughts and food shortages
It’s easy to take water for granted, but climate change could force us to appreciate it more. Major droughts such as the one that took place in Atlanta in 2007 will become more commonplace, forcing homes and businesses to ration the water they use. Agriculture will be seriously affected, with less water available for irrigation and therefore less food for everyone.
Disappearing tropical paradises
Some places on Earth have to be seen to be believed: the pure white sands and perfectly clear water of the Maldives, or the lush green islands of Komodo that are ruled by real life dragons. But global warming could see an end to these incredible paradises, as they sink under rising sea levels and become uninhabitable for the wild animals that live there.
Less space at the beach
The beaches that so many of us love to spend our holidays lazing on will shrink due to global warming, with stronger storms and higher sea levels causing extra erosion of the coastline. Many beaches will consequently completely disappear.
Shorter ski seasons
If you prefer a holiday that involves hitting the slopes on skis or a snowboard, you should also prepare for your favourite vacations to be affected by global warming. Snow will be replaced by rain in many popular ski resorts, with air temperatures becoming too warm to support an icy climate.
The death of coral reefs
Natural wonders like the Great Barrier Reef are delicate ecosystems filled with thousands of remarkable animals, which all rely on the living terrain as a home and food source. Higher sea temperatures and increasing amounts of carbon dioxide in the water have already led to the death numerous coral reefs; tragically, global warming could see off many more, fatal for the staggering amount of marine life they support.
Flooded rivers and canals
The threat of rising sea levels continues to affect famous bodies of water such as the canals in Venice and the Thames in London. Barriers and dams can only do so much, and there is a chance that these unique waterways might merge into one unstoppable sea if climate change continues.
Increased cases of deadly disease
Our health will take a turn for the worse as our planet becomes more polluted, with heat waves allowing bacteria and viruses to spread faster while creating the perfect conditions for infection-spreading insects like mosquitos and ticks. Life threatening diseases like malaria will become more common, especially in humid parts of the world.
Mass extinction of the world’s most iconic animals
Imagine the Arctic without polar bears, oceans without whales or turtles, jungles without tigers and the savannah without elephants. These are just a few of the species that could be wiped out entirely thanks to environmental damage caused by climate change. Children have historically been taught that the dinosaurs were killed by an asteroid, and in the future we’ll have to educate our kids about the amazing animals that went extinct thanks to human selfishness.
To those who doesn’t believe in global warming, consider this a wake up call: climate change is happening, and it’s destroying our world.
Of course, it’s far easier to ignore the scientific claims about rising sea levels, fluctuating weather patterns and altering landscapes while we go about our privileged lives the way we always have. But unless this problem is addressed quickly and effectively, everyone’s lives will change for the worse. Still not convinced?