News Release – Global Warning
This Feature Appeared in the Darton Arrow June 2019
Global Warming – Not my Concern!
Watch out on radio and TV over the coming months as more and more programmes start to incorporate Global Warming into their storylines. Why? Because it has been reported that on mainstream TV ‘Zombies’ and ‘Rhubarb’ are as popular as Global Warming as a topic of conversation, neither of which are ‘hot topics’ worthy of discussion in most households.
So why worry?
The thought of a few extra degrees and more hot sunny days are not an unattractive prospect. In fact, many people will travel hundreds of miles to sit and soak up the sun. Similarly, at 100 metres above sea level, Mapplewell and Staincross Village Hall is hardly likely to have to be concerned about an increase in sea levels or tidal erosion.
Similarly, Climate Change is nothing new. The Earth’s cycle means that over millions of years the temperature of the earth has continued to rise and fall with devastating consequences – with and without mankind’s assistance. It started long before we came to be on the planet and it will continue to do so long after we’ve wiped ourselves out. We don’t need to worry about the World as that will continue to survive whether we, and the existing millions of different species, are here or not.
So why should we be concerned about Global Warming? The concern is the speed at which the climate is changing and this has been proven to be as a direct result of what we’re doing to the planet. Globally since 2001 we’ve recorded 16 of the warmest 17 years ever and the current level of greenhouse gases are the highest for over 800,000 years.
The bad news is that even places like Darton and Mapplewell will be affected.
A further rise of 2 degrees centigrade will mean more severe storms in many countries. Yes, the greatest effect will be felt in coastal areas, but local places such as Leeds, York and even Hebden Bridge have already experienced more flooding and, as we know, most of the big rivers are fed from the hills such as the Pennines and our own regions. Any change does mean that we will experience even greater rainfall, often torrential and we’ve all seen the havoc that it can cause when existing natural gullies, drains and other water tables fail to keep up with the flow. Our roads and paths look like rivers and they change the natural flow of water, bringing it ever closer to our homes and businesses alike.
Ironically, with such weather extremes we are also likely to experience more severe droughts. Recently, moors fires such as those on Saddleworth Moor, Ilkley Moor and even Ulley are just some of the examples of tinder dry grasses being overwhelmed by rapidly moving moors fires. Here we are surrounded by moors and grassy areas and the problem with moorland grass fires is that they can burn undetected for days and even weeks after being quelled, as the undergrowth continues to smoulder away.
Ask any green fingered enthusiast or arable farmer and the problems associated with growing crops in these conditions does have a massive impact on the food chain. This is just down to the weather without taking into consideration any impact on the pollinating insects needed to germinate crops for future generations.
So that’s got the vegans and vegetarians worried, but meat eaters shouldn’t gloat. What do most of our farm animals eat? Grasses such as wheat, barley and other greenery that may start to be in short supply. This means that there could be a general decline in a whole range of available meat items in the butchers.
Let them eat fish!
With the demise of meat and veg stocks, will we see unprecedented queues at the Fish and, what was once called, the Chip shop (until they stopped having potatoes due to the ‘potato rot’)?
Well the bad news is that the same 2 degree increase in temperature will also have a major impact on sea life and fisheries. The sea will become more acidic causing the eventual demise of many of our conventional food chains. Coral and krill will die out and the likelihood is that many of our own fish banks will be destroyed or simply move to a more hospitable habitat which could be hundreds of miles away, making them harder to catch and bring to our (ever moving) shores.
As a Global race we are already seeing a mass displacement of people looking for a better life and an opportunity to survive. For many this is cause by national and civil wars The predictions are that anything above a 2 degree increase in temperature this movement of people will intensify and more people will have to head to cooler climes in the longer term and what better place to head for than Mapplewell and the surrounding areas?
Global Warming and the Bottom Line
We will survive because we have a varied and moderate climate and we are a rich country compared to many. However, an increase in the population with migrants moving into our country as well as a decrease in the amount of food stocks available will, obviously, cause a major price increase as demand far outstrips supply. But we shouldn’t starve – unlike many of those living in the poorer, third world countries. This is why those in the media recognise that we need to do something about it now and make it a topic of conversation to be had.
I don’t see Global Warming becoming a lead story in Eastenders or Coronation Street, but watch out for these changes in your programme viewing over the next few months – and remember that you read about it first in the Darton Arrow.