In what ways has the Coronavirus crisis affected climate change and global inequality?

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Introduction

Although COVID-19, may have brought a lot of quarantining and depression, there are some positives that the pandemic brought us. So, let us start off with those.

The Good
When cases were on the rise earlier this year, the amount of transportation and industrial activity decreased substantially and resulted in a drop of 17% in daily global emissions in April of 2020. Speaking of transportation, some cities have closed off active streets for pedestrians to carry on and have increased bike lanes. We know that cars and the burning of fossil fuels in them is incredibly detrimental to our atmosphere, so hearing this was great news. To be more specific, cities like Minneapolis, Seattle, and New York have all been promoting walking and biking during this unprecedented time. If any of you want more information on how these cities are going about this, I highly suggest you read this article about Paris, France: https://iglus.org/reinventing-cities-in-a-post-covid-19-era-france/. On another note, there has been another huge decrease in international travel, which inevitably means smaller carbon footprints! All good news!

The Bad
Carbon dioxide emitted by the actions of humans can remain in our atmosphere for hundreds or thousands of years. As a result, the Co2 levels reached their highest monthly average ever recorded at 417.1 parts per million in May. As we know, with a pandemic like COVID-19, comes a lot of plastic. Gloves, plexiglass dividers, shopping bags and more have littered the grounds of our parks and streets. Not to mention, all of the disposable masks we see every time we go out. It truly is a problem and maybe production of a biodegradable mask is the next step to take. More importantly, important research has been and/or was halted during the start of the pandemic. Scientists studying coral, atmospheric levels, and carbon in forests have all had to stop what they are doing, put their pencils down, and retreat home for safety. As a result, we are behind on understanding how to act on climate change and its effects. With the help of the National Science Foundation, a well-known earth scientist, Jacqueline Austermann, was supposed to collect coral fossil samples in the Bahamas this spring. These samples would have been a great help to researchers and would’ve made them better understand historical sea levels and rising sea levels. However, the project was put on hold and Austermann is unable to get the data he wants at this time. It really is too bad, but that is another reason why we need to move on, get these vaccines, and continue on with our normal lives. We cannot wait any longer.

Research from…
          25, Renee Cho |June, et al. “COVID-19’s Long-Term Effects on Climate Change-For Better or Worse.” State of the Planet, 7 July 2020, news.climate.columbia.edu/2020/06/25/covid-19-impacts-climate-change/.

“Coronavirus and Climate Change.” C-CHANGE | Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, 6 July 2020, www.hsph.harvard.edu/c-change/subtopics/coronavirus-and-climate-change/. 

Acclimating to a New World

Actions You Can Take

Research! Develop an understanding of climate change.

Spread the word! Discuss what you have researched.

Protest with those who believe the same! Peacefully, of course.

2 Comments

2 comments

  1. Hi! I think you did an amazing job on your website. Your understanding and knowledge of this topic definitely helps when it came to reading over your website. I highly enjoyed you diving into the topic of climate change and how the pandemic affected it because this is real world issues today. I also liked how you not only talk about the bad effects but as well as the good effects. I think your pictures go well with your beautiful question. Good job!!

  2. You do a great job of integrating sources that we can learn from into your project. It is also really interesting to compare the good and also the bad that come from the impact that Cover 19 has on all of us, and the environment.

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