Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

Ally Hill

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Harvey. Irma. Jose. Maria. The effect of the 2017 hurricane season has been nothing short of catastrophic for families in Florida, Texas, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean.

On August 25, Hurricane Harvey hit land between Port Aransas and Port O’Connor, Texas as a Category Four storm. With winds up to 130 mph, Harvey brought what experts call “500-year” flooding to the Houston area. With 27 trillion gallons of total rainfall across Texas and Louisiana, an estimated $180 billion in damage for the state of Texas alone, and a death toll of 57, Hurricane Harvey destroyed the homes of over 100,000 families. Then came Hurricane Irma.

After 37 consecutive hours of 180 mph winds, Irma was one of the strongest storms ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean and set the record for the most intense storm for such a long duration anywhere on Earth. From September 8-9, the Category Five storm hit the Caribbean and took the lives of at least 24 people. The hurricane made landfall again on September 10 in the Florida Keys as a Category Four storm, leaving 25% of all houses on the island chain completely destroyed, before moving on to the Florida coast.

Ten days later, Puerto Rico was pummeled by the most powerful storm the island has experienced since 1928: Hurricane Maria. It is still too early to measure the full extent of damage and loss of life, but as of right now we know that nearly 12 thousand people remain in shelters, 44% of the population is without drinking water, 80% of the island’s crops have been destroyed, and the entire island is still without power.

Faced with the truly inconceivable disaster wrought by these horrific storms, we are all left with the same question: Why? Why did three of the most powerful hurricanes in recorded history occur within four weeks of each other?

The answer: climate change. Climate change is the reason these hurricanes were so extraordinarily destructive. This information, however, has been erroneously interpreted by climate change deniers to mean the actual formation of hurricanes is caused by the earth’s warming. Katharine Hayhoe, Director of the Climate Science Center at Texas Tech University says emphasizes that scientists don’t believe climate change directly caused each storm. “No scientist ever said that,” Hayhoe said. “What you will find is that we’re basically saying the same thing, which is that climate change exacerbates those risks” posed by the hurricanes.

For instance, in 2001 Tropical Storm Allison dumped over 30 inches of water over Texas, causing extreme flooding around Houston. In comparison, Harvey’s total rainfall was 51 inches, causing 150 miles worth of flooding from Houston to Lake Charles, Louisiana.

Fortunately, after being presented with the overwhelming amount of scientific evidence proving not just the existence of climate change, but also it’s potentially calamitous effects on the planet, the President took immediate action to combat the crisis and protect American citizens.

Just kidding.

When President Trump was harshly criticized for responding more slowly to the crisis in Puerto Rico than the hurricane-affected areas in the states, he attacked Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz of San Juan- on Twitter, of course- accusing her of “poor leadership” and the “others in Puerto Rico” of not doing enough to fix their situation themselves.

This reaction, while disgraceful, is not surprising. Since the beginning of his administration, the President has consistently ignored the issue of climate change, even taking major steps backward in environmental protection in the US. Most notable was his withdrawal of the US from the Paris Agreement, but there are numerous other examples. Back in August it was revealed that the Department of Agriculture had been instructed to avoid using the term “climate change” in their work, replacing the phrase with “weather extremes” instead. The phrase “reduce greenhouse gases” was also banned, replaced with “build soil organic matter, increase nutrient efficiency.”

In reality there is no debate about climate change: 97% of  scientists agree that climate change is real and that humans are responsible. A truly accurate debate about this issue is not one climate scientist vs one climate change denier. It is 97 climate experts versus three climate change deniers. There is legitimate, concrete evidence which proves human carbon emissions are causing the Earth’s temperature to rise. If emissions continue to rise unchecked there’s no stopping the damage, the ice caps will melt, causing ocean levels to rise and flood most coastal cities; governments will destabilize, resulting in a massive wave of refugees; and the sixth mass extinction, the first caused by humans, will occur, wiping out ¾ of the Earth’s plant and animal species.

So to our current President and any other climate change deniers out there, please consider the words of Texas climate scientist, Katharine Hayhoe: “You can say you don’t believe in gravity, but if you step off a cliff, you’re going down.”

Leave a Comment

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    The iPhone XR: Really Revolutionary?

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    Tips And Tricks For The Last-Minute College Applicant

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    Memes, Monsters and More: The Fall Trends of 2018

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    Atlantic City’s Revival?

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    Empowering Through Education: The Ms. Sweeney Story

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    The Big Question……SAT or ACT?

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    V-Day Cinema

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    Sponge: Out of the Water, Onto the Stage

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    Board of Education Elections

  • Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change

    2017-2018

    “The Last Jedi” Not the Last Movie

Mr. President, It’s Time to Face the Reality of Climate Change