Saturday 23 September 2017

Frank McGovern: Our island nation is not safe from the threat - we must act

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan at the climate change march in Dublin yesterday
Green Party leader Eamon Ryan at the climate change march in Dublin yesterday

Frank McGovern

As an island nation with major coastal cities and assets, Ireland is vulnerable to the short, medium and longer-term effects of climate change. Effective global actions to address the causes of climate change are therefore in the country's interest.

We already know that the average global temperature increase in 2015 will break all previous records. The World Meteorological Office (WMO) suggested it will reach the symbolic and significant milestone of 1C, half-way to the 2C adopted by world governments as an upper limit.

The science of climate change is robust. It is well known how changes to our atmosphere impact on our climate. The problem is really around carbon dioxide. In the 1850s, Co Carlow-born scientist John Tyndall answered one of the key scientific questions of the time: why is the Earth so warm?

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