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Solving Climate Change: Will It Be Enough?

In the last few weeks, leaders from all around the world have gathered in Glasgow, Scotland to discuss the issues of climate change. The world has been rapidly heating for the last 50 years, and these leaders realize that maintaining the globe under 1.5 degrees celsius will require all nations to cut back on emissions. Prior to the conference, many developed nations already laid out plans to cut back on greenhouse gas emissions such as coal and methane. However, the developing countries at the conference have made it clear that they lack the resources to slow climate change, and because of this, they are looking to the leading countries to take preventative action. The wealthy nations do not feel the direct impacts of climate change, however, the leaders of the poor nations are living the consequences and do not have the resources to combat them. There is a request from the developing countries of the world for rich nations to contribute 100 billion dollars for relief so other nations can equip themselves with the resources to fight climate change.

Even though some countries laid out plans before the conference began, new plans have already begun to rise. There have been pledges to cut back on deforestation, which is an important step to take as trees absorb carbon dioxide, the main contributor to climate change. Countries have also agreed to cut back on Methane production by 30%, however, China, Russia, and India have not joined this agreement and they are some of the biggest emitters. To succeed in the battle against climate change, it is crucial that all of the major countries of the world join the global efforts. There can no longer be exemptions for selfish ambition and greed: the world is at stake. 

In good news, however, 450 financial organizations that control a total of about 130 trillion dollars, agreed to back clean energy. This will help ensure the world gets on track for a sustainable future. Developing and developed countries like the United States, have also pledged to become net zero in emissions by 2050, with a promise of drastically reducing fossil fuel usage by 2030. Scientists say that to stop the most catastrophic effects of climate change we need to keep the globe under 1.5 degrees celsius, and some say that we have already passed the ability to do so. 

The pledges made, such as reducing methane and coal emissions, have not been joined by the major polluters. The United States, China, Australia, and India have not committed to the coal pledge yet, and China and Russia have not signed the methane pledge. These major contributors to climate change must be part of the process or their pollution will continue and nothing will get done. The policies that leaders make have to translate into action or we could see the destruction of our world come closer than we ever wanted to.  

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