No matter what happens after election day, whether 19th-century ideas put forward by the current administration win or 21st-century ideas voiced by the opposition carry the day, climate change remains the most critical problem. This problem is caused by human activity but knows not of humanity. The resulting damage to our economy and natural environment from green-house gases (GHG) in the oceans and atmosphere has been underway for decades and is now becoming obvious and measurable.
Unless current mitigation and adaptation actions are significantly ramped up, GHG emissions will not level off. The resulting global consequences will overwhelm distinctions between governments, political views, and cultures within our children’s and grandchildren’s lifetime – all will be drastically affected.
The future impacts to our planet have been identified and widely disseminated and yet take a back seat to whatever is being blasted out in the news cycle and twitter feeds. Individuals and institutions need to see past this daily noise and ensure that climate change mitigation and adaptation actions are immediately strengthened.