FLOODS and LANDSLIDES -The dangers of climate change

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FLOODS and LANDSLIDES -The dangers of climate change

 The city of Limbe is hit yearly by floods and landslides, with the disaster of 26 and 27 June 2001 recording 24 dead, 330 houses completely or partially destroyed, 3,000 people affected, a thousand homeless, and over 18 neighborhoods affected.   

A random assessment of the situation in 2016 revealed that the human population is largely responsible for the floods and landslides, as many carryout uncontrolled human activities which are not in conformity to environmental principles and disciplines along the river and the hillslopes According to the National Climate Assessment, human influences are the number one cause of global warming, especially the carbon pollution we cause by burning fossil fuels and the pollution-capturing we prevent by destroying forests. The carbon dioxide, methane, soot, and other pollutants we release into the atmosphere act like a blanket, trapping the sun’s heat and causing the planet to warm. Evidence shows that 2000 to 2009 was hotter than any other decade in at least the past 1,300 years. Most climate scientists have attributed the main cause of the current global warming trend to human expansion of the “greenhouse effect” (https://climate.nasa.gov/causes/)

An Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, comprising of 1,300 independent scientific experts from countries all over the world under the auspices of the United Nations, concluded in their 5th Assessment Report that there’s more than 95% probability that human activities over the past 50 years have warmed our planet. The industrial activities that our modern civilization depends upon have raised atmospheric CO2 levels from 280 parts per million to 400 parts per million in the last 150 years. (http://ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment report/ar5/syr/AR5_SYR_FINAL_SPM.pdf.)

The burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil, and gas for electricity, heat, and transportation and the uncontrolled activities of man such as deforestation, clear-cutting, fires, and other forms of forest degradation, are the leading cause of the earth’s rapidly changing climate as they contribute up to 20 percent of global carbon emissions. This has come with adverse effects such as floods, landslides, tsunamis with loss of life and property

Much forest cover has been lost, many lands destroyed by the floods, many animals and birds almost near extinction, many humans displaced due to climate change and loss of life.

WE ARE ALL TRAPPED HERE as there is no other planet that can support life except the Earth. The planet Mars has a very thin atmosphere with mostly carbon dioxide. Because of the low atmospheric pressure, and with little to no methane or water vapor to reinforce the weak greenhouse effect, Mars has a largely frozen surface that shows no evidence of life

 photo showing Mars and Venus, from left to right

The planet Venus, just like Mars, is even worse than Mars to enable any living in it. Venus has about 154,000 times as much carbon dioxide in its atmosphere as Earth (and about 19,000 times as much as Mars does), producing a high temperature that can burn humans alive

We need therefore as humans control our activities, for the best way to reduce climate impact or climate change is by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Carbon dioxide is the climate’s worst enemy. Human beings need to change their ways of living in the earth.   “Change only happens when individuals take action,” it is therefore hig time the population is educated and trained on best practices on environmental management in Limbe in particular and Cameroon in general, as studies revealed lack of environmental knowledge is the brain behind the non respect and non application of environmental best practices in environmental management

Aliya Haq, Deputy Director of NRDC’s Clean Power Plan initiative, says. “There’s no other way, if it doesn’t start with people. WE have to reduce pollution, burning of fossil fuel, stop the bush burning, and control the cutting down of trees (deforestation) and all sorts of activities that generate emissions of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. Let’s plant more trees (embrace afforestation and reforestation), increase the use of renewable energy, and reduce fertilizer use in farms and better increase the use of better farming techniques. This is inline with one of LUKMEF’s core pillar of Sustainable Development, and also inscribed in LUKMEF’s mission of empowering individuals to take leadership in addressing all social, economic, political and environmental problems limiting their abilities to live life to its fullness using a right-based approach.


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