Sample Speech: Recent Proof of Climate Change and the Danger it Poses

Essay Speech
May 17, 2022

Stubbornness. This is the human characteristic responsible for our success as a species. This was the very thing that lit up the primordial fire of civilization. Our ancestors were too stubborn to perish in a cold hostile world; they adapted to heat, dampness, rain, snow, and other forces that the Earth threw at humans. Eventually, our ancestors found themselves on top of the food chain. Their stubbornness to survive gave birth to civilization, progress, and humanity. This same stubbornness, however, has caused us to prioritize human interest over anything else. We created marvelous machines and monumental technology in exchange for something significant. Whether the  technologies were good or bad , they came with the same cost–a one-degree increase in the global temperature, causing instability to the Earth.

This imbalance resulted in what we know now as climate change and global warming –unceasing events that are causing extreme weather conditions and can harm every species on the planet. Not the grain-sized ants nor the great blue whales are safe from its consequences. And yet, there are still those who deny this; individuals who claim that their neighborhoods still have the same temperature as five years ago; those who say that it is a natural event that does more good than harm; companies that argue against the high cost of mending the situation. And so again, stubbornness leads mankind. Only this time, not towards progress but into a depth that will slowly drown civilization.

Our stubbornness in pushing technology forward and expanding our lands has caused an immense heat that the Earth cannot handle. We, along with our technologies, are producing excessive carbon dioxide that has nowhere to go but to remain on the planet. A 2022 study by Schuckmann and his associates revealed that the excessive heat in the atmosphere is going into the ocean. With this, the waters warm up, endangering species that rely on it as their home, source of food, and ventilation. This increased ocean temperature only occurred over the last six decades, further indicating that humans are responsible for the event. What changed since then? More cars? More factories? More carbon footprints? Nevertheless, it is no time for blame. What we need are actions–small steps to address a slowly boiling world.

But the warming ocean is not the only problem. The ice sheets–towers and monuments of white, are melting away as the Earth heats up. According to Velicognas and her associates’ study in 2020, ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are melting at a rapid rate because of hot weather and warm ocean water. Now, while ice sheets that are already submerged in the water will not cause the ocean to rise, melting land ice can have a detrimental effect. Land ice, which are ice sheets on land, can melt and find its way into the ocean. They will then add to the total volume of the ocean water, producing a rise in sea level. This could affect the Earth’s rotation, prolonging days to a few milliseconds. And as we witnessed with just a one-degree temperature increase, instability may follow.  Furthermore, the ocean may end up swallowing coastal regions as the water level continue to rise. Cities will disappear, people will drown, and we will find ourselves in a partially submerged world; just because we were too stubborn to listen.

Lastly, there is the extreme weather conditions during the 20th and 21st centuries. During these periods, which include today, researchers recorded record-breaking temperatures. These are both in the coldest and hottest categories since the beginning of human civilization. A 2017 report from Wuebbles and associates stated that the period between 1901 and 2016 was the warmest in modern civilization history, with 2013 to 2016 being the warmest years for the Earth . The extreme weather makes cold areas colder, hot areas hotter, storms stronger, and the weather unpredictable. This poses various threats not just to humans but to all the species living on Earth. Migratory birds will have no place to go if all the world’s corners are cold; elephants can experience heat stroke, further dwindling their numbers; no underbrush or tree trunk can be strong enough for squirrels to hide from storms; humans will fail to anticipate the weather, crashing planes and sinking ships. The world will be unstable–just because we were too stubborn to know our folly.

But hear this, those who deny and ignore the changing world; I do not mean to antagonize you, to question your beliefs and force you to accept my truth. I do not want to tell you that you are wrong or misguided. No, I am here to tell you that the Earth is changing. That despite your well-ventilated neighborhood, other communities are gasping for fresh air and longing for the caress of a gentle breeze. That while you think that a warmer Earth is good, soon the oceans will boil and swallow coasts. That as companies turn their heads from the high cost of saving the world, human life is the toll that we would pay in the end. So to those who deny and ignore; please ponder what I have said, that is all I ask of you.

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References

Climate.nasa.gov. (n.d.). If all of Earth’s Ice Melts and FLows Into the Ocean, What Would Happen to the Planet’s Rotation? NASA. Available at https://climate.nasa.gov/faq/30/if-all-of-earths-ice-melts-and-flows-into-the-ocean-what-would-happen-to-the-planets-rotation/. Accessed May 16, 2022.

Schuckmann, K., Cheng, L., Palmer, M., Hansen, J., Tassone, C., Aich, V.,...Wijffels, S. (2020). Heat Stored in the Earth System: Where Does the Energy Go? Earth Syst. Sci. Data. Available at https://essd.copernicus.org/articles/12/2013/2020/. Accessed May 16, 2022.

Velicogna, I., Mohajerani, Y., Geruo, A., Landerer, F., Mouginot, J., Noel, B.,...Wiese, D. (2020). Continuity of Ice Sheet Mass Loss in Greenland and Antarctica From the GRACE and GRACE Follow-On Missions. Geographical Research Letters, vol 47(8). Available at https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1029/2020GL087291. Accessed May 16, 2022

Wuebbles, D., Fahey, D., Hibbard, D., Doherty, K., Hayhoe, R., Horton, J.,...Weaver, C. (2017). Executive Summary. In: Climate Science Special Report: Fourth National Climate Assessment, vol 1. U.S. Global Change Research Program, Washington, DC, USA. Available at https://science2017.globalchange.gov/chapter/executive-summary/. Accessed May 16, 2022.

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