Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

A World Without Snow?

Custom User Avatar
More by this author
Every winter, a little girl looked out her window eagerly waiting for snow. Her favorite season was winter, and she loved to play in the snow. She joyously ran, jumped, and slid in the soft white crystals. As she grew, so did her love for snow. She continued to love to play in it, and make works of art out of it. One year, she looked out her window as she usually did. No snow. Every day, she looked out the window and stared until her eyes hurt. Still no snow. It was the first year she had never had a snow day at school. Eventually, winter passed.

The little girl in this story is me.

I haven’t seen snow for two years.

I’ve experienced 60° weather in December.

Imagine how this warm weather could affect colder places, like the North and South Poles. Imagine the animals there that need the cold weather and are struggling to adapt to these new temperatures.

And this is all our fault. Humans are the ones to blame for these high temperatures and the horrible absence of snow.

For causing sea levels to rise.

For causing storms like Hurricane Sandy.

This is what makes me want to scream and stomp and cry.

This is climate change. And this is what our future could be like, or maybe even worse, if things aren’t changed.

So what exactly is climate change? Climate change is basically the result of global warming. Global warming occurs from greenhouse gases trapping heat and light from the sun in the atmosphere. As a result of this, the Earth heats up, and an increase in temperature follows.

The greenhouse gases are carbon dioxide, water vapor, nitrous oxide, and methane. Any of those sound familiar? The one that probably looks most familiar to you right away is carbon dioxide. Plants take in carbon dioxide, and give out oxygen. But when plants like trees get cut down, there aren’t as many plants to take in the carbon dioxide that we exhale, so it just floats into the atmosphere. Also, all four of the greenhouse gases are released into the atmosphere just by people using electricity in the house, like using an air conditioner or a washing machine, or even by just driving a car. So yes, we humans really have contributed to climate change.

A lot of people have heard of climate change before, but they just ignore it and don’t think about it at all. I actually ignored it for a while, until I learned more about it and realized how important it really is.

So you may be thinking: “Well it’s just warmer weather, big deal!” Actually, there is more to it than that. These warmer temperatures are making the arctic ice melt, which causes sea levels to rise. This also might not seem like a big deal, but it means that low-lying islands, like the Solomon Islands, could become submerged. Imagine all the people, animals, and plants on those islands that this could be happening to. Just think about what life is like for them right now.

Climate change is also causing animals to adapt to new environments. However, the temperature change isn’t directly affecting species. Climate change is affecting things that affect the species. For example, in one case I read about, a species of fish became extinct because of the lower amount of oxygen availability because the temperature of the water increased. These adaptations that animals are struggling to have could cause extinctions in species, which could lead to chaos in the food chain. According to the National Wildlife Federation, if climate change continues at its current pace, 20 to 30 species of plants and animals would have an increased risk of extinction.

People really do need to start caring about climate change. I can’t say it enough. If people continue to be careless, our planet could become unsuitable for humans to live on, and the human species could die out. Have you ever imagined that? Have you ever imagined that when you watch TV, or use an air conditioner, you are contributing to the problem, just like millions of others around the world?

To help out with climate change, you don’t need to donate any money to an organization (although that would be nice). Doing something as simple as turning off lights when they aren’t needed, or walking instead of driving can support the solution to climate change. When you are driving in a car or turning on your lights, the amount of pollution in the air increases, so doing less of theses things can help slow down pollution. Most importantly, set an example for others and make them aware of the climate change problem.

The United States releases more carbon dioxide into the air than any other country in the world. According to the National Wildlife Federation, the average American family emits 50% of their carbon dioxide from heating and cooling the house, 25% from transportation, and 25% from using electricity.
If everyone in the country were to do a few of the small, simple things that can help climate change, climate change might not be as much of a threat as it is now.

Climate change might not be affecting you right now, but think about the ones who are being affected. Think about how what happens to them could eventually affect you. And think about the animals in the arctic, struggling to survive with the melting ice. Think about the ocean animals that are dying because they don’t have enough oxygen. Think about how much carbon dioxide we release unknowingly every day, causing these problems. Will you be part of the problem, continuing to live your everyday life, ignoring climate change? Or will you be part of the solution? Will you keep our world a safe place to live?



Join the Discussion


This article has 4 comments. Post your own!

chocolate30 said...
Jan. 25, 2013 at 7:54 am:
Great editorial Priya!!! What you say about Global Warming is totally true, and we need to put more effort towards it. You are a great writer!! :)
 
PriyaTARDIS replied...
Jan. 25, 2013 at 3:09 pm :
Thank you so much!!!! :D
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
bluepandas said...
Jan. 23, 2013 at 3:48 pm:
Great job, Priya!  What you say seems to be very true!  Earlier this month, it went up to 70 degrees!  I really liked it!  Your editorial pointed out a lot of key facts that we don't always like to admit and gave some solutions for solving the problem, as well.  Good use of questions!
 
PriyaTARDIS replied...
Jan. 23, 2013 at 4:19 pm :
Thanks so much!!
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
Site Feedback