Today is the 30th anniversary of Earth Day, and this year’s theme is Climate Action. We all know that climate change is, in a word, bad. ‘Climate change represents the biggest challenge to the future of humanity and the life-support systems that make our world habitable,’ says Earth Day. But what does that mean for us and our day-to-day lives? Here are just 7 of things you love, from wine to avocados, that climate change threatens to take away if we don’t start taking action:
Avocados aren’t in danger of disappearing because of your avo-on-toast habit; it’s because of climate change. The world is getting hotter, and avocado crops are very temperature-sensitive. The best way to save our avos is, of course, to reduce the effects of climate change as much as possible, but in the meantime, scientists are developing a strain of avocado crop that can grow all year long. So we can watch the world fall apart but while eating guacamole, I guess.
Some good news: they won’t exactly last as long as tinned food but you can totally freeze avocados.
Your favourite chocolate is probably from Ivory Coast or Ghana, who are responsible for producing half of the world’s chocolate fix. These countries are expected to get hotter by 2.1°C by 2050, which will negatively affect their ability to cultivate cacao.
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Some of the most beautiful spots in the world could *literally* disappear in the next few years due to rising sea levels. Scientists predict that in the next 80 years 200 million people will be affected and displaced. Places in Asia, such as Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand and The Maldives, are expected to be hit the worst by land erosion and an increase in flooding.
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About 60% of wild coffee species are at risk of extinction and there has been an increase of crop-damaging fungus, pests and droughts, all of which are going to affect your morning cuppa. We have become used to seeing coffee shops with shelves abundant with coffee beans and packets but could see these becoming a luxury in our lifetime.
It’s not just cute animals and beautiful forests that suffer because of climate change. According to the World Health Organisation ‘Between 2030 and 2050, climate change is expected to cause approximately 250, 000 additional deaths per year.’ Because of extreme weather, there will be an increase in events like fires, malnutrition, heatwaves and infectious diseases such as malaria.
Wow, could this list get any more depressing?! Climate change is having its way with your favourite grapes, affecting the quality of wines worldwide. And because of water shortages, beer production is also being affected.
Monarch butterfly populations have decreased by nearly 95% in some areas, meaning they’re nearing extinction and Kylie Jenner is going to have to think of a different theme for Stormi’s next birthday. Those aren’t the only pretty creatures that are close to dying out completely: giraffes, elephants, whales and sharks are also at risk. In fact, about 50% of the world’s species are predicted to be extinct by 2100.
Can we get some good news pls?
Companies and brands are beginning to take climate change seriously and providing ways for us to lessen our damage to the planet. From reducing packaging to reusable coffee cups, it all makes a difference.
In honour of Earth Day 2020, SodaStream made a pledge to avoid single-use plastic bottles by 2025. That’s a pretty huge step for a company known for its plastic bottles. From early next year they will be switching their flavour bottles from plastic to metal, avoiding nearly 200 million single-use plastic bottles over the next five years.
‘While we are all going through something so challenging like the COVID-19 crisis, my hope is that we will remember to take much better care of the planet we live in, all together as mankind,’ says SodaStream CEO Eyal Shohat.
The company also made a donation to WaterAid, a global non-profit who provide clean water for drinking and hand-washing. We want to see more brands make big green commitments like this.
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