Circulating around social media, 2016 has lightheartedly been called "the year on fire," and in terms of weather change, it was. Yet there were some environmental accomplishments this year, such as the Paris climate treaties becoming law, 2016 had some very miserable headlines regarding global warming and the planet's overall ecological health. I listed some of the most depressing news that came out during the so-called "the year on fire."
The Hottest Year On Record
2016 scorched through heat accounts, and the year is composed to be the hottest year ever in the last 122 years ago, by a weighty margin. At only the midway point of 2016, NASA had broadcasted that each of the first six months (from January to June) set new temperature records. Also, July and August were tense as the hottest month the world has seen in the last 136 years. By November, worldwide temperatures had averaged 2.2 degrees Fahrenheit (1.2 degrees Celsius) above pre-industrial heights, per the World Meteorological Organization. The overwhelming heat felt this year follows what was the hottest five-year dated on record, 2011-2015.
U.S. Presidential Election Results
With the election of Donald Trump as the next president of the United States, the future of climate change justification has been called into question, despite the landmark Paris arrangements becoming law this year.
Trump has already made dogmatic moves to choke climate change as a national concern. He has nominated a climate change denier and a zealous opponent of procedures for greenhouse gas discharges as Secretary of Interior, U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers.
400 PPM Milestone
Scientists have foreseen that this year the global atmospheric carbon dioxide condensation would pass the 400 parts per million mark, constantly. In September, a month when carbon dioxide is on lowest average, the monthly value failed to drop below 400 ppm for the first time. The 400-ppm milestone is largely figurative, a sign of modern society's devastating impact on the planet, climate experts have said. Since the industrial transformation, humans have been adding more carbon dioxide to the air than plants can take up. This course has driven carbon dioxide levels higher, adding to the greenhouse gas effect and growing temperatures, along with many other climate change impacts.
Arctic Sea-Ice Lows
This year, the Arctic saw record both low on the cover of sea ice during the winter (when it reaches its peak mark) winter and summer (when it reaches its minimum level). Sea ice also made a virtually unparalleled cold-season retreat in mid-November due to ill-seasoned warm weather. Air temperatures set new records in the Arctic area this year, and the Greenland Ice Sheets experienced its second earliest spring melt-down on record, per NOAA's annual Arctic Report Card. The report found that in 2016 ice levels displayed the strongest, most distinct signal of tenacious warming due to climate change. In fact, the Arctic has continued to warm at twice the rate of the planet. With winds dragging warmer air up from the south, some areas of the Arctic experienced temperatures 14 degrees F (8 degrees C) above average this year, per the Arctic Report Card.
Climate Refugees Becoming A Reality
Globally, researchers assessed this year that about one-quarter of the world's residents now lives in coastal areas that will be unlivable by the year 2100 because of rising sea levels. In the United States, new research proposed that more than 13 million Americans could become climate evacuees if the oceans rise about 6 feet (1.8 m) by 2100. Rising seas would leave hundreds of U.S. counties enduringly flooded. In accordance with the study, Miami-Dade, Florida, would be the hardest-hit county - 2 million people might be forced to relocate by 2100. About half of all the probable climate refugees would be from Florida.
Coral Reefs Are Dying
"The worst mass blanching event in its history," is how the Australian Research Council labeled the Great Barrier Reef's bleaching this year. Observations of more than 500 coral reefs across 2,485 miles (4,000 kilometers) exposed that most reefs were undergoing general and severe bleaching - when stressed coral expels their algae, which give them their color and so without them the corals look as if ghostly. Bleaching can be fatal for corals if the strain is too intense, or if it lingers for too long.
Ice to Release Cold War-Era Toxic Waste
Toxic waste from an abandoned Cold War-era sites could seep into nearby ecosystems as temperatures warm in Greenland. Academics warn that as temperatures rise, meltwater could move through the ice, engrossing toxic waste from the camp and carrying it to the coast. In about 75 years, if human-driven climate change continues unrelenting, the ice cover the site will melt, they said. Studies have shown that chemicals are harmful to our immune system, reproductive, nervous, and endocrine systems.
Deadly Tornado Clusters
Outbursts of twisters that span several days, known as tornado clusters, are becoming more communal as the warming planet causes shifts in weather forms across the U.S. These cluster occurrences are responsible for 79 percent of a tornado-related death toll. A new study showed that the number of tornadoes per outbreak is unwantedly increasing, and the chance of outbreaks may increase 4-folds.
Climate change advocates are continuously looking for long-term solutions for the next generations of inhabitants of this Earth. However, countries with individual approaches on this matter may not coincide with the demand of many.