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Opinion – Shift to clean energy is what the planet needs

Sun in X-Ray

ABU DHABI,- Shift to clean energy is what the planet needs because the changing climate can directly impact billions of people around the world as the risks of extreme weather events inevitably grow, according to a local newspaper.

“Unusually hot years wreak havoc on the planet by increasing rainfall in some parts of the world while leading to drought in others, damaging crops. As experts point out, diseases can spread faster in the warming waters, sickening marine life and killing corals,” said The Gulf Today in an editorial comment on the recent declaration by two leading U.S. science agencies that 2016 was the hottest year on record, surpassing the previous record set just last year.

The globally averaged temperature in 2016 was about 1.1 degree Celsius higher than the pre-industrial period, according to a consolidated analysis by the World Meteorological Organisation, continuing the trend in which 16 of the 17 hottest years on record will have been during this century, the Dubai-based paper said.

A separate analysis by the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA, also found that 2016 was the hottest on record.

Throughout 2016, there were many extreme weather events which caused huge socio-economic disruption and losses, the paper said.

Noting that rising temperatures and concentrations of major greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are not the only record-breaking indicators of climate change, the paper said that what is also worrying is that Arctic sea ice remains at very low levels.

“The main reason for the rising heat is the burning of fossil fuels like oil and gas, which send carbon dioxide, methane and other pollutants known as greenhouse gases into the atmosphere and warm the planet,” the paper said, and cited another factor: the Pacific Ocean warming trend of El Nino, which experts say exacerbates the planet’s already rising warmth.

This is a clear indication of the quickening pace of climate change and calls for effective remedial measures, said The Gulf Today, and noted that the mounting toll of industrialisation on the Earth’s natural balance is increasingly apparent in the record books.

[Source: Emirates News Agency/WAM/MMYS-Media Relations]

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