Because of excessive carbon emissions from humans, Earth’s climate is changing. Our society can and should reduce emissions in order to stop the worst effects of the climate crisis, but a substantial amount of damage has already been done. Because of this, our planet is already experiencing a myriad of effects from climate change such as natural disasters, droughts, floods, and ecological changes.
Climate resilience refers to how humans must adapt to the changing climate in order to mitigate its effects. It is critical for humans to try to stop the climate crisis, but as the effects of climate change are happening now, we must also simultaneously adapt to climate change. Climate resilience requires large-scale, systemic changes that deal with climate change’s social, economic, and ecological effects. This primarily requires policy at every level of government, but it also includes the engagement of businesses, organizations, and individuals.
What exactly does climate resilience look like? Start by thinking of how climate change is currently affecting humans. For example, in the United States and around the world, communities are facing serious natural disasters, such as hurricanes and floods, of unprecedented magnitudes. A climate-resilient society would prepare these communities to handle these natural disasters and quickly recover from them. Other ways humans can become climate resilient are growing drought-resistant crops and restructuring communication systems. Governmental policies that build socio-economic justice are also climate-resilient, as those who the most socioeconomically vulnerable will face the worst impacts of the climate crisis.
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