Tag Archives: climate change

You should watch “after earth”

I went to the cinema last night with my brother and his girlfriend to watch “After earth.” The movie is directed by M. Night Shyamalan and the main actors are Will Smith and his son Jaden Smith. I am not going to be a spoiler and tell you everything about the movie but there is one thing that I want to say about it, and its that the movie has an important ecological message and I wanted to share it here. The movies starts talking about how we ended up destroying the planet because we ended with it’s natural resources, with the consequence of big floods, massive storms, dramatic change of temperatures, earthquakes…etc. So humans had to find other planets to live in, and they did, but they were not alone. Aliens almost ended with the existence of humans but they figured out how to kill the aliens. Aliens were blind, but fear from other species could allow them to see. When the commandant Cypher Raige (Will Smith) and the apprentice Kitai Raige (Jaden Smith) are about to arrive to another planet, a meteor shower gets on their way and they cause a fatal accident and only Cypher and his son are the rest of the survivors on the ship, which crashes in a planet where during the day the temperatures are very warm and during the night everything gets frozen (extreme temperatures). Cypher found out that the planet that they were in was Earth, and it was categorized as level 1 of danger, because every specie evolved to kill humans. However, in the middle of the movie, a bird saves and dies for Kitai because he was about to get frozen at night time during his journey to go to the tale of the ship to send a rescue message. After the movie I was thinking, what if we in reality have a similar ending? what if we have to abandon Earth because we get really close to destroy it? And even if most of the species hate us there are still some that show that we can cohabit with them if we show care for them. It has an important meaning of how we were not born to create destruction and madness. I hope you guys end up watching the movie if you have not yet and share your thoughts. Thank you.

-Luis

Newspapers: anything about climate change?

Well, I have been thinking about this topic for the past few weeks and I realized that newspapers do not really talk about climate change or global warming. So, I am asking myself and you guys, how are people going to start getting influenced if newspapers do not really mention anything about nature on the news?

I do not know if I am wrong on this one but I have been checking The New York Times, USA TODAY, ABC news, CNN…etc and other newspapers in Spain and there is not much about climate change or things related to this topic.  I just think that it is sad that society is not realizing that nature needs to be taken care of and like we have discussed we are too busy debating and doing other things.

-Luis

Heat wave in the United Kingdom: 540-760 deaths at the moment

According to “BBC news” a heat wave has provoked the death between 540 to 760 people in the UK in just the past week. The heat wave has been raised to level 3, which means “heatwave action,” and the next level is level 4 which is “national emergency.” Scientist say that if the heat wave remains until next week they will raise it to level 4. People are being warned against heatstroke, dehydration and exhaustion in England, Wales, and Scotland. The temperature in the United Kingdom oscillates between 30º and 40º Celsius (90º to 100º Fahrenheit) with 7 days of consecutive hot weather. According to the newspaper, a research by the London School of Hygiene showed that there has not been a heat wave like this since 1740 and the number of deaths due to extreme weather conditions is increasing.

I would like to know your opinion. Do you think that this has anything to do with global warming or climate change?

For more information visit: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23371454 and http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk-news/2013/jul/19/heatwave-hot-weather-wildfires

A New Ice Age?

The movie The Day After Tomorrow shows us what can happen when extreme climate changes occur to the earth. The very beginning of the movie begins with an aerial shot of what appears of be the ocean and ice. The viewer of the movie is looking down into the water and ice while the opening credits are displayed parallel to the water. The shot gradually turns upwards in order for the viewer to see the glaciers coming up from the water. The opening credits change with the crane shot as well, with the credits now being vertical to match the new camera angle. From the very opening scene, the viewer gets the idea that the movie will have something to do with the ice and/or the ocean.

After the opening credits, the movie changes to a scene with one of the main characters, Jack, and his partners Frank and Jason in Antarctica. While collecting data, there is a giant shelf of ice that breaks off from where the men are working. The viewer sees cracks occurring, but Jason is the first to actually hear the cracked ice. The camera shows a close up of his face as he stops to listen to the sound of breaking ice and then zooms out to show the ice breaking all around him. While Jack tries to save some of their data he falls into the cracked portion of the ice and Jason and Frank have to save him. After collecting this data Jack then gives a speech in New Delhi, India on climate change that may occur from a change in the Atlantic current due to ocean global warming. Global warming is causing the fresh water glaciers to melt into the Atlantic Ocean, which is leading to a critical desalination point. His message is ignored for the most part until bizarre weather starts taking place all over the world. The movie shows several different scenes depicting the climate changes, such as the falling of snow in New Delhi, giant ice chunks hailing down in Tokyo, multiple tornados destroying large portions Las Angeles (including the famous Hollywood sign), and airplanes being brought down by turbulence in the Midwest part of the United States.

As Jack and other fellow scientists do more research, they come to the realization that the cold temperatures from the Antarctic are moving towards civilization and are combining with cool air from the troposphere, which is descending too quickly to warm, thus creating several global storms. These storms appear to be similar looking to hurricanes, except all over landmasses. The movie repeatedly shows the earth from the view of astronauts in space as the storm covers more and more of the earth, eventually making all landmasses invisible. The rest of the movie portrays the tale of survival for Jack and his family, along with the rest of the world. In a scene where the southern half of the United States is evacuated to Mexico, another aerial shot shows U.S. citizens illegally crossing the river into Mexico after the border is closed. People are desperate to survive and this is shown to great detail. There are even small amounts of a love story thrown into the mix, which pulls the viewer into other aspects of the movie besides the terrible destruction and deaths of many, many people.

In the end, the storm gradually starts to clear up and the astronauts are able to start seeing land again. Jack is able to save his son Sam who was trapped in New York and many other survivors are found. The movie ends with a final scene of the earth, as the astronauts say they have never seen air quite so clear. The sound track played at the opening scene is then replayed at the end, wrapping the movie up.

Although the movie may be a bit dramatic in how global warming may change the climate of our earth, it does teach a good lessen. We need to watch what we do with our resources and control how we use them. Things such as a new ice age occurring from our use of greenhouse gases may seem far-fetched, but over a larger time span (maybe not quite as short as 7-10 days) something similar to this could happen.

Amanda

Obama and climate change

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According to the president of the United States, Barack Obama, climate change is becoming more important and we need to start taking actions, Obama says. The president gave a speech at Georgetown University in Washington last month. Obama stated that he is trying to pass a bill to reduce the emissions of carbon and pollution from factories and vehicles. He said “My energy plan will cut carbon emissions, help U.S. face worst effects.” In his speech, he encourages to start using cleaner energies and start acting so future generations do not suffer the effect of global warming.

I thought it would be interesting to share this because we are at a critical moment where we can either take the necessary measures or our future generations will suffer the consequences. I am glad that finally someone like the president who has power is taking a stand against climate change.

To read the whole speech, go to: http://www.jsonline.com/news/opinion/president-barack-obama-we-must-face-the-problem-of-climate-change-b9945912z1-214433911.html

Luis

 

Global Warming: Cinema or Reality?

The film “The day after tomorrow” is a movie that exposes, in a very explicit way, the consequences of the global warming. Although the film might be a little bit exaggerated, the idea presented is not far from reality.

The movie starts when scientists and climatologists propose that global warming is going increase rapidly and cause massive climate change in the world in the next 100 or 1000 years. The melting of the poles is provoking that the currents of the sea will change dramatically and this will unchain the union of huge hurricanes, tornadoes, tsunamis and earthquakes.

The special effects achieved to keep the curiosity of the spectator from the beginning to the end of the movie. Also, the theme of the movie was good. It can induce a little fear because that situation is what many people are afraid of what could happen in the future. However, there are some scenes that went a little over reality, like the immediate climate change, in just a few days, with the massive hurricanes or scenes where the scene where of the protagonists do not get hit by the temperature change in the room of the library.

There have been reports and researches about climate change and global warming, but this movie directed by Roland Emmerich can have a bigger impact than these documentaries. Are the special effects from the movie exaggerations or they might be just an example of what could occur?

Even though the movie has a happy ending and leaves some hope after the president’s speech (this will teach humanity some humility), the consequences of the climate change may last longer. We are the cause of all of this we cannot keep living like we do or did in the past, now is the time to start taking measures.

“The day after tomorrow” is an interesting film that can make us realize that the increase of the global warming can bring serious consequences to Earth and humanity. The effects of climate change can already be seen in the world today. The tornadoes in the Midwest have made the news in Spain and right now we are experiencing the coldest summer in 200 years. This is probably attributed to worldwide climate change. The scariest thing is that the consequences of the climate change are unpredictable.

Luis

Are WE the Problem?

After reading Kerry Emanuel’s What We Know about Climate Change, and reflecting on previous classes and issues, it seems that us humans are being blamed for the climate change in our atmosphere. The term “global warming” is constantly being linked to humans’ using man-made devices that emit greenhouse gasses which in return affect the temperature of the Earth. But, the question that has disturbed me these past 8 weeks of summer courses is “are we really the problem”? Sure, I understand that driving cars and (the worst of them all) animal-meat production cause enormous amounts of CO2 to enter the Earth, but a lot of natural causes contribute as well. Take for example volcanic eruptions. In Hawaii, when the volcano Kilauea erupts it emits CO2 into the air that is equivalent to around 1,000 SUV’s. Although in comparison, there are WAY less volcanoes than there are manmade devices that emit CO2, but I just feel like human activity shouldn’t be taking ALL of the blame of “global warming”.