However, I'm concerned. According to many sources*, we are rapidly approaching the climatic point-of-no-return. Some estimates say my kids' generation will suffer significantly, some put it off until my grandchildren's prime years.
Most experts agree that weather will become increasingly erratic and violent, animal species will die out and or migrate significantly to compensate for environmental changes, tropical diseases will spread further into previously-temperate latitudes, already-overtapped-fossil fuels reserves will be exhausted at increasingly rapid speeds as we attempt to compensate with climate control in our homes and businesses. Pretty much everyone who seems to know what they're talking about agrees that our lives, routines, comfort, food supplies as we've come to know them are going to change for the worse.
And it will be worse even faster for the poor of the planet.
Please don't misunderstand me ... this is not the world coming to an end. On the contrary, the world will be just damn fine, thankyouverymuch. It is us who will suffer. Animal and plant species will evolve, die off, adapt. We will have to do the same. Period.
We are, as a species, relatively helpless without shelter. We don't adjust well to changes in our environment. Instead, we use our massive brains and opposable thumbs to adapt our environment to suit our narrow criteria of comfort. Where there's a will, there's a way, and all that.
Until the environment becomes simply too extreme for us to continue compensating. Until our financial resources are exhausted with no end to rising seas, rising temperatures, and extreme weather systems in sight. Our food resources will become increasingly scarce. We will run out of options.
According to numerous scientific sources (I heard it from Niel deGrasse Tyson), but this quote is from the British Natural History Museum "More than 99% of all species that have ever lived on Earth are now extinct. The vast majority (over 95%) died out because they couldn’t compete successfully for food or other resources. Or they failed to adapt to changes in their local environment over tens or even hundreds of millions of years."
The planet will be just damn fine. We don't need to worry about the end of the world. The only thing we have to fear is that our own complacency and the lack of action on a national and global scale by our leaders ... will lead to our own extinction.
PS: Climate change can be slowed, stopped and/or reversed if enough people care. Every individual counts. Your habits make a difference. Even more so, the leaders you select can make a difference on a regional or national level ... so choose wisely and communicate the importance of this issues (one might argue the importance of this issue over any other issues). We may differ politically or philosophically on a variety of issues, but saving our species from extinction and choosing the "greenest" leadership we can seems like a pretty no-brainer thing to do.
* See the latest report from the UN Climate Change Working Group, here. If you look at the PDF, scroll through to the nifty and easy-to-grasp graphics and tables at the end.