Let's Create a Net-Zero Future
Nov 01, 2021|13Climate Action
Climate change is a concept you have probably heard quite a few times by now. In our previous blog post, "Cows can Heat the World", we talked about climate change, global warming, and the Greenhouse Effect. We also spoke about the international efforts that many world leaders are making to fight global warming. If you haven't done so yet, head over to our previous post to better understand the topics discussed in this article.
Climate change refers to long-term shifts in temperatures and weather patterns. Shifts are naturally occurring in any ecosystem. However, dramatic shifts can completely change the natural balance of our ecosystems. This unbalance can even have ripple effects across the world. One example of this is the melting of the arctic ice; Over the past 30 years, the Arctic has warmed at roughly twice the rate as the entire globe, significantly affecting the polar bear population. By the year 2100, polar bears could face starvation and reproductive failure even in far northern Canada.
Thankfully, after many years of industrialization and complete disregard for nature, humanity is taking action. With this in mind, the United Nations and governments across the globe are working harder to create new ways of doing and living that are more sustainable and better for the environment.
Beyond Carbon Neutrality
Carbon neutral refers to not increasing carbon emissions and achieving carbon reduction through offsets. Offsets are like removing stains from clothes. We can remove the stains by washing them after they have happened. Likewise, we can offset carbon dioxide that has already been released by doing something that will compensate or help the environment. The most common way to 'carbon offset' is to plant new trees - reforestation.
We can achieve carbon neutrality by making sure we live sustainably, for example, by using renewable energy and making sure we "give back" to nature. However, to become net-zero, we need to go beyond by creating an economy and a way of living that doesn't even require carbon offsetting. It might sound weird to have a goal that equals zero. But when it comes to carbon monoxide, net-zero is exactly where you want to be.
This is a big task. The global net-zero goal requires us to change the way we currently produce and consume goods and services. Therefore, this year 2021, from Sun, 31st October to Friday, 12th Nov COP26 is taking place in Glasgow, UK.
COP26 is the 2021 United Nations climate change conference. The conference brings together leaders from all over the world to a "Conference of the Parties" - COPs. This year will be the 26th annual summit – giving it the name COP26. With the United Kingdom as President, COP26 takes place in Glasgow.
In the run-up to COP26, the UK is working with every nation to reach an agreement on tackling climate change. Considering that the Paris Agreement was born during COP21 in Paris in 2015, COP26 promises to bring a global solution to climate change. So, Glasgow is the moment for countries to update their original sustainability plans, provide proof of actions and set new goals.
Living in Net-Zero: What Will the Jobs of the Future Be?
A net-zero future needs a new generation of thinkers and doers. A net-zero economy will no longer need coal plants, oil refineries or factory farms. Instead, a net-zero future will likely need solar farms, wind farms, regenerative agriculture and sustainable eco-buildings.
Jobs of the future will demand more renewable energy jobs, including technicians, construction workers and engineers capable of installing and maintaining solar panels and wind turbines. In addition, environmental auditors and ecologically sustainable careers will likely be required to fulfill jobs in the new net-zero economy.
Transportation will be electric, which means there will be a high demand for electric vehicles. Therefore, EV technicians, engineers, service providers will be needed to cover the increased demand for private transportation. However, Net-zero transportation careers will not be limited to personal vehicles. These same technicians will be required to work on electrified urban public transport and intra-city rapid transit systems. But, to truly be net-zero, we will have to move away from heavy transportation and re-design the cities of the future to allow more dynamic inner-city communication. Urban planners, architects and engineers will be in high demand to complete these tasks.
It is an inspiring time to be alive! Imagine the possibilities. We will need you and generations to come to be ready and prepared to save the planet and live sustainably.
The future is yours to build to build.
This 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, also known as COP26, is one of the world’s most important meetings right now. There, the world leaders will take actions to limit Global Warming to 1.5°C.
We are still on time to correct the trajectory and have a better future for all. Be part of the conversation and tell us: What would you say to the leaders of this conference? What do you think you can also do to help limit climate change?
Tell your parents to research simple ways to limit the effects of global warming and be part of the solution!