Climate change isn’t just an imminent threat. It’s already impacting your daily life.
When we talk about climate change, a lot of alarm is placed on a time in the future or a place nowhere near the average human. We’re told that the glaciers will melt, the sea levels will rise, our climate will change, and the world will be a completely different place. Climate change can seem unreal sometimes when we’re bombarded with statistics and numbers that seem hardly tangible. With manipulative politics and media intertwined, it’s harder than ever to sort through the information we are given and discover what’s true and how severe it is. You see images of the Maldives or the Solomon Islands at the frontline of fighting rising sea levels, far away from the comforts of your own home, which makes it easier to think climate change isn't at your doorstep.
Before going further, we want to clarify why a beauty company is so focused on Earth Month, climate change, environmentalism, and sustainability.
All Your Actions Have an Impact
Every morning before work, you stop to get a hot cup of coffee at Starbucks or some other coffee shop. Sure, it’s fantastic to be able to wake up to the toasty smell of caffeine at your favorite cafe. Sometimes you joke to yourself that you spend more on coffee than skincare. But is it just you, or is the price of your daily morning latte rising at a rate that’s outside of your comfort zone? Sure enough, every fraction of a degree that temperatures rise contributes to drastic changes. Whether you love a dark roast from Costa Rica or India, or an Ethiopian cup made with naturally processed beans, these countries, like others are seeing drastic declines in crop yields. Indian coffee production has seen as much as a 30% decline in just under 10 years. It’s frightening to hear that the convenient existence of your daily staple could be threatened.
The problem isn’t just in the price of the coffee that you drink. Use and toss a disposable coffee cup (usually unrecyclable due to food contamination) and you add onto your carbon footprint. Want some cream with that latte? The director of environmental impact for Starbucks reported: “emissions from our whip cream exceed the emission from all our roasting plants combined.” This all goes back to contributing to the declining coffee crops in the first place in what is called the greenhouse effect. This isn’t just happening in charts and diagrams, and far away in the Arctic ice caps. The effects of climate change are already reaching your coffee cup.
Climate Change is Already Happening
We all enjoy living a life of convenience. We want to get through our busy schedule at work so we have time to fit in a jog afterwards. That might mean choosing to get lunch out today. You get to the restaurant counter and are asked, “For here or to-go?” You choose to-go to save time on your lunch break so you can get home earlier. You hope your food doesn’t go bad in your car on your way back to the office. It’s another year for record high heat levels, and you’re blasting your car air conditioner to make sure your salad doesn’t wilt on the drive. Have you ever wondered about the relation between the plastic containers you throw out and the rising global temperatures? The question might linger at the back of your head until you finally reach home and get to go on your daily jog. As you’re cleansing the sweat off your face and throw away your empty facial cleanser or moisturizer bottle, the question bothers you again.
The fact is, the rising global temperatures that you see on charts are already impacting daily weather patterns where you live - and you don’t have to live in the Arctic or the Maldives to witness it. The droughts and California wildfires have already been linked to increased greenhouse gas emissions, and it’s easy to notice the skyrocketing heat while out on your run. However, the situation goes beyond just global warming. The effects of climate change occur differently in various regions, so don’t be deceived by the heavy rains occurring in some parts of the US. Wherever you live, you may already seeing unusual and more intense weather patterns hit close to home. The fossil fuels burned while incinerating the trash you throw away and the methane-emitting landfills only exacerbate the situation.
What Will the Future of Today Look Like?
Signs of climate change are everywhere now, but it is important to not confuse one day of atypical weather with climate change. However, as Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria have shown us, the storms will be more wet and ferocious. Some of the simple things in life you have grown to love are being impacted though. For example, if you are trying to plan a trip to the beach, you may have a toxic algae bloom to worry about. Unfortunately the warmer waters are also directly affecting your dietary choices as well. You might take to eating less meat after learning about the correlation between beef consumption and greenhouse gas levels, but your selections for seafood are growing slim too from the warming waters. Food safety doesn’t just lie in preparation and serving, but also its source. Higher risks of toxic algae and parasites aren’t just threatening ecological balance, but your own health as well.
We’ve provided you links to where you can check out the scientific studies and statistics that show how monumental the effects of climate change are, and we urge you to read more. But we wanted to give you an idea of how climate change is already affecting your life today. Climate change isn’t just an imminent threat. While some of the observations we listed above might only be inconveniences or nuisances, the effects of climate change will only escalate as every year goes by. Can you imagine what that would look like?