By Diamay Klem D. Balacuit | February 25, 2021
What was once covered with grasslands and arid dust is now covered with snow. Texas, known for its humid weather, is now under a state of emergency; cold temperatures are creeping inside the “Lone Star State.” This is an unusual occurrence that sprung with no preparations—leaving everyone helpless.
The US state of Texas is currently facing its worst catastrophe. This month, they have experienced the worst weather disturbance in recent history: a winter storm. This bizarre catastrophe was triggered by the unnatural path taken by an Arctic air mass, which usually does not travel too deep into the North American continent. As a result, Texans are now experiencing massive effects on their economy and health as series of power outages left the citizens to fend off fighting the cold temperatures unsupported. But, this might not just affect Texans.
Consequences of Human Actions
The ravaging winter storms in Texas and nearby states are just one of the effects of climate change on America. Irregular weather patterns, extreme temperatures, floods, and wildfires– America is no stranger to these effects, yet the topic of climate change is still divisive to many Americans.
However harsh it is, the reality of climate change led to many changes in Texans’ lives. The unprecedented energy demand led the state to power outages. The harsh winter temperatures stunted the state’s independent power infrastructure. It led the people across the state to struggle on how to stay warm and to find enough food and clean water as their water treatment facilities were engulfed and disabled by the freezing temperatures brought about by the aberrant weather system.
On the Far Side of the World
While climate change may mean harsh temperature drops in America, the Philippines on the other side of the Pacific is also set to experience similar effects. More intense droughts, declining rice yields, rising sea levels, water shortages, declining labor productivity, and more public health emergencies are projected to happen in the country due to the deteriorating effects of climate change.
According to a 2017 World Risk Report, the Philippines is the third most vulnerable country to climate change. The immense impact of climate change is felt by the country. This has been evident in the different extreme weather systems, public health emergencies, and declining natural ecosystems that happened and continues to happen in the country. The projection of these effects is now materializing.
The consequences of human actions led to nature’s future being at risk of dying. After years of exploitation, the environment now shows its symptoms to everybody.
The situation in Texas and our country is a reflection of human actions toward the environment. It is a horror that no one can escape. But it is still not too late to act. Changing the way we live, calling for systemic changes, and fighting for the environment are the things that we can do for our only planet.
Corbett, E. (2021, Feb. 19). What’s really going on in Texas right now. Retrieved from: https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/really-going-texas-now-185118436.html
National Integrated Climate Change Database and Information Exchange System. (n.d.). Climate change impacts. Retrieved from: https://niccdies.climate.gov.ph/climate-change-impacts
Taylor, A. (2021, Feb. 18). Texas’s cold-weather catastrophe is a global warning. Retrieved from: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2021/02/18/texas-cold-global-climate-change/