COP23 and the world’s oceans
The 23rd annual climate change conference, or COP23, was held in Bonn, Germany, on Nov. 6-17.
There is no doubt that this year will be another record-breaking year to showcase the disastrous effects of climate change. We’ve already seen the hurricanes and storms that affected the United States and the droughts and heat waves that plagued many other
countries, as well as the floods that took their toll in Asia and South America.
We must remember that our oceans absorb almost 90 percent of all carbon dioxide emissions and are dying because of pollution. Already gyres have sprouted in all our oceans and seas. This is our last bastion of nature and it is being destroyed.
It is hoped that with the United States accepting the Paris Accord, the planet has a better chance of mitigating and withstanding the ill effects of climate change.
We recently travelled to Jerusalem and marvelled at its beauty—in Hebron, where Abraham and Sarah are buried; and in Bethlehem, site of the Church of the Nativity which houses the cave and the manger where Jesus was born — but we were dogged by the unpleasant weather. Though the humidity was low it was extremely warm in September and October!
We do not have the luxury of time to combat climate change. Its effects will surely be stronger and fiercer. It is hoped that if everyone will take a stand, maybe, just maybe, there will be a little more time for the planet to survive.
ANTONIO M. CLAPAROLS, president, Ecological Society of the Philippines
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