Our House On Fire Part 1: The World We Are Inheriting

by Helmy Sa'at

Climate change is here to stay and it is not a hoax. It has essentially morphed into a climate emergency!

What Have We Done?!: Reverberating Repercussions 

Following more than two hundred years of industrialisation perpetuated by human activities, increased scale and frequency with each successive generation leaving an even bigger human carbon footprint, the Earth suffers.

Understanding climate change, its causes and how it is accelerated by human activities, is simple. However, trying to understand and accept its impacts is not that easy to swallow. Different parts of the globe experience varying degrees of challenges, but at a rate that is alarming!

 

In Text Body Image 5 Our House On Fire Part 1: The World We Are Inheriting

With global warming, the Earth gets hotter.This is attributed to the correlation between increase in greenhouse gases in the planet’s atmosphere and a rise in temperatures. In 2020, temperatures in Antarctica reached 20 degree celsius for the first time ever! In 2018, South Korea experienced its most severe heatwave since records began in 1973. Global warming leads to radical changing of weather patterns contributing to extreme events, such as frequent and unpredictable floods and hurricanes. For instance, one of Iran’s provinces received 70 percent of its annual rainfall in a single day in 2019. That is a staggering amount! And, as recently as this month, heavy and devastating downpours caused detrimental flooding in seven states in Malaysia.

Extreme temperatures also expose surface areas to warmer and drier conditions that cause droughts and wildfires. For instance, unprecedented blazes swept Australia in 2020. It resulted in the loss of hundreds of lives and an estimated three billion animals were either harmed or killed in the process. In the meantime, melting glaciers causes rise in sea levels that threaten coastal communities vulnerable to any small changes in their immediate natural environments, propelling climate migrations.

Lives of land and sea creatures are affected, too; with habitat loss from the shrinking Arctic sea ice to wildfires destroying forests, these creatures face extinctions. Take the clownfish for example. Its coral reef habitat is threatened by ocean acidification thus disrupting its ability to breed. Or, look at reports on polar bears. With the Arctic warming twice as much compared to the global average, sea ice is continuously melting which threatens polar bears that do most of their hunting on ice. It is no longer a hyperbolic remark to make — polar bears are at risk of drowning.

Burst That Bubble

Climate emergency is already at our doorstep. There is no time to wait. At best, we are at the stage whereby mankind is playing catch up in order to reduce and minimise its devastating impacts.

From Hurricane Maria in 2017, to wildfires in Spain in 2019 and the gradual sinking of Tuvalu’s islands, global displacement is real with millions of people being forced to leave their homes due to climate change.

Do we wait till sunscreen lotion of whatever degree of SPF would no longer work in protecting us from the punishing sunlight, or learning how to swim is no longer a hobby but rather a matter of survival for the next generation facing rising sea levels? Although the world’s billionaires are racing to clinch the top position for ultimate domination of space travel at the moment, we have to realise that we only have one home among the billions of stars — the Earth.

Do you find this article alarming? Well, you should experience a bit of discomfort knowing that the Earth we live in is in peril with each passing second. With awareness, knowledge and hope, it should nudge us into taking actions. You and I are the ‘problem’; but, we are also the ‘solution’.

Share with us in the comments section below about your worries for the Earth we are inheriting; and do not forget to share this article with your family and friends in order to continue this very important conversation upon learning something new. Look out for ‘Our House On Fire Part 2: Combating Climate Emergency’, next Friday.

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11 Comments

  1. Nafhesa Ali

    Have a look and take part in the Towards Inclusive Environmental Sustainability (TIES) project which explores the experiences of Muslims and sustainability in Manchester, UK.

    Reply
  2. Momodou Barry

    It’s alarming! We all should change our habits.

    Reply
  3. Luqman Jamila

    Good to hear

    Reply
  4. Ibrahim Danbatta

    Vey Apt !

    Reply
  5. Adamu Mukhtar

    Masha Allahu barakalla, I’m very excited about this opportunity for been part of this Great site. Thanks

    Reply
    • Salma Ahmed

      It’s time that we should rise up and take actions to save our Mother Earth from our destructive actions.

      Reply
  6. Nafisat Abdullahi Ahmed

    Climate change is real, we are are all in it , there are choices we can make in our day to day activities to lessen the impact on the environment.
    You can start the process by thinking about how to reduce your carbon footprint by driving less , reconsider how often and how much you travel, and if you most drive go easy on gas and brake, also regularly servicing your car can go along way in reducing carbon footprint. Eat less meat and waste less by buying only what you can consume.always turn off water heater and light when not in use and when buying new products buy those that consume less energy, when going for shopping take a reusable bag.

    Reply
  7. Cory Jones

    How do we stop for it

    Reply
  8. Yasmeen Khan

    It is extremely alarming . But what steps should we , the little people take ? We are fighting two enemies. Global warming and the ruthless billionaires who just care about filling their coffers . A few tips would be appreciated. I want to do something , but what ? I don’t have a clue . Writing to the senators is useless as they are mostly hand-in-glove with the industrialists and billionaires who are keeping them in office . I suggest we start a grass-roots movement , select a sincere and honest person totally devoted to this issue as their main concern and campaign to vote him or her into power so that we have a voice that will be heard and taken seriously . Some feedback would be appreciated . Thanks .
    Green Salute !

    Reply
  9. M. Ben Hassine

    Maa Chaa Allah. Nice writing.

    Let me relate to you and remind you of two verses of the Holy Quran:

    وإذا قيل لهم لا تفسدوا في الأرض قالوا إنما نحن مصلحون ١١
    ألا إنهم هم المفسدون ولكن لا يشعرون ١٢

    سورة البقرة

    In English:

    And when it is said to them: create not disorder on the earth, they say: we are only promoters of peace. 11
    Beware it is surely they who create disorder but they do not perceive it. 12

    AL-BAQARAH

    The issue that we all facing is a huge problem for the entire humanity and I personally cannot deny it.
    If we just return to ALLAH and what he said and what the Prophet Muhammad ( SAAWS ) told us to do : Be humble, Be Self Sufficient and Be Merciful. We will never damage our own home.
    Not easy but we can probably achieve it with God’s power.

    Reply
  10. Sis Qadria

    Self sufficiency and sustainability go hand in hand but which is stifled by the rich who run the country and world. Elija Muhammad said that when they destroy the earth they will look to escape by space travel; he did not lie and yes we must all do whatever we can to combat the adverse effects of the greedy and make it safer for ourselves and our babies and always remember that the earth Belongs to Allah

    Reply

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