Surprise! Humans are turning the earth into a garbage fire a lot quicker than previously thought.
According to Australian National University researchers, humans are speeding up climate change 170 times faster than natural forces.
“Human-caused greenhouse gas emissions over the past 45 years have increased the rate of temperature rise to 1.7 degrees Celsius per century, dwarfing the natural background rate,” ANU climate professor Will Steffen said in a statement on the university’s news page.
The “natural background rate” Steffen mentions refers to the degrees the global temperature climbs in any given century due to natural forces like “changes in solar intensity and subtle changes in orbital parameters, along with a few volcanoes.”
Altogether these factors only account for a rate of change of 0.01 degrees Celsius per century.
Steffan said no one should completely discount nature’s effects on the climate — but human intervention has now rendered those effects “negligible compared with our own influence.”
Most climate change deniers maintain the changes in our environment — like say, three consecutive hottest years on record — are totally normal and natural.
Rising sea levels? Melting ice caps? Short sleeves in February? Nothing to see here, folks.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said much the same in 2014, when he stated point blank, “I do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it.” He added, “Our climate is only changing.”
Rubio was just one of many 2016 GOP presidential candidates who denied climate change or denied humanity’s impact on the environment.
President Donald Trump himself once called climate change a hoax, suggesting the Chinese had invented the conspiracy to give the country a leg up on trade.