In a recent study lead by Kirk Smith, a researcher at UC Berkeley, it was concluded that most cities on Earth will be too hot to host the Summer Olympics as early as 2085. Smith and his team conducted their research with climate models that took into account both current world emissions and growing emission trends. The study found that, due to climate change, the majority of cities on Earth will be so hot that athletes would be in imminent danger of heat stroke, dehydration, and heat exhaustion during competition.
And that future is less than 70 years away.
“This is a human designed disaster,” explains Evan Marks, Founder & Executive Director of The Ecology Center, in Southern California. “And the worst case scenario ends in human extinction.”
Whether or not you believe in climate change (it’s worth noting that July was the warmest month in recorded history), it’s undeniable that we need to make a fundamental shift in the way we live.
“If we can’t decide that living on this planet in a positive way is the healthiest and best for future generations, then our living conditions will get more and more extreme,” continues Marks. “We’ve all seen, in the last 10 years, rapid catastrophes happening at an extreme scale. It doesn’t take science to see that.”
While Smith’s study predicts an extreme increase in temperature over the course of the next few decades, Marks makes the assertion that this trend could actually see the end of humans on Earth. It’s obvious that our environment is reaching a critical tipping point, and it raises the essential question: What can we do?