How is Climate Change Affecting the UK

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In recent years the UK has been witnessing unprecedented weather variations. From deadly floods to super hot heat waves, rising sea levels; Climate Change is finally catching up with us.

Climate change has affected the UK in many ways. Some of these ways include the UK’s food production, wildlife decimation and polluted coastal regions. Outlined below are some of the most extreme ways in which climate change has affected the UK.

1. Extreme heat waves

In 2003, the UK and its neighbours experienced one of the most severe heat waves. Many died during the time, and it was recorded the hottest summer in many years in the western side of the continent. Scientists have warned that the 2003 heat wave was not going to be the last one. They also warned that the heat waves are set to be the norm in the summer seasons by the year 2040. This is not taken lightly since high temperatures are being recorded in summer in the UK.

This is so serious that it is feared that the elderly, children and people with chronic illnesses are said to be in great danger of the sudden waves. The extreme health effects that these kinds of people are exposed to include elevated risk of death, strokes and sometimes organ failures. Without an aggressive action to reduce the adverse climate change in the UK, these extreme heat waves could reach temperatures of up to 48 degrees Celcius, which is very dangerous to all life.

2. Flooding and drought

Have you ever realised that floods are always following a long period of drought in the UK? Well as contradictory as it would sound, floods and drought and very connected. Yes, they are very connected in this way; the two are connected to one thing known as the global water cycle. The whole cycle is interconnected, so if a part of the cycle is affected, it results in a sequence of changes to the rest of the cycle.

cars in flood
Photo by Chris Gallagher on Unsplash

The global water cycle is also very dependant on temperature. Climate change in the UK has dramatically affected temperature levels. Since the temperatures have also been increased, the precipitation patterns, the stream flow patterns and the water vapour concentration have been affected. When these things are affected, that means that it will also affect how, where, and when precipitation falls which results in either floods or drought.

Drought, in turn, causes low food production, which in turn causes hiked costs of food, which is a lamentable occurrence to people with low income and poor communities in the UK. On the other hand, flooding displaces a lot of people leaving a large population with few or no proper housing.

3. Diseases (vector-borne)

The warming temperatures being experienced in the UK may introduce new diseases to the UK population. In the warmer temperatures, insects tend to travel far and wide, leaving their native habitats. When travelling these insects and especially the disease-carrying insects known as vectors may transmit viruses and diseases to people.

Warmer conditions also extend the ranges of vectors like mosquitoes that are known to cause Malaria. A very notable concern to the people of UK is the risk of an increased number of the deadly Asian tiger mosquito. This deadly insect is notorious for passing on the chikungunya virus, zika virus and dengue virus. All three of these viruses are fatal to humans.

What can be done to reduce the effects of climate change in the UK

Climate change affects a large number of the aspects in our lives. It puts our lives in danger, and if aggressive action is not taken as soon as possible, then we are in for a massive mess in the UK. With all the harm that climate change is doing in the UK and the world at large, we have got to fight like our planet depends on it because it does. Here are some things you can do to reduce the effects of climate change as a resident in the UK.

  • Replace plastics – it all starts with you, say no to plastics. Luckily the UK government is planning on how they can ban plastics in the UK. This is a great relief since plastic is hazardous to both human health and the environment.
  • Ditching fossil fuels – using the sun for energy and ditching fossil fuels is an excellent idea. Fuels are also harmful to nature, so if we can use solar panels for energy, then we can start our war with climate change.
  • Educating people on the advantages of environment conservation.- Many residents of the UK do not take the dangers of climate change seriously. This is because they have very little knowledge concerning the climate. Environment conservation education should be done in a very detailed manner to ensure that people are aware of the dangers our world is facing.
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