Scientists Have Been Correctly Predicting Climate Change For Years

Supermajority Education Fund

December 10, 2019

Despite overwhelming proof, many political leaders still deny the existence of climate change. A new study, however, found that predictions of global climate change for the past 50 years have been correct. 

Seventeen models published within the past five decades by former NASA climatologist James Hanse — including a 1970 study, as well as models from 1981 and 1988 — featured climate pattern predictions that were notably close to the changes in climate scientists have seen so far. 

“We found that climate models – even those published back in the 1970s – did remarkably well, with 14 out of the 17 model projections indistinguishable from what actually occurred,” Zeke Hausfather, of the University of California, Berkeley, told the Guardian

Some of the most notable effects of climate change so far have been an increase in natural disasters. Per and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), in 2017, the US hit a new record for damage costs; The damage caused by wildfires alone cost 17 billion dollars. 

When major weather events like this occur, the communities who take the most severe hits are people living in poverty. As the Fourth National Climate Assessment found  in 2018, low-income families are disproportionately affected by climate change, because they already live in communities where they often have higher health risks, live in areas that are more exposed to hazardous conditions, and can’t afford the resources to repair their homes from damage. 

Sonal Jessel, a  Policy and Advocacy Coordinator for WE ACT for Environmental Justice, told Supermajority News that  families living in poverty need financial and educational support so that when their communities are affected by natural disasters, they have the resources to bounce back faster. 

“Low-income communities need investment to improve the quality of poorly maintained homes, or to have more green spaces and vegetation to keep temperatures down and flooding at bay,” she said. “They need spaces to act as social hubs to build community power that can be harnessed to help one another in an emergency. They need energy democracy, so they are not reliant on major utility companies that overcharge and under-serve the community.” 

She added that the most effective way to help vulnerable communities decrease their risks during natural disasters is to give residents the agency to make these changes “n through community empowerment, in which members of the community are in charge of the changes being made in their homes and neighborhoods.”

Building community power, such as allowing local families to decide how they spend any awarded community disaster preparedness funds, would let an important change start within the community who needs it. 

“Some of the most important things that people can do is advocate for just policies that focus on building resilience in low-income communities, and to continually hold our government and institutions accountable for making improvements in communities,” Jessel said.