Environmentalists are using the 10-year challenge on social media in order to raise awareness about the negative impact of global warming on the planet.
On sites such as Twitter and Reddit, photos of glaciers and ice sheets that were taken from 2009 were juxtaposed with more recent images, showing drastic changes in the landscape due to the rising temperatures.
While the meme, which asks social media users to post photos of themselves then and now, has been popular among celebrities, it is also the perfect avenue to open discussions about global warming. The photos posted by environmental activists show how quickly the world is changing.
The real #10yearchallenge? Climate change. According to @IPCC_CH #SR15, we have just over 10 years to #ActOnClimate before we cause irreparable damage to our planet. Take our free course on #ClimateAction and become a part of the solution. Enroll now! https://t.co/puzQgIiUoQ pic.twitter.com/Ujz7kEAnoH — The SDG Academy (@SDG_Academy) January 14, 2019
The photos above show the Rhone Glacier in Switzerland back in 2008 and then last year. The rising temperature has turned the winter wonderland into a river, exposing the earth underneath.
Experts believe that the small glaciers in Switzerland will disappear in the next 25 years if the world fails to reduce the emission of excess greenhouse gases that are trapping heat in the atmosphere.
The only #10YearChallenge we should care about #M1Ö pic.twitter.com/S8hU7gNgZJ — Mesut Özil (@MesutOzil1088) January 17, 2019
The disappearance of glaciers spells trouble for everyone. Once these glaciers are gone, the massive ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland might collapse, sending huge quantities into the ocean and leading to the rapid rise of sea level around the world.
A recent report found that Antarctica is shedding ice six times faster than in the 80s. From 2009 to 2017, ice loss was estimated at 252 gigatons a year compared to 40 gigatons per anum from 1979 to 1990.
In another study, scientists found that the second largest ice sheet in the world is shrinking at an unprecedented rate due to global warming. This could cause sea levels to rise sooner rather than later.
The only #10YearChallenge we should care about.. pic.twitter.com/wM6eqCC69Z — Maria Babiychuk (@MBabiychuk) January 18, 2019
The Negative Effects Of Global Warming Are Manifesting
Unfortunately, the world will continue to change in the next decade. This month, scientists revealed that 2018 achieved the ocean's warmest temperature recorded.
Previous estimates have revealed that the world's oceans absorb 90 percent of the excess heat energy that the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere have trapped. This new discovery suggests that it is unlikely for the planet to keep warming below 2 degrees Celsius.