Human activities (primarily the burning of fossil fuels) have fundamentally increased the concentration of greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere, warming the planet. Natural drivers, without human intervention, would push our planet toward a cooling period.
Climate change refers to long-term shifts in temperatures and weather patterns. These shifts may be natural, such as through variations in the solar cycle. But since the 1800s, human activities have been the main driver of climate change, primarily due to burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas.
The effects of human-caused global warming are happening now, are irreversible on the timescale of people alive today, and will worsen in the decades to come.
Human population growth and consumption, energy use, land use changes, and pollution are driving forces of global change. How do these factors impact ecological systems and human societies?
Climate change affects each part of the globe differently. Because of Earth's biodiversity, changing weather patterns and geographic variety, each region in the world will have to deal with their own set of consequences brought on by climate change.
2020 was one of three warmest years on record, despite cooling La Niña.
Extreme weather and COVID-19 combined in a double blow.
Global Distribution of plastic pollution: World Data on plastic pollution
Strategies for the Future
Sustainability is not simply about "being green." It is a transformative movement rippling around the globe. NOW is the time for systemic change, to rethink and rework how we live and interact on this planet.
Contains commonly used native plants and their cultivars. It currently has 3,800+ plant species with over 5,200 cultivars that are accompanied with 14,000 photographs including images of related pests and insects.
Open-access Journal Articles
Immunity and Disease
Homelessness is an urgent, shared and solvable problem. Street homelessness affects people in every region of the world — developed and developing — and in the absence of coordinated action globally it is growing. We know that homelessness is solvable because we have seen communities around the world solve it, through a combination of strategy, planning, and political will.
In any form, homelessness happens because people cannot access the housing and supports they need. The immediate cause is often an exogenous shock, such as a health crisis, unexpected lack of employment, or abrupt housing loss due to eviction or domestic violence. But socio-structural factors make certain people especially vulnerable, and gaps in the social safety net and homelessness services systems can extend homelessness or make it more difficult to remain housed.
Although the specifics of who is the most vulnerable tend to change depending on local contexts and socio-economic factors, by and large, already-marginalized populations will be the ones who are most at risk. Globally, certain patterns of homelessness emerge along lines of class, race, ethnicity, sexuality, gender, disability, and age; in addition, there is a complex relationship between homelessness and conflict, which can create populations of people are displaced or stateless, while climate change has increasingly prompted higher migration rates from vulnerable areas.
Substance use in its many forms can be both a cause and a result of homelessness. These behaviors may emerge as coping mechanisms, but often make it harder for people to return to housing. Studies have shown that homeless populations are highly vulnerable to addiction, be it substance use or other behaviors such as problem gambling, with that vulnerability increasing for chronically homeless populations.
Living on the streets contributes to rapid health deterioration, increased hospitalization, and, in some cases, death. For vulnerable subgroups, such as street youth, people with mental illness, young women, and the elderly, the risk of mortality when compared to the housed population can be especially high.
People living with mental health problems and disorders are more susceptible to three key factors that can lead to homelessness: poverty, disaffiliation, and personal vulnerability. Certain disorders can limit individuals' capacity to sustain employment, and as a result they have very little income. Behavioral issues may lead them to withdraw from friends, family and other people, creating a vacuum of support and fewer coping resources in times of trouble. Mental illness can also impair a person’s ability to be resilient and resourceful; it can cloud thinking and impair judgment. For all these reasons, people with mental illness are at greater risk of experiencing homelessness.
Homelessness is a global challenge. The United Nations Human Settlements Program estimates that 1.1 billion people live in inadequate housing, and the best data available suggest that more than 100 million people have no housing at all.
Noun: An extreme shortage of food in one area during a long period of time.
Famine is a widespread condition in which many people in a country or region are unable to access adequate food supplies. Famines result in malnutrition, starvation, disease, and high death rates.
Many of the worst contemporary wars are accompanied by mass starvation. In some cases, starvation is used as a weapon.
The Horn of Africa is experiencing its worst drought in four decades. Combined with the sky-rocketing price of food and fuel, 18.4 million people are facing extreme hunger in countries such as Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan.
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Good and Evil – There is No Such Thing as Evil
Good and evil – It seems the great struggle of good vs. evil is a fallacy. Good exists, but evil does not. By “evil,” we mean the antithesis of good; an exact opposite. A force working in opposition to an equal and contradictory force of good. But this is simply not so. Rather, what we call evil is nothing more than the absence of good.
If God is good, then all He created was good. In this situation, “evil” does not and cannot exist in the physical or spiritual reality that God created. In other words, evil does not exist.
God saw all that He had made, and it was very good (Genesis 1:31).