Amazon Rainforest Fire and Elliot City Flooding


Catherine Huang, Staff Writer

The Earth is something all humans have in common. It has provided all of its inhabitants with water, air, shelter, and enough resources to survive from ancient times to the present. Yet, humans have abused and exploited these resources. Emitting exhaust, discharging waste-water, overdevelopment, and the slaughtering of animals in their habitats is causing an increase in climate change, pollution, and weather disasters around the world.

Climate change is the most long-term, serious issue unfolding today. There are two recent disasters on Earth that were caused by climate change: the Amazon rainforest fires and the flooding in Ellicott City.

The Amazon rainforest is the biggest tropical forest in the world. The rainforest is not just a beautiful creation, but it also contains 10 percent of the world’s animals and plants. Its beneficial effects help prevent floods, droughts, and soil loss. The rainforest also takes in carbon dioxide while releasing oxygen for humans to breathe. 

According to The Conversation, the Amazon rainforest fire was caused by human activity; especially in deforestation for agricultural use. Flames can escape into the rest of the forest and it will burn until they run out of fuel. Since climate change left the Amazon Basin drier than usual, the flames will keep burning until the wet season comes. According to Newsweek, hundreds of thousands of acres of the Amazon Rainforest were on fire for 16 days. If humans keep developing resources, burning coal and oil, and burning trees without vigilance, forest fires will only get worse and worse, which will affect people’s health.

According to climate nexus, Ellicott is a city in Howard County, Maryland. On May 27, 2018, Ellicott City flooded with about 13 to 15 inches of rain. Many people were shocked by this rainfall event; only the second in the past millennium.

Floods have a direct relationship with climate change. Climate change leads to more rainfall from storms and increases the risk of flooding which disastrously affects humans. Crops cannot be harvested, house furniture can become soaked in water in coastal areas, and humans can also be infected by millions of bacteria or viruses from the flooding. If humans don’t address climate change, flooding will only get more and more common, resulting in tragedies or disasters that cannot be overcome.

Climate change is not only affecting the Amazon rainforest and Ellicott City; it is affecting the entire world. 

“Climate change is causing the temperature to rise and is also bringing more hurricanes in California. The polar bears are also dying,” said Sophomore Jessie Huh.

“San Diego, in particular, is becoming more humid during the summer, and the king tides are much higher than it used to be and more frequent,” said Mrs. Menders.

Protecting communities and environments on Earth is not only the duty of government; the responsibility is shared by everyone living on planet Earth. To retain a comfortable and livable environment for future generations, everyone must finally address climate change. 

There are some actions that can be taken to save the planet. First, carbon dioxide emissions can be reduced by walking or taking public transportation instead of driving cars. Secondly, one way to reduce harmful chemicals or gases released from burning waste is to recycle properly. Lastly, eating less meat will reduce greenhouse gas emissions caused by the raising of animals. 

It may seem powerless and ineffective if only one person performs these actions. Yet, when combining the power of all people, it can bring a great and effective impact on the Earth.