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I keep myself to my desk, my eyes fastened on the laptop screen, doing my everyday chore of reading environmental essays, when I realize how the words “climate change” and “global warming” are overly used. People constantly keep on hovering about environmental degradation and rise in temperatures in speeches or essays. Their words aim at stirring awareness about these global phenomena but end up boring and putting away the audience for the simple reason of repetition.

Today, everyone is already aware of what climate change is; the whys, the hows and the whats have all been answered. But despite knowing the reasons for the sweltering summers, people still seem indifferent to the effects of global warming. Why? There are thousands of people out there who believe that there are more ‘pressing’ issues the global community should concentrate on. However, what they don’t understand is that environmental problems are closely linked with almost every ‘pressing’ issue, be it fast growing economies, the food crisis or population explosion.

Even though the awareness among masses has shot up, there haven’t been significant improvements. There has been an accelerated change in temperatures but there haven’t been drastic measures taken to check this change in climate. We have striking facts and stats bolstering the severity of the problem, but our response has always been in the shadow. Our environment is a lot like weight loss; we strive to set goals but end up doing nothing to achieve them.

I’m sure you must be thinking about the various conventions that have taken place; right? From the Kyoto Protocol to the Copenhagen Summit, these are summits that have been romanticized in your textbooks. But ironic as it may sound, these conferences have done very little, if not nothing, to help the worsening scenario. The percentage of carbon emissions the world’s leaders pledge to reduce in the time frame of those meetings strive to be only a small fraction of the amount of resources that go into use during the preparations for the convention.

The ‘climate’ is slowly changing (pun, unfortunately intended). The environmentalist me was extremely happy after seeing pictures of the climate change protests that took place at several different places in the world on Sunday. I was thrilled to know about the UN Climate Change Summit. Here’s hoping that the goals put forth would be long-lived in contrast to its counterparts and world leaders don’t hold a deaf ear to one of the most crucial issues that needs urgent attention.

Actions speak louder than words: cliched, yes; relevant, absolutely. This is a cue for all of us to stop debating on climate change and to step out of our air-conditioned surroundings, broaden our horizons and work together to make people understand how our human race is on its brink of extinction due to ‘climate change’, a phrase everyone uses but no one seems to act upon.

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