In western Germany extreme flooding has killed more than 100 people, with many still missing. The flood began from heavy rainfall that made its way to the Netherlands and Belgium. The rains created sludge like fast-rising water that decimated roads, bridges, entire towns, and homes. This natural disaster is just another clear example that climate change is already here.
Over the years Germany has experienced hot, dry summers, but now parts of the country are reaching precipitation levels that infrastructure cannot sustain. Friederike Otto, who is the Associate Director of the Environmental Change Institute at the University of Oxford stated that, “the extreme precipitation we have been experiencing in Europe over the last few days is extreme weather, the intensity of which is growing due to climate change and will continue to do so as the climate warms.”
On September 26th, Germans will elect a new parliament which could help mold the country’s climate policies. However politicians are still reluctant to push climate action plans even amongst growing concerns from voters.
Germany isn’t the only country that is beginning to see the effects of climate change. Developing countries have always faced the brunt of the changing world, but now highly developed countries, like the United States are susceptible to global warming as well. Recently, New York City subways were flooded with stormwater, which showed that no one is safe from climate change and left commuters stranded.
Governments need to take action when it comes to fighting climate change before it is too late. Experts are warning that in order to survive the human race will need to adapt. This means emission cuts, infrastructure that is resilient to extreme weather, and warning systems that will make the public aware of a threat. Without adaptation there will more than likely be more destruction and death.