climate change

All posts tagged climate change

Here is my latest vlog!

Warning: Do not save your vlog for your last blog post. You will have the flu and it will also be due the night of Greek sing. Somehow, you will get first at Greek Sing despite having the flu and will film this video at 11:40 pm. No, I do not know why it’s sideways but I’ve spent 20 minutes trying to fix it and it’s about time to submit. You will still have the flu, so you will go to bed as soon as this finished uploading.

We have 3D printers in our schools and some might even already own one in their home. We print plastics and more recently metals, but the next step, which has already been breached, is printing food.

Imagine a world years from now that already replaced the manufacturing industry with printers. Global greenhouse gas emissions from livestock had huge consequences, the world population was continuously growing, and malnutrition continued to tear apart third world countries. So they took the next step in the 3D-printing revolution: 3D-printed food.

3D printed Carrots

Carrots printed from a 3D printer.

Every family who can afford a 3D printer owns one, maybe even two or three. They can be found in place of food shelters, and in factories where diverse machinery was once present. And everything is automated; resources are distributed and used more carefully under supervision and regulation, reducing waste but also reducing choice and creativity. Malnutrition can be treated easily with artificial proteins created by the 3D-printers, which is one of the reasons the switch was made, but the machines don’t exist in all the places they need to, and don’t work in all the places where they do. In regions where poverty still rages, the public printers break down from overuse or misuse, and sometimes are left empty of resources to print with.

Where regular 3D printers print with plastics, the "Foodini" uses real food ingredients to create edible products.

Why pay continuously for a chef when you can just buy a printer once? 3D printers replaced chefs in the kitchen, making the cooking process quicker and less wasteful.

In addition to the unsolved hunger and malnutrition in poorer areas, the agriculture industry is dead, along with many other manufacturing jobs that people once held. Farmers are something that only exist in history books, along with chefs and factory workers. Farms are deserted; livestock was banned years ago because of the mounting implications on the earth’s climate, and it’s pointless to put labor into a crop that can now be artificially created by a printer for less money and more convenience. Unrest is increasing in and about poverty-ridden areas; if they can’t print their food and farms are non-existent then they literally have nothing to eat. But these are problems of people that remain mostly unheard. While it was argued in the beginning that the switch would help them, it was in part for them, the printing revolution has moved away and beyond that now.

Image result for empty factory

Factories are left empty, as products can now be manufactured locally or even in homes from 3D printers.

Image result for deserted farmland

Farmland is left unusable by the changing climate and replaced by the printing industry.

With a focus on the good things: the fewer wasted materials and resources, longer life spans due to easily replaced product parts, less transport, and fewer unsold products, it seems reasonable, even a good idea then to advance printing once again. It was a quick transition from printing plastics to metals and from metals to food and artificial proteins, so why not take it one step further? Imagine the possibilities if we began to print living tissue. Imagine all the people it could help, how many lives it could make better. If only it would help the people that need it most.

Image result for 3d printing tissue

No ear? No problem. Just print yourself another.

Reading Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi has made me more aware of the environmental issues that are facing our society today. Ship Breaker is set in a post-apocalyptic future where human civilization is in decline due to ecological reasons. Sea levels have risen by huge amounts due to the melting of the polar ice caps leaving New Orleans under water. Huge storms, known as city killers, became worse every year destroying everything that the ship breaker’s had.

After reading about the consequences that could potentially occur and what a possible society could look like, I decided to do some more research on the topic. What I found was very alarming and made me more aware of the environmental consequences of global warming. The arctic ice is already melting at alarming rates, declining by 13.3 percent per decade. The global temperature is also on the rise, with the ten warmest years on record have occurred since 1998, with last year (2016) being the warmest on record. Both the melting ice and the increase in temperature expanding the sea water, have led to the constant rising of the sea level with a rate of change of 3.4mm per year. These numbers will not be on the decline anytime soon, due to the executed and anticipated changes of the Trump administration.

On March 13, 2017 the first preliminary budget was released which confirmed speculation and outlines deep cuts to U.S. science and environmental agencies. These include EPA, NOAA, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The money will then go to increase defense spending by $54 billion. Without an adequate amount of money, there is little that these agencies can do to help the environment. Only two days later, the EPA administrator and the U.S. Secretary of Transportation announced that they will reconsider era emission requirements for vehicles with model years between 2022 and 2025. This will only keep increasing the amount of air pollution and not helping decrease the effects of global warming. These are only some examples of what the Trump administration has already done and who knows what he will do in the future.

Ship Breaker made me think of the consequences of global warming and made me realize that it is imperative that we take actions to keep this from happening. From now on, I will be more conscious of the way I am polluting the world and always try to be and to encourage others to be more environmentally friendly.

Works Cited

Bacigalupi, Paolo. Ship Breaker. London, Atom, 2011.
https://climate.nasa.gov/vital-signs/sea-level/
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/03/how-trump-is-changing-science-environment/