No more white Christmases, boomers

A pessimist's look at climate change

SADDENING+SNOWFALL%3A+Sophomore+Ronan+Euzen+stares+dejectedly+at+the+ground%2C+perhaps+pondering+the+bleak+scenario+in+which+he+is+part+of+the+last+generation+in+Indiana+that+gets+to+experience+snow.+If+climate+change+continues%2C+this+scenario+could+come+to+fruition.

SADDENING SNOWFALL: Sophomore Ronan Euzen stares dejectedly at the ground, perhaps pondering the bleak scenario in which he is part of the last generation in Indiana that gets to experience snow. If climate change continues, this scenario could come to fruition.

The Christmas season is upon us, and for most people here in Indiana, that means plummeting temperatures, icy roads, an absurd amount of potholes, and of course, snow. However, in the decades to come, this picturesque view of a winter wonderland could dramatically change. 

Due to the impending global threat of climate change, the snow of the holiday season and the beloved activities made possible by it—sledding, building snowmen, making snow angels, having snowball fights—could become faded and obscure memories relayed to future generations.

The absence of snow and loss of cooler temperatures could also quite possibly raise the crime rates in Indiana. According to a study conducted by the Oxford Academic Journal in 1992, some researchers have hypothesized that colder temperatures cause people to stay inside their homes, causing them to commit fewer crimes. Thus how much climate change raises the global temperature could well be the deciding factor in whether the citizens of Indiana become the equivalent to Florida men.

Another possible effect of the rising temperatures caused by climate change is the increase of tropical environments and unfortunately, the diseases-carrying mosquitoes that they harbor. If climate change continues on the path it is currently headed, instead of gathering around the Christmas tree to swap gifts, families would be gathering to transmit deadly tropical diseases such as Zika, malaria, and West Nile virus.

Growing tropical zones are not the only way that climate change could result in the spread of disease. Through the thawing of Arctic permafrost, diseases previously thought vanquished such as smallpox and the plague could return to wreak havoc upon the world. 

Despite how bleak these possibilities seem to be, actions can be taken and lifestyles can be adopted in order to prevent these cataclysmic events.

“The Amish set the standard when considering a lifestyle with the least amount of carbon emissions possible,” chemistry teacher Mr. Ben North said.

The absence of electricity and electronic devices paired with the constant need to carpool could cut carbon footprints in half. Plus, annual barn-raising events create the perfect place to store locally grown and organic food. 

However, in the wise words of the poet Weird Al Yankovic, “It’s hard work and sacrifice living in an Amish paradise.” In reality, there are easier actions to take when going about cutting down on carbon emissions. Whether it be the simple act of using LED lightbulbs or choosing to refuse single-use plastics, there are a plethora of ways to aid in the ongoing battle against climate change.

“I try to fight the battles that are important to me but also that are realistic with my family,” environmental science teacher Mrs. Robyn Witty said. “We compost, have a rain garden, and we try to buy our groceries at the farmer’s market, but at the same time, I live in Whiteland and drive an SUV in order to carry my kids.”

Climate change raises some interesting questions regarding the shape of the Holiday season for future generations. Will they be able to walk in a winter wonderland? Will they know it’s Christmas time at all? Will the dream of a white Christmas simply remain a dream?

As time goes on and the battle against climate change enters its endgame, these questions will be answered and hopefully for the better.