Immediately after the debate political pundits criticized the presidential candidate for saying that people should start moving away from the coast since it will only get warmer in a few years no matter how well we do on curbing emissions.
“The important number in this is 15 percent of global emissions,” said Yang. “We like to act as if we’re 100 percent. Even if we were to curb our emissions dramatically, the Earth is going to get warmer. The last four years have been the four warmest years in history. We are too late. We are 10 years too late.”
“We need to do everything we can to start moving the climate in the right direction,” he continued, “but we also need to start moving our people to higher ground—and the best way to do that is to put economic resources into your hands so you can protect yourself and your families.”
Andrew Yang essentially says we’re all screwed on climate change, so therefore we all need more money in our pocket so we can move to “higher ground” pic.twitter.com/78Ge1B2zLp
NASA oceanographer Josh Willis recently spoke with CNN, providing data that backs Yang’s claims.
“There is enough ice in Greenland to raise the sea levels by 7.5 meters, that’s about 25 feet, an enormous volume of ice, and that would be devastating to coastlines all around the planet,” Willis said. “We should be retreating already from the coastline if we are looking at many meters [lost] in the next century or two.”
According to Willis, his research team at NASA’s Ocean Melting Greenland encountered some alarming patterns around the island’s coastline following the recent heat waves experienced in the United States and Europe.
It’s not just surface temperatures that are getting warmer and melting Greenland’s ice, the ocean temperature deep under the water is also rising. As Greenland’s massive ice sheet is being melted away at the top and the bottom, the entire world is put in grave danger.
Approx 90% of Greenland’s ice sheet surface melted at some point between 7/30 & 8/3, according to @NSIDC. The west central coast, seen in the above pass, was dotted with bright blue melt ponds. pic.twitter.com/RMgjrDT4sl
Helheim glacier, a huge 4-mile glacier on Greenland’s east coast has been found to be retreating “by many meters per day, it’s tens of meters per day,” Willis said.
The National Geographic noted that the glacier lost a huge 2-mile piece two years ago and then broke off a chunk the size of lower Manhattan just last summer.
Scientists have been expressing deep concerns about this since glaciers like Helheim are big enough to make global sea levels rise by one millimeter in just one month. This also results in less carbon being removed from the atmosphere as sea ice continues to melt.
“Greenland has an impact all around the planet. A billion tons of ice lost here raises sea levels in Australia, in Southeast Asia, in the United States, in Europe,” Willis was quoted as saying. “We are all connected by the same ocean.”
Aside from his proposal to move people to higher ground, Yang is also endorsing the regulation of fossil fuels not only to affect climate change but also to improve the health of Americans, according to his website’s section on his climate change policy.
“Renewable energy must be invested in, not only as a means of moderating climate change but also to drive economic growth,” it added. “However, innovation must also be relied on to reverse the damage already caused.”