The sense of interconnectivity between different ecosystems and their reciprocal impact on each other refers to the environmental citizenship concept. There is a stability between those groups, whose existence and survival depend on the actions of their close as well as distant neighbors. Thus, ecological issues such as climate change (CC) can upset the balance which has been built over millions of years. Over the course of time, artificial novelties such as automobiles and production plants have increased the level of greenhouse gases, stimulating global warming. Thereby, CC has the potential to imperil the safety and access to freshwater, which inevitably leads to disequilibrium in other complexes.
CC has significantly worsened water quality on a worldwide scale. In particular, ashes and dust particles coming from car tanks and chimneys have traveled for long distances to reach mountain peaks (Schmeller et al., 2018). Various microorganisms have been delivered by sidestream smoke. Expected heavy rainfalls and storms, caused by the same CC, encourage the spread of diseases and infections (Schmeller et al., 2018). There will be severe ramifications related to the health of humans and other species, the agricultural sector, and the fishing industry. Furthermore, any artificial activities with regard to mountain zones can encourage the distribution of harmful organisms. Specifically, in case they become highly infective, the ecosystems of mountain freshwater are in serious danger (Schmeller et al., 2018). There is a possibility for the development of poisonous “cyanobacteria,” which can contaminate potable water for all creatures (Schmeller et al., 2018). Moreover, rising air and water temperatures facilitate the spread of parasites and their expansion in host organisms. Thus, CC generates another problem concerning water properties and the security of those consuming it.
Impact on Biodiversity
An incremental trend in water temperatures is the most marked characteristic of global warming. It can change the signals for “mating and reproduction” and transform the nature of the correlation between “coevolved species” (Knouft & Ficklin, 2017). Consequently, the influence of heat is vast and able to threaten the future of flora and fauna. Since such events as migration and flowering depend on seasons, changes in weather tendencies can undermine the balance in the wildlife. The entire ecosystem becomes dysfunctional, which transmits to other groups due to the environmental citizenship principle. For example, as the climate gets warmer, plant species grow and germinate more actively. Provided that the lifecycle finishes too early, insects might fail to feed themselves. As a result, birds seeking to nurture an upcoming hungry generation will decline. Thousands of species are united and interrelated in multiple ecosystems. As they grew and evolved together now, groups’ existence and prosperity are sustained by other ones. CC will force them to adjust to altering conditions, otherwise, the consequences will be disastrous.
Harmful Algal Blooms
Despite its adverse effects, CC benefits some plant and animal species. Those who are capable to align with changes promptly are likely to dominate ecosystems in the long run. They will become a threat to weaker neighbors, which react slower and thus can vanish from the planet. Griffith and Gobler (2019) provide an excellent example of “harmful algal blooms” (HAB) that cover all possible spaces, depriving others of food and shelter. In addition, these species are able to produce “potent biotoxins”, which if consumed are mortal for human beings (Griffith & Gobler, 2019). They are highly invasive and largely associated with CC consequences. HAB has the potential to impair aquatic life by emitting dangerous toxins. The freshwater will be unsuitable for drinking and uninhabitable for living. Native wildlife is a major source of nutrition for other species, serving as a refuge for several ecological groups. Thereby, intrusive plants and animals’ prevailing status will begin another extinction period in human history.
CC is one of the reasons for extreme precipitation seasons, which generates catastrophic flooding events. Climate belts will shift, and weather changes will become more severe (frosts will be followed by sudden thaws in the winter, and the number of abnormally hot days in the summer will increase). Anomalies such as droughts and floods will become more frequent and intense. The melting of glaciers and rising sea levels are likely to be some of the most visible consequences of global warming. Millions of people on coasts will suffer from continuous overflow and will be forced to move to other regions. Fresh water-related CC incidents impose high costs in respect to natural source depletion, loss of lives, economic recession, and damaged infrastructure. Thereupon, it can be noted that issues created by CC result in further critical risks and harmful outcomes with reference to weather irregularities.
In conclusion, as the climate of the planet is constantly changing, the global environmental problem is increasingly threatening humankind and wildlife. The austerity and destructiveness of CC can be explained by the environmental citizenship concept, where all neighbors are connected and dependent on each other. The quality of water is likely to be influenced, as greenhouse gases emission will travel to mountains. Moreover, the wildlife is in a vulnerable position since air and water temperatures rise invariably. Next, there are species for which CC offers advantages to overpower the marine ecosystems. Lastly, humanity will experience abnormal patterns in weather, causing flooding and other linked set of problems.
Griffith, A. W. & Gobler, C. J. (2019). Harmful algal blooms: A climate change co-stressor in marine and freshwater ecosystems. Harmful Algae, 91, 1-12.
Knouft, J. H. & Ficklin, D. L. (2017). The potential impacts of climate change on biodiversity in flowing freshwater systems. Annual Review of Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics, 48(1), 111-133.
Schmeller, D. S., Loyau, A., Bao, K., Brack, W., Chatzinotas, A., Vleesschouwer, F., … Vredenburg, V. T. (2018). People, pollution and pathogens – global change impacts in mountain freshwater ecosystems. Science of the Total Environment, 622-623, 756-763.