Consider what you learned about how COVID-19 shutdowns affected air quality. What can these events teach us about efforts to control global climate change? What do you think are fair and realistic expectations of the world’s more-developed and less-developed countries in this effort?
COVID-19 shutdowns have provided a glimpse into the potential impact of reduced human activity on air quality. During these shutdowns, there were significant reductions in the levels of pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and particulate matter, resulting in improved air quality in many areas. This suggests that reducing human activity can have a significant impact on improving air quality and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
In terms of efforts to control global climate change, the shutdowns demonstrate the importance of reducing human activity, particularly in the form of industrial and transportation emissions, in order to achieve significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. However, it is important to note that the shutdowns were temporary and not sustainable in the long term and that more comprehensive and permanent solutions will be needed to address climate change.
In terms of expectations for developed and developing countries, it is important to recognize that the challenges and opportunities for reducing emissions will differ between countries. Developed countries, which have historically been the largest emitters of greenhouse gases, have greater responsibility and capacity to reduce emissions through technological and policy solutions. Developing countries, on the other hand, may face greater challenges in reducing emissions due to their lower levels of economic and technological development, but may also have opportunities to leapfrog to cleaner forms of energy and development.
It is important for developed and developing countries to work together to find solutions that are fair and realistic for all countries, and to provide support and resources to help developing countries reduce emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change.