What is climate change?
We are hearing it more and more: the climate is changing. But what does it mean? The climate is seen as the normal weather in a specific area. For example, the temperatures in the Amazon are always high and it is raining almost every day, while on the Antarctic it is always freezing and almost no rain falls. When the normal temperature and the amount of rain in a specific area changes, there is a transition in the normal weather. This is climate change. Not only in specific areas climate change is observed, all over the world the consequences of climate change are felt.
What is causing climate change?
Changes in the climate are not something new. In the past, natural factors, such as volcanic eruptions and El Niño, caused fluctuations in the temperature and rainfall. What is new, is the influence of humans on climate change. We drive our cars, are heating our houses when it is cold outside, and use energy to cook. These day to day activities cause the emission of greenhouse gasses, such as methane and carbon. These gasses prevent the heat emitted by the earth the escape, causing global warming.
What are the consequences of climate change?
Global warming has various consequences. Heat waves occur more often, rainfall becomes more intense and the sea level rises. Especially within vulnerable areas, such as Sub-Saharan Africa, the consequences of climate change are felt on a daily basis. Extreme heat and the lack of rain cause drought, with crop failure as a consequence. When rain does arrive, the showers are really intense, leaving no time for the water to infiltrate into the soil, causing it to flood to lower areas, washing away the fertile top layer of the soil. A process called erosion. It leads to degradation of the land, making it hard to grow crops, causing a decline of vegetation and maintain the land to be dry. This could lead to food shortage for the local communities. Since they are not assured to have food, the people migrate to other areas, hoping to find fertile soil where they can grow their crops. These people are also called climate refugees. They are forced to flee due to the consequences of climate change.
How can we solve climate change?
We can do this with help of regreening! Recent studies show that nature-based solutions can contribute up to 37% of the carbon emission intake required to keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius. Vegetation cause the sequestration of carbon, decreasing the amount carbon in the atmosphere and subsequently reducing the greenhouse effect, ultimately leading to the mitigation of global warming. Vegetation also causes cooling of the soil, decreasing the evaporation of water from the soil leading to increased water availability for plants, animals and humans. In addition, greening stimulates the water cycle, causing increased rainfall and the retention of water in the soil. This increasement of the soil moisture content makes the land available for agriculture again, producing food and income for the local communities.
Who is Justdiggit?
Justdiggit is a Dutch foundation with the goal to restore degraded ecosystems by developing, initiating and co-funding large-scale landscape restoration programs within Africa. Our regreening projects help to restore the water balance in the soil and bring back vegetation, which has a positive effect on the local and regional climate, increases water and food security and promotes biodiversity within the project areas. Within our projects we work together with local partners and communities. The communities involved directly benefit from our programs as we create a better living environment and increase economic development.
Our unique approach is a media and communication-based strategy, involving all available communication and media on a local, regional, national and international level. With these sponsored media campaigns, we aim to amplify the eﬀect of landscape restoration programs, thereby creating a landscape restoration movement, promoting regreening throughout Africa!More about Justdiggit