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Anita Verma Headshot

The Heat Is On!

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There are two things everyone talks about: politics and the weather. Unfortunately, neither of them have very good news these days.

People have probably heard more than enough about global warming -- whether it exists or doesn't -- but judging by the severity of storms over the past four months, no one can deny that "something" is going on.

CO2 emissions are at a dangerously high level. The industrialization revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries and the overall increase in the world's population has taken CO2 levels to all time highs. CO2 levels have gone from about 275 ppm in the year 1000 to nearly 400 ppm in 2014. In the span of 1,000 years, the levels have nearly doubled! This rapid acceleration of the emissions began in the 1800s and has continued to increase steadily year over year since then according to the NOAA-ESRL data.

This is causing global warming! If you compare the earth to the human body, earth's temperature has been increasing one to two degrees every year. If the human body's temperature increased like this, we would be very sick, which is why experts are predicting that natural disasters have started increasing.

Ok. So maybe you have heard this already, but we can no longer ignore it. While other countries are very proactive and have been exploring renewable energy for decades, the United States is still far behind.

There are glimmers of hope, however. California is very actively developing renewable energy, pushing to have 50 percent of their energy come from renewable sources in the future. They are already over 30 percent. That's the good news. The bad news is, it needs to be done faster.

Arizona may provide the answer. California is facing a shortage of energy since their population is growing; they have shut down nuclear plants and other fossil fuel plants in an effort to eliminate sources of "dirty" energy. They are now looking to Arizona for solar development, since the permitting process for solar projects in the Golden State takes so long. It can take up to two years to permit a solar project, whereas it can be permitted in less than six months in Arizona.

Despite the fact that only 17 percent of land in Arizona is privately owned, there are still several opportunities for solar development, along major transportation routes and near metropolitan hubs. Raw land parcels exist and provide the best locations for building solar plants, close enough to town, yet far enough away to accommodate the massive area needs for development, construction and operations.

If something isn't done to stop what is happening, the earth will self destruct. The population will continue to increase and food needs will also increase, so if something isn't done to control C02, there will be big problems. Some groups are so concerned about this that they are exploring other planets, which could host human populations.

Solar is absolutely necessary for the sustainability of earth. It's just a matter of time before everyone is forced to use it. It will happen in Arizona, it's just a matter of time.

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