Green Christmas



The tree in downtown Syracuse lit up during a white Christmas in 2007

Winter is beloved for its unique trait of snow. Snow tends to be a big visual during the holidays, especially in songs like “White Christmas” or “Underneath the Tree.” In recent years there has been a decrease in snowfall throughout the world, and the holidays seem less festive without the snow. What happened to those white Christmases?

  Global warming becomes a bigger problem each year due to rising global temperatures, which according to the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, have increased by 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit since the late 1800s. This may not seem like a lot, but the shift has had a big impact on the world’s environment, with rising temperatures causing precipitation to come in the form of rain. 

The main cause of rising temperatures is the crazy amount of carbon emissions going into the atmosphere every day. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration states that, since the globe’s Industrial Revolution, over 2000 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide has entered the atmosphere. These carbon emissions could be coming from cars, fossil fuels, and factories. You may have heard of your “carbon footprint,” which, according to the Oxford Dictionary, is the measure of the amount of carbon dioxide and other carbon compounds emitted due to the consumption of fossil fuels by a particular person, group, etc. 

All of these causes have impacts beyond green Christmases. Polar bears have less ice to roam around and live on, huge wildfires are occurring more often (as seen in California), summers are getting hotter and winters are getting warmer, sea levels and ocean temperatures are rising, and the extinction of different species is becoming more prevalent. 

This knowledge of the Earth’s deterioration should not scare us, but rather be a wake-up call for everyone living on it. Things like reducing your carbon footprint, carpooling and taking public transportation, using solar panels, turning off the light in rooms when you are not using them, not leaving water running, throwing out trash you see on the ground and not littering, recycling, eating less meat, and not supporting fast fashion will help solve the climate crisis.  

Some might believe that they cannot do anything since they are just one person, but that mindset only adds to the problem. Although big corporations are mainly to blame for this climate crisis, if one person throws away one piece of litter on the ground, that could inspire someone else to do the same. 

Together, we can all reverse the effects of climate change, and maybe there will be regular white Christmases once again to enjoy.