If you’re headed to the beach in southern Spain, this probably isn’t what you’re envisioning:
In July, this duo was spotted sunbathing at the Entrepenas reservoir in Duron, the second largest reservoir in Spain.
And the pics really are worth a thousand words.
The reservoir has shrunken dramatically as water levels drop.
The receding water has given way to cracked, arid soil…
…and abandoned relics reflecting a region that once revolved around life on the water.
Like the reservoir itself, tourism, and the local economy that benefits from it, are drying up too.
So, what the heck is going on at the Entrepenas reservoir? Where has all the water gone?
The area’s severe drought and dusty countryside are indicative of a larger force shaping landscapes across southern Spain.
Yep, you guessed it: climate change.
A 2016 study spelled disaster for the lush Mediterranean region due to human activity.
By 2100, southern Spain will have transformed into a desert, researchers have found — unless drastic measures are taken, like, now, to slash carbon emissions to curb the worsening effects of global warming.
“The effect of the human is to deforest, to replace with agriculture and so on,” lead author of the study, Joel Guiot of Aix-Marseille University, told The Guardian last year.
“You change the vegetation cover, the albedo, the humidity in the soil, and you will emphasize the drought when you do that,” he continued, noting the Mediterranean is already very susceptible to the consequences of a warming planet. “If you have the [direct] human impact, it will be worse.”
You don’t have to be in southern Spain to see the alarming effects of climate change, of course.
Scientists, however, have not found a friend in the White House.
The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2012
Unlike other prominent world leaders, President Trump has publicly rebuked the vast majority of climate scientists who say global warming is real and humans are to blame. He appointed Scott Pruitt — who’s argued that the science surrounding climate change is still up for debate — to run the EPA. He’s hellbent on resurrecting a dying, dirty coal industry and, in June, announced plans to pull the U.S. out of the world’s best hope to collectively confront the woes of global warming: the Paris climate agreement.
Why doesn’t Trump care?
Mother Nature certainly doesn’t care about our national borders.
We need to act. Now.
Or else sad-looking beach day photos will become the norm.
To learn more about climate change and to take action, visit the Sierra Club.