Sept. 8, 2019 • 1 min
The annual melt of Arctic ice is under way, and the melt is getting worse and worse. The size of the ice cap where the melt is taking place has become the smallest since satellite records began. It will not be many more years until the Arctic is ice-free in summer. This is not news. Nor is the fact that the US is about the break its promise on its climate change policies, again. The scale and speed of worrying events in the Arctic is increasing, so is the recklessness of the current administration's climate policies. The two are closely connected: without comprehensive, rapid, global action, there is zero chance of preventing irreversible change in the Arctic, which may bring catastrophe to the rest of the world. What is also not-news is the antibiotic crisis. For years, if not the case, medics have been warning that overuse is driving up resistance, threating to propel us back to a pre-penicilin age when common bacterial infections could be fatal. Both are large, complex problems arising from technological progress. Both are tragedies that require collective action. But on antibiotic resistance, there are signs that the problem is getting less severe, thanks largely to changing prescription habits, following great collective action, which is missing in the climate change problem.