Aug. 8, 2016
On Friday, the Summer Olympics began in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil with the traditional opening ceremony and torch-lighting. But in a highly unorthodox move, Brazil took its moment with 3.3 billion people around the world watching to highlight the dangers of climate change, global warming, and sea level rise. The ceremony included a somber video that showed the melting of the polar ice cap, the rising of the earth’s temperature, and the threat posed by sea level rise to major cities across the world, including Shanghai, Miami, Amsterdam, Dubai, Lagos, and Rio. Though unusual for an opening ceremony, it makes sense that Brazil would use this unique opportunity to call the world to action on climate change. 2016 is likely to be the hottest year ever recorded, Brazil is one of the countries likely to be hit hardest by climate change, and like the Olympic Games, climate change is one of the few things that truly unites all the countries of the world - all countries have contributed to the problem, all countries will be effected, and all countries will be needed to help confront the challenge.