Climate Change Impacts Will be Pervasive (pp. 371-376)
Authors: Michael C. MacCracken
Abstract: Climate change and associated impacts will affect everything and everyone—the young and the old, the healthy and the infirmed, the rich and the poor, some by a little and some by a lot. While some of the changes, like more intense heat waves, will affect us directly, many of the impacts are likely to be experienced through impacts on the natural world on which we depend. Although preparation and adaptation can moderate some of the impacts, new ones are likely to arise as the global energy system is changed to limit emissions of the gases and aerosols that cause climate change. A few of the changes may lead to local opportunities and gains, but many are likely to result in negative consequences, many arising because the extremes that already impose costs will occur more frequently and be even further from the norms to which society and the environment have become reasonably adapted.