Climate change has already impacted nearly every aspect of life on earth, according to a new study in the journal Science.
Warming global temperatures have altered everything from entire ecosystems down to the individual genes of species. Some 80 percent of key ecological processes examined by the scientists show signs of change and distress. The disruptions could lead to unpredictable fisheries yields, reduced agricultural productivity, worsening pests and disease outbreaks, and “point toward an increasingly unpredictable future for humans,” the authors wrote. “There is now clear evidence that, with only a ~1 degree C of warming globally, very major impacts are already being felt,” said lead author Brett Scheffers, an ecologist at the University of Florida. “Species’ physiology and physical features such as body size are changing, species are rapidly moving to keep track of suitable climate space, and there are now signs of entire ecosystems under stress.”