Does this summer feel a little warmer than usual? Well, that’s because it is.
According to NASA, the first six months of 2016 have been the warmest half-year ever recorded. Pair that with the smallest monthly Artic Sea ice extent in that same period of time, and these two indicators give a grim image of the accelerating pace of climate change.
In a report, NASA states that the global temperature has increased by 2.4°F since record keeping began in the 1800s. Additionally, Artic Sea ice has been declining at a rate of 13.4 percent per decade.
“It has been a record year so far for global temperatures, but the record high temperatures in the Arctic over the past six months have been even more extreme,” says Walt Mkeier, a sea ice researcher with NASA. “This warmth as well as unusual weather patterns have led to the record low sea ice extents so far this year.”
If climate continues down this same path, the effects could be devastating for the world. However, electrochemical and solid state science may have some of the answers to mitigate climate change.
Take, for example, ECS member Jaeho Lee, who is working to recycle the upwards of 86 percent of produced energy that is wasted on a daily basis. Or David Go, an ECS Toyota Young Investigator Fellowship winner who is aiming his efforts on transforming environmentally harmful greenhouse gases into clean, alternative fuels for next-generation vehicles.
Electrochemists and solid state scientists are also instrumental in harvesting and storing renewable energy. ECS member Lili Deligianni’s cutting-edge developments in solar cells via nanotechnology has led to devices with lower costs and higher efficiency levels.
From creating more efficient systems to discovering new energy sources, electrochemists and solid state scientists are behind the most critical innovations in sustainability and renewable energy.