Close Login
Register here
Forgot password
Forgot password
or
or

Close
Close Inspiration on environmental sustainability, every month.

Currently 5,988 people are getting new inspiration every month from our global sustainability exchange. Do you want to stay informed? Fill in your e-mail address below:

Close Receive monthly UPDATES ON ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY IN YOUR MAILBOX EVERY MONTH.

Want to be kept in the loop? We will provide monthly overview of what is happening in our community along with new exciting ways on how you can contribute.

Close Reset password
your profile is 33% complete:
33%
Update profile Close

Are white Christmases a thing of the past?

Share this post
by: Hans van der Broek
are white christmases a thing of the past

Yes, climate change is real and happening. A few notable exceptions aside, this is something that we mostly agree on. And while we might prefer to discuss more uplifting topics at the Christmas dinner table, this one is bound to come up - alongside politics and the current state of the economy, obviously.

Your uncle or father in law will undoubtedly bring up how back when they were young, white Christmases were considered to be normal. Snowy and cold winters, ideal for huddling together with the family around the fire, swapping stories and gifts. No, then look at today, barely a snowflake in sight, let alone any prospects of a White Christmas in the near future.

After another glass of wine, the debate will have sparked - with various relatives claiming that it is all the result of global warming, making the world inherently warmer and therefore crushing any hopes of significant snowfall any time soon.

That is, if you live in or near the Northern Hemisphere - those living near the equator or south of it have always celebrated Christmas on the beach, in bikinis and shorts; once there is even a remote chance of a White Christmas over there, we really ought to get worried.

Another downside of climate change

Then there is always the chance that the weather will in fact take a turn for the worse, preventing said relatives from visiting the family gathering due to excessive snow storms and blizzards. Then the remaining family members will quickly commiserate over this as being another downside of climate change, causing extreme weather events to be more frequent and significant.

Melting snow, tree, ice

Be as it may, our chances for a picturesque, cosy White Christmas will be diminishing in years to come. Snow cover and sea ice has been declining dramatically in the Northern Hemisphere, with snow predicted to become an increasingly rarer event. And while your nephews and nieces may be disappointed at the lack of sledding and skiing opportunities, the problem of fewer snow days is actually much greater than just hurting the typical Christmas aesthetic.

It will accelerate global warming, as snow typically reflects the sun’s energy back into space, therefore cooling down our planet. When melting, it also provides water for a great number of communities downstream. And this does not even take into account the financial and social strain it will put on ski villages and resorts, taking away their lifeblood.

Climate change is something that concerns all of us - and something that will definitely impact Father Christmas as well. Santa would be finding himself in quite a pickle now that he risks losing his gift factories to the melting snow caps on his native North Pole.

Apart from the urgently growing need for him to relocate his facilities, he would also be facing a problem with his trusty travel companions: his reindeer. Large reindeer populations are threatened by global warming, as the Arctic gets warmer and the landscape is altered - changing their habitat permanently and irreversibly.

In quite some regions, reindeer are already considered to be an endangered species, such as in southern Canada and in the USA. The animals are slowly moving up north, and this restriction of their territory will bring along a wide range of problems, including the isolation of some populations and the high chances of others interbreeding - with potentially disastrous consequences. Thus, Santa might soon face the unavoidability of replacing Rudolph and his friends.

Not only will we have to change out all reindeer-themed decoration, we might also find it harder to get our hands on a real, original Christmas tree. Christmas tree farms have found it increasingly harder in recent years to produce a decent harvest, as the result of intensifying extreme weather events, such as the extreme heat and drought in the last few summers and tornadoes and flash floods in the months after.

Hence, you might find yourselves fighting over a limited number of Christmas trees that will be available. And while you are at it, you might just consider stocking up on your chocolate supplies early as well. Those of us who treasure fond memories of sitting around with scorching hot cups of cocoa, will be alarmed to hear that the world’s chocolate supply is in danger.

As it is, a large portion of this supply originates from two countries: Ghana and Ivory Coast. These countries are looking at a huge loss of land that is suitable for the production and growth of cacao, partially caused by unsustainable farming practices that are still employed today, combined with the weather negatively impacting the crops.

Now that would be a great anecdote for the dinner table discussions: climate change taking away our precious chocolate. And our maple syrup, while we are at it, that we may have just generously poured over our pancakes, cookies or waffles. The maple trees that are delivering this substance thrive in a freeze-and-thaw habitat, that can also be impacted negatively by climate change. And if this habitat changes, the trees will change accordingly, possibly reducing their substance production or stopping it altogether.

So, if you wind up in a heated discussion on the effects and causes of climate change, you might just be able to plead your case by mentioning how it might even destroy all the things that make Christmas great. Now if that isn’t a great reason to make a resolution to green up our lives, nothing is.

https://www.whatsorb.com/category/climate

Updates on environmental sustainability, every month in your mailbox!
sign up
More like this:
Messange
You
Share this post
profilepic
World traveler, entrepreneur and environmental activist. Has countless ideas and set up several businesses in the Netherlands and abroad. Has an opinion about everything and unlimited thoughts about a better world. He likes hiking and climbed numerous 5.000 m.
profileimage
World traveler, entrepreneur and environmental activist. Has countless ideas and set up several businesses in the Netherlands and abroad. Has an opinion about everything and unlimited thoughts about a better world. He likes hiking and climbed numerous 5.000 m.
signup
Updates on environmental sustainability, every month in your mailbox!
sign up
More like this:
Get updates on environmental sustainability in your mailbox every month.

Are white Christmases a thing of the past?

Yes, climate change is real and happening. A few notable exceptions aside, this is something that we mostly agree on. And while we might prefer to discuss more uplifting topics at the Christmas dinner table, this one is bound to come up - alongside politics and the current state of the economy, obviously. Your uncle or father in law will undoubtedly bring up how back when they were young, white Christmases were considered to be normal. Snowy and cold winters, ideal for huddling together with the family around the fire, swapping stories and gifts. No, then look at today, barely a snowflake in sight, let alone any prospects of a White Christmas in the near future. After another glass of wine, the debate will have sparked - with various relatives claiming that it is all the result of global warming, making the world inherently warmer and therefore crushing any hopes of significant snowfall any time soon. That is, if you live in or near the Northern Hemisphere - those living near the equator or south of it have always celebrated Christmas on the beach, in bikinis and shorts; once there is even a remote chance of a White Christmas over there, we really ought to get worried. Another downside of  climate change Then there is always the chance that the weather will in fact take a turn for the worse, preventing said relatives from visiting the family gathering due to excessive snow storms and blizzards. Then the remaining family members will quickly commiserate over this as being another downside of climate change, causing extreme weather events to be more frequent and significant. Be as it may, our chances for a picturesque, cosy White Christmas will be diminishing in years to come. Snow cover and sea ice has been declining dramatically in the Northern Hemisphere, with snow predicted to become an increasingly rarer event. And while your nephews and nieces may be disappointed at the lack of sledding and skiing opportunities, the problem of fewer snow days is actually much greater than just hurting the typical Christmas aesthetic. It will accelerate global warming, as snow typically reflects the sun’s energy back into space, therefore cooling down our planet. When melting, it also provides water for a great number of communities downstream. And this does not even take into account the financial and social strain it will put on ski villages and resorts, taking away their lifeblood. Climate change is something that concerns all of us - and something that will definitely impact Father Christmas as well. Santa would be finding himself in quite a pickle now that he risks losing his gift factories to the melting snow caps on his native North Pole. Apart from the urgently growing need for him to relocate his facilities, he would also be facing a problem with his trusty travel companions: his reindeer. Large reindeer populations are threatened by global warming, as the Arctic gets warmer and the landscape is altered - changing their habitat permanently and irreversibly. In quite some regions, reindeer are already considered to be an endangered species, such as in southern Canada and in the USA. The animals are slowly moving up north, and this restriction of their territory will bring along a wide range of problems, including the isolation of some populations and the high chances of others interbreeding - with potentially disastrous consequences. Thus, Santa might soon face the unavoidability of replacing Rudolph and his friends. Not only will we have to change out all reindeer-themed decoration, we might also find it harder to get our hands on a real, original Christmas tree. Christmas tree farms have found it increasingly harder in recent years to produce a decent harvest, as the result of intensifying extreme weather events, such as the extreme heat and drought in the last few summers and tornadoes and flash floods in the months after. Hence, you might find yourselves fighting over a limited number of Christmas trees that will be available. And while you are at it, you might just consider stocking up on your chocolate supplies early as well. Those of us who treasure fond memories of sitting around with scorching hot cups of cocoa, will be alarmed to hear that the world’s chocolate supply is in danger. As it is, a large portion of this supply originates from two countries: Ghana and Ivory Coast. These countries are looking at a huge loss of land that is suitable for the production and growth of cacao, partially caused by unsustainable farming practices that are still employed today, combined with the weather negatively impacting the crops. Now that would be a great anecdote for the dinner table discussions: climate change taking away our precious chocolate. And our maple syrup, while we are at it, that we may have just generously poured over our pancakes, cookies or waffles. The maple trees that are delivering this substance thrive in a freeze-and-thaw habitat, that can also be impacted negatively by climate change. And if this habitat changes, the trees will change accordingly, possibly reducing their substance production or stopping it altogether. So, if you wind up in a heated discussion on the effects and causes of climate change, you might just be able to plead your case by mentioning how it might even destroy all the things that make Christmas great. Now if that isn’t a great reason to make a resolution to green up our lives, nothing is. https://www.whatsorb.com/category/climate