Words matter – particularly when they relate to an existential threat as momentous as large-scale climate change – because they set the context for a debate on the subject.
That’s why it was an important moment when The Guardian updated its style guide three years ago to introduce terms that more accurately describe the significant environmental crises facing the world.
Instead of ‘climate change’, for example, the newspaper opts for the term ‘climate emergency, crisis or breakdown’, and it favours ‘global heating’ over ‘global warming’.
What is global warming?
Global warming (or heating) usually refers to human-induced raising of the temperature of the planet caused by greenhouse gas emissions which blanket the Earth and trap the sun’s heat.
The world is currently heating up faster than at any point in recorded history. Human-induced global heating reached around 1°C above pre-industrial levels in 2017 and is increasing at a rate of around 0.2°C per decade. However, rising temperatures greater than the global average have already been experienced in many regions and seasons.
Recent heatwaves – with the thermometer hitting 40 deg C in the UK for the first time on record – together with melting runways and raging wildfires scorching vast swathes of Europe have laid bare the grim reality of the climate emergency we face.
Indeed, it has been clear for some time that decisive action is urgently required to stop the remorseless rise in global temperatures. What the world is crying out for is more climate change… just in the opposite direction!
Climate degradation tipping point
Warming greater than 1.5°C – widely regarded as the tipping point for climate degradation – is therefore geo-physically unavoidable, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: “Whether it will occur depends on future rates of emission reductions…
“All 1.5°C pathways involve limiting cumulative emissions of long-lived greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide, and substantial reductions in other climate forcers.
“Limiting cumulative emissions requires either reducing net global emissions of long-lived greenhouse gases to zero before the cumulative limit is reached, or net negative global emissions (anthropogenic removals) after the limit is exceeded.”
Achieving net zero
Achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050 – the UK government’s ambitious target – will require almost all buildings in the UK to transition to low carbon heating. Around a third of non-domestic buildings off the gas grid currently have a fossil fuelled heating system in use for producing heating and hot water, which contributes to carbon emissions.
Progressive manufacturers recognise the clear and present danger humanity faces and are responding by concentrating their research and development firepower on environmental initiatives that boost the energy efficiency of the products they produce.
And enlightened suppliers like LH-plc ensure they only work with companies like these that have views that are laser-focused on exceptional ‘green’ performance to stop or even reverse the inexorable rise in global temperature.
But specifying energy efficient equipment is not enough on its own to mitigate the problems associated with climate change. The way the equipment is installed also has a significant bearing on its environmental performance as well as how effectively it maintains a comfortable and consistent temperature in a workplace all year round.
That is why it pays to talk to an expert before embarking on a HVAC project.
Climate control support
LH-plc offers a complete solution for climate control in every conceivable type of commercial office building from energy efficient chillers to heat pumps, heat rejection systems like cooling towers and coolers to chilled beams and fan coil units.
The company’s dedicated team of specialist partners have the expertise to design and project manage complete and innovative HVAC solutions for a wide variety of office properties.
Its experienced project team manages the whole process from inception to completion, handover and throughout the warranty period. All of LH-plc’s projects are carried out in accordance with CDM requirements.
Commitment to sustainability
Find out more about our own commitments to sustainability, here.