Cities with substantial population growth continue to encounter economic, social, and environmental challenges in their daily operations. This growth has led to public outcry demanding that societies curb their dependence on fossil fuel consumption to limit global warming. In fact, major cities’ usage of fossil fuels constitutes 75% of global energy resource use and accounts for 70% of global greenhouse gas emissions, despite occupying only approximately 5% of the planet’s total land mass. Rapid urbanization also contributes to multiple types of serious environmental pollutants (e.g., air, soil, and water), which affect the people’s health and the quality of life.
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Climate and weather patterns are changing in California and across the planet. Extreme weather events such as wildfires are happening more frequently, precipitation has become increasingly variable, heat waves are more common, and temperatures are warming. Climate and weather scientists have tracked the observed changes since the mid-20th century and linked them mainly to human activity and influence. The human activity, including the burning of fossil fuels, has led to a significant release of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, which disrupts the global carbon cycle and leads to global warming.
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