Climate change is undeniable, and it’s likely to destroy Earth and all its inhabitants. Climate change has affected nearly every aspect of our lives and will continue to do so for years to come. But despite its colossal importance, it’s continuously debated and speculated as if we haven’t known about the possibility since the 1800s.

We must no longer view climate change as a disaster waiting to happen; it is already happening. It is not easy to grapple with the fact that our planet is slowly dying, but it is — and we are the killer. I would like to tell you that there is hope, or that with immediate action we can reverse the damage we have done. However, we can’t always have what we want.

This article contains no urgency. This article contains no groundbreaking information nor does it contain ways that we can help save our planet. I am sitting here, writing at 8 P.M., to tell you that we’ve missed the mark;our efforts have been all but uselful.

It doesn’t matter how many of us recycle. It doesn’t matter how many biodegradable products we use. It doesn’t matter how many of us switch to biking or driving electric cars. We can’t stop climate change and the effects it will have on our planet. Sure, taking action can keep our streets (and consciences) clean, but any efforts we make or may have made in the past are ultimately useless in this centuries-long battle. But why? The answer is simple: It is because, as a society, we are too inconsistent, we are too cheap, and because we are too slow to act.

Perhaps with the cooperation of large corporations, world leaders, and politicians, we could have done something to stand a chance.

In 2017,the Guardian publishedan article citing 100 corporations that were responsible for more than 70% of global emissions. This percentage has only risen in recent years, and it shows no sign of stopping in the future. World leaders and politicians are also responsible for this climate catastrophe, as they could have influenced policy that limited the usage of CO2 and other greenhouse gases.

Just a few years ago, we may have still had time to mitigate climate change -- just a sliver. But without help from the rich and powerful, we never stood a chance. It is a depressing fact that we must carry with us wherever we go, but it remains the truth nonetheless.

NASA has statedthat there is “a time lag between what we do and when we feel it, but that lag is less than a decade.” This means that, even if corporations and world leaders did everything they could to stop climate changetoday, we would still face the consequences of our current actions in 9 years.

I wish I had better news. I wish I could have more hope for the future. But as long as humankind remains power-hungry and inconsistent, there is no hope. We are ever-so-slowly committing suicide; we are ever-so-slowly committing mass extinction.

We have fallen victims to our own demise.