TAMPA, Fla — Climate change is getting worse. That's the consensus from many scientists across the globe including those who recently released a massive United Nations study on the topic.
In it, they found that reducing carbon emissions would be key to slowing climate change down.
Doctor Jennifer Jones is the Director of the Center of Environment and Society at Florida Gulf Coast University. She tells ABC Action News that given recent findings—a recent ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court now has many scientists alarmed.
"This ruling by the supreme court against the EPA said that they don't have the statutory authority to regulate carbon dioxide as a pollutant coming from energy power plants," she said.
According to the court, the Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, will now have to regulate power plants and their greenhouse gas emissions on a case-by-case basis instead of making a set standard for everyone to follow.
And if the EPA does want to make sweeping rules or changes, they'll have to go through congress.
Dr. Jones says this extra red tape will make controlling pollutants much more difficult.
"We are already seeing sea levels rise, increased storminess, flooding, we know those impacts are going to get worse," she said.
And she adds that everyone should be concerned about that —especially in Florida, and more specifically the Bay area which relies heavily on ecotourism.
"Climate change is ultimately threatening our environment, our people, and our economy. And this ruling puts all of that at increased risk because it makes fighting climate change harder," she said.