The uniform increase in temperature in the city of North Charleston, South Carolina, seems quite understandable when viewed in the context of an anthropocentric picture of world climate transformation. Considering that the vast majority of natural changes that threaten impending cataclysms are due to the human footprint on the face of the planet, Charleston’s example seems especially valuable. Changes occurring with the climate of this region are natural if we take into account the recent history of this city and the dissemination of various industries on its territory.
Charleston is the third largest city in South Carolina and has a long history dating back to the very beginnings of English-speaking settlements in the Americas. However, it is important to note the fatal deal for the city by the leaders of the community of Charleston, which was still a county in 1901, with business entrepreneurs who used the territory of the newly formed city. It is in this territorial sector that the impressive production of industrial mechanics is concentrated. The area was developed for various industrial needs throughout the first half of the 20th century, but a really noticeable increase in climate change is noticeable only from the 1950s. Interestingly, the activities of various enterprises at that time increased to such an extent that the white citizens of the city, known as Charlestonians, began demanding more democratic control over the activities of the city (City of North Charleston, n.d.). This only additionally emphasizes to what extent the territory of the city is historically well-established in the perception of entrepreneurs as ready-made real estate for production. Thus, a significant temperature spike during the 1950s-1970s can be explained by the control of the city by industrial corporate forces.
At the same time, the port and industrial importance of the North Charleston Corridor grew. Researchers point out that local ports and maritime forces emit a large amount of pollution into the air, which is also a clear indicator of rising air temperatures. Until the 1990s, a full-fledged naval base operated in the city (Svendsen et al., 2014). At the moment it is closed, but the region is still mixed, that is, not only civil but also industrial and military. This has a negative impact on the level of air quality in local communities.
It is interesting to note, however, that the city administration made some important decisions hindering the development of the ecological side of the region. In 2009, the expansion of the terminal rail across the city was stopped, the laying of which would have stopped the development of civil society in the Park Circle (Gillespie, n.d.). The quality of air in the region is described as potentially hazardous in the future and able to cause naval cataclysms (Rubin, 2018). The desire of the authorities to clean the air is expressed in stopping the passage of a large constant flow of heavy cargo traffic, which could have an even more deplorable effect on the urban climate.
In conclusion, it should be noted that despite the decrease in the level of toxic emissions, this area still remains at risk of a biological threat. Many negative manifestations of extensively deployed production can be long-term and progressive in the future. This also explains the late drop in temperature by several degrees after the closure of the naval base. further expansion of industries in the region threatens only with a further increase in climate temperature. However, throughout the 21st century, the city administration has been trying to create a friendly cultural image for it, which is also facilitated by federal cash injections.
City of North Charleston. (n.d.) History & cultural heritage. Web.
Gillespie, B. (n.d.) North Charleston offers its own unique vulture. Discover South Carolina. Web.
Rubin, N. D. (2018). Developing flood maps for coastal resilience in Charleston County and in North Charleston neighborhoods. ProQuest. Web.
Svendsen, E. R., Reynolds, S., Ogunsakin, O. A., Williams, E. M., Fraser-Rahim, H., Zhang, H., & Wilson, S. M. (2014). Assessment of particulate matter levels in vulnerable ommunities in North Charleston, South Carolina prior to port expansion. Environmental Health Insights 8. Web.