THIS week we will have heard the news that scientists now predict we are on track for a 3 degree rise in temperatures rather than a 1.5 degree rise.

What will that mean for us here in Hampshire and is there action we can collectively take to dramatically reduce the risk of a 3C rise?

I am writing this from South Africa; where this week I have been out assessing the impacts of climate change on a large game reserve near Johannesburg.

The effects have been dramatic.

At this time of year, they should be getting rain; instead it is parched and has been so for months.

Many trees have died, along with insects, mammals and reptiles.

The air temperature today was a stifling 35C; about 10C above what it should be and a huge fire went through the southern section of the reserve two weeks ago; wiping out about 30% of the grass and bush cover for the larger game.

This has become the new normal here and as we head in to mid October; it is starting to become the new normal in the UK too.

Some places in the UK may have reached 25C this week, before returning to more normal values. It is not what should be happening.

So what can we do? The first thing is to stop debating whether climate change is happening. It is not fake news; it is not a lie of the labour left or of the green liberals. It is not some great big hoax to raise taxes; nor scaremongering on a grand scale.

To deny climate change is as nuts as suggesting the earth is flat.

We may agree to disagree on the exact reasons for the changes; but change is happening and very fast.

So it is time to stop debating…let us not waste precious time in pointless debate.

We now need to lobby our MP’s harder and deeper. We need to say no to fracking; no to oil imports, no to a fossil fuel future.

We need to demand a faster shift to a greener energy future. We need to push for UK grown food; where possible sourced here in Hampshire. We need to seek tax breaks for local food producers and incentives for shoppers to buy locally sourced foods. We should go meat free at least once a week; and we need to approach our local Hampshire supermarkets and say a firm no to all single use plastic wrapping on our fruit and veg.

And a firm no to anything with palm oil in, as boycotting non-certified palm oil is critical to the future of our rainforests.

Beyond all those small life-style changes and campaigning efforts we have to come to terms with the fact that a 3C rise is very different to a 1.5C rise.

For us it will mean prolonged droughts with temperatures in the summer over 30C every two to three years. It will mean flooding rain every three to four years and coastal flooding that will eventually render areas of Hampshire coast permanently under water.

It will also mean huge pressure on food imports; as large areas of southern Europe and North America become unsuitable for growing anything.

It will also mean new crops from grapes to bananas, but also a complete collapse of UK fish stocks, sea bird populations and an end to the migration of some summer bird species such as turtle dove, nightingale and cuckoo.

The window to avoid this level of change is fast closing. At best we have ten years to adapt or face some really terrible consequences.

This may all sound rather dramatic-but it is nothing compared to what South Africa is already facing.

We are sleepwalking into a catastrophe largely of our own making and only deep, radical and life changing action will prevent us lurching into a very dangerous future for our children and grandchildren.