We no longer have the luxury of facing one catastrophe at a time. And the underlying cause is our slavish devotion to perpetual growth.
There is a need to outline current knowledge about the likelihood of extreme climate change, discuss why understanding bad-to-worst cases is vital, articulate reasons for concern about catastrophic outcomes, define key terms, and put forward a research agenda.
Nordhaus (and about 20 like-minded economists) used two main methods to derive sanguine estimates of the economic consequences of climate change: the “enumerative method” and the “statistical method”. But my research shows neither stand up to scrutiny.
So how does hitting warming of 1.5°C a decade from now square with the 2015 Paris Agreement’s goal of “holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C”? In two words, it doesn’t.
I thought of Jung’s pre-World War One visions when I read of the stirring of the sleeping ice giants of East Antarctica earlier this year. According to recent research, one of those glaciers—the Totten (larger than the state of California)—is moving slowly towards the Southern Ocean as a result of global warming, with the potential to raise sea levels by 3.5 metres in future decades.
The United States faces a choice between manageable warming and unmanageable catastrophe, according to a leaked draft report by scientists from 13 federal agencies. The report’s “higher emissions” scenario projects a devastating 8°F to 10°F warming over the interior of this country–and, unimaginably, upwards of 18°F over in the Arctic!–by 2071 to 2100. In that case, global sea levels could rise as much as 8 feet, inundating every major coastal city in this country and around the world.
“We really need to on the one hand be aware that it’s something we need to respond to as a collective,” she says. “Riding your bike is great, but we need to also be engaged in collective political action and solutions. That’s part of what helps people to do something proactive that’s real.”
New York Magazine has stirred up a firestorm of debate by publishing a worst-case scenario for climate change this week, “The Uninhabitable Earth” by David Wallace-Wells.
If greenhouse gas emissions aren’t stopped soon, unprecedented and deadly heat waves will become the new normal in most of the world.
The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has issued its second of four planned reports examining the state of climate science…As with every recent IPCC report, it is super-cautious to a fault and yet still incredibly alarming.