We all know that our planet is changing, but what most of us really care about is the question of whether or not this will really affect us.
Latest in climate news is NASA’s announcement that the average worldwide temperature for the month of May was 1.38°F above average, making it the hottest ever recorded. This is even scarier because this record comes before El Niño, predicted to strike this summer, which causes ocean surface temperature to rise.
To put these changes in perspective is a report from leading American climatologist, James Hansen. His findings state that Earth’s sensitivity to doubling CO2 levels from preindustrial amounts is most likely larger that 5.4-7.2°F. To put that into perspective, his studies demonstrate that we are on track to tripling or even quadrupling CO2 atmospheric levels.
Clearly, we cannot afford to wait any more time to change our consuming ways.
Even more staggeringly, if we do not start seriously investing in renewable energy sources, we will burn all fossil fuels. Hansen’s research demonstrates that in doing so, land masses would be warmed by an average of 36°F, and simultaneously the poles by 54°F! As a result, the majority of the planet would be “uninhabitable by humans.”
It is easy to write scientists like Hansen off as predicting the worst possible case scenarios, but what we cannot ignore is the fact that he has been correct about his predictions regarding global warming for over three decades. Thus, his findings clearly deserve respect and attention.
So the take away is the following:
If we continue at any rate close to our current emissions we are in huge trouble! As a result we will experience disastrous global warming levels. Even more catastrophic will be the results of burning all fossil fuels which would drastically increase temperatures to staggering amounts and eliminate global grain production almost completely. Now how are we supposed to raise healthy kids and healthy families without these resources?
This resulting “scorched earth” would be vastly unproductive with a fraction of today’s carrying capacity coinciding with exponential mal nourishment and starvation. In short, most of Earth would simply be uninhabitable.
The question then goes back to you- What kind of world do you want to live in?
I think we all know what your answer is, so get off the sidelines and move into action!
Click embedded links to learn more about recent climate change (climatepath.org) and get involved in climate change reduction (wri.org).
Discovery Magazine: The Home Planet Experiences its Warmest May on Record
Hansen Study: Climate Sensitivity Is High, Burning All Fossil Fuels Would Make Most Of Planet ‘Uninhabitable’