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View Diary: Top Climate Scientist: "The Arctic Is Screaming" (161 comments)

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  •  Frightening (13+ / 0-)

    I'd like to hope that these estimates and projections are overly pessimistic, but given the years of experience these scientists have in interpretation of their data, I suspect that they are presenting an accurate picture of what's happening.  If there really is only half the ice in the arctic as there was in 2004, and there's a solid chance that it will all melt by the summer of 2012, then even an immediate stop to our profligate ways will not prevent the worst from happening.  We're irrevocably bound for unknown and very dangerous territory.

    -5.13,-5.64; When pygmies cast such long shadows, it must be very late in the day. -Gian-Carlo Rota

    by gizmo59 on Tue Dec 11, 2007 at 07:25:59 PM PST

    •  What we're in for (19+ / 0-)

      There's some misconception about what we're in for. Because of the time lag between cause (greenhouse gas pollution) and effects, even stopping emissions cold right now will not stop whatever is going to happen in the near future from happening.  We're going to see change because of global heating--we're seeing them now.  In that sense, we are already "irrevocably bound" for climate crisis consequences.  The best we can do about that is do what has to be done to deal with the effects and make them less harsh--for instance, right now it means cities being aware of heat wave health effects and vulnerable populations, or planning ahead for sea level rise.

      That's what I've been calling the Fix It part of the crisis.  

      The Stop It part of the crisis is to address the causes of global heating--the emissions. We need to do that quickly, because it may not be too late to save the far future from the very worst consequences: which may well include the end of civilization and much of the life as we know it on the planet.

      So the fact that the effects are happening and will happen should not be cause for despair.  We have to do what we can to Fix It, while we work to Stop It, and do our best to save the future.  Even if it turns out we're too late, it's our responsibility to do everything we can anyway.

      "The end of all intelligent analysis is to clear the way for synthesis." H.G. Wells "It's not dark yet, but it's getting there." Bob Dylan

      by Captain Future on Tue Dec 11, 2007 at 07:45:40 PM PST

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