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Yes, the arctic ice cap is melting. Not long ago scientists were predicting it wouldn't be ice free in the summer until about 2100, far enough away that the deniers could pretend it was a bunch of hyperventilating, Chicken Little, Tree Hugging Hippies that were concerned with such things. The scary thing is that our climate patterns have already been altered, and the positive feedback hasn't even fully kicked in. Things would be scary if we stopped emitting carbon dioxide at record levels today. Eventually things would improve, but it would get worse first. Of course, exactly the opposite is happening.

Most Americans, including most of us that vote Dem, are living in denial. We have these fairy tales we tell ourselves. There will always be an arctic ice cap for Santa. Our lifestyle can continue. Our children will live on a planet similar to Earth with sufficient resources.

If you are still reading, let me say this as gently as possible - We humans are fucked. So are many other species, but certainly life will go on in some form. Worms miles beneath the surface won't be inconvenienced by our demise.

Most will think I am overstating the case. Things might not be perfect in the future, but humanity will be fine. Here are a few things to consider, if you believe this.

CO2 isn't just increasing in the atmosphere due to human activities, the rate of increase is increasing. Things will get much warmer on our planet. The scientists say as much as 10 degrees F by the end of the century. I wouldn't put too much stock in that number though. If you have been watching this whole train wreck unfold closely, you will have noticed that the scientific projections are almost always wrong. They tend to grossly underestimate the disturbing real changes that have been observed.

We are running out of water for agriculture. The Arab Uprising was caused in large part by food shortages. We will have more drought in the future and we are exhausting our ground aquifers. There will be food shortages in America. There will be civil unrest when our  heavily armed citizenry experiences the same.

The ocean is becoming more acidic due to our CO2 emissions. This could threaten the base of the ocean's food chain. So as we are overfishing our oceans, creating huge dead zones in them from pollution, and warming them, we are also pulling out the rug from underneath them. If this wasn't bad enough, the rate of acidification is vastly greater than anytime in hundreds of millions of years. A death spiral in the ocean would be very bad news for a hungry planet.

We are at seven billion humans and still rising. We are running out of all sorts of resources, from oil to rare earth elements. As India and China continue to grow their economies, based on a western consumer style economy, shortages will only get worse.

The mainstream media is of course owned by large corporations. Their customers are large corporations intent on selling things like cars, oil, food grown far away and heavily processed, and lots of other stuff. Don't think that because you don't hear about this on NBC or PBS (yes, even they suck at the corporate teat) that it isn't true. There isn't much money to be made on voluntary simplicity.

So, why bother then? Because we can mitigate the suffering. We will likely just dig faster instead, but I can't think of anything more important to spend my remaining years working on than the survival of humanity and the planet. Certainly, Obama is a much better choice than Romney, for the planet. But increasing mileage on our vehicles is just rearranging the deck chairs. We need to be talking about public transit and bikes, not perfecting a very broken system. Cheap natural gas is great, but we need solar roofs all across the world. Buying local is helpful, but we need our lawns replaced with gardens.  But mostly, we need to communicate to all that will listen, we are living in an environmental crisis. The planet is our most important resource and we are destroying it. It is too late to prevent suffering, but we can still stop making it worse.

I am sure many readers will dismiss this. If you think there is even a one percent chance my fear mongering is true, then we must all act now. Santa already is moving to Greenland. Let's not force him off the planet.


We are facing a global climate crisis?

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| 18 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (8+ / 0-)

    There is only one planet suitable for human habitation in our solar system.

    by too many people on Sat Sep 08, 2012 at 04:22:27 PM PDT

  •  best thing to do...STOP eating Meat!!.... (5+ / 0-)

    many forget about this simple but most effective action.

    Macca's Meatless Monday

    by VL Baker on Sat Sep 08, 2012 at 04:32:08 PM PDT

  •  I Agree with you. If we are to survive our (4+ / 0-)

    cleverness then we have to use our intelligence for more then increasing our number and our use of resources... We have to rise above our origins and stop acting like primates in the wild. Civilization can be glorious but it can destroy us with its abuse of our own cleverness to simply satisfy the genes that we share with ancestors back to the single cell organisms living in a methane atmosphere... Perhaps that will be all that is left of us if we can't control ourselves...

    THe biggest problem is that so many probably know that we are screwing ourselves but cannot deny themselves for thier individual glorification and satisfaction... Even those who claim to believe that there is an afterlife somehow cling rabidly to thier right to behave like there is no problem seeking to satisfy those non-intelligence driven wants (Thats what I see as the basis of most religions efforts to control breeding and sex for thier profit and power).

    Some days I read something and then sit back and wonder why I bother trying to reduce my footprint...But we have to start somewhere and as the effects become even more obvious we may see leaders arise who won't have to convert billions to learn to control themselves so that those progeny they are so adamant about creating don't live short lives in hell on earth, The biggest problem in the political world is the effort to destroy any politician who is honest and is making a herculean effort to change our path. Perhaps this has to be a grass roots effort where there is no preaching and lecturing but change that can be shown on a person to person level to be beneficiary and worhtwhile. It is hard to let go of what has worked for mankind and individuals without incentive. Others look to the US and Europe and see that we have it pretty nice so they understandably want it too. Which is impossible since the US consumes such a large share of the worlds resources.

    How can you tell when Rmoney is lying? His lips are moving. Fear is the Mind Killer

    by boophus on Sat Sep 08, 2012 at 04:51:41 PM PDT

    •  Well We Have 70-80% Support for Government (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lorinda Pike, too many people

      policies that the government is willing and able to oppose.  So what would change if we had 80% support to act on climate change? We've got huge leadership and governing system design problems that have to be solved before we have a shot at addressing climate appropriately.

      All our modern governments are the product of 1,000 years of surplus resources and capacity, none more than the American system. They're not designed to cope with a hard, fixed limit, whereas our planet suddenly cannot accept one single new net molecule of waste gas.

      That's why I say this is not a problem government can address, it has to be put face to face before a set of top economic ownership by some kind of small mission from science and maybe a few other types. That's the only force that can get government to act enough and in time.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sat Sep 08, 2012 at 05:15:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes Yes... I am afraid the systems we have to get (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        too many people

        things done that have never ever had to be done before are inadequate and not only active resistence but passive resistence is a barrier. We can scream at the pols all we want but they cannot do what they have never done which is to point out that the way we live has to be radically changed... They would never survive it.

        That is exactly why republicans are the very worst at even considering dealing with it. Thier own operational logic is that what worked for thousands of years is good enough. SO that is why in the face of rising evidence of our affect they are doubling down and going further back in how they want us all to deal with life...

        How can you tell when Rmoney is lying? His lips are moving. Fear is the Mind Killer

        by boophus on Sat Sep 08, 2012 at 05:55:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Yes. We - humans and everything else... (0+ / 0-)

    are in deep trouble. I agree with you, Goose, Dr. Hansen...

    But I'm afraid only a catastrophe will force a change, and barring a rapid release of methane, water will most likely be the first crisis.

    (OT...your screen name always reminds me of this... Too Many Humans.)

    "In other words, if we bust our butts, there's an even chance things will get better; and if we sit on our butts, there's a major chance things will go completely to hell". --- G2geek

    by Lorinda Pike on Sat Sep 08, 2012 at 05:54:15 PM PDT

  •  Billions and billions of dollars of wealth will (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    too many people

    evaporate when the coastal areas go under. In my opinion, if I were queen of the world, I would start designating "future submerged zones" and would freeze values in terms of appraisal at where they are today and would forbid future development in these zones. I would offer the home and business owners an opportunity of a government buyout at some percentage of today's value good for 10 years in an effort to get people to relocate voluntary from these high risk zones.

    When people say we can't afford it, I say BS. The government has been funneling trillions of dollars of free money to the banks for years and they can start funneling those dollars elsewhere, helping people to keep some value and move while they can.

    I have also wondered for years why our basic styles of architecture haven't changed. Shouldn't we be building concrete igloos in order to withstand hurricanes and tornados? Shouldn't every house being built today just automatically come with some kind of solar assist? Why do our houses look like they always have?

    Where is the future? Where are our mass transit George Jetson monorails? Why does everything seem so moribund? How come no one wants to talk and plan for what we can clearly see is the oncoming freight train? Is it that they don't want to panic us? Won't ignoring things until the last possible second create a far greater panic?

    “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

    by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Sat Sep 08, 2012 at 05:59:10 PM PDT

    •  Yes, you would think people would at least (0+ / 0-)

      be swayed into action to prevent catastrophic financial losses.  Leven the military understands the threats of climate change.

      There is only one planet suitable for human habitation in our solar system.

      by too many people on Sat Sep 08, 2012 at 08:37:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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