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Author Topic: Future Earth  (Read 10202 times)

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AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #270 on: October 26, 2017, 07:11:36 pm »
The future does not look good, even though people of sound mind know EXACTLY what the right thing to do is.


Quote
This video poses a compelling set of questions: Do we educate to strengthen our democracy or to strengthen our economy? Does competition or cooperation produce better results? What will students need to know? Are they being educated with current reality in mind? Should the people support the economy or should the economy support the people?

Maybe we need to change the way we look at success, progress, wealth, competition, the future?

It is a collage of points made on the subject of sustainability, and a change of
direction that needs to be addressed within the educational system to reflect our current reality.

Compelling images, graphics and quotes like this one tell the story:

"We have reached a point where the value we add to our economy is being outweighed by the value we are removing." Paul Hawken, author and environmentalist.

Indeed, GDP is not an indicator of a society's well being or stability. It goes up with every instance of destructive spending too: illness, war, nuclear power plants, GMO food production, incarceration.

We need to come together around a new indicator of "wealth", and prepare students for the reality of Now.

--Bibi Farber

http://www.nextworldtv.com/page/4201.html
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AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #271 on: November 04, 2017, 10:12:09 pm »
Expect A Sudden Sea Level Event

Posted on November 1, 2017, by Radio Ecoshock

Audio:

https://www.ecoshock.org/2017/11/expect-a-sudden-sea-level-event.html
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AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #272 on: November 05, 2017, 02:10:11 pm »
Agelbert NOTE: This news is a year old, but I post it because it is about a hellish future the Military Industrial Complex is trying to convince all of us to believe so that, OF COURSE, the massive funding for WAR and BRUTALITY will continue. Friends, it is the MILITARY itself that creates all these social problems so it can then claim to be "defending" us from them. These lackeys for the 1% are firmly convinced that the "moral Hazard" of a military that disingenuously warns of trouble to justify more military funding is actually a "prudent, practical, profitable (and so on) Might is Right Opportunity".

The military, like the 1% that OWNS them, does not DO ethics and thinks ethical behavior is a "weakness". There is no future for humanity if the Military Industrial Complex has its way. I pray to God that the MIC fails in their hellish quest.

Quote
According to a startling Pentagon video obtained by The Intercept, the future of global cities will be an amalgam of the settings of "Escape from New York" and "Robocop" — with dashes of the "Warriors" and "Divergent" thrown in.

It will be a world of Robert Kaplan-esque urban hellscapes — brutal and anarchic supercities filled with gangs of youth-gone-wild, a restive underclass, criminal syndicates, and bands of malicious hackers.

At least that's the scenario outlined in "Megacities:

Urban Future, the Emerging Complexity," a five-minute video that has been used at the Pentagon's Joint Special Operations University.

All that stands between the coming chaos and the good people of Lagos and Dhaka (or maybe even New York City) is the U.S. Army, according to the video, which The Intercept obtained via the Freedom of Information Act.

       


http://www.thebigwobble.org/2016/10/leaked-army-video-shows-near-future-of.html
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GWarnock

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #273 on: November 05, 2017, 03:42:09 pm »
Can I scream now?

AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #274 on: November 05, 2017, 03:54:15 pm »
Can I scream now?

Yes! This is the appropriate smiley for the way decent people feel about this dystopian horror:   

Here is another one that is justified:













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GWarnock

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #275 on: November 05, 2017, 04:26:07 pm »
Where do you get those awesome emoji?

AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #276 on: November 05, 2017, 07:53:20 pm »
Where do you get those awesome emoji?

I built up a collection slowly over the past five years. I have them saved on documents for quick retrieval. 

I have posted many of them at a forum thread here when I was teaching a member on how to post images over a year ago.

Below is the link to the "How to make a comic" thread. I update it every now and then to show new images I have come up with. I had a lot of great kudzu bunny emojies and the people that produced them stopped allowing hot linking.
In order to avoid losing emojies in my collection, I have slowly uploaded them to the gallery here in gif or jpg format so I will always be able to link to them.

Here's a nice one with falling leaves appropriate to this season:


At any rate, I hope you get some good laughs from the thread, in addition to learning this and that about images. 

http://renewablerevolution.createaforum.com/general-discussion/how-to-make-a-comic/msg599/#msg599
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GWarnock

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #277 on: November 06, 2017, 02:51:41 pm »
I live to see your posts, these are so warming, do I have permission to abscond a few of them? ;D

AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #278 on: November 06, 2017, 03:08:40 pm »
I live to see your posts, these are so warming, do I have permission to abscond a few of them? ;D

Certainly! I heartily support any subsequent publication, in whole, or in part, of anything I post, with or without attribution. 

« Last Edit: November 06, 2017, 06:15:51 pm by AGelbert »
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AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #279 on: November 22, 2017, 06:21:54 pm »
Agelbert (plagiarised  ;D) NOTE: This piece is particularly interesting because it’s from someone who campaigns for the Scottish Greens. He’s also a scientist, so knows what’s going on better than most politicians.


BRACE FOR IMPACT

By Ian Baxter

Politics will not save us from abrupt climate change because we don’t want to be saved

Forty years ago I was studying for a Physics degree at Edinburgh University. I chose Edinburgh because it offered a course which included Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics, interests which have stayed with me since.

When I came across articles about the Greenhouse Effect, this intrigued me as a scientist, but also worried me as a human being, and although it was only a theory at the time, I felt the implications if true were so severe that at the very least, we should adopt the precautionary principle and take immediate action to prevent it.

It was this that led me to join the Ecology Party in 1979 and since then, politics for me has always been about climate change and the need to address it before it became unstoppable. In the seventies and eighties, the threat of an impending nuclear war was on everyone’s minds, but here was another existential threat to humanity that although distant, required no less attention to defuse or at least to quantify.

Then it was a theory and if proven, we still had time to do something about it. Forty years on and the Greenhouse Effect is now known as Global Warming or Climate Change. The effects predicted are not only happening, but they are happening much faster than predicted and events over the last three years have led me to believe that this is not only irreversible, but we are now entering a period of what is known as ‘abrupt climate change’, which will lead to the breakdown of society within 30 years and near human extinction by the end of the century.

To understand how this will happen so quickly, we need to appreciate that climate change is not linear. We are on an exponential curve. The three warmest years on record globally have been 2014, 2015 and 2016 (with 2017 set to join them).  Floods, droughts, wildfires and storms are this year setting records and records are not only being broken, but they are starting to be broken by some margin. We’re on an curve where not only will events happen more often and be more severe, but the rate at which they increase will itself be increasing. That’s what exponential means.

We also need to appreciate some of the deficiencies in climate modelling. Specifically, climate scientists (in common with nearly all scientists) are experts in their own fields only. Looking at a specific aspect of science in isolation is fine if nothing else is changing, but if everything else is changing, you need to take that into account if you’re predicting what will happen in the future.

There are around 70 feedback effects now kicking in, and few if any models are taking these into account. For example, scientists studying the Arctic sea ice may take into account higher sea surface temperatures, but not the incursion of water vapour (a greenhouse gas) into the Arctic resulting from a distorted jet stream, or the impact of soot on ice albedo from increased wildfires thousands of miles away.

A recent example is the speed with which this year’s Atlantic hurricanes strengthened from tropical storms to Category 5 hurricanes due to higher sea surface temperatures. This surprised meteorologists as the computer models were only forecasting Cat 2 or 3 at most. Only now are they recognising that the models are underestimating the effect of warmer sea surfaces and the additional energy and water vapour they provide.

As Peter Wadhams writes in his recent book ‘A farewell to ice’, to reverse the effects of man made carbon dioxide in the atmosphere would demand a switch in global focus on the scale of the post war Marshall plan. We would need not only to stop producing CO2 but also turn over many of our factories to producing carbon capture and storage machines, and we would need to start right now. The cost to the world economies would be huge, possibly running to over $100 Trillion.

If, and it’s still an if, we are capable of reversing the trajectory we’re on, there are no signs of a willingness to do so – neither from politicians nor people in general. CO2 takes over a decade to become fully effective as a greenhouse gas, and lingers in the atmosphere for decades. Methane (CH4) is 130 times as effective as a greenhouse gas in the first 3 years after release and due largely to melting permafrost is starting to rise rapidly in global concentration (another feedback).

So what are we actually doing about it? ‘Emissions’ as measured by countries themselves levelled out over the past three years – but are now rising once again. Leaving aside allegations that the figures have been doctored anyway, the extra CO2 from increasing wildfires is not included (as an example, the CO2 from those in British Columbia, just one Canadian province, this year equated to the annual emissions from 40 million cars on the road). The litmus test is the actual measure of CO2 in the atmosphere – now reaching a peak of around 410 ppm and rising at a record annual rate of around 2.5 ppm per year.

In 1989, the UN issued a warning that we had only ten years to address global warming before irreversible tipping points start kicking in. That was 30 years ago. Similar warnings have appeared since, none of them heeded. Instead of issuing warnings, more and more scientists are now coming round to the view that it really is too late. What I have witnessed over the last three years has led me to believe the same. We really are too late and are now entering the sixth mass extinction.

Too many articles on climate change contain the phrase “By 2100…” or “By the end of the century…”. That really is too far away for most people to treat as urgent. While it’s difficult to make predictions, it should be made clear that the catastrophic impacts of climate change will affect us well before then.

Within five to ten years I expect to see food prices rising well above inflation – perhaps by as much as 50% to 100% with some empty shelves appearing in supermarkets as specific crops are devastated (we already had a ‘taste’ of this earlier this year with courgettes and lettuce crops hit by unusual weather in Spain; world wine production is now at a 50 year low due to extreme weather events).

Wildfires are already becoming uncontrollable. Portugal has seen six times its average this year. There have been fires in Greenland and in Australia during its winter, not to mention the devastation in California, Canada and Siberia. Hurricanes are becoming stronger and appearing in unusual places (Ophelia was the strongest on record in the east Atlantic and Greece is currently being hit by what is called a ‘Medicane’). Sea surface temperatures need to be over 28.5 C for a hurricane to strengthen. The Mediterranean off Italy’s coast reached 30 degrees this year. With the right conditions, it would only take one stray east Atlantic hurricane to head into the Med to cause widespread devastation. I can easily see this happening within ten years. Elsewhere we will see hurricanes and typhoons strong enough to flatten cities within the next decade.

The economic implications will be immense. The impact of hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria in the US is expected to be around $400 Billion this year, not counting the wildfires in California and drought in Montana. Over the next decade, super hurricanes, flooding and drought will cause insurance companies to collapse. Banks will follow and pension funds will start to come under pressure. With food prices increasing way ahead of wages, disposable incomes will be hit hard, leading to worldwide economic depression.

And that’s not taking into account the hundreds of millions of climate refugees (already begun in the Caribbean). With the jet stream already getting seriously messed up, or if the Hadley cells become severely disrupted, it’s not out of the question that the Indian monsoon could fail permanently and within a year we have a billion people starving.

There’s a saying that if something is unsustainable it will not be sustained. Obvious, perhaps, but we have been living well beyond the sustainability of the planet for decades and continue to believe that somehow we can do so increasingly and indefinitely. That will not be sustained.

So for forty years I tried to warn people. Now I tell them it’s too late and we’re f***ed, they say I’m being too negative need to give people a positive message. OK then, will “We’re positively f***ed” do?, because when we could save ourselves nobody listened, and even now when they think we still can, there is absolutely no will to do so.

For a long time, we have needed to change our lifestyles and that, for most people, is a red line area. There are no quick fixes. We cannot continue with mass air transport – the only non polluting alternative to fossil fuels requires huge areas of land to be removed from food production, which is already coming under pressure due to climate change and increasing population. We need to stop owning cars (not just leaving them in the driveways) – the resource requirements and human rights implications of even switching to electric cars present largely insurmountable problems. And even if these problems can be fixed, the solution needs to come first, rather than assuming as always that the next generation will somehow pick up the bill and sort out the mess we are creating by our profligate lifestyles.

And so we continue to build more runways and roads, drill for more oil, burn more forests for palm oil plantations and clear the rainforests for agriculture and logging, despite the fact that these massive environmental problems are no longer a theory but are staring us in the face. But we keep on driving and keep on flying and keep on buying things we don’t need from halfway across the globe without the slightest thought that all this will kill our children.

I was perhaps naive to believe that politics would solve the problem. If the bottom line is that people will not change their lifestyles, then they will not vote for politicians who say we need to. So politicians will not tell people the truth and tell them instead that we can get by with replacing petrol cars with electric ones by some decade well in the future and convince people we’re all ‘doing our bit’ for the planet by planting a few wind turbines. They talk vaguely about carbon capture and how air transport is important for economic growth and without that we cannot tackle climate change. As a councillor I was the only one even vaguely interested in the council’s climate change plan (including both councillors and officers).

And people believe them because they want to. I’ve long maintained that people get the politicians they deserve (good and bad) and they certainly don’t want politicians to tell them they can’t have their cheap holidays in Spain. I joined the Ecology Party (which became the Green Party) because it was, and still is, the only party to come anywhere close to telling people the truth on climate change. That people are generally not in the least interested in the environment that keeps them alive is borne out by the derisory vote Greens get – around 2% support except where they campaign strongly on non-environmental issues.

And Green Party activists have also realised this. So they focus on being more user friendly and campaigning on issues that ‘matter to people’ like independence or austerity, rather than lose votes by telling people it’s about time they faced the harsh truth.

I’ve been accused of being too Utopian, that before we address climate change we need an independent Scotland, or a Socialist Republic, or something else. And those arguments were rational thirty years ago – after all, it’s the free market Capitalist system that brought us to this position. However, thirty years ago is not now – when your house is on fire, you don’t try and get ownership of the keys, you reach for the hose. When I attend a climate rally and see it attracts less than a tenth of the numbers at a Scottish independence rally, it brings home how insane our politics has become. What planet do these people expect an independent Scotland to exist on? Venus by the look of it.

So we might be f***ed, but should we give up? No, I don’t think so. We may not be able to stop the process, but we can slow it down and offer the next generation at least some kind of palliative care. I have not flown or owned a car for around 20 years and will continue that way. Because very soon my children’s generation will become angry with mine, and will ask why, in the face of so many warnings from scientists for decades, we did nothing about it.

It will be little consolation, but at least I will be able to say I tried.

https://damnthematrix.wordpress.com/2017/11/21/brace-for-impact/

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AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #280 on: November 24, 2017, 06:03:38 pm »


Ice Apocalypse - MULTIPLE METERS SEA LEVEL RISE


Climate State

Published on Nov 23, 2017

Rapid collapse of Antarctic glaciers could flood coastal cities by the end of this century. Based on an article written by Eric Holthaus. Read the full story https://grist.org/article/antarctica-...
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AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #281 on: December 15, 2017, 02:51:20 pm »
Global Warming is tracking EVEN WORSE than the IPCC RCP 8.5 (Representative Concentration Pathway) "Business As Usual" projection.   



« Last Edit: December 15, 2017, 09:42:38 pm by AGelbert »
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AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #282 on: December 17, 2017, 07:26:48 pm »
The year is 2037. This is what happens when the hurricane hits Miami

The climate is warming and the water is rising. In his new book, Jeff Goodell argues that sea-level rise will reshape our world in ways we can only begin to imagine

After the hurricane hit Miami in 2037, a foot of sand covered the famous bow-tie floor in the lobby of the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach. A dead manatee floated in the pool where Elvis had once swum. Most of the damage came not from the hurricane’s 175-mile-an-hour winds, but from the twenty-foot storm surge that overwhelmed the low-lying city.

In South Beach, historic Art Deco buildings were swept off their foundations. Mansions on Star Island were flooded up to their cut-glass doorknobs. A seventeen-mile stretch of Highway A1A that ran along the famous beaches up to Fort Lauderdale disappeared into the Atlantic. The storm knocked out the wastewater-treatment plant on Virginia Key, forcing the city to dump hundreds of millions of gallons of raw sewage into Biscayne Bay.

Tampons and condoms littered the beaches, and the stench of human excrement stoked fears of cholera. More than three hundred people died, many of them swept away by the surging waters that submerged much of Miami Beach and Fort Lauderdale; thirteen people were killed in traffic accidents as they scrambled to escape the city after the news spread—falsely, it turned out—that one of the nuclear reactors at Turkey Point, an aging power plant twenty-four miles south of Miami, had been destroyed by the surge and had sent a radioactive cloud floating over the city.

The president, of course, said that Miami would be back, that Americans did not give up, that the city would be rebuilt better and stronger than it had been before. But it was clear to those not fooling themselves that this storm was the beginning of the end of Miami as a booming twenty-first-century city.

All big hurricanes are disastrous. But this one was unexpectedly bad. With sea levels more than a foot higher than they’d been at the dawn of the century, much of South Florida was wet and vulnerable even before the storm hit.

Because of the higher water, the storm surge pushed deeper into the region than anyone had imagined it could, flowing up drainage canals and flooding homes and strip malls several miles from the coast. Despite newly elevated runways, Miami International Airport was shut down for ten days. Salt water shorted out underground electrical wiring, leaving parts of Miami-Dade County dark for weeks.

Municipal drinking-water wells were contaminated with salt water. In soggy neighborhoods, mosquitoes carrying Zika and dengue fever viruses hatched (injecting male mosquitoes with the Wolbachia bacteria, which public health officials had once hoped would inhibit the mosquitoes’ ability to transmit the viruses, had failed when the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes that carry the diseases developed immunity to the bacteria).

In Homestead, a low-lying working-class city in southern Miami-Dade County which had been flattened by Hurricane Andrew in 1992, thousands of abandoned homes were bulldozed because they were deemed a public health hazard. In Miami Shores, developers approached city officials with proposals to buy out entire blocks of waterlogged apartments, then dredge the streets and turn them into canals lined with houseboats. But financing for these projects always fell through.

Before the storm hit, damage from rising seas had already pushed city and county budgets to the brink. State and federal money was scarce too, in part because Miami was seen by many Americans as a rich, self-indulgent city that had ignored decades of warnings about building too close to the water. Attempts had been made to armor the shore with seawalls and elevate buildings, but only a small percentage of the richest property owners took protective action. The beaches were mostly gone too.

The Feds decided they couldn’t afford to spend $100 million every few years to pump in fresh sand, and without replenishment, the ever-higher tides carried the beaches away.


Flooding in North Miami, Florida.


By the late 2020s, the only beaches that remained were privately maintained oases of sand in front of expensive hotels. The hurricane took care of those, leaving the hotels and condo towers perched on limestone crags. Tourists disappeared.

After the hurricane, the city became a mecca for slumlords, spiritual healers, and lawyers. In the parts of the county that were still inhabitable, only the wealthiest could afford to insure their homes. Mortgages were nearly impossible to get, mostly because banks didn’t believe the homes would be there in thirty years.

Still, the waters kept rising, nearly a foot each decade. Each big storm devoured more of the coastline, pushing the water deeper and deeper into the city. The skyscrapers that had gone up during the boom years were gradually abandoned and used as staging grounds for drug runners and exotic-animal traffickers. Crocodiles nested in the ruins of the Frost Museum of Science. Still, the waters kept rising.

By the end of the twenty-first century, Miami became something else entirely: a popular diving spot where people could swim among sharks and barnacled SUVs and explore the wreckage of a great American city.

That is, of course, merely one possible vision of the future. There are brighter ways to imagine it—and darker ways. But I am a journalist, not a Hollywood screenwriter. In this book, I want to tell a true story about the future we are creating for ourselves, our children, and our grandchildren. It begins with this: the climate is warming, the world’s great ice sheets are melting, and the water is rising. This is not a speculative idea, or the hypothesis of a few wacky scientists, or a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese. Sea-level rise is one of the central facts of our time, as real as gravity. It will reshape our world in ways most of us can only dimly imagine.

My own interest in this story began with an actual hurricane. Shortly after Hurricane Sandy hit New York City in 2012, I visited the Lower East Side of Manhattan, one of the neighborhoods that had been hardest hit by flooding from the storm.

The water had receded by the time I arrived, but the neighborhood already smelled of mold and rot. The power was out, the shops were closed. I saw broken trees, abandoned cars, debris scattered everywhere, people hauling ruined furniture out of basement apartments. Dark waterlines were visible on many shop windows and doors. The surge in the East River had been more than nine feet high, overwhelming the seawall and inundating the low-lying parts of Lower Manhattan. As I walked around, watching people slowly put their lives back together, I wondered what would have happened if, instead of flooding the city and then receding in a few hours, the Atlantic Ocean had come in and stayed in.

I have been writing about climate change for more than a decade, but seeing the flooding on the Lower East Side made it visceral for me (I hadn’t visited New Orleans until several years after Katrina hit—the TV images of the flooding there, catastrophic as they were, did not affect me as strongly as my walk through the Lower East Side). A year or so before Sandy hit, I had interviewed NASA scientist James Hansen, the godfather of climate change science, who told me that if nothing was done to slow the burning of fossil fuels, sea levels could be as much as ten feet higher by the end of the century. At the time, I didn’t grasp the full implications of this. After Sandy, I did.

Soon after my visit to Lower Manhattan, I found myself in Miami, learning about the porous limestone foundation the city is built on and the flatness of the topography. During high tide, I waded knee-deep through dark ocean water in several Miami Beach neighborhoods; I saw high water backing up into working-class neighborhoods far to the west, near the border of the Everglades. It didn’t take a lot of imagination to see that I was standing in a modern-day Atlantis-in-the-making. It became clear to me just how poorly our world is prepared to deal with the rising waters. Unlike, say, a global pandemic, sea-level rise is not a direct threat to human survival. Early humans had no problem adapting to rising seas—they just moved to higher ground. But in the modern world, that’s not so easy. There’s a terrible irony in the fact that it’s the very infrastructure of the Fossil Fuel Age—the housing developments on the coasts, the roads, the railroads, the tunnels, the airports—that makes us most vulnerable.

Rising and falling seas represent one of the ancient rhythms of the earth, the background track that has played during the entire four-billion-year life of the planet. Scientists have understood this for a long time. Even in relatively recent history, sea levels have fluctuated wildly, driven by wobbles in the Earth’s orbit that change the amount of sunlight hitting the planet. One hundred and twenty thousand years ago, during the last interglacial period, when the temperature of the Earth was very much like it is today, sea levels were twenty to thirty feet higher. Then, twenty thousand years ago, during the peak of the last ice age, sea levels were four hundred feet lower.

What’s different today is that humans are interfering with this natural rhythm by heating up the planet and melting the vast ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica. Until just a few decades ago, most scientists believed these ice sheets were so big and so indomitable that not even seven billion humans with all their fossil-fuel-burning toys could have much impact on them in the short term. Now they know better.

In the twentieth century, the oceans rose about six inches. But that was before the heat from burning fossil fuels had much impact on Greenland and Antarctica (about half of the recorded sea-level rise in the twentieth century came from the expansion of the warming oceans). Today, seas are rising at more than twice the rate they did in the last century. As warming of the Earth increases and the ice sheets begin to feel the heat, the rate of sea-level rise is likely to increase rapidly.

A 2017 report by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, the United States’ top climate science agency, says global sea-level rise could range from about one foot on the low end to more than eight feet by 2100. Depending on how much we heat up the planet, it will continue rising for centuries after that.

But if you live on the coast, what matters more than the height the seas rise to is the rate at which they rise. If the water rises slowly, it’s not such a big deal. People will have time to elevate roads and buildings and build seawalls. Or move away. It is likely to be disruptive but manageable. Unfortunately, Mother Nature is not always so docile. In the past, the seas have risen in dramatic pulses that coincide with the sudden collapse of ice sheets. After the end of the last ice age, there is evidence that the water rose about thirteen feet in a single century. If that were to occur again, it would be a catastrophe for coastal cities around the world, causing hundreds of millions of people to flee from the coastlines and submerging trillions of dollars’ worth of real estate and infrastructure.

The best way to save coastal cities is to quit burning fossil fuels (if you’re still questioning the link between human activity and climate change, you’re reading the wrong book). But even if we ban coal, gas, and oil tomorrow, we’re not going to be able to turn down the Earth’s thermostat immediately. A good fraction of the CO2 emitted today will stay in the atmosphere for thousands of years. That means that even if we did reduce CO2 tomorrow, we can’t shut off the warming from the CO2 we’ve already dumped into the air. “The climatic impacts of releasing fossil fuel CO2 to the atmosphere will last longer than Stonehenge,” scientist David Archer writes. “Longer than time capsules, longer than nuclear waste, far longer than the age of human civilization so far.”

For sea-level rise, the slow response of the Earth’s climate system has enormous long-term implications. Even if we replaced every SUV on the planet with a skateboard and every coal plant with a solar panel and could magically reduce global carbon pollution to zero by tomorrow, because of the heat that has already built up in the atmosphere and the oceans, the seas would not stop rising—at least until the Earth cooled off, which could take centuries.


An aerial shot of Miami Beach and Fisher Island.

 However, if we don’t end the fossil fuel party, we’re headed for more than eight degrees Fahrenheit of warming—and with that, all bets are off. We could get four feet of sea-level rise by the end of the century—or we could get thirteen feet. The long-term consequences are even more alarming. If we burn all the known reserves of coal, oil, and gas on the planet, seas will likely rise by more than two hundred feet in the coming centuries, submerging virtually every major coastal city in the world.

The tricky thing about dealing with sea-level rise is that it’s impossible to witness by just hanging out at the beach for a few weeks. Even in the worst-case scenarios, the changes will occur over years and decades and centuries, not seconds and minutes and hours. It’s exactly the kind of threat that we humans are genetically ill equipped to deal with. We have evolved to defend ourselves from a guy with a knife or an animal with big teeth, but we are not wired to make decisions about barely perceptible threats that gradually accelerate over time.

One architect I met while researching this book joked that with enough money, you can engineer your way out of anything. I suppose it’s true. If you had enough money, you could raise or rebuild every street and building in Miami by ten feet and the city would be in pretty good shape for the next century or so. But we do not live in a world where money is no object, and one of the hard truths about sea-level rise is that rich cities and nations can afford to build seawalls, upgrade sewage systems, and elevate critical infrastructure.

Poor cities and nations cannot. But even for rich countries, the economic losses will be high. One recent study estimated that with six feet of sea-level rise, nearly $1 trillion worth of real estate in the United States will be underwater, including one in eight homes in Florida. If no significant action is taken, global damages from sea-level rise could reach $100 trillion a year by 2100.

But it is not just money that will be lost. Also gone will be the beach where you first kissed your boyfriend; the mangrove forests in Bangladesh where Bengali tigers thrive; the crocodile nests in Florida Bay; Facebook headquarters in Silicon Valley; St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice; Fort Sumter in Charleston, North Carolina; America’s biggest naval base in Norfolk, Virginia; NASA’s Kennedy Space Center; graves on the Isle of the Dead in Tasmania; the slums of Jakarta, Indonesia; entire nations like the Maldives and the Marshall Islands; and, in the not-so-distant future, Mar-a-Lago, the summer White House of President Donald Trump. Globally, about 145 million people live three feet or less above the current sea level. As the waters rise, millions of these people will be displaced, many of them in poor countries, creating generations of climate refugees that will make today’s Syrian war refugee crisis look like a high school drama production.

The real x factor here is not the vagaries of climate science, but the complexity of human psychology. At what point will we take dramatic action to cut CO2 pollution? Will we spend billions on adaptive infrastructure to prepare cities for rising waters—or will we do nothing until it is too late? Will we welcome people who flee submerged coastlines and sinking islands—or will we imprison them?

No one knows how our economic and political system will deal with these challenges. The simple truth is, human beings have become a geological force on the planet, with the power to reshape the boundaries of the world in ways we didn’t intend and don’t entirely understand. Every day, little by little, the water is rising, washing away beaches, eroding coastlines, pushing into homes and shops and places of worship.

As our world floods, it is likely to cause immense suffering and devastation. It is also likely to bring people together and inspire creativity and camaraderie in ways that no one can foresee. Either way, the water is coming. As Hal Wanless, a geologist at the University of Miami, told me in his deep Old Testament voice as we drove toward the beach one day, “If you’re not building a boat, then you don’t understand what’s happening here.”

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/dec/17/miami-hurricane-2037-climate-change
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Faith,
if it has not works, is dead, being alone.

AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #283 on: December 19, 2017, 02:50:22 pm »
The coastal mortgage time bomb

Experts worry that if insurers start to pull out of flood-prone seaside communities, it could cause a crisis worse than 2008
BY BRYAN WALSH DEC 18 2017

SNIPPET:

As seas continue to rise — with levels projected to increase by as much as six feet by the end of the century — flooding will become more common and more devastating. (A recent Zillow report found a six-foot rise in sea level by 2100 would likely submerge 1.9 million homes.)

Eventually insurers could begin to pull out of coastal markets altogether, as could lenders who fear that homes won’t be able to retain their value through the lifespan of a 30-year mortgage. Unable to get insurance to repair their repeatedly flooded properties — and tired of navigating the now constant risk of water–homeowners might end up desperate to sell, only to find that no one wants to buy.

The result would be a wave of defaults — while homeowners tried to keep paying their mortgages when their homes were financially underwater during the crisis, they’re more likely to give up if their home is actually underwater. They would know that there would be no hope their flooded homes would ever regain value.

“All of a sudden we’re going to reach a tipping point and no one will touch these mortgages,” says Edward Golding, a fellow at the Urban Institute and the former head of the Federal Housing Administration. “At some point it becomes undesirable risk and people start pulling out from entire regions.”

When that happens, coastal communities will enter a death spiral, as property taxes vanish even as the cost associated with responding to ever more frequent floods rises. “You don’t need to be too smart to figure out how this affects your tax base,” says Philip Stoddard, the mayor of South Miami. “No one is going to buy or invest in the community after that. This is not going to be pretty.”


Full artcle with lots of DETAILED stats on which homes (cost estimates) are doomed in US coastal areas:

https://www.inman.com/2017/12/18/coastal-mortgage-time-bomb/
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AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #284 on: December 30, 2017, 12:57:27 pm »

Juliana v US: For Children of All Ages — Part Two

December 28, 2017

By Joel B. Stronberg

SNIPPET 1:

In part one of this article, I took a closer look at the oral arguments in the latest episode of Juliana v. United States, and identified two questions that were raised during the orals that bear further consideration:

The first was: who would prevail in the event of a conflict between the findings of the District Court and the Trump administration?

More specifically:

What if: The District Court finds climate change harmful to the health of the plaintiffs and a violation of their constitutional rights. BUT, the Administration  finds climate change a hoax or of a much-diminished magnitude than currently thought after its current reconsideration of the Clean Power Plan (CPP)?

It is at least an even bet Administrator Pruitt will prevail upon Trump to approve rescission or a substantial watering of the endangerment finding as well.


SNIPPET 2:

Time and Nature wait for no one. Failing to contain global warming threatens the health and well-being of current generations. Most importantly, it steals the opportunities of future generations to live long and prosper. These are the Juliana’s plaintiffs.

The raw hostility to climate science and the depth of enmity exhibited by Trump and company is not to be seen merely in their efforts to unwind the environmental legacies of Nixon, Carter, G.H.W. Bush, Clinton, and Obama. It is found in their purging them from consciousness—to deny their reason for being and very existence. 

The darkest irony of all is the one time the Administration seems content to agree that climate change is bad for America and is the product of harmful human emissions is the time when their outright dismissal of scientific fact might defeat an open and consequential debate. A meaningful proceeding in the only remaining forum able to prompt constructive action.

Judge Coffin is right: the judicial forum is particularly well-suited for the resolution of factual and expert scientific disputes, providing an opportunity for all parties to present evidence, under oath and subject to cross-examination in a process that is public, open, and on the record.

Denial not debate is the watchword of this President and his agents . To date, the legal victories of climate defenders have been mostly the consequence of an administration indifferent to the established rule of law.

What distinguishes Juliana v. U.S. from all the cases that have gone before is the opportunity it offers to elevate environmental protection to a Constitutional right—equal to the right to vote or to love and to marry whomever one chooses. The inalienable right to the pursuit of happiness and opportunities to thrive and to prosper. A right not easily abridged or made a victim of political whims.

Full article:

http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/articles/2017/12/juliana-v-us-for-children-of-all-ages-part-two.html

Agelbert NOTE: The mens rea modus operandi of Trump and his other Fossil Fuel bought and paid for Toadies behind the effort to purge environmental legacies from consciousness to the point of denying their reason for being and very existence is TEXTBOOK 1984 (the book written by Orwell about a cruel mind twisting dictatorship that forced people to deny reality - the origin of the term "Orwellian") strategy (See: EngSoc language purging). I do not think they will be successful, simply because Catastrophic Climate Change will continue to be too much in our faces to pretend it is not there.



But, I do think the Trumpers will delay and hamper meaningful action to mitigate Catastrophic Climate Change as long as they are in power. If you love your children and want a future for them where they inherit a viable biosphere, please do your part to get those children/biosphere murderers out of government as soon as possible. Please pass this on. We may be out of time already but we have to keep doing what is right, come hell or high water. 

Trump and his wrecking crew want YOU TO IGNORE all of the following IRREFUTABLE empirical evidence that our environment is WORSENING BECAUSE OF CONTNUALLY INCREASING POLLUTION FROM THE FOSSIL FUEL INDUSTRY and other polluters. ALL the following GOVERNMENT data will soon be erased by Trump and his wrecking crew in Orwellian mindfork fashion to convince you that these THREATS to your health are "not real" and Renewable Energy is "no big deal". DON'T LET THEM GET AWAY WITH THIS ATROCITY! Save this and pass it on.
 

https://energy.gov/eere/sunshot/downloads/environmental-and-public-health-benefits-achieving-high-penetration-solar



DON'T LET the KOCHROACHES LIKE TRUMP RUIN OUR FUTURE!
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Faith,
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