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Author Topic: Future Earth  (Read 17414 times)

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AGelbert

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I have a mental picture of those locked into the 'greed + ambition = IT' world view. It is not pretty. However, it is not particularly ghastly. It is mostly, just sad. Why? Because all this destruction is so unnecessary for absolutely any of the reasons that elite profit over people and planet humans wrap around themselves like a comfortable blindfold.

I'm sure you've heard about the two groups of people sitting at two tables. One group is starving to death and one group is eating well. Both groups have the same amount of food on the table. Neither group can use anything but spoons to reach the food. However the spoons are longer than a person's arm (You cannot cheat by holding the spoon near the spoon cup, instead of at the end of the handle). IOW, you cannot feed yourself with the spoon you have.

One group spoons the food and feeds others in the group. They eat well. They live in harmony. They know that harmony and altruism equals survival in peace and plenty. They always look out for the other person as a utilitarian, practical matter. Every person in the group knows that if they do not feed someone else, the others will notice and not feed the selfish one, who will then starve to death.   

The group starving to death is the 'greed + ambition = IT' based human society.

Proverbs predicted all this thousands of years ago:

Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets: She crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city she uttereth her words, saying, How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge?

Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you.

Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded; But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof: I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;

When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you. Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:

For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the Lord: They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof.

Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices. For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them. -- Proverbs 1:20-32

Agelbert NOTE: As long as most people are more concerned with physical safety than spiritual safety, the violent climate upheavals which are undermining human civilization are guaranteed to increase in frequency and duration until our civilization is destroyed.

The 'escape clause', (see below) is NOT about physical safety; it is about spiritual safety. God fearing people have been victims of physical violence and various privations from the beginning, and will continue to suffer many of these harms till the end. 

But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil -- Proverbs 1:33
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

Surly1

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You don't need a "grade"from me, but this was excellent.

AGelbert

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You don't need a "grade"from me, but this was excellent.

When you judge a comment of mine to be excellent, I feel honored. Thank you.
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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August 7, 2019

Birth Rate Reaches Record Low as Premature Deliveries Rise

Recent data reveal the number of new births has been declining over the past 20 years, while the number of preterm births is rising. Some attribute the declining numbers to socioeconomic factors, but it is likely related to multiple factors.

Read More >>

Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

Surly1

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From r/collapse.

The Ultimate Doom Post | Just kidding, it's worse than that.

The Facts

► 50% of animals gone since 1970

► 99% of Rhinos gone since 1914.

► 97% of Tigers gone since 1914.

► 90% of Lions gone since 1993.

► 90% of Sea Turtles gone since 1980.

► 90% of Monarch Butterflies gone since 1995.

► 90% of Big Ocean Fish gone since 1950.

► 80% of Antarctic Krill gone since 1975.

► 80% of Western Gorillas gone since 1955.

► 60% of Forest Elephants gone since 1970.

► 50% of Great Barrier Reef gone since 1985.

► 50% of Human Sperm Counts gone since 1950.

► 80% of Western Gorillas gone since 1955.

► 50% of Forest Bird Species will be gone in 50 years.

► 40% of Giraffes gone since 2000.

► 40% of ocean phytoplankton gone since 1950.

... http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/phytoplankton-population/

► Ocean plankton declines of 1% per year means 50% gone in 70 years, declines of more than 1%/yr are likely.

► Ocean plastic is killing bacteria that make 10% of our oxygen.

► Ocean acidification doubles by 2050, explodes by 2100.

► 30% of Marine Birds gone since 1995.

► 70% of Marine Birds gone since 1950.

► 28% of Land Animals gone since 1970.

► 28% of All Marine Animals gone since 1970.

► If you are 15 years old, emissions went up 30% in your lifetime.

► If you are 30 years old, emissions went up 60% in your lifetime.

&#9658; After 30 years trying, solar and wind are < 3% of total world energy use.

&#9658; Solar panels produce 90% of power rating 15% of time

&#9658; Wind turbines produce 90% of power rating 25% of time.

&#9658; Claire Fyson said emissions must go down 50% in 10 yrs to avoid 1.5° C.

&#9658; The Insurance Journal said they must go down 50% in 10 yrs to avoid 3.0° C.

&#9658; Stefan Rahmstorf said emissions must go down 100% in 20 yrs to avoid 2.0° C.

&#9658; Hans Schellnhuber said 5 of 13 major hothouse tipping points start below 2.0° C.

&#9658; When these 5 points are triggered, they trigger the other 8.

&#9658; This results in runaway hothouse, which can't be stopped or reversed once started.

&#9658; But we are also headed for runaway mass extinction, which can't be stopped or reversed once started.

&#9658; 10,000 years ago humans and livestock were 0.03% of land vertebrate biomass.

&#9658; Today humans and livestock are 98% of land vertebrate biomass.

&#9658; Human/livestock food production caused 80% of land vertebrate species extinctions.

&#9658; Petrochemical use grows 7X faster than human population.


AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #335 on: September 20, 2019, 03:01:49 pm »
From r/collapse.


Reality is what it is. Excellent post.



The Lord hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil. Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished. Pr, 16:4-5
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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You know that these bastards think they will be able to buy their way out of the inevitable consequences that will kill the dying class.

Yes, I know. The fundamental flaw in their thinking is that they neglect to apply the old Wall Street disclaimer, tacked on to all investment advice, to it. It is ironic, considering the 🦕🦖 Hydrocarbon Hellspawn and their 🐘 chief enablers view themselves as "experts" at risk analysis. They would be the first to tell you that "past performance" of a stock is not any guarantee of "future performance".

Yet, here they are, basing the projected outcome of ALL their present ethics free activities (i.e. polluting skullduggery, political bribing, mendacious propaganda efforts and business model projections) on PAST PERFORMANCE (IOW: They made out like bandits  for over a century so there is "no valid reason" to tamper with the "successful" profit over people and planet business model)...

Tomorrow is Yesterday...

« Last Edit: November 04, 2019, 04:28:28 pm by AGelbert »
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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Environmental Historian Justin McBrien: "Most of the Time I Am Utterly Terrified About the Future"
1,955 views•Nov 17, 2019


Collapse Chronicles
3.35K subscribers

In this week's Collapse Chronicles Conversation, I have the pleasure of speaking with environmental historian Justin McBrien.
Here is a link to Justin's essay titled "This Is Not the Sixth Extinction, It's the First Extermination Event."  

https://truthout.org/articles/this-is...

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If you would like to send a check or money order to support this channel, you can email me at collapsechronicles@gmail.com.
Thank you!
Category News & Politics
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #338 on: November 24, 2019, 02:47:45 pm »


Devin Nunes was directly involved in the push for Biden Ukraine investigations, says Lev Parnas

vox.com - Ed MacMahon, a lawyer for Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas, who faces charges of campaign finance violations, has told the Daily Beast that his client helped Republican Rep. Devin Nunes arrange mee…


😈 Deval Patrick Is Everything That’s Wrong With the Democratic Party

jacobinmag.com - The 👹💵🎩 donor classes do not want Bernie Sanders to be president. Most of them don’t want Elizabeth Warren, either. They’d prefer someone who doesn’t have much to say about wealth distribution, whether i…



It’s not what 🦀 Trump did. It’s what 🐘 Republicans accept.

vox.com - The core question this impeachment process is raising isn’t “what did Donald Trump do?” The hearings have filled in important details and added confirming witness, but the story is largely the one we…


The Collapse of Civilization May Have Already Begun

vice.com - “It is now too late to stop a future collapse of our societies because of climate change.” These are not the words of a tinfoil hat-donning survivalist. This is from a paper delivered by a senior sus…

Read more Doomstead Diner Daily 11/24/19 

I'm glad to see the Nunes skullduggery is coming to light. That crook is as much a part of Trump's 'get Ukraine to pretend they have dirt on Biden' criminal conspiracy as the three amigos PLUS Barr were (and still ARE).

Nunes should be impeached and prosecuted. The ethics investigation alone should be enough to force him out of the Impeachment Inquiry Panel AND force him to testify to the Impeachment Inquiry Panel under oath. That evil bastard is the ultimate fox in the henhouse.

As to what the Republicans "accept" (i.e. whatever they are paid to accept or reject, regardless of ethical considerations), lack of moral compass, the 'greed is good' morallity eschewing cancer destroying the fabric of society and the biosphere all life forms need to survive and thrive, is the problem. The relentless trashing of our biosphere for short term profit, now unraveling human civilization (as per your posted article above), though appearing to be a separate subject from the gross immorality displayed daily by the Republicans, is based on exactly the same illogic. 

While Republicans are more in-our-faces about "situational ethics" (See: Orwell), Democrats and at least 75% of the adult population of the United States sees "no problem" with THAT. Well, THAT is destroying absolutely everything and everyone humans hold dear.

No ethics, no future, PERIOD.


« Last Edit: November 24, 2019, 05:11:20 pm by AGelbert »
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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Overpopulation Caused Pollution Equals Biosphere DOOM! 😱

Agelbert NOTE: I agree with Kevin Sandbloom 👍, the Black Bear News guy, who has mixed feelings about the article he reads. The article is a good rant that makes several irrefutable points about our present DOOM trajectory. The issue that never seems to be brought up in these rants is what do you do about a battle ship or an aircraft carrier or a Trump Tower or a cruise ship (etc. you get the idea) that pollute, individually, every single day, even without counting the pollution cost involved in building them, more than several million poor, or even middle class, humans in the USA or ChinaFrugal lifestyles that require recycling just about everything are lamentably resisted by most people, but 90% of humans simply are not in the same mega-polluting class as the top 10%, who habitually pollute on Capitalist Bling "principle"!

Of course low to ZERO carbon footprints should be the LAW all over planet Earth. I just do not see that happening until there are no more natural "resources" out there availble for privileged humans to trash for profit. It is quite obvious to anyone paying attention that Homo sap is, barring a massive attitude change by those running this freak show, toast.   


BLACK BEAR NEWS: Why climate change is an irrelevance, economic growth is a myth and sustainability (is impossible)
1,109 views•Dec 4, 2019


Black Bear News
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#FridayGasStrike #ExtinctionRebellion #ClimateStrike
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#BlackBearNews

Why climate change is an irrelevance, economic growth is a myth and sustainability is forty years too late
http://globalcomment.com/why-climate-...

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Category People & Blogs
« Last Edit: December 06, 2019, 01:49:20 pm by AGelbert »
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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Climate Change is a Threat to Human Survival

Dec 17, 2019


Thom Hartmann Program
200K subscribers

Thom looks at a report written in Australia on climate-related security risks.

Is it too late for us to save our planet? Let us know what you think in the comments.

🔴 Subscribe for more clips like this: https://www.youtube.com/user/thomhart...


Climate Change: Is It Time To Scare People? YES!

Dec 17, 2019


Thom Hartmann Program
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Climate Change is here but politicians are still not acting.

Is it time to scare people into caring about the Planet?

🔴 Subscribe for more clips like this: https://www.youtube.com/user/thomhart...
Do scare tactics work as a method to stop global climate change? Will you employ them in your activism and if not what methods will you use to convince people that this needs to be done?

⭐ Join our Membership and Support the Channel:  https://www.youtube.com/user/thomhart...
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

Surly1

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The Collapse of Civilization May Have Already Begun
« Reply #341 on: December 26, 2019, 07:47:04 am »
Ya think?

Just remember, when you've heard the same thing for the umpteenth time, many others are only beginning to become dimly aware.

The Collapse of Civilization May Have Already Begun
Scientists disagree on the timeline of collapse and whether it's imminent. But can we afford to be wrong? And what comes after?
By Nafeez Ahmed 




“It is now too late to stop a future collapse of our societies because of climate change.”

These are not the words of a tinfoil hat-donning survivalist. This is from a paperdelivered by a senior sustainability academic at a leading business school to the European Commission in Brussels, earlier this year. Before that, he delivered a similar message to a UN conference: “Climate change is now a planetary emergency posing an existential threat to humanity.”

In the age of climate chaos, the collapse of civilization has moved from being a fringe, taboo issue to a more mainstream concern.

As the world reels under each new outbreak of crisis—record heatwaves across the Western hemisphere, devastating fires across the Amazon rainforest, the slow-moving Hurricane Dorian, severe ice melting at the poles—the question of how bad things might get, and how soon, has become increasingly urgent.

The fear of collapse is evident in the framing of movements such as ‘Extinction Rebellion’ and in resounding warnings that business-as-usual means heading toward an uninhabitable planet.

But a growing number of experts not only point at the looming possibility that human civilization itself is at risk; some believe that the science shows it is already too late to prevent collapse. The outcome of the debate on this is obviously critical: it throws light on whether and how societies should adjust to this uncertain landscape.

Yet this is not just a scientific debate. It also raises difficult moral questions about what kind of action is warranted to prepare for, or attempt to avoid, the worst. Scientists may disagree about the timeline of collapse, but many argue that this is entirely beside the point. While scientists and politicians quibble over timelines and half measures, or how bad it'll all be, we are losing precious time. With the stakes being total collapse, some scientists are increasingly arguing that we should fundamentally change the structure of society just to be safe.

*

Jem Bendell, a former consultant to the United Nations and longtime Professor of Sustainability Leadership at the University of Cumbria’s Department of Business, delivered a paper in May 2019 explaining how people and communities might “adapt to climate-induced disruption.”

Bendell’s thesis is not only that societal collapse due to climate change is on its way, but that it is, in effect, already here. “Climate change will disrupt your way of life in your lifetimes,” he told the audience at a climate change conference organized by the European Commission.

Devastating consequences, like “the cascading effects of widespread and repeated harvest failures” are now unavoidable, Bendell’s paper says.

He argues this is not so much a doom-and-gloom scenario as a case of waking up to reality, so that we can do as much as we can to save as many lives as possible. His recommended response is what he calls “Deep Adaptation,” which requires going beyond “mere adjustments to our existing economic system and infrastructure, in order to prepare us for the breakdown or collapse of normal societal functions.”

Bendell’s message has since gained a mass following and high-level attention. It is partly responsible for inspiring the new wave of climate protests reverberating around the world.

In March, he launched the Deep Adaptation Forum to connect and support people who, in the face of “inevitable” societal collapse, want to explore how they can “reduce suffering, while saving more of society and the natural world.” Over the last six months, the Forum has gathered more than 10,000 participants. More than 600,000 people have downloaded Bendell’s paper, called Deep Adaptation: A Map for Navigating our Climate Tragedy, published by the University of Cumbria’s Institute of Leadership and Sustainability (IFALS). And many of the key organizers behind the Extinction Rebellion (XR) campaign joined the protest movement after reading it.

“There will be a near-term collapse in society with serious ramifications for the lives of readers,” concludes that paper, released in 2017.

Catastrophe is “probable,” it adds, and extinction “is possible.” Over coming decades, we will see the escalating impacts of the fossil fuel pollution we have already pumped into the atmosphere and oceans. Even if we ceased emissions tomorrow, Bendell argues, the latest climate science shows that “we are now in a climate emergency, which will increasingly disrupt our way of life… a societal collapse is now inevitable within the lifetimes of readers of this paper.”

Bendell puts a rough timeline on this. Collapse will happen within 10 years and inflict disruptions across nations, involving “increased levels of malnutrition, starvation, disease, civil conflict, and war.”

Yet this diagnosis opens up far more questions than it answers. I was left wondering: Which societies are at risk of collapsing due to climate change, and when? Some societies or all societies? Simultaneously or sequentially? Why some rather than others? And how long will the collapse process take? Where will it start, and in what sector? How will that impact others sectors? Or will it take down all sectors of societies in one fell swoop? And what does any of this imply for whether, or how, we might prepare for collapse?

In attempting to answer these questions, I spoke to a wide-range of scientists and experts, and took a deep dive into the obscure but emerging science of how societies and civilizations collapse. I wanted to understand not just whether Bendell’s forecast was right, but to find out what a range experts from climate scientists to risk analysts were unearthing about the possibility of our societies collapsing in coming years and decades.

The emerging science of collapse is still, unfortunately, a nascent field. That's because it's an interdisciplinary science that encompasses not only the incredibly complex, interconnected natural systems that comprise the Earth System, but also has to make sense of how those systems interact with the complex, interconnected social, political, economic, and cultural systems of the Human System.

What I discovered provoked a wide range of emotions. I was at times surprised and shocked, often frightened, sometimes relieved. Mostly, I was unsettled. Many scientists exposed flaws in Bendell’s argument. Most rejected the idea of inevitable near-term collapse outright. But to figure out whether a near-term collapse scenario of some kind was likely led me far beyond Bendell. A number of world leading experts told me that such a scenario might, in fact, be far more plausible than conventionally presumed.

Science, gut, or a bit of both?

According to Penn State professor Michael Mann, one of the world’s most renowned climate scientists, Bendell’s grasp of the climate science is deeply flawed.

“To me, this paper is a perfect storm of misguidedness and wrongheadedness,” he told me.

1574363643144-GettyImages-1179384365

Firefighters work to put out Fire Maria in California. Image: APU GOMES/AFP via Getty Images

Bendell’s original paper had been rejected for publication by the peer-reviewed Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal. According to Bendell, the changes that editorial reviewers said were necessary to make the article fit for publication made no sense. But among them, one referee questioned whether Bendell’s presentation of climate data actually supported his conclusion: “I am not sure that the extensive presentation of climate data supports the core argument of the paper in a meaningful way.”

In his response, sent in the form of a letter to the journal’s chief editor, Bendell wrote: “Yet the summary of science is the core of the paper as everything then flows from the conclusion of that analysis. Note that the science I summarise is about what is happening right now, rather than models or theories of complex adaptive systems which the reviewer would have preferred.”

But in Mann’s view, the paper’s failure to pass peer review was not simply because it didn’t fit outmoded academic etiquette, but for the far more serious reason that it lacks scientific rigor. Bendell, he said, is simply “wrong on the science and impacts: There is no credible evidence that we face ‘inevitable near-term collapse.’”

Dr. Gavin Schmidt, head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, who is also world-famous, was even more scathing.

“There are both valid points and unjustified statements throughout,” he told me about Bendell's paper. “Model projections have not underestimated temperature changes, not everything that is non-linear is therefore ‘out of control.’ Blaming ‘increased volatility from more energy in the atmosphere’ for anything is silly. The evidence for ‘inevitable societal collapse’ is very weak to non-existent.”

Schmidt did not rule out that we are likely to see more instances of local collapse events. “Obviously we have seen such collapses in specific locations associated with extreme storm impacts,” he said. He listed off a number of examples—Puerto Rico, Barbuda, Haiti, and New Orleans—explaining that while local collapses in certain regions could be possible, it's a "much harder case to make" at a global level. "And this paper doesn't make it. I’m not particularly sanguine about what is going to happen, but this is not based on anything real.”

Jeremy Lent, systems theorist and author of The Patterning Instinct: A Cultural History of Humanity’s Search for Meaning, argues that throughout Bendell’s paper he frequently slips between the terms “inevitable,” “probably,” and “likely.”

“If he chooses to go with his gut instinct and conclude collapse is inevitable, he has every right to do so,” Lent said, “but I believe it’s irresponsible to package this as a scientifically valid conclusion, and thereby criticize those who interpret the data otherwise as being in denial.”

When I pressed Bendell on this issue, he pushed back against the idea that he was putting forward a hard, scientifically-valid forecast, describing it as a “guess”: “I say in the original paper that I am only guessing at when social collapse will occur. I have said or written that every time I mention that time horizon.”

But why offer this guess at all? “The problem I have with the argument that I should not give a time horizon like 10 years is that not deciding on a time horizon acts as a psychological escape from facing our predicament. If we can push this problem out into 2040 or 2050, it somehow feels less pressing. Yet, look around. Already harvests are failing because of weather made worse by climate change.”

Bendell points out that such impacts are already damaging more vulnerable, poorer societies than our own. He says it is only a matter of time before they damage the normal functioning of “most countries in the world.”

Global food system failure

According to Dr. Wolfgang Knorr, Principal Investigator at Lund University’s Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in a Changing Climate Program, the risk of near-term collapse should be taken far more seriously by climate scientists, given the fact that so much is unknown about climate tipping points: “I am not saying that Bendell is right or wrong. But the criticism of Bendell’s points focuses too much on the detail and in that way studiously tries to avoid the bigger picture. The available data points to the fact that some catastrophic climate change is inevitable."

Bendell argues that the main trigger for some sort of collapse—which he defines as “an uneven ending of our normal modes of sustenance, security, pleasure, identity, meaning, and hope”—will come from accelerating failures in the global food system.

We know that it is a distinct possibility that so-called multi-breadbasket failures (when major yield reductions take place simultaneously across agricultural areas producing staple crops like rice, wheat, or maize) can be triggered by climate change—and have already happened.

As shown by American physicist Dr. Yaneer Ban Yam and his team at the New England Complex Systems Institute, in the years preceding 2011, global food price spikes linked to climate breakdown played a role in triggering the ‘Arab Spring’ uprisings. And according to hydroclimatologist Dr. Peter Gleick, climate-induced drought amplified the impact of socio-political and economic mismanagement, inflicting agricultural failures in Syria. These drove mass migrations within the country, in turn laying the groundwork for sectarian tensions that spilled over into a protracted conflict.

In my own work, I found that the Syrian conflict was not just triggered by climate change, but a range of intersecting factors—Syria’s domestic crude oil production had peaked in the mid-90s, leading state revenues to hemorrhage as oil production and exports declined. When global climate chaos triggered food price spikes, the state had begun slashing domestic fuel and food subsidies, already reeling from the impact of economic mismanagement and corruption resulting in massive debt levels. And so, a large young population overwhelmed with unemployment and emboldened by decades of political repression took to the streets when they could not afford basic bread. Syria has since collapsed into ceaseless civil war.

This is a case of what Professor Thomas-Homer Dixon, University Research Chair in the University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Environment, describes as “synchronous failure”—when multiple, interconnected stressors amplify over time before triggering self-reinforcing feedback loops which result in them all failing at the same time. In his book, The Upside of Down: Catastrophe, Creativity and the Renewal of Civilization, he explains how the resulting convergence of crises overwhelms disparate political, economic and administrative functions, which are not designed for such complex events.

From this lens, climate-induced collapse has already happened, though it is exacerbated by and amplifies the failure of myriad human systems. Is Syria a case-study of what is in store for the world? And is it inevitable within the next decade?

In a major report released in August, the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned that hunger has already been rising worldwide due to climate impacts. A senior NASA scientist, Cynthia Rosenzweig, was a lead author of the study, which warned that the continued rise in carbon emissions would drive a rise in global average temperatures of 2°C in turn triggering a “very high” risk to food supplies toward mid-century. Food shortages would hit vulnerable, poorer regions, but affluent nations may also be in the firing line. As a new study from the UK Parliamentary Environment Audit Committee concludes, fruit and vegetable imports to countries like Britain might be cut short if a crisis breaks out.

When exactly such a crisis might happen is not clear. Neither reports suggest it would result in the collapse of civilization, or even most countries, within 10 years. And the UN also emphasizes that it is not too late to avert these risks through a shift to organic and agro-ecological methods.

NASA’s Gavin Schmidt acknowledged “increasing impacts from climate change on global food production,” but said that a collapse “is not predicted and certainly not inevitable.”

The catastrophic ‘do-nothing’ scenario

A few years ago, though, I discovered first-hand that a catastrophic collapse of the global food system is possible in coming decades if we don’t change course. At the time I was a visiting research fellow at Anglia Ruskin University’s Global Sustainability Institute, and I had been invited to a steering committee meeting for the Institute’s Global Research Observatory (GRO), a research program developing new models of global crisis.

One particular model, the Dawe Global Security Model, was focused on the risk of another global food crisis, similar to what triggered the Arab Spring.

“We ran the model forward to the year 2040, along a business-as-usual trajectory based on ‘do-nothing’ trends—that is, without any feedback loops that would change the underlying trend,” said institute director Aled Jones to the group of stakeholders in the room, which included UK government officials. “The results show that based on plausible climate trends, and a total failure to change course, the global food supply system would face catastrophic losses, and an unprecedented epidemic of food riots. In this scenario, global society essentially collapses as food production falls permanently short of consumption.”

Jones was at pains to clarify that this model-run could not be taken as a forecast, particularly as mitigation policies are already emerging in response to concern about such an outcome: “This scenario is based on simply running the model forward,” he said. “The model is a short-term model. It’s not designed to run this long, as in the real world trends are always likely to change, whether for better or worse.”

Someone asked, “Okay, but what you’re saying is that if there is no change in current trends, then this is the outcome?”

“Yes,” Jones replied quietly.

The Dawe Global Security Model put this potential crisis two decades from now. Is it implausible that the scenario might happen much earlier? And if so why aren’t we preparing for this risk?

When I asked UN disaster risk advisor Scott Williams about a near-term global food crisis scenario, he pointed out that this year’s UN flagship global disaster risk assessment was very much aware of the danger of another global "multiple breadbasket failure."

“A projected increase in extreme climate events and an increasingly interdependent food supply system pose a threat to global food security,” warned the UN Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction released in May. “For instance, local shocks can have far-reaching effects on global agricultural markets.”

Climate models we've been using are not too alarmist; they are consistently too conservative, and we have only recently understood how bad the situation really is.

Current agricultural modelling, the UN report said, does not sufficiently account for these complex interconnections. The report warns that “climate shocks and consequent crop failure in one of the global cereal breadbaskets might have knock-on effects on the global agricultural market. The turbulences are exacerbated if more than one of the main crop-producing regions suffers from losses simultaneously.”

Williams, who was a coordinating lead author of the UN global disaster risk assessment, put it more bluntly: “In a nutshell, Bendell is closer to the mark than his critics.”

He pointed me to the second chapter of the UN report which, he said, expressed the imminent risk to global civilization in a “necessarily politically desensitized” form. The chapter is “close to stating that ‘collapse is inevitable’ and that the methods that we—scientists, modellers, researchers, etc—are using are wholly inadequate to understand that nature of complex, uncertain ‘transitions,’ in other words, collapses.”

Williams fell short of saying that such a collapse scenario was definitely unavoidable, and the UN report—while setting out an alarming level of risk—did not do so either. What they did make clear is that a major global food crisis could erupt unexpectedly, with climate change as a key trigger.

Climate tipping points

A new study by a team of scientists at Oxford, Bristol, and Austria concludes that our current carbon emissions trajectory hugely increases this risk. Published in October in the journal Agricultural Systems, the study warns that the rise in global average temperatures is increasing the likelihood of “production shocks” affecting an increasingly interconnected global food system.

Surpassing the 1.5 °C threshold could potentially trigger major “production losses” of millions of tonnes of maize, wheat and soybean.

Right now, carbon dioxide emissions are on track to dramatically increase this risk of multi-breadbasket failures. Last year, the IPCC found that unless we reduce our emissions levels by five times their current amount, we could hit 1.5°C as early as 2030, and no later than mid-century. This would dramatically increase the risk of simultaneous crop failures, food production shocks and other devastating climate impacts.

In April this year, the European Commission’s European Strategy and Policy Analysis System published its second major report to EU policymakers, Global Trends to 2030: Challenges and Choices for Europe. The report, which explores incoming national security, geopolitical and socio-economic risks, concluded: “An increase of 1.5 degrees is the maximum the planet can tolerate; should temperatures increase further beyond 2030, we will face even more droughts, floods, extreme heat and poverty for hundreds of millions of people; the likely demise of the most vulnerable populations—and at worst, the extinction of humankind altogether.”

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Image: FETHI BELAID/AFP via Getty Images

But the IPCC’s newer models suggest that the situation is even worse than previously thought. Based on increased supercomputing power and sharper representations of weather systems, those new climate models—presented at a press conference in Paris in late September—reveal the latest findings of the IPCC’s sixth assessment report now underway.

The models now show that we are heading for 7°C by the end of the century if carbon emissions continue unabated, two degrees higher than last year’s models. This means the earth is far more sensitive to atmospheric carbon than previously believed.

This suggests that the climate models we've been using are not too alarmist; they are consistently too conservative, and we have only recently understood how bad the situation really is.

I spoke to Dr. Joelle Gergis, a lead author on the IPCC’s sixth assessment report, about the new climate models. Gergis admitted that at least eight of the new models being produced for the IPCC by scientists in the US, UK, Canada and France suggest a much higher climate sensitivity than older models of 5°C or warmer. But she pushed back against the idea that these findings prove the inevitability of collapse, which she criticized as outside the domain of climate science. Rather, the potential implications of the new evidence are not yet known.

“Yes, we are facing alarming rates of change and this raises the likelihood of abrupt, non-linear changes in the climate system that may cause tipping points in the Earth’s safe operating space,” she said. “But we honestly don’t know how far away we are from that just yet. It may also be the case that we can only detect that we’ve crossed such a threshold after the fact.”

In an article published in August in the Australian magazine The Monthly, Dr. Gergis wrote: “When these results were first released at a climate modelling workshop in March this year, a flurry of panicked emails from my IPCC colleagues flooded my inbox. What if the models are right? Has the Earth already crossed some kind of tipping point? Are we experiencing abrupt climate change right now?”

Half the Great Barrier Reef’s coral system has been wiped out at current global average temperatures which are now hovering around 1°C higher than pre-industrial levels. Gergis describes this as “catastrophic ecosystem collapse of the largest living organism on the planet.” At 1.5°C, between 70 and 90 percent of reef-building corals are projected to be destroyed, and at 2°C, some 99 percent may disappear: “An entire component of the Earth’s biosphere—our planetary life support system—would be eliminated. The knock-on effects on the 25 percent of all marine life that depends on coral reefs would be profound and immeasurable… The very foundation of human civilization is at stake.”

But Gergis told me that despite the gravity of the new models, they do not prove conclusively that past emissions will definitely induce collapse within the next decade.

“While we are undeniably observing rapid and widespread climate change across the planet, there is no concrete evidence that suggests we are facing ‘an inevitable, near term society collapse due to climate change,’” she said. “Yes, we are absolutely hurtling towards conditions that will create major instabilities in the climate system, and time is running out, but I don’t believe it is a done deal just yet.”

Yet it is precisely the ongoing absence of strong global policy that poses the fatal threat. According to Lund University climate scientist Wolfgang Knorr, the new climate models mean that practically implementing the Paris Accords target of keeping temperatures at 1.5 degrees is now extremely difficult. He referred me to his new analysis of the challenge published on the University of Cumbria’s ILFAS blog, suggesting that the remaining emissions budget given by the IPCC “will be exhausted at the beginning of 2025.” He also noted that past investment in fossil-fuel and energy infrastructure alone will put us well over that budget.

The scale of the needed decarbonization is so great and so rapid, according to Tim Garrett, professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Utah, that civilization would need to effectively “collapse” its energy consumption to avoid collapsing due to climate catastrophe. In a 2012 paper in Earth System Dynamics, he concluded therefore that “civilization may be in a double-bind.”

"We still have time to try and avert the scale of the disaster, but we must respond as we would in an emergency"

In a previous paper in Climatic Change, Garrett calculated that the world would need to switch to non-carbon renewable energy sources at a rate of about 2.1 percent a year just to stabilize emissions. “That comes out [equivalent] to almost one new nuclear power plant per day,” Garrett said. Although he sees this as fundamentally unrealistic, he concedes that a crash transition programme might help: “If society invests sufficient resources into alternative and new, non-carbon energy supplies, then perhaps it can continue growing without increasing global warming.”

Gergis goes further, insisting that it is not yet too late: “We still have time to try and avert the scale of the disaster, but we must respond as we would in an emergency. The question is, can we muster the best of our humanity in time?”

There is no straightforward answer to this question. To get there, we need to understand not just climate science, but the nature, dynamics, and causes of civilizational collapse.

Limits to Growth

One of the most famous scientific forecasts of collapse was conducted nearly 50 years ago by a team of scientists at MIT. Their "Limits to Growth" (LTG) model, known as "World3," captured the interplay between exponential population and economic growth, and the consumption of raw materials and natural resources. Climate change is an implicit feature of the model.

LTG implied that business-as-usual would lead to civilizational breakdown, sometime between the second decade and middle of the 21st century, due to overconsumption of natural resources far beyond their rate of renewal. This would escalate costs, diminish returns, and accelerate environmental waste, ecosystem damage, and global heating. With more capital diverted to the cost of extracting resources, less is left to invest in industry and other social goods, driving long-term economic decline and political unrest.

The forecast was widely derided when first published, and its core predictions were often wildly misrepresented by commentators who claimed it had incorrectly forecast the end of the world by the year 2000 (it didn’t).

Systems scientist Dennis Meadows had headed up the MIT team which developed the ‘World3’ model. Seven years ago, he updated the original model in light of new data with co-author Jorgen Randers, another original World3 team-member.

“For those who respect numbers, we can report that the highly aggregated scenarios of World3 still appear… to be surprisingly accurate,” they wrote in Limits to Growth: the 30 year update. “The world is evolving along a path that is consistent with the main features of the scenarios in LTG.”

One might be forgiven for suspecting that the old MIT team were just blowing their own horn. But a range of independent scientific reviews, some with the backing of various governments, have repeatedly confirmed that the LTG ‘base scenario’ of overshoot and collapse has continued to fit new data. This includes studies by Professor Tim Jackson of the University of Surrey, an economics advisor to the British government and Ministry of Defense; Australia’s federal government scientific research agency CSIRO; Melbourne University’s Sustainable Society Institute; and the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries in London.

“Collapse is not a very precise term. It is possible that there would be a general, drastic, uncontrolled decline in population, material use, and energy consumption by 2030 from climate change," Meadows told me when I asked him whether the LTG model shines any light on the risk of imminent collapse. "But I do not consider it to be a high probability event,” he said. Climate change would, however, “certainly suffice to alter our industrial society drastically by 2100.” It could take centuries or millennia for ecosystems to recover.

But there is a crucial implication of the LTG model that is often overlooked: what happens during collapse. During an actual breakdown, new and unexpected social dynamics might come into play which either worsen or even lessen collapse.

Those dynamics all depend on human choices. They could involve positive changes through reform in political leadership or negative changes such as regional or global wars.

That’s why modelling what happens during the onset of collapse is especially tricky, because the very process of collapse alters the dynamics of change.

Growth, complexity and resource crisis

What if, then, collapse is not necessarily the end? That’s the view of Ugo Bardi, of the University of Florence, who has developed perhaps the most intriguing new scientific framework for understanding collapse.

Earlier this year, Bardi and his team co-wrote a paper in the journal BioPhysical Economics and Resource Quality, drawing on the work of anthropologist Joseph Tainter at Utah State University’s Department of Environment and Society. Tainter’s seminal book, The Collapse of Complex Societies, concluded that societies collapse when their investments in social complexity reach a point of diminishing marginal returns.

Tainter studied the fall of the Western Roman empire, Mayan civilization, and Chaco civilization. As societies develop more complex and specialized bureaucracies to solve emerging problems, these new layers of problem-solving infrastructure generate new orders of problems. Further infrastructure is then developed to solve those problems, and the spiral of growth escalates.

As each new layer also requires a new ‘energy’ subsidy (greater consumption of resources), it eventually cannot produce enough resources to both sustain itself and resolve the problems generated. The result is that society collapses to a new equilibrium by shedding layers of complex infrastructure amassed in previous centuries. This descent takes between decades and centuries.

In his recent paper, Bardi used computer models to test how Tainter’s framework stood-up. He found that diminishing returns from complexity were not the main driver of a system’s decline; rather the decline in complexity of the system is due to diminishing returns from exploiting natural resources.

In other words, collapse is a result of a form of endless growth premised on the unsustainable consumption of resources, and the new order of increasingly unresolvable crises this generates.

In my view, we are already entering a perfect storm feedback loop of complex problems that existing systems are too brittle to solve. The collapse of Syria, triggered and amplified partly by climate crisis, did not end in Syria. Its reverberations have not only helped destabilize the wider Middle East, but contributed to the destabilization of Western democracies.

In January, a study in Global Environment Change found that the impact of “climatic conditions” on “drought severity” across the Middle East and North Africa amplified the “likelihood of armed conflict.” The study concluded that climate change therefore played a pivotal role in driving the mass asylum seeking between 2011 and 2015—including the million or so refugees who arrived in Europe in 2015 alone, nearly 50 percent of whom were Syrian. The upsurge of people fleeing the devastation of their homes was a gift to the far-right, exploited by British, French and other nationalists campaigning for the break-up of the European Union, as well as playing a role in Donald Trump’s political campaigning around The Wall.

To use my own terminology, Earth System Disruption (ESD) is driving Human System Destabilization (HSD). Preoccupied with the resulting political chaos, the Human System becomes even more vulnerable and incapable of ameliorating ESD. As ESD thus accelerates, it generates more HSD. The self-reinforcing cycle continues, and we find ourselves in an amplifying feedback loop of disruption and destabilization.

Beyond collapse

Is there a way out of this self-destructive amplifying feedback loop? Bardi’s work suggests there might be—that collapse can pave the way for a new, more viable form of civilization, whether or not countries and regions experience collapses, crises, droughts, famine, violence, and war as a result of ongoing climate chaos.

Bardi’s analysis of Tainter’s work extends the argument he first explored in his 2017 peer-reviewed study, The Seneca Effect: When Growth is Slow but Collapse is Rapid. The book is named after the Roman philosopher Lucius Annaeus Seneca, who once said that “fortune is of sluggish growth, but ruin is rapid.”

Bardi examines a wide-range of collapse cases across human societies (from the fall of past empires, to financial crises and large-scale famines), in nature (avalanches) and through artificial structures (cracks in metal objects). His verdict is that collapse is not a “bug,” but a “varied and ubiquitous phenomena” with multiple causes, unfolding differently, sometimes dangerously, sometimes not. Collapse also often paves the way for the emergence of new, evolutionary structures.

In an unpublished manuscript titled Before the Collapse: A Guide to the Other Side of Growth, due to be published by science publisher Springer-Nature next year, Bardi’s examination of the collapse and growth of human civilizations reveals that after collapse, a "Seneca Rebound" often takes place in which new societies grow, often at a rate faster than preceding growth rates.

This is because collapse eliminates outmoded, obsolete structures, paving the way for new structures to emerge which often thrive from the remnants of the old and in the new spaces that emerge.

He thus explains the Seneca Rebound as “as an engine that propels civilizations forward in bursts. If this is the case, can we expect a rebound if the world’s civilization goes through a new Seneca Collapse in the coming decades?”

Bardi recognizes that the odds are on a knife-edge. A Seneca Rebound after a coming collapse would probably have different features to what we have seen after past civilizational collapses and might still involve considerable violence, as past new civilizations often did—or may not happen at all.

"Very little if anything is being done to stop emissions and the general destruction of the ecosystem"

On our current trajectory, he said, “the effects of the destruction we are wreaking on the ecosystem could cause humans to go extinct, the ultimate Seneca Collapse.” But if we change course, even if we do not avoid serious crises, we might lessen the blow of a potential collapse. In this scenario, “the coming collapse will be just one more of the series of previous collapses that affected human civilizations: it might lead to a new rebound.”

It is in this possibility that Bardi sees the seeds of a new, different kind of civilization within the collapse of civilization-as-we-know-it.

I asked Bardi how soon he thought this collapse would happen. Although emphasizing that collapse is not yet inevitable, he said that a collapse of some kind within the next decade could be “very likely” if business-as-usual continues.

“Very little if anything is being done to stop emissions and the general destruction of the ecosystem,” Bardi said. “So, an ecosystemic collapse is not impossible within 10 years."

Yet he was also careful to point out that the worst might be avoided: “On the other hand, there are many elements interacting that may change things a little, a lot, or drastically. We don’t know how the system may react… maybe the system would react in a way that could postpone the worst.”

Release and renewal

The lesson is that even if collapse is imminent, all may not be lost. Systems theorist Jeremy Lent, author of The Patterning Instinct, draws on the work of the late University of Florida ecologist C. S. Holling, whose detailed study of natural ecosystems led him to formulate a general theory of social change known as the adaptive cycle.

Complex systems, whether in nature or in human societies, pass through four phases in their life cycle, writes Lent. First is a rapid growth phase of innovation and opportunity for new structures; second is a phase of stability and consolidation, during which these structures become brittle and resistant to change; third is a release phase consisting of breakdown, generating chaos and uncertainty; the fourth is reorganization, opening up the possibility that small, seemingly insignificant forces might drastically change the future of the forthcoming new cycle.

It is here, in the last two phases, that the possibility of triggering and shaping a Seneca Rebound becomes apparent. The increasing chaos of global politics, Lent suggests, is evidence that we are “entering the chaotic release phase,” where the old order begins to unravel. At this point, the system could either regress, or it could reorganize in a way that enables a new civilizational rebound. “This is a crucially important moment in the system’s life cycle for those who wish to change the predominant order.”

So as alarming as the mounting evidence of the risk of collapse is, it also indicates that we are moving into a genuinely new and indeterminate phase in the life cycle of our current civilization, during which we have a radical opportunity to mobilize the spread of new ideas that can transform societies.

I have been tracking the risks of collapse throughout my career as a journalist and systems theorist. I could not find any decisive confirmation that climate change will inevitably produce near-term societal collapse.

But the science does not rule this out as a possibility. Therefore, dismissing the riskof some sort of collapse—whether by end of century, mid-century, or within the next 10 years—contravenes the implications of the most robust scientific models we have.

All the scientific data available suggests that if we continue on our current course of resource exploitation, human civilization could begin experiencing collapse within coming decades. Exactly where and how such a collapse process might take off is not certain; and whether it is already locked in is as yet unknown. And as NASA’s Gavin Schmidt told me, local collapses are already underway.

From Syria to Brexit, the destabilizing socio-political impacts of ecosystemic collapse are becoming increasingly profound, far-reaching and intractable. In that sense, debating whether or not near-term collapse is inevitable overlooks the stark reality that we are already witnessing climate collapse.

And yet, there remains an almost total absence of meaningful conversation and action around this predicament, despite it being perhaps the most important issue of our times.

The upshot is that we don’t know for sure what is round the corner, and we need better conversations about how to respond to the range of possibilities. Preparation for worst-case scenarios does not require us to believe them inevitable, but vindicates the adoption of a rational, risk-based approach designed to proactively pursue the admirable goal for Deep Adaptation: safeguarding as much of society as possible.

Jem Bendell’s Deep Adaptation approach, he told me, is not meant to provide decisive answers about collapse, but to catalyze conversation and action.

“For the Deep Adaptation groups that I am involved with, we ask people to agree that societal collapse is either likely, inevitable or already unfolding, so that we can have meaningful engagement upon that premise,” he said. “Deep Adaptation has become an international movement now, with people mobilizing to share their grief, discuss what to commit to going forward, become activists, start growing food, all kinds of things.”

Confronting the specter of collapse, he insisted is not grounds to give-up, but to do more. Not later, but right now, because we are already out of time in terms of the harm already inflicted on the planet: “My active and radical hope is that we will do all kinds of amazing things to reduce harm, buy time and save what we can," he said. "Adaptation and mitigation are part of that agenda. I also know that many people will act in ways that create more suffering."

Most of all, the emerging science of collapse suggests that civilization in its current form, premised on endless growth and massive inequalities, is unlikely to survive this century. It will either evolve into or be succeeded by a new configuration, perhaps an “ecological civilization”, premised on a fundamentally new relationship with the Earth and all its inhabitants—or it will, whether slowly or more abruptly, regress and contract.

What happens next is still up to us. Our choices today will not merely write our own futures, they determine who we are, and what our descendants will be capable of becoming. As we look ahead, this strange new science hints to us at a momentous opportunity to become agents of change for an emerging paradigm of life and society that embraces, not exploits, the Earth. Because doing so is now a matter of survival.


AGelbert

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Released in 2009, this film is a Solid Climate Science based WARNING that is NOT being heeded. 

EARTH 2100


Apr 20, 2012 | 1,979,866 views

How will world look at 2100?To change our future, first we must imagine it... It's an idea that most of us would rather not think about -- that within the next century, ...

 
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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Re: Future Earth
« Reply #343 on: January 22, 2020, 08:35:10 pm »

How to Survive When, NOT IF, Catastrophic Climate Change Makes Earth's Climate Unsuitable For Humans

By Anthony G. Gelbert (Edited April 6, 2018)

During many periods in human history, some were doing just fine and others lived on the edge of starvation in a constant state of collapse. Abrupt changes in climate, such as that caused in France by a massive Laki volcanic eruption in Iceland in 1783, have resulted in famine induced starvation. In that case, starvation was followed by social upheaval and revolution, instead of collapse. Civilization in Iceland was nearly wiped out with that eruption (over one third of the population was killed), but did not collapse.

For a collapse to occur, the society destroying pressure must last longer than a decade or so. For example, natural climate alterations that produced lengthy droughts caused some ancient starving civilizations to eventually collapse. 

SNIPPET From the March 21, 2016 article, "Ten Civilizations or Nations That Collapsed From Drought", by Jeff Masters:

Drought is the great enemy of human civilization. Drought deprives us of the two things necessary to sustain life--food and water. When the rains stop and the soil dries up, cities die and civilizations collapse, as people abandon lands no longer able to supply them with the food and water they need to live. While the fall of a great empire is usually due to a complex set of causes, drought has often been identified as the primary culprit or a significant contributing factor in a surprising number of such collapses. Drought experts Justin Sheffield and Eric Wood of Princeton, in their 2011 book, Drought, identify more than ten civilizations, cultures and nations that probably collapsed, in part, because of drought. As we mark World Water Day on March 22, we should not grow overconfident that our current global civilization is immune from our old nemesis--particularly in light of the fact that a hotter climate due to global warming will make droughts more intense and impacts more severe. So, presented here is a "top ten" list of drought's great power over some of the mightiest civilizations in world history--presented chronologically.

֍ Collapse #1. The Akkadian Empire in Syria, 2334 BC - 2193 BC.
 
֍ Collapse #2. The Old Kingdom of ancient Egypt, 4200 years ago.

֍ Collapse #3. The Late Bronze Age (LBA) civilization in the Eastern Mediterranean. About 3200 years ago, the Eastern Mediterranean hosted some of the world’s most advanced civilizations.

֍ Collapse #4. The Maya civilization of 250 - 900 AD in Mexico. Severe drought killed millions of Maya people due to famine and lack of water, and initiated a cascade of internal collapses that destroyed their civilization at the peak of their cultural development, between 750 - 900 AD.

֍ Collapse #5. The Tang Dynasty in China, 700 - 907 AD. At the same time as the Mayan collapse, China was also experiencing the collapse of its ruling empire, the Tang Dynasty. Dynastic changes in China often occurred because of popular uprisings during crop failure and famine associated with drought.

֍ Collapse #6. The Tiwanaku Empire of Bolivia's Lake Titicaca region, 300 - 1000 AD. The Tiwanaku Empire was one of the most important South American civilizations prior to the Inca Empire. After dominating the region for 500 years, the Tiwanaku Empire ended abruptly between 1000 - 1100 AD, following a drying of the region, as measured by ice accumulation in the Quelccaya Ice Cap, Peru.

֍ Collapse #7. The Ancestral Puebloan (Anasazi) culture in the Southwest U.S. in the 11th - 12th centuries AD. Beginning in 1150 AD, North America experienced a 300-year drought called the Great Drought.

֍ Collapse #8. The Khmer Empire based in Angkor, Cambodia, 802 - 1431 AD. The Khmer Empire ruled Southeast Asia for  intense decades-long droughts interspersed with intense monsoons in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries that, in combination with other factors, contributed to the empire's demise.

֍ Collapse #9. The Ming Dynasty in China, 1368 - 1644 AD. China's Ming Dynasty--one of the greatest eras of orderly government and social stability in human history--collapsed at a time when the most severe drought in the region in over 4000 years was occurring, according to sediments from Lake Huguang Maar analyzed in a 2007 article in Nature by Yancheva et al.

In this image, we see Kurdish Syrian girls among destroyed buildings in the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobane on March 22, 2015. Image credit: Yasin Akgul/AFP/Getty Images.

֍ Collapse #10. Modern Syria. Syria's devastating civil war that began in March 2011 has killed over 300,000 people, displaced at least 7.6 million, and created an additional 4.2 million refugees. While the causes of the war are complex, a key contributing factor was the nation's devastating drought that began in 1998. The drought brought Syria's most severe set of crop failures in recorded history, which forced millions of people to migrate from rural areas into cities, where conflict erupted. This drought was almost certainly Syria's worst in the past 500 years (98% chance), and likely the worst for at least the past 900 years (89% chance), according to a 2016 tree ring study by Cook et al., "Spatiotemporal drought variability in the Mediterranean over the last 900 years." Human-caused emissions of greenhouse gases were "a key attributable factor" in the drying up of wintertime precipitation in the Mediterranean region, including Syria, in recent decades, as discussed in a NOAA press release that accompanied a 2011 paper by Hoerling et al., On the Increased Frequency of Mediterranean Drought.

A 2016 paper by drought expert Colin Kelley showed that the influence of human greenhouse gas emissions had made recent drought in the region 2 - 3 times more likely.

Ten Civilizations or Nations That Collapsed From Drought - lots of great pictures

As Dr. Jeff Masters evidenced above, extended drought, sometimes alternating with other harsh climate conditions like intense rains, can lead to starvation. Long wars exacerbate the situation, leading directly to collapse.

In addition to the above, there is another climate change based collapse level attack on human civilization, one that is 100% unavoidable now, that has wreaked havoc in the past.

SNIPPET from the March 23, 2018 article, "Humanity has contended with rising seas before — and it didn’t go well for us", by Alxandru Micu:

The Neolithic revolution was the first major transformation humanity had paused — the transition foraging to farming. Spreading out from the Middle East, this wave of change took peoples used to hunt and forage wherever they pleased and tied them down, hoe in hand, to sedentary — but oh so lucrative — farms and fields.

Around 7,600 years ago, however, the revolution paused — no new agricultural settlements seemed to pop up in Southeastern Europe around the time, existing communities declined, and the progress of civilization as a whole came to a standstill. Up until now, we didn’t have any inkling as to why this happened, but new research from the Senckenberg Biodiversity and Climate Research Centre, the Goethe University in Frankfurt, and the University of Toronto sheds some light on this mysterious period.

According to their findings, this lull in progress was due to an abrupt rise in sea levels in the northern Aegean Sea. Evidence of this event was calcified in the fossils of tiny marine algae preserved in seafloor sediments.

The impact this event had on societal dynamics and overall development during the time highlights the potential economic and social threats posed by sea level rise in the future, the team says. Given that climate-change-associated changes in sea level are virtually unavoidable, the team hopes their findings will help us better prepare for the flooding ahead.

“Approximately 7,600 years ago, the sea level must have risen abruptly in the Mediterranean regions bordering Southeastern Europe. The northern Aegean, the Marmara Sea and the Black Sea recorded an increase of more than one meter. This led to the flooding of low-lying coastal areas that would have been ideal areas for settlement,” says lead author Professor Dr. Jens Herrle.

The evidence supports a link between the two timeouts in the Neolithic revolution and the flooding events. The event 8,400 years ago coincides with archaeological findings suggesting that settlements in low-lying areas were under significant hardship from encroaching seas and other associated climatic changes. The renewed rise just 800 years later likely amplified these communities’ woes, keeping them from making the transition to agriculture.

“The source of this may have been Lake Agassiz in North America. This glacial meltwater lake was enclosed in ice and experienced a massive breach during this period, which emptied an enormous volume of water into the ocean.”

Past fluctuations in sea levels have already had a significant effect on human history during the early days of agriculture, the authors note, warning that it would be unwise to dismiss the challenges it will place in our path in the future.

"Humanity has contended with rising seas before — and it didn’t go well for us"

The article goes on to repeat the overly conservative estimate from the IPCC of a rise by up to "one meter over the next 100 years". That is the same IPCC that predicted the amount of ice depletion we have at present at the poles would not occur until 2070. That is the same IPCC that has NOT figured in the contribution of ice loss from Greenland to global sea level rise in any of the models.

So, if you are a logical person, I recommend you count on 3 to 6 meters, at least, of sea level rise several decades before the end of the century. As Peter Ward says (The Flooded Earth: Our Future In a World Without Ice Caps by Peter D. Ward]), over 25% of the world's arable land is near sea level and will be flooded. Most major airports along coastlines will be flooded. Every harbor facility in the world will require a staggering amount of land fill to raise them as the sea level goes up. Most coastal real estate, currently highly assessed in value, will be flooded and become worthless.     

By the way, the latest science indicates that rapid sea level rise will be accompanied by a large increase in volcanic eruptions (which might slow down the heating due to a temporary increase in aerosols), and and increase in earthquaqe activity. The volcanic aerosols, at most, will be a minor speed bump on the way to intolerable climate caos. So, please don't count on volcanic eruptions to 'save us' from global warming hell. That is wishful thinking.

I am not a voice "crying in the wilderness" on this issue. I will provide you some screenshots from the video of a scientist who recently wrote the book, "Waking the Climate Giant". He predicts a continued increase in volcanic activity, now observed in the data, due to terrain bounce from melting land ice and increased pressure on the surrounding seabed, as the the global average temperature increases. It's not the volcanoes that are increasing the heat, it's the greenhouse gases that are causing massive ice melt that, in turn, triggers earthquages and volcanic eruptions. Read his book if you disagree. I just watched the video but I think he is spot on.

On Earth, destructive climate change was not catastrophic before. The difference now it that the entire globe will be impacted. Humans have never lived on a planet with an average temperature of 3° C above pre-industrial. We will pass that mark up a half century before 2100 and continue towards PLUS 4° C and beyond, with no available technological or natural negative feedback mechanism to stop the continued acceleration, not slowing, of the rate of increase in temperature.

Already our atmosphere is being distorted by global warming to the point of pushing the dry subtropical bands on either side of the tropics towards their respective pole, thereby increasind drought conditions in highly populated areas and a large percentage of hitherto arable terrain.

SNIPPET from the February 2, 2016 article, "The mystery of the expanding tropics", by Olive Heffernan

As Earth's dry zones shift rapidly polewards, researchers are scrambling to figure out the cause — and consequences.

One spring day in 2004, Qiang Fu was poring over atmospheric data collected from satellites when he noticed an unusual and seemingly inexplicable pattern. In two belts on either side of the equator, the lower atmosphere was warming more than anywhere else on Earth. Fu, an atmospheric scientist at the University of Washington in Seattle, was puzzled.

It wasn't until a year later that he realized what he had discovered: evidence of a rapid expansion of the tropics, the region that encircles Earth's waist like a green belt. The heart of the tropics is lush, but the northern and southern edges are dry. And these parched borders are growing — expanding into the subtropics and pushing them towards the poles.

Tropical forest losses outpace UN estimates

Cities that currently sit just outside the tropics could soon be smack in the middle of the dry tropical edge. That's bad news for places like San Diego, California. “A shift of just one degree of latitude in southern California — that's enough to have a huge impact on those communities in terms of how much rain they will get,” explains climate modeller Thomas Reichler of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City.


Elsewhere, there is evidence that tropical expansion is affecting the ocean. Where the Hadley cell descends, bringing cool air downward, it energizes the ocean and whips up currents to high speeds. This energy powers the upwelling of cold, nutrient-rich waters towards the surface, which feeds some of the world's most productive fisheries. But there are hints that some of these regions are suffering because of shifts in the Hadley cell.

These upwelling zones could move south over time, or get weaker or stronger, depending on what happens to the Hadley cell, says Cook. In any case, it means that fishing communities that rely on these resources will not be able to count on traditional patterns.

On land, biodiversity is also potentially at risk. This is especially true for the climate zones just below the subtropics in South Africa and Australia, on the southern rim of both continents. In southwestern Australia, renowned as one of the world's biodiversity hotspots, flowers bloom during September, when tourists come to marvel at some of the region's 4,000 endemic plant species. But since the late 1970s, rainfall there has dropped by one-quarter. The same is true at South Africa's Cape Floristic Province, another frontier known for its floral beauty. “This is the most concrete evidence we have of tropical expansion,” says Steve Turton, an environmental geographer at James Cook University in Cairns, Australia.

Turton worries that the rate of change will be too rapid for these ecosystems to adapt. “We're talking about rapid expansion that's within half or a third of a human lifetime,” he says. In the worst-case scenario, the subtropics will overtake these ecologically rich outposts and the hotter, drier conditions will take a major toll.

The Mystery of the Expanding Tropics

Vermont is already experiencing the economy harming effects of climate change. A Vermonter, concerned about this, wrote about it. He has a right to be.

Watching Nature Collapse March 24th, 2018 by George Harvey

Sometimes it seems the best of everything is passing away.

SNIPPET:

A few years ago, someone threw a peach pit into shrubbery on the front yard of the house where I live. The tree that sprouted from the peach pit is now bearing fruit. Neighbors have paw-paw trees growing in their yards. But Vermont’s maple sugar industry, and the apple orchards, and the blueberry fields are all suffering. Vermont is fast becoming a place unlike what it has ever been, and it is not an improvement.

Watching Nature Collapse

Don't look at what he wrote as the "new normal" and just think we can 'adapt' to climate change by growing different crops and so on. This is the leading edge of climate that will soon, much sooner than many think, become intolerable for crop growing. We are not just on a treadmill moving in the wrong direction; our velocity on that deadly treadmill is increasing. Please keep that in mind so you are not lulled into thinking it would be 'nice' to grow palm trees in Burlington. Yes, the fossil fuel industry 🦖 does continue to try to pitch the 'warmer weather good' out of context propaganda happy talk. They'll do anything to keep their profit over people and planet suicide machine going. Stupid is as stupid does.

All these deleterious effects of Catastrophic Climate Change will continually get worse, not for a decade or so, but for over a century.

Temperatures unsuitable for human life are baked in for at least a couple of centuries, even if we stopped the insanity of constantly making things even worse by going on a crash program to stop burning fossil fuels. Yeah, we have to do that. Yeah, if we don't, we are all dead. But, regardless of what we do, it will take a while to catch up to all of us. I write this for those who, though sadly unable to stop the insane suicidal "business model" of the biosphere killing fossil fuel fascists, wish to survive as long as possible.


I wish to stress that, though many confused voices out there do not wish to face this, the one unifying aspect of the present threat 🌡️ to human civilization is Catastrophic Climate Change 🚩, NOT lack of fossil fuel based energy.

Have I got your attention? Good.

Then, look at this graphic from the Video, "Waking the Climate Giant", and ask yourself if it reflects our current situation:


The above graphic is already correct in its prediciton. In 2017 (the emissions data was for the years 2014, 2015 and 2016) the greenhouse gas emissions INCREASED. Consequently, there is a very, very high probability that the collapse of our civilization will occur much sooner than we think.

Some humans in different parts of the globe are already well acquainted with living on the edge of collapse. I am absolutely certain that many jungle tribes in Brazil, Ecuador and Peru, RIGHT NOW, live on the edge of starvation in a constant state of collapse, while most of the city dwellers nearby live not much better, but still avoid starvation.

My point in this quixotic exercise in hard truth logic is that the lack of food in the past has eventually triggered revolutions, not collapse of the civilization. It is after the social upheaval, when no solution to the lack of food problem is found, such as is in LONG WARS of aggression or extended harsh climate conditions, that collapse ensues.

People tend to fear other people more than deleterious climate. People can certainly be a threat to your life and stuff, but Catastrophic Climate Change is a much greater threat to everything you hold dear, past, present and future.

Catastrophic Climate Change is worse than a long war of aggression because it will last much longer than a human lifetime.

The climate change problem is intractable, but I believe some WILL beat it for maybe a century or so. For example, there are places near the equator with very high mountains. A world heated plus 4° C by around 2060, despite happy talk by certain wishful thinkers, will kill off most humans. BUT, in high mountains, the tree line will move way up while the temperature becomes temperate, even at the Equator. I stress the equator, though RE will vigorously disagree, because human civilization in a low food environment with over acidified seas (no easy fish or whales or seals to catch = NO ESKIMOS) with poor available sunlight is not a recipe for long term survival, even if the temperature is mild enough to grow crops.

There is a mountain in Ecuador (Chimborazo) about 20,000 feet high that will, because of the horrendously altered atmosphere, get plenty of rain even at high altitudes. There are several other candidates in the HIGH tropics around the world. This will enable the folks living there to grow enough food, thanks to an ABUNDANCE of sunlight all year round, with low tech methods. They just might be able to ride out the fossil fuel burning stupidity that dooms most of human civilization.

The tree line, the highest point on a mountain that trees will grow, varies between 5,000 feet and up to 13,000 feet above sea level. It varies so much mainly because of wind chill, though the length of the summer growing season is important as well. A tree in relatively mild wind conditions can grow all the way up to the maximum recorded tree line altitude at temperature well below freezing (down to minus 40° F =- 40° C  ;D), provided its roots can get enough water.

Trees can have liquid water in their tracheal elements at such low temperatures because of a wonderful combination of two factors. The first is that the 'pumping' mechanism of a tree is more a sucking mechanism than a pumping mechanism. The transpiration of water vapor into the atmosphere at the branch leaf pores creates negative pressure on the water molecules inside the tree (as long as the tracheal elements vacuum is not breached by air intrusion).

Water molecules, as they travel up the inside of tree, aided by capillary action as well as transpiration, can be stretched by as much as negative 25 atmospheres! That is how those Giant Sequoias can move up to a 130 gallons of water a day over a 100 feet vertically.

The second factor is that the water in the tracheal elements, in addition to being thoroughly stretched, is extremely pure. This prevents the crystalization of water around non-water substances that would normally trigger freezing at 0° C. But, when the wind is howling during below freezing temperatures, the wind chill can cause the water in the tree to freeze and eventually kill the tree.

The closer to the equator a high mountain tree is located, the longer it's growing season will be. If the growing season is too short, like in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, the tree line is only about 4,500 feet.

SNIPPET from an article about the Tree line:

The elevational limit of such suitable summer conditions varies by latitude. In Mexico, for example, treeline occurs somewhere around 13,000 feet, whereas farther north, in the Tetons, for instance, it occurs lower, at approximately 10,000 feet. Again, it’s a ragged line that may vary by hundreds of feet on any mountain, depending largely on shelter and exposure.

Because the elevational treeline is so closely tied to temperature, many suggest that it could be a particularly sensitive indicator of global climate change. Presumably, rising temperatures would increase the elevation of treeline in any locale, altering forest distribution and potentially ousting rare plant communities – and their inhabitants – that now exist above treeline. Although the specific physiological mechanism of treeline formation is not fully understood, there is growing photographic and other evidence of upward shifts in treelines worldwide.

Why Is the Treeline at a Higher Elevation in the Tetons than in the White Mountains?

A PLUS 4° C (and still going up) atmosphere by around 2060 will enable trees to grow at much higher altitudes. For every degree increase in average global temperature, a corresponding increase in humidity of at least 7% to 13% will take place. We will have an atmosphere expanding vertically, but also with increased humidity. This will accelerate warming because water vapor is a powerful greenhouse gas, but the good news is that high mountain areas will, in some areas, experience more rain higher up.

As noted at the beginning of this article, humans need water and other adequate growing conditions in order to have a viable civilization.

The Catastrophic Climate Changed world of 2060 will be a stormy place. The over acidified, mostly dead oceans, will be full of giant waves. The winds during storms will be off the charts in comparison to what we experience now. High up in the mountains, some type of barrier will need to be erected to keep the fierce winds from destroying the crops.

Finally, those hardy folks who carve out a life in year-round sunny high mountains will have to deal with UV radiation. It is a fact that, at present, the UV levels at around 10,000 ft. and above are particularly hazardous to humans.

However, with the expanded atmosphere in an overheated planet, this is the one area I see as hopeful for humans and animals living on very high mountains. You see, in said expanded atmosphere of plus 4° C and above, the massive increase in humidity will inhibit UV radiaiton.

Nevertheless. Since the equator alpine areas are infamous for high UV radiation, it would be prudent to plan to plant crops that have high UV tolerant foliage, like tubers. Hopefully, the greatly increased humidity will help protect the High Mountain Human Heroes.

SNIPPET:

Everyone is exposed to UV radiation from the sun and an increasing number of people are exposed to artificial sources used in industry, commerce and recreation. Emissions from the sun include visible light, heat and UV radiation.

The UV region covers the wavelength range 100-400 nm and is divided into three bands:

UVA (315-400 nm)
UVB (280-315 nm)
UVC (100-280 nm).

As sunlight passes through the atmosphere, all UVC and approximately 90% of UVB radiation is absorbed by ozone, water vapour, oxygen and carbon dioxide. UVA radiation is less affected by the atmosphere. Therefore, the UV radiation reaching the Earth’s surface is largely composed of UVA with a small UVB component.

Environmental factors that influence the UV level

Sun height—the higher the sun in the sky, the higher the UV radiation level. Thus UV radiation varies with time of day and time of year, with maximum levels occurring when the sun is at its maximum elevation, at around midday (solar noon) during the summer months.

Latitude—the closer the equator, the higher the UV radiation levels.  :(

Cloud cover— UV radiation levels are highest under cloudless skies. Even with cloud cover, UV radiation levels can be high due to the scattering of UV radiation by water molecules and fine particles in the atmosphere. :(

Altitude—at higher altitudes, a thinner atmosphere filters less UV radiation. With every 1000 metres increase in altitude, UV levels increase by 10% to 12%.

http://www.who.int/uv/uv_and_health/en/

What do you think are the chances of human civilization achieving what the following graph says we HAVE TO DO?



There is NO WAY in God's (formerly good) Earth that we can avoid a climate that is almost entirely unsuitable for human life. The above graphic illustrates that. Anyone who thinks that we can do what needs to be done to avoid a PLUS 4° C (and above!) climate that will kill most humans and cause the extinction of thousands of other vertebrate species is engaging in magical thinking.  >:( 

ALL the people near the surface in the tropics will die as crispy critters, period. Those in temperate zones will perish too. Those near the poles who live near the surface will last as long as the food they have lasts. Unless they can maintain some geothermally heated and powered high tech greenhouse CITY that includes PLENTY of crop growing quality light and plenty of water, they will die too.

I might add that those greenhouse giant domes, both near the poles ond on high equatorial mountains, had better be MASSIVELY strong. The storms that will visit them and the wind speeds they will face in a PLUS 4 ° C planet  will make any recent hurricane look like a gentle breeze.

In Antarctica, some vegetables have now been (sort of) successfully grown.

SNIPPET:

These Antarctic vegetables were grown without pesticides, daylight, or even soil — but they look absolutely delicious.

Various vegetables which were harvested from the EDEN-ISS greenhouse at the Neumayer-Station III on Antarctica. Image credits: DLR

Germany’s southernmost workplace, the Neumayer-Station III, has harvested the first crop of Antarctic vegetables. Biologists report that they’ve successfully grown 3.6 kilograms (8 pounds) of salad greens, 18 cucumbers and 70 radishes grown inside a high-tech greenhouse, as temperatures around the research station were plummeting to -20 degrees Celsius (-4 Fahrenheit).

The plants were grown without soil, in a closed-water circle. No outside lighting was used — instead, researchers optimized and used an LED system. The carbon dioxide cycle was also closely monitored.

While this is a solid crop already, researchers are expecting much more in the future. The German Aerospace Center DLR, which coordinates the project, said that in the coming months, they expect to harvest 4-5 kilograms of fruit and vegetables a week.

Image shows engineer Paul Zabel with fresh salad he harvested in the EDEN-ISS greenhouse at the Neumayer-Station III on Antarctica. The project with — instead of soil — a closed water cycle, optimized lightning and carbon dioxide levels is a test of what may become part of the nutrition program for astronauts in future moon or Mars missions. Image credits: DLR.

Full article: Scientists harvest first batch of Antarctic vegetables

I am skeptical of the nutritive value of crops grown this way. Though it is good to know they used no pesticdes, the article says nothing about any nutritive mineral analysis of these vegetables, so there is no evidence yet that this is a sustainable crop growing method in a harsh climate changed plus 4 degrees C world.

The article ends with optimistic talk about using the above technique (and similar techniques like they use in the International Space Station) to eventually grow food in spaceships and on other planets.

Within a decade or less, successfully growing food near the poles will be far more important for the survival of humanity here on earth than in space or on some other planet. 

Speaking of activity near the poles to deal with Climate Change, Iceland is one of the few places on Earth that are seeing benefits from Climate Change. They may be destined to be one of the outposts of humanity in an increasingly overheated world.

Now they are planting evergreens 🌱 🌲.
But, if we do not reverse the overheating trend, they will eventually have to plant these: 🌴  :P



Vikings cleared the forests, now Iceland is bringing them back

Even with laudable efforts like the forest planting project in Iceland, humanity needs to do far, far more to survive.

We will need gigantic, and I mean "miles in diameter" GIGANTIC, greenhouses to get a reasonable amount of food grown near the poles and/or on the equatorial mountains.

The giant greenhouse domes situated in the high equatorial mountains would have to be something like the U.K. Eden Project Domes, but way up high on a mountain. In England they have an enclosed rainforest in these domes. They need to be ten or twenty times bigger for an equatorial alpine community. If the post collapse alpine community could control the atmospheric pressure in the giant domes, more UV protection is guaranteed and more comfortable living for humans too.



For those still worried about fellow humans trying to kill you for your stuff, remember that high mountains are a natural defense against warlike humans during the initial phases of the Climate Change Caused Collapse. The heat lower down will eliminate any human threat after a couple of decades. 

STOP thinking you are going to live on planet that has the remotest resemblance to the one you have lived in all your life. THAT is WISHFUL THINKING! The LEAST of your problems is going to be worrying about the "zombie" humans getting your stuff.


NOTE: I pose these issues for your discussion. I will not argue the merits of them beyond this comment. If you disagree with anything I said, then you are entitled to be as wrong as you like.  ;D  :D 
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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2036 is ONLY 16 years away from 2020... 😨
« Reply #344 on: January 23, 2020, 12:32:17 pm »
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

 

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