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Topic Summary

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 05, 2017, 02:38:13 pm »

By the end of this century, world temperatures are likely to rise by more than 2 degrees Celsius, a study revealed on Monday.

The temperatures will increase before 2100 by 2 to 4.9 degrees Celsius with a 90% chance. Only 5% chance indicates warming could be at or below 2 degrees Celsius, one of the many targets Paris Agreement is tackling, the study published in Nature Climate Change shows.

Adrian Raftery, the lead author of the study and a professor at the University of Washington, said failing the target would have dramatic consequences on people's livelihoods.

"Countries need to change the economic incentives for producing carbon Ė for example by introducing a carbon tax Ė and encourage innovation that would improve energy efficiency."

Adrian Raftery,  lead author of 'Less than 2 įCelsius warming by 2100 unlikely' via Reuters

That is putting 350 million people in 31 countries and regions in danger of deadly heat waves and other health hazard. Weather-related disasters, such as drought, heat wave and rising sea levels, are expected to cause 152,000 deaths annually in Europe between 2071 and 2100, jumping from 3,000 a year between 1981 and 2010, CNN reported.

The number of expected death is 50 times larger than at present, the study in the Lancet Planetary Health journal said. It added that heatwaves would lead to 99 percent of all weather-related deaths.

According to the UN Environment Program, 12 billion tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions should be cut from the current 54 billion annually, mainly from fossil fuels burning, to keep the rise below 2 Celsius.

Ramping up efforts to improve carbon efficiency are key to limit future warming, Raftery told Reuters.

"Countries need to change the economic incentives for producing carbon Ė for example by introducing a carbon tax Ė and encourage innovation that would improve energy efficiency," he said. "We should be learning more from countries that are particularly carbon-efficient, like France, which has a very low-carbon transport infrastructure."

Another study published on Nature Climate Change in June suggested outperforming Paris Agreement would not stop half of the world's population being exposed to fatal heat waves.

"Even if we outperform the Paris targets, the population exposed to deadly heat will be about 50% by 2100."

 Camilo Mora, lead author of 'Global risk of deadly heat'

"Many people around the world are already paying the ultimate price of heat waves, and while models suggest that this is likely to continue, it could be much worse if emissions are not considerably reduced,Ē said Camilo Mora, lead author of the study and a biogeography professer at University of Hawaii.


Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 05, 2017, 01:26:58 pm »

Agelbert NOTE: The following average temperature at 2 meters  projection for the year 2100 on the RCP 8.5 (highly optimistic IPCC "business as usual" scenario) ECM (Environmental Change Model) scenario is adapted from Birkel, 2010 (PhD. Dissertation).

Since 2010, we have learned that the follwing scenario will arrive about 50 years earlier than Birkel estimated. So, what you see below is what those alive will most likely experience in 2050, NOT in the year 2100. Have a nice day.

The most likely RCP of those presented is the 8.5 pathway, in the sense that it most closely resembles our observations so far. If anything, it looks quite optimistic right now.

It's hard to call any RCP truly unobtainable. If we'd invent a miraculous carbon "vacuum cleaner" tomorrow and decide to completely crash the world economy the day after tomorrow, so that we'd have negative worldwide emissions very soon, then we could probably follow the 2.6 trajectory. That is, however, very unlikely.

Realistically and unscientifically speaking, the completely disasterous RCP 8.5 pathway is a good-case scenario. The pretty disasterous RCP 6.0 pathway is a very-good-case scenario.


Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 04, 2017, 02:17:20 pm »

Climate change? Somebody up there will take care of it

By Christine Colbert / Writers On The Range

Friday, August 4th, 2017 at 12:02am

SANTA FE, N.M. ó Not long after President Trump decided that the United States should withdraw from the Paris Agreement, Michigan Republican Rep. Tim Walberg  told his constituents that if it turned into a ďrealĒ problem, God would ďtake care ofĒ climate change.   

Social media buzzed with dismay and alarm over the Michigan congressmanís attitude, since it runs counter to overwhelming scientific evidence concerning climate change.

Yet, if you live in a religiously conservative state, as I once did, Walbergís statement would not be surprising. I was born and raised in a Mormon family in Utah, where the word ďenvironmentalistĒ is still considered by many to be foul language. Iím no longer a practicing Mormon, but rather a convert to the wonder of the outdoors, thanks to the education I received while exploring Utahís vast public lands. I did not need to lose my religion to become an environmentalist, but Iím sure it didnít hurt.

Years ago, I asked my dad why he didnít think climate change was a threat. He replied that the second coming of Jesus Christ would take care of any ďproblems.Ē In other words, he believed a wipe-down of our planet would ensue upon Christís arrival back on earth.

I was alarmed. This seemed to me like a rather large bet to make. But my father added that because he ďknewĒ Christ would come again, it wasnít a g a m b l e for him and he didnít need to worry about the future.

But, as the public response to Walburgís statement demonstrated, this idea is not very reassuring to the majority of the American people. The science behind global climate change is overwhelming. What if the supernatural cleanup orchestrated by God failed to occur? And what if it came too late to matter?

I believe there is a strong religious argument to be made that we all have a responsibility to protect our planet. Caring for creation is emphasized in many religious texts and, in particular, by the Bible. Pope Francis wrote an entire encyclical on the subject Ė ďLaudato SI'Ē, subtitled ďOn Care for Our Common Home.Ē In the case of my familyís religion, in the Book of Mormon, as well as Doctrine and Covenants, God instructs his children to tread lightly upon the Earth, to be sure that we do not defile or pollute it, and to use the planetís gifts sparingly and conscientiously.

All scripture is open to interpretation. But hereís my take: Imagine your mother asked you to clean your room and, not only that, to take good care of your things, including your stuffed animals, your Barbie dolls and your action figures. She told you to care for each one because she gave them to you and she loves them just like she loves you. (Yes, in my story, Mom loves your childhood toys.)

But you decide not to clean up your room. In fact, you dump a couple of cans of paint on the carpet and smear fecal matter all over the walls. You light a fire in the middle of the room, throw your toys and plush animals into it, and let the air fill with smoke Ė endangering the house and everyone in it. How do you think your mom will react? I remember numerous mentions in the Bible about a vengeful God who doesnít take kindly to manís willful disregard for his commandments. Epic flood, anyone?

Which brings me back to Rep. Tim Walberg, and his dismissal of science and the future of our planet. Walberg and others like him can decide that climate change doesnít concern them and, if theyíre correct, God will fix it all. But when? And after how many of the earthís plant and wildlife species have disappeared, become displaced, or gone extinct by the effects of climate change? And by destroying our environment for the sake of continued fossil fuel extraction and use, what does that say about us humans as stewards of the land?

Creating harmony between religious beliefs and the conservation of our planet is really quite easy. Even for those who believe that our warming planet poses no real threat, advocating for clean air, water, and protecting Earthís teeming diversity of plants and wildlife is still something everyone can get behind. Or mostly everyone.

Because Iím thinking that God would love to see his children taking care of their planet and not totally gutting the place.

Christine Colbert is a contributor to Writers on the Range, the opinion service of High Country News (hcn.org). She lives and writes in Washington.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 04, 2017, 12:03:43 pm »

Sixth Mass Extinction Event is Under Way - video 17min. 7/31/2017

Biodiversity hot spots of 80% of biosphere's species endangered by Global Warming Pollution

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 03, 2017, 02:49:23 pm »

The Annihilation of Nature : Human Extinction of Birds and Mammals

By (author)  Gerardo Ceballos , By (author)  Anne H. Ehrlich , By (author)  Paul R. Ehrlich
Gerardo Ceballos, Anne H. Ehrlich, and Paul R. Ehrlich serve as witnesses in this trial of human neglect, where the charge is the massive and escalating assault on living things. Nature is being annihilated, not only because of the human population explosion, but also as a result of massive commercial endeavors and public apathy.

Despite the well-intentioned work of conservation organizations and governments, the authors warn us that not enough is being done and time is short for the most vulnerable of the world's wild birds and mammals. Thousands of populations have already disappeared, other populations are dwindling daily, and soon our descendants may live in a world containing but a minuscule fraction of the birds and mammals we know today.

The Annihilation of Nature is a clarion call for engagement and action. These outspoken scientists urge everyone who cares about nature to become personally connected to the victims of our inadequate conservation efforts and demand that restoration replace destruction. Only then will we have any hope of preventing the worst-case scenario of the sixth mass extinction.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 03, 2017, 02:18:28 pm »

Sixth Mass Extinction Event is Under Way - video 17min. 7/31/2017

Biodiversity hot spots of 80% of biosphere's species endangered by Global Warming Pollution

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: July 31, 2017, 05:30:07 pm »

The point is that it is feasable to end up with only ten percent of the present biosphere and zero complex life forms populating the biosphere (except for the embryos, the oligarchs and their pets)

I don't think a technofix with space elevators is feasible nor will any such gimmick save the Elite.  They'll die along with most of the rest of the population, because the monetary system will collapse before the ecosphere does, and money will go worthless.  Most of them will end up hanged, guillotined or impaled on stakes.


I sincerely hope you are right and a more just society will emerge from the tattered remnants of this empathy deficit disordered madhouse destroying everything it touches.

You always bring up the money issue. Let me point something out to you. If you have a a 100 robots with sophisticated AI so they can build other robots, as well as build absolutely anything humans can build (faster and more accurately too), carry and use weapons to defend you and yours, mine for materials, grow food, cook, clean and maintain all the infrastructure in good working order, you do not need ANY MONEY.

Now you may think that is science fiction baloney. Tell that to all the people losing their jobs from mining to accounting to manufacturing to maintenance, ETC. The Robots are HERE. And they DO NOT charge anything for their services.

All they need is energy. If you can get that energy renewably, then your only "problem" is making sure your oligarch competitor has less robots that you do.


Laugh if you wish, but I do believe the oligarchs consider AI ROBOTS to be the cornerstone of their devious plan to survive when most of us die. I know Musk is afraid of AI, but Trump thinks they are the best thing since toasted bread. And Mr. Trump's mindset is typical of the Plutocrat Cretins planning to survive when the rest of us don't.

I agree with you that the Greed Ball Oligarchs will die, but it will not be because of lack of resources.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: July 31, 2017, 04:57:40 pm »

Can a Technological Society be Sustainable? ???

The Amish life is getting a lot of press these days.  What I wonder is can it maintain itself without the much larger much richer society around it that both let's it exist and provides the level of financial activity that keep them viable.  Everything from produce to hand tools to furniture are sold to outsiders and pay for land, equipment, taxes.  So they are both part of our society and apart.

The Amish are almost as dependent on the Industrial Civilization to function as the regular Sheeple are.

Those cute Buggy Carts they travel around in all have their parts forged using copious amounts of energy.  They use the same Monetary system as everybody else, selling their produce fore $Dollars$ and then buying other stuff they need like cloth for $Dollars$.  Do you think Amish women spin all their own thread and then weave that into cloth before they sew up their anachronistic dresses and head gear?  Hell no, they buy bolts of cloth that are produce over in China for a lot less than the Amish could do that job.

About the only advantage the Amish have is they still are somewhat attached to the land and didn't give up farming.  They also have a strong community structure, very important.  But they are going to have a lot of problems when TSHTF too.



But I would like to address the broader issue of the normally polluting technology (as in UNsustainable) Homo Sap has come up with.

Sustainability should be defined as a stable biosphere which can become unstable only by some natural catastrophe not caused by any of the life forms in said biosphere. But there is a huge problem with that definition for humans simply because we KNOW that the universe is a GIGANTIC place and we DO NOT have to be "sustainable" IF we can manage to be successful parasites OUTSIDE of the confines of our planetary biosphere. It is perfectly feasable, from an energy resources point of view, to protect Earth's biosphere from pollution by obtaining all the energy we need to keep the various species we rely on healthy somewhere else.

This point of view is ethically bankrupt, but it is exactly what many elite cretins are probably planning to bring about.

The scenario goes like this:

1. Secret labs funded with oligarch money (taken from we-the-people through fraud and deception) preserve the DNA, not just of most plants, but of all the complex life forms expected to die out during this accelerated mass extinction event. Advances in cryogenics and embryo preservation enable the storage of viable specimens of hundreds of thousands, if not millions of species of the estimated 16 to 30 million species in our biosphere.

1. Business as usual causes a major Homo Sap Die-off. The oligarchs go to ground for a couple of centuries with high tech hydroponics and a renewable energy powered microcosm of a Homo Sap civilization. Robots are sent out to keep the nuclear power plants from melting down.

2. After a couple of decades with hotter and hotter temperatures, but a human population reduced to about 100 million or so, technology and robotics has advanced to enable the building of a space elevator. It is built over a 10 year period.

3. Around the year 2050, with temperatures wiping out nearly  one half (and the death rate still accelerating) of all lcomplex species on Earth showing no sign of their climb to about 8C above pre-industrial, the first future Mars colonists are sent to establish a base on the moon for the building of a space elevator there. That one will be used to sling shot colonists to Mars and several other exploitable rocks in the solar system.

4. By 2060, all macroscopic marine life is dead and the ice caps are gone. The methane bursts from the arctic have put us right in the PETM heat acceleration and the biosphere has shrunk to about a third of its present size. The oligarchs are still happy as clams in their high tech holes. Scientists in those holes have become influential political leaders and are championing revolutionary low energy cooling laser technology as a global technfix that could shorten the time the globe is subjected to such high average temperatures from a thousand years to about 200 hundred years. They begin to try that in Antarctica to get the ice to begin to build up with some marginal successes and several robot frying failures. Additionally, high temperature and acid resistant algae has been genetically engineered and is being seeded all over the oceans by robots. But the temerature is at about 5C above pre industrial and still climbing.

5. By 2070 a thin layer of ice covers Greenland and Antarctica, despite the average global temperature having reached 6C above pre-industrial. This was accomplished by the combination of three widespread uses of new technology which included the cooling lasers, the GMO algae covering greater portions of the oceans (preventing the oceans from absorbing solar heat while increasing pH) and an aluminum vapor coated polyester reflector (of mostly UV though some visible light passed through) one mill thick and several thousand miles in diameter deployed in space over these areas.

6. And so on. The point is that it is feasable to end up with only ten percent of the present biosphere and zero complex life forms populating the biosphere (except for the embryos, the oligarchs and their pets) BUT, repopulate an imperfect, but "sustainable", biosphere on this planet as long as we do all our polluting, exploiting and so on OFF this planet.

I would not like to live in that "society". In fact, I think that they would, even after making the earth a new "Eden" (after 200 years or so), self destruct from their empathy deficit disordered view of life.

Technofixes, if limited to AVOIDING pollution on this planet, instead of putting a bandaid on it, could work. But, so far, ALL the technofixes that have been proposed, are proposed in order to continue polluting the planet in other ways. That is really, really STUPID.

But exploiting outer space rocks to bring home the bacon is not. That said, I think that "solution" is immoral and it is a futile attempt to kick the can of the destructive human problem of unethical behavior down the road.

Our problem is an ethical problem, NOT a lack of resources problem. But I expect the above outlined scenario will be tried simply because TPTB do not DO ethics. Have a nice day.
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: July 29, 2017, 01:13:52 pm »

ďDrawdownĒ ó The Definitive Guide To Combating Climate Change

July 29th, 2017 by Steve Hanley


Drawdown Surprises  :o

We here at CleanTechnica, we focus heavily on the electrification of the transportation sector. That is critically important, of course, but would you care to guess what the one area is that we as a people have total control over and that has the potential to keep more carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere than making every car and truck on the planet run on electricity?

#1 is something we have touched on here only briefly ó refrigerant management. Read more about it on page 164. The authors estimate that this one area could keep nearly 90 gigatons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere. Electric cars? About 4 gigatons.  :P

Here are the other 9 items on the Top 10 list and their carbon reduction potential:

Wind Turbines (Onshore) ó 84.60 gigatons
Reduced Food Waste ó 70.53 gigatons
Plant-rich diet ó 66.11 gigatons
Tropical Forests ó 61.23 gigatons
Educating Girls    ó 59.60 gigatons
Family Planning ó 59.60 gigatons
Solar Farms ó 36.90 gigatons
Silvopasture ó 31.19 gigatons
Rooftop Solar ó 24.60 gigatons

There are 80 items on the list. Total cost if all were fully implemented? $27.4 trillion. Thatís a lot of cash, right?

However will we pay for all that?
With savings, people ó or deferred costs. The authors estimated total economic savings at just under $74 trillion.

Deferred Gratification 

The trick, of course, is that the costs come up front. The savings often come later. Human beings seem genetically incapable of making hard choices today that will have extraordinary benefits later. Deferred gratification could be the death knell for the capitalist model prevalent in most countries today.

Pie-in-the-sky projections about future savings are discounted.    Either they are treated as irrelevant or derided as #FakeNews. 

The world operates on what I like to call the Wimpy Theory. Wimpy was a character in Popeye cartoons (some of you may be old enough to remember watching cartoons on television on Saturday mornings). Wimpy had one line that he used all the time. It went like this: ďI will gladly pay you Tuesday for a cheeseburger today.Ē Itís the ďkick the can down the roadĒ theory of global management and it will kill us all if we donít stop ó all except the lucky few who can escape to Mars aboard Elon Muskís magic carpet.  ::)

Full article:

Agelbert NOTE: I have a couple of things to say.

First of all, the contents of this article should be required reading for everyone that can read, not just students.

The issue of Deferred Gratification is not new. t is called Common Sense and every religion out there advocates it. Only the SCAM called "greed is good" Capitalism actually labels deferred gratifcation as a "weakness". That explains why Capitalism has been so morally destructive to human society and environmentally disastrous to the biosphere.

Theresa Morris wrote an excellent Essay that fleshes out what we must do. The article here deals with nuts and bolts economic realities. Theresa goes further and explains specifically WHY we should opt for deferred gratification as a matter of ethics, not just survival. I added graphics to underline the importance of her essay and some comments at the end. But the work is hers and it deserves to be broadcast far and wide, just like the article here.

I am posting here two of the graphics I included in my comments on Theresa's Essay in order to explain to readers how TPTB, who are well aware of the dangers inherent in climate change (though they won't admit it), plan to make all the rest of us pay for what those actually DOING over 90%  (about ONE percent of the world population) of the damage are liable for (i.e. environmental damage through government policies subsidizing polluters actively and passively through mendacious happy talk propaganda born of corporate corruption).

IOW, those responsible for the damage plan to spread the cost to further enrich the oligarchic polluters that got us into this mess in the first place. The operative phrase is "Fragmentation of Agency". 

The "Agency" definition here is the responsibility for harm and the consequent responsibility to pay for mitigating said harm. 

"Fragmentation" refers to what percentage of all those with Agency in doing the harm are responsible to pay to mitigate and eventually repair said harm.

Since, according to the U.N., the richest 20% of the world's population uses 80% of the resources, the 'Fragmentation of Agency' pie chart for the damage done to the biosphere should look like this:

The fossil fuel industry, and almost half of the worldís 100 largest companies, want that 'Fragmentation of Agency' pie chart to look like is as follows:

The above graphic is how TPTB polluters will try to pass most of the buck away from themselves and onto we-the-people.

We either take to heart what this Cleantechnica article makes very clear and also adopt the common sense ethical recommendations of visionaries like Theresa Morris, or we are toast.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: July 25, 2017, 04:37:42 pm »

Agelbert NOTE: Originally published in September of 2015 in three parts. I'm reposting it in full, with a few graphics changes, for you to pass on to friends and family. It's message continues to be of the utmost importance to intelligent, caring humans.

The following multi-part article post makes a case for the premise that ignoring, deriding or mocking the high probability of the existential threat we face from anthropogenic climate change is irresponsible. Anyone who is alive after around 2040 will pay for their present irresponsible, egocentric, empathy deficit disordered behavior.

Unfortunately, the innocent will suffer equally along with the criminally negligent reprobates who support incremental measures to deal with this existential threat. Have a nice day.

The essay, "What it Means to be Responsible - Reflections on Our Responsibility for the Future" by Theresa Morris, State University of New York at New Paltz references the work of Fitzpatrick, Jonas, Aristotle and others. I have summarized the essay to save the readers time.
Theoretical & Applied Ethics Vol. 1, Issue 42 2, Spring 2011

What it Means to be Responsible
Reflections on Our Responsibility for the Future
Theresa Morris, State University of New York at New Paltz

The concept of responsibility is a central one in ethics but it seems to require rethinking when we consider the fact that oftentimes the consequences of actions in contemporary, technological society extend far into the future. To whom or what are we responsible, and how far into the future do our obligations extend?

In this essay, I consider the question of our possible responsibility for the future, specifically the future state of our planet, and the well-being of future people and other beings. I argue that we do have responsibilities to future people and an obligation to try to preserve and protect the planet and its living beings for the future, and I present a new concept of responsibility, one that provides a way of understanding our actions in light of concern for the future.

The central problem with an argument that considers the effects of present actions on the future world lies in the fact that those acting today will not exist in the world they are affecting with their actions.

Why should people, now living, care about the consequences of their actions on a future world whose inhabitants are currently non-existent? Even if held accountable by those future generations, no price for wrongful actions can be extracted from the dead. We lack the usual motivations for acting ethically in situations that might impact future generations, and though we may imagine angry voices condemning us for our lack of forethought and care some several generations into the future, we will never hear those words of contempt.

Despite this, Attfield (1998) argues that "intergenerational justice remains a serious possibility, as actual future generations which come into being, and find that they have been deprived by earlier generations of opportunities for satisfying some of their most basic needs, could reasonably criticize their ancestors for failing to facilitate the satisfaction of foreseeable vital interests" (p.211).

Ethical arguments struggle, however, when lack of proximity is a factor, for it is difficult to take into consideration the impact of our actions on those spatially distant from us.

This problem arises whenever we are asked to take into consideration or contribute to the welfare of those who live in distant places, those who do not share our community, and those whose suffering we do not directly experience.

Without the presence of the other face-to-face, without a real relation to the other person, it is difficult to remain aware of and concerned about his or her need.

How much more difficult then, to take into consideration those who do not yet exist, those others we will never know and can only imagine.

The difficulty is further complicated by the fact that often the choices we make today, choices that involve use of finite resources, for instance, or the use of technology that may have deleterious aftereffects, may seem at the time to be valuable for the comfort, health or well-being of the contemporaneous human population. Indeed, most of our ethical deliberation is concerned with present actions.

In what way and how can it be argued that sacrifices or restrictions on some very useful and beneficial activities and technologies must be made in order to benefit future peoples who do not yet exist?

Responsibility in Aristotle

For Aristotle, the capacity human beings have to think about what they will do is what lies at the root of our responsibility for our actions. We are free to act, within certain necessary limits, and we have the capacity to think about our choices, therefore responsibility accompanies actions when, as Aristotle says, the "source is in oneself."

Rational beings with the capacity to choose among actions and bring about ends cannot escape from the notion of responsibility. It is a given, provided one is free from coercion in one's actions. Here responsibility is not responsiveness to the Other, not responding to another's need or want, as in Levinas. Rather, it is that since we are free to make choices and commit acts, we must accept responsibility for the consequences of those choices.

For Aristotle, to act responsibly is to act beautifully, because when a person does so he or she engages the greatest capacity available to human beings; that is "thinking things through," dianoia . What differentiates ethical choice from willing, desiring, and wishing, for Aristotle, is that it involves deliberation (NE 1112a 15).

To think things through is to look ahead and estimate consequences using imagination and forethought and to make judgments about possible actions based on experience and memory; this is the kind of reasoning that responsibility requires.

Aristotle says, "We deliberate about things that are up to us and are matters of action" (NE 1112a32). Choice is not something that is shared by irrational beings, it is the mark of a being with self-control (NE 1111b15).

Thus choice is firmly in the realm of practical, ethical action. With his emphasis on dianoia, Aristotle offers one way to think about responsibility to the future; it is the lack of "thinking things through," in preference for shortsightedness regarding means and ends, that results in acts of harm, both to the environment and to future people.

If we fail to think things through to the consequences of our actions we are not acting responsibly.

And ignorance is no justification for poor choices, for Aristotle points out that we can be ignorant and still responsible. If we deliberately become irrational, as when we become drunk, or when we ought to know something and yet fail to, we are still held responsible, "on the grounds that it is up to people themselves not to be ignorant, since they are in control of how much care they take" (NE 1114a).

Aristotle is rigorous in his insistence that human beings, because they are rational and have the capacity to "think things through," are responsible for their actions.

But perhaps, Aristotle says, "one is not the sort of person who takes any care" (NE 1114a5). Perhaps here we have the crux of it; that there are people who don't care, who are careless.

We must act on Global Warming: Climate Change has already made the world three times more dangerous.

Aristotle says such people, despite their lack of care, are still responsible because it was always in the beginning up to them to use their intelligence to make good choices and the fact that they don't care is the result of a long line of deliberations that denigrated the value of their own beautiful actions, the concerns of others, and the consequences of their actions on themselves and others.

The Problem of Responsibility Today

To think things through would be to take into account in deliberating about our choices the realities that face us, the sure consequences of some of our actions, those that we have experience and knowledge enough to foresee.  If the consequences of our actions today extend far into the future, this would require that we take that far future into consideration in our actions.

It is just because of this farther extension of consequences into the future that Jonas argues that human action today differs radically from human action in Aristotle's time. As he says, "modern technology has introduced actions of such novel scale, objects, and consequences that the framework of former ethics can no longer contain them" (Jonas, 1984, p. 6). Powerful technologies in use today have effects that extend far into the future, and this includes harms that arise directly from their manufacture and use, such as resource depletion and pollution from hazardous waste, as well as harms that occur because of the scope their reach, as in climate change. The negative effects are not limited to the earth and its ecosystems but include effects on communities of people whose livelihoods are harmed and whose basic goods, such as water and air, are polluted and rendered unusable.

These consequences affect living beings over their lifetimes, threaten the health of the planet, and are passed down to future generations as the integrity of the global ecosystem is damaged over time.

Particularly, Jonas has in mind the repercussions of genetic engineering, nuclear technologies, and other technologies that have the capacity to impact the future in highly significant ways: "more specifically, it will be my contention that with certain developments of our powers the nature of human action has changed, and since ethics is concerned with action, it should follow that the changed nature of human action calls for a change in ethics as well, in the more radical sense that the qualitatively novel nature of certain of our actions has opened up a whole new dimension of ethical relevance for which there is no precedent in the standards and canons of traditional ethics" (1984, p. 1).

For example, the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf had consequences that extend far into the future, affecting marine and coastal ecosystems, the livelihood of human beings dependent on a healthy environment for sustenance, and marine life far from the origin of the spill.

Ecosystems are by nature interconnected and interdependent, and the reach of the spill was extensive. Its impact is not limited in space or time. As well, we might ask who exactly is responsible for the oil spill in the Gulf? Is it the technicians and engineers, the government regulations that allow drilling to be done in extreme conditions, the companies making a profit, or the consumers whose desire for cheap fossil fuel drives the market?

This kind of diffusion of responsibility, a diffuse collective responsibility that Stephen Gardiner refers to as a "fragmentation of agency," means that it is difficult to assign responsibility.

As Gardiner points out, "climate change is caused not by a single agent but by a vast number of individuals and institutions not unified by a comprehensive structure of agency. This is important because it poses a challenge to humanity's ability to respond" (2010, p. 88).

How much is up to us then, to use Aristotle's term, in today's technological, global world? The notion of collective responsibility is pertinent because in a democratic society responsibility for collective actions like oil drilling would seem to rest with all citizens.

How we are to understand democratic responsibility, diffused among many, is a significant problem given the altered nature of human action and the extended reach of the consequences of our actions. And because the consequences will fall primarily on future generations, there is a disincentive to alter our behavior, particularly if that might make current lives more difficult.

While a new ethical understanding
that takes into consideration the extended consequences of our actions in a technological society seems necessary, another question arises: where do our obligations end if we begin to think of extending them to future beings and the future existence of a livable planet?

How might such seemingly open-ended obligations be argued for? And if, to be responsible, as Aristotle claims, is to "think things through," are there limits to our capacity to be responsible?

Rethinking Responsibility

Here I think it is a good moment to turn to Jonas, who argues in The Imperative of Responsibility that, difficult as it may seem, we do have a responsibility for the future.

He presents an argument for responsibility based on the presence of an objectively existing good, and he claims that fulfillment of the human good results from taking the effects of our actions on the future into account (Jonas, 1984, pp. 80-82).

When we are not able to predict the long-term consequences of our actions he argues that we should proceed with prudence, even to the extent of being guided by fear, in order to ensure that we do not create extensive future harms.

For Jonas, the human being occupies a special place in the lifeworld. Jonas sees the human being as that being which is uniquely capable of responsibility, and the presence of this capacity entails that it must be acted on if a one is to fully become the being one is capable of becoming.

The capacity for responsibility contributes to the "what it is to be" a human being and as such, informs the telos of human being. Jonas says that
For Jonas, the fact that each organism desires and pursues the continuance of its own life points to the fact that life is a value for each being. Life is a good and as such it presents the being with the capacity to take responsibility with an imperative to protect and preserve it, to recognize the value it is for all living beings. The particular human good lies in the capacity of the human being to recognize and respond to the imperative of responsibility.

For Jonas, the imperative of responsibility commands us to respond ethically for the sake of the good that is evidenced in Being, a good that reveals itself in each living beings' pursuit of its own continuance, its desire for life.

As well, responsibility includes protecting the possibility for the continued existence of human freedom and ethical responsiveness.

As Jonas says, "the secret or paradox of morality is that the self forgets itself over the pursuit of the object, so that a higher self (which indeed is also a good in itself) might come into being.

As Jonas tries to show, the good of the human and the good in the world are not separate but the same.

Rights and Responsibility

Another means of arguing for responsibilities to future generations, one that is less metaphysical and more supportive of political action, is to consider the question of the rights of future people. A proponent of this view is Hiskes (2009), who argues that "global warming and climate change have made it abundantly clear that the human impact on the environment is an emergent one, the product of uncounted individual decisions and choices on one hand, and public policies and political omissions on the other, which make every one of us responsible for putting all the rest of us in a new situation of risk, and not only "all of us" but those who come after us as well" (p.146).

Hiskes goes on to explain that "rights are necessarily the legal response to harms, real or potential. The fact that they are new and collective harms that do not fit within the traditional individualist language of either rights or responsibility do not alter the equation of rights as a response to harm.

New harms demand new rights. Because they are emergent harms, the rights that they begat will share their emergent ontological nature" (p. 146).

Future people are continually coming into existence, even as the effects of our actions emerge over long periods of time. There is a synchrony in terms of the emergence of future beings and the emergence of harms.

Both are initiated in the present, in the actions of present day beings, and both concern a time after present day actors are gone.

Future needs are predictable and future beings are coming into being all the time. It is not as if the future exists at some point far into the distance, with no connection to the present. The future is always coming into being, it follows closely on the heels of the present, and while we see changes in each generation, physical human beings will always need clean air to breathe and water to drink, as well as fire to stay warm.

In a similar vein, Fitzpatrick (2007) argues that a conception of justice based upon a notion of "mutual advantage among cooperating parties of roughly equal power and vulnerability" is too restrictive (p. 377).

Justice, insofar as it relates to rights and obligations, is a concept not limited to those sharing space and time. He says that, "attribution of rights to future generations will therefore be legitimate if we can speak of an earlier generation's wronging future generations by spoiling the environment the former was given and has relied upon for its flourishing in the same way that future generations depend upon it for theirs" (Fitzpatrick, 2007, p. 377).

Future generations have a right to inherit a healthy ecosystem, just as we did, and this right entails an obligation on the part of the living to pass down a viable planet. The responsibility to do so is centered in the right future generations have to be protected from harms caused by others, as well as the right to inherit and enjoy what previous generations have inherited and enjoyed.

That people depend upon a healthy environment to flourish, and that a diminished environment is harmful to people is at the basis of Fitzpatrick's argument.
He considers future people to be the moral equals of presently living people, and therefore claims we cannot disregard their rights or turn aside from our responsibility not to cause them harm.

He argues that "if we fail to conserve limited natural resources, or to control dangerous waste, or to curb greenhouse gas emissions, then we will be causing people harm, not merely failing to benefit them" (Fitzpatrick, 2007, p. 377).

The fact that these people do not exist simultaneously with us is not a reason to fail to take them into ethical consideration. Fitzpatrick concludes by arguing that we need to reconsider the meaning of justice rights in order to include responsibilities to future generations in our consideration because there is simply no justification possible for disregarding the effects of our actions on the future.

In the next and final section, I take a brief look at the way in which an ethic of care might provide the needed motivation for the difficult changes that taking future generations into ethical consideration might require.

Motivation and Care

To accept the burden of responsibility for what is up to us, difficult as it is where our technological reach is so extended and agency is so fragmented, is to strive to fulfill the capacity we have to respond to the good and protect and preserve it.

This task, however, is difficult, not only because of the extent of effects in time and space, fragmentation of agency, and the difficulty of predicting harms, but also because in many cases we may benefit now from actions that result in harms to future generations.

What could motivate us to make the necessary sacrifices required by responsibility of this scope and nature?

Jonas turns to the human capacity for care for an answer to this question. He uses the analogy of the parent and child to demonstrate that we are attuned to caring in a fundamental way (Jonas, 1984, pp. 98-108).

 Jonas sees that caring is a mode of being for the human being, one that is demonstrated naturally in the attention and love parents give to their children as they nourish these beings who will exist in the future.

It can be argued that the care of children is ultimately selfish, a way to project particular and individual genetic material forward. Yet, at the same time, most stable societies demonstrate their concern and care about the future through the fostering of all children in the society and through their concern with passing down cultural and physical artifacts to posterity.

Jonasí example of the statesman as a paradigm of responsibility toward the future reflects the important role of democratic social institutions and governments in responsibility. Established to foster and preserve culture and enable the orderly transfer of power from generation to generation, governments, at their best, are concerned with bettering the conditions of the people and ensuring that opportunities, values, artifacts, inventions, techniques, and other "objects" cultivated and produced by society are preserved and passed down.

This example illustrates the presence, in social institutions, of a fundamental care and concern with the future and future peoples that can serve as an example and guide for a practical ethic of responsibility for the future.

It is only through care of the future that we can extend the reach of our grasp on life through bequeathing a planet that is livable and viable, one that preserves and protects the cycle of life for the beings who will inhabit it.

The natural drive toward transcendence of finitude through leaving behind works, objects or beings of lasting value can be engaged as a motivating force in an ethics that is concerned with extending its reach to future generations.

Perhaps we should reframe the question of an ethics of responsibility for the future, because it can be argued that we are motivated to moderate and measure our actions toward nature and to care about the health and continued viability of the Earth because of our love for it, and for the life it offers.

We are capable of caring not only about those potential beings of the future who will inherit this planet but also about the planet itself as a living being we will pass down.[1] Inspired by the beauty of existence, fleeting though it is, we desire its continuance even though we will not be here to enjoy its pleasures forever, and this too is reflective of our ethical capacity.


In the preceding I've shown what I see is a need for a reconsidered understanding of the meaning and extent of responsibility today, and I've talked about some of the difficulties facing us in attempting to accept responsibility for the future, as well as some of the motivational forces that might help us overcome those difficulties.

To begin to take responsibility for the Earth and future generations we can consider ourselves as caretakers, trustees or stewards. We can pursue sustainable practices that conserve resources and other basic goods for future generations to benefit from and enjoy.

Recognizing the presence of the good in existence, we can protect it by considering the long-term effects of our choices and actions on the future. The damage we've done has been done collectively, as Fitzpatrick points out, and the only way to prevent further damage and protect the future is through collective action.

Taking responsibility will require thinking about ourselves differently, as well. We must develop a new self understanding, one that reflects our increasing knowledge concerning the extent of the effects of our actions on the Earth and the future. The human capacity for responsibility is a reflection of what Jonas calls "the higher self," a good-in-itself that comes into being when we recognize the value of life, reflect on the consequences of our choices, and take responsibility for the harms we cause.

Thus, a significant aspect of the good of the human being is the human capacity to bear responsibility.

The continued existence of the good for all beings rests on humans assuming that responsibility, and the time for us to recognize that is now.

If we fail to take responsibility it will be a failure of justice and of love, towards both future beings and the planet.


1. "When men act for the sake of a future they will not live to see, it is for the most part out of love for persons, places and forms of activity, a cherishing of them, nothing more grandiose. It is indeed self-contradictory to say: 'I love him or her or that place or that institution or that activity, but I don't care what happens to it after my death.' To love is, amongst other things, to care about the future of what we love" (Passmore, 1980, p. 53


Adam, G. (2011). Futures Tended: Care and Future-Oriented Responsibility. Bulletin of Science, Technology and Society,
31, 1, 17-27.

Aristotle. (2002). Nicomachean Ethics, J. Sachs (trans). Newburyport, MA: Focus Publishing.

Attfield, R. (1998). Environmental Ethics and Intergenerational Equity. Inquiry, 41, 2, 207-222.

Fitzpatrick, W. J. (2007). Climate Change and the Rights of Future Generations: Social Justice Beyond Mutual Advantage.

Environmental Ethics, 29, 4, 369-388.

Gardiner, S. M. (2010). A Perfect Moral Storm. In Climate Ethics. NY: Oxford University Press.

Hiskes, R. P. (2009). The Human Right to a Green Future. NY: Cambridge University Press.

Jonas, H. (1984). The Imperative of Responsibility. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.

Passmore, J. (1980). Conservation. In Responsibilities to Future Generations. Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books..


Agelbert NOTE: The mens rea of the fossil fuel industry and almost half of the worldís 100 largest companies, including Procter & Gam ble and Duke Energy, has been recently exposed. They all funded lobbyists and propagandists in order to obstruct climate change legislation.

I use the Latin legal expression, "mens rea", because the above obstructionists of climate change legislation were knowledgeable over 40 years ago of the damage that burning fossil fuels causes to the biosphere in general and humans in particular.

As Theresa  Morris made quite clear in her essay, these corporations made the wrong choice. And they made that choice because they refused to think things through.

Theresa  Morris said,
Ethical considerations aside for a moment, the people in these powerful corporations are not stupid. They love their own children.

So, if they knew, because over 40 years ago ExxonMobil scientists laid out the facts to oil executives, who then secretly joined with several other corporations to fund denial of climate change and obstruct climate change legislation, why did they, with malice and aforethought, engage in disguising the fact that they were, and are, getting an F in viable biosphere math?

Some will say that it's a no brainer that they did it for profit. While that is partially true, it ignores the fact that big oil corporations DO believe their own scientists. It also ignores the fact that fossil fuel corporations DO NOT believe the happy talk propaganda that they fund.

They plan ahead. They plan to take advantage of the 'Fragmentation of Agency' mentioned by  Stephen Gardiner. The corporations did not get limited liability laws passed because they wanted to be socially responsible. I believe they will use the 'Fragmentation of Agency', in regard to biosphere damage claims, to unjustly limit their liability in a typically unethical "damage control" exercise.

One of the themes about human history that I have tried to communicate to readers over and over is that predatory capitalist corporations, while deliberately profiting from knowingly doing something that causes pollution damage to the populace, always plan AHEAD to socialize the costs of that damage when they can no longer deny SOME liability for it. Their conscience free lackey lawyers will always work the system to limit even PROVEN 100% liability.

When 100% liability is blatantly obvious, as in the Exxon Valdes oil spill, they will shamelessly use legalese to limit the liability. ExxonMobil pulled a fast one on the plaintiffs by getting "punitive", rather than "compensatory" damages. See what the learned counselor said, "The purpose of punitive awards is to punish, not to destroy, according to the law". Ethics free Exxon and its ethics free lawyers KNOW how the Court System "works". JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 18:151] The purpose of this comment is to describe the history of the Exxon Valdez litigation and analyze whether the courts and corresponding laws are equipped to effectively handle mass environmental litigation..

While the profits are rolling in, they will claim they are "just loyal public servants, selflessly providing a service that the public is demanding", while they laugh all the way to the bank. When the damage is exposed, they will claim we are "all equally to blame" (i.e. DISTORTED Fragmentation of Agency).

This is clearly false because polluting corporations, in virtually all cases, AREN'T non-profit organizations. If they were NOT PROFITING, THEN, and only then, could they make the claim that "we all benefited equally so we all are equally responsible to pay equally for the cost."

Those who presently benefit economically from the burning of fossil fuels, despite the scientific certainty that this is ushering in a Permian level mass extinction, will probably be quick to grab on to a severely distorted and duplicitous version of the 'Fragmentation of Agency' meme, in regard to assigning the proportionate blame for the existential threat our species is visiting on future generations.

Privatizing the profits and socializing the costs is what they have done for over a century in the USA. They have always gotten away with it. That is why, despite having prior knowledge that their children would be negatively impacted by their decisions, they decided to dispense with ethical considerations.

They assumed that, with all the profits they would accumulate over the last 40 years (or as long as the populace can be blinded to the truth of the existential threat), they could protect their offspring when things got "difficult".

They know that millions to billions of people, in all probability, will die. But they think their wealth can enable them to survive and thrive.   

As for the rest of us, who obtained a pittance in benefits in comparison to the giant profits the polluters raked (and still continue to rake) in, we can expect an army of corporate lawyers descending on our government(s) demanding that all humans, in equal portions, foot the bill for ameliorating climate change.

The lawyer speak will probably take the form of crocodile tears about the "injustice of punitive measures" or, some double talk legalese limiting "punitive damage claims" based on Environmental LAW fun and games (see: "punitive" versus "compensatory" damage claims).

This grossly unjust application of the 'Fragmentation of Agency' is happening as we speak. The poorest humans are paying the most with their health for the damage done by the richest. The richest have avoided most, or all, of the deleterious effects of climate change.

When the governments of the world finally get serious about the funding needed to try to clean this mess up (present incremental measures ARE NOT sufficient), the rich plan to continue literally getting away with ecocide, and making sure they don't pay their share of the damages for it. 

As Kevin Anderson (after showing the alarming rate of increase in CO2 emissions) put it in the graphic below, the 1% bear about 50% of the blame.

Since, according to the U.N., the richest 20% of the world's population uses 80% of the resources, the 'Fragmentation of Agency' pie chart for the damage done to the biosphere should look like this:

The way the fossil fuel industry, and almost half of the worldís 100 largest companies, will want that 'Fragmentation of Agency' pie chart to look like is as follows:

The world of business has made many Empathy Deficit Disordered, unethical choices. We are all paying for their rejection of  their responsibility to use dianoia in their decision making process.

But they are relatively few in number. Their chicanery would cease from a huge public outcry if they did not have so many people aiding and abetting their unethical biosphere destroying modus operandi.

Those are the comfortable millions who have swallowed the corporate happy talk propaganda.

Those are the people that continue to delay progress on the implementation of the drastic government action we must demand, which is desperately needed to stem, or eliminate, the length and breadth of the climate change damage existential threat.

The people who think that this climate change horror can be addressed by incremental measures are, as Aristotle said, deliberately becoming irrational.

Dianoia is sine qua non to a viable biosphere.

Please pass this on with attribution to Theresa Morris, State University of New York at New Paltz. I just summarized her essay and added images to enhance the gravity and importance of her message. We are in a world of trouble. 

A. G. Gelbert
Colchester, Vermont

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: July 11, 2017, 09:18:34 pm »

Definitely Happening Now! Sea Level Rise Rates Are Now Speeding Up Due To CLIMATE CHANGE

Richard Aguilar

Published on Jul 10, 2017

SUBSCRIBE: https://goo.gl/w3A8IS
Sea Level Rise Speeds Up. - Sea Level Rise Rates Are Speeding Up, New Research Shows. - Sea Level Rise Quickens More Than Thought in Threat to Coasts. - Daily Floods Could Plague Annapolis In 50 Years, Expert Says.- Rising sea levels threaten $100B of US coastline. - Suncoast 2037- Sea Level Rise. - San Mateo Takes Virtual Reality Approach To See Rising Sea Levels. - Study Says Sea Level Rise Might Change Earth's Rotation. - US- Rising sea levels force Louisiana residents Āf relocation.

Watch the video to see all these and many more...
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: July 10, 2017, 07:07:18 pm »

Famine, economic collapse, a sun that cooks us: What climate change could wreak ó sooner than you think.

I. ĎDoomsdayí

Peering beyond scientific reticence.

It is, I promise, worse than you think. If your anxiety about global warming is dominated by fears of sea-level rise, you are barely scratching the surface of what terrors are possible, even within the lifetime of a teenager today. And yet the swelling seas ó and the cities they will drown ó have so dominated the picture of global warming, and so overwhelmed our capacity for climate panic, that they have occluded our perception of other threats, many much closer at hand. Rising oceans are bad, in fact very bad; but fleeing the coastline will not be enough.

Indeed, absent a significant adjustment to how billions of humans conduct their lives, parts of the Earth will likely become close to uninhabitable, and other parts horrifically inhospitable, as soon as the end of this century.

Even when we train our eyes on climate change, we are unable to comprehend its scope. This past winter, a string of days 60 and 70 degrees warmer than normal baked the North Pole, melting the permafrost that encased Norwayís Svalbard seed vault ó a global food bank nicknamed ďDoomsday,Ē designed to ensure that our agriculture survives any catastrophe, and which appeared to have been flooded by climate change less than ten years after being built.

The Doomsday vault is fine, for now: The structure has been secured and the seeds are safe. But treating the episode as a parable of impending flooding missed the more important news. Until recently, permafrost was not a major concern of climate scientists, because, as the name suggests, it was soil that stayed permanently frozen. But Arctic permafrost contains 1.8 trillion tons of carbon, more than twice as much as is currently suspended in the Earthís atmosphere. When it thaws and is released, that carbon may evaporate as methane, which is 34 times as powerful a greenhouse-gas warming blanket as carbon dioxide when judged on the timescale of a century; when judged on the timescale of two decades, it is 86 times as powerful. In other words, we have, trapped in Arctic permafrost, twice as much carbon as is currently wrecking the atmosphere of the planet, all of it scheduled to be released at a date that keeps getting moved up, partially in the form of a gas that multiplies its warming power 86 times over.

Maybe you know that already ó there are alarming stories every day, like last monthís satellite data showing the globe warming, since 1998, more than twice as fast as scientists had thought. Or the news from Antarctica this past May, when a crack in an ice shelf grew 11 miles in six days, then kept going; the break now has just three miles to go ó by the time you read this, it may already have met the open water, where it will drop into the sea one of the biggest icebergs ever, a process known poetically as ďcalving.Ē

But no matter how well-informed you are, you are surely not alarmed enough. Over the past decades, our culture has gone apocalyptic with zombie movies and Mad Max dystopias, perhaps the collective result of displaced climate anxiety, and yet when it comes to contemplating real-world warming dangers, we suffer from an incredible failure of imagination. The reasons for that are many: the timid language of scientific probabilities, which the climatologist James Hansen once called ďscientific reticenceĒ in a paper chastising scientists for editing their own observations so conscientiously that they failed to communicate how dire the threat really was; the fact that the country is dominated by a group of technocrats who believe any problem can be solved and an opposing culture that doesnít even see warming as a problem worth addressing; the way that climate denialism has made scientists even more cautious in offering speculative warnings; the simple speed of change and, also, its slowness, such that we are only seeing effects now of warming from decades past; our uncertainty about uncertainty, which the climate writer Naomi Oreskes in particular has suggested stops us from preparing as though anything worse than a median outcome were even possible; the way we assume climate change will hit hardest elsewhere, not everywhere; the smallness (two degrees) and largeness (1.8 trillion tons) and abstractness (400 parts per million) of the numbers; the discomfort of considering a problem that is very difficult, if not impossible, to solve; the altogether incomprehensible scale of that problem, which amounts to the prospect of our own annihilation; simple fear. But aversion arising from fear is a form of denial, too.

In between scientific reticence and science fiction is science itself. This article is the result of dozens of interviews and exchanges with climatologists and researchers in related fields and reflects hundreds of scientific papers on the subject of climate change. What follows is not a series of predictions of what will happen ó that will be determined in large part by the much-less-certain science of human response. Instead, it is a portrait of our best understanding of where the planet is heading absent aggressive action. It is unlikely that all of these warming scenarios will be fully realized, largely because the devastation along the way will shake our complacency. But those scenarios, and not the present climate, are the baseline. In fact, they are our schedule.

The present tense of climate change ó the destruction weíve already baked into our future ó is horrifying enough. Most people talk as if Miami and Bangladesh still have a chance of surviving; most of the scientists I spoke with assume weíll lose them within the century, even if we stop burning fossil fuel in the next decade. Two degrees of warming used to be considered the threshold of catastrophe: tens of millions of climate refugees unleashed upon an unprepared world. Now two degrees is our goal, per the Paris climate accords, and experts give us only slim odds of hitting it. The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issues serial reports, often called the ďgold standardĒ of climate research; the most recent one projects us to hit four degrees of warming by the beginning of the next century, should we stay the present course. But thatís just a median projection. The upper end of the probability curve runs as high as eight degrees ó and the authors still havenít figured out how to deal with that permafrost melt. The IPCC reports also donít fully account for the albedo effect (less ice means less reflected and more absorbed sunlight, hence more warming); more cloud cover (which traps heat); or the dieback of forests and other flora (which extract carbon from the atmosphere). Each of these promises to accelerate warming, and the geological record shows that temperature can shift as much as ten degrees or more in a single decade. The last time the planet was even four degrees warmer, Peter Brannen points out in The Ends of the World, his new history of the planetís major extinction events, the oceans were hundreds of feet higher.*

The Earth has experienced five mass extinctions before the one we are living through now, each so complete a slate-wiping of the evolutionary record it functioned as a resetting of the planetary clock, and many climate scientists will tell you they are the best analog for the ecological future we are diving headlong into. Unless you are a teenager, you probably read in your high-school textbooks that these extinctions were the result of asteroids. In fact, all but the one that killed the dinosaurs were caused by climate change produced by greenhouse gas. The most notorious was 252 million years ago; it began when carbon warmed the planet by five degrees, accelerated when that warming triggered the release of methane in the Arctic, and ended with 97 percent of all life on Earth dead. We are currently adding carbon to the atmosphere at a considerably faster rate; by most estimates, at least ten times faster. The rate is accelerating. This is what Stephen Hawking had in mind when he said, this spring, that the species needs to colonize other planets in the next century to survive, and what drove Elon Musk, last month, to unveil his plans to build a Mars habitat in 40 to 100 years. These are nonspecialists, of course, and probably as inclined to irrational panic as you or I. But the many sober-minded scientists I interviewed over the past several months ó the most credentialed and tenured in the field, few of them inclined to alarmism and many advisers to the IPCC who nevertheless criticize its conservatism ó have quietly reached an apocalyptic conclusion, too: No plausible program of emissions reductions alone can prevent climate disaster.

Over the past few decades, the term ďAnthropoceneĒ has climbed out of academic discourse and into the popular imagination ó a name given to the geologic era we live in now, and a way to signal that it is a new era, defined on the wall chart of deep history by human intervention. One problem with the term is that it implies a conquest of nature (and even echoes the biblical ďdominionĒ). And however sanguine you might be about the proposition that we have already ravaged the natural world, which we surely have, it is another thing entirely to consider the possibility that we have only provoked it, engineering first in ignorance and then in denial a climate system that will now go to war with us for many centuries, perhaps until it destroys us. That is what Wallace Smith Broecker, the avuncular oceanographer who coined the term ďglobal warming,Ē means when he calls the planet an ďangry beast.Ē You could also go with ďwar machine.Ē Each day we arm it more.

II. Heat Death  

Humans, like all mammals, are heat engines; surviving means having to continually cool off, like panting dogs. For that, the temperature needs to be low enough for the air to act as a kind of refrigerant, drawing heat off the skin so the engine can keep pumping. At seven degrees of warming, that would become impossible for large portions of the planetís equatorial band, and especially the tropics, where humidity adds to the problem; in the jungles of Costa Rica, for instance, where humidity routinely tops 90 percent, simply moving around outside when itís over 105 degrees Fahrenheit would be lethal. And the effect would be fast: Within a few hours, a human body would be cooked to death from both inside and out.

Climate-change skeptics point out that the planet has warmed and cooled many times before, but the climate window that has allowed for human life is very narrow, even by the standards of planetary history. At 11 or 12 degrees of warming, more than half the worldís population, as distributed today, would die of direct heat. Things almost certainly wonít get that hot this century, though models of unabated emissions do bring us that far eventually. This century, and especially in the tropics, the pain points will pinch much more quickly even than an increase of seven degrees. The key factor is something called wet-bulb temperature, which is a term of measurement as home-laboratory-kit as it sounds: the heat registered on a thermometer wrapped in a damp sock as itís swung around in the air (since the moisture evaporates from a sock more quickly in dry air, this single number reflects both heat and humidity). At present, most regions reach a wet-bulb maximum of 26 or 27 degrees Celsius; the true red line for habitability is 35 degrees. What is called heat stress comes much sooner.

Actually, weíre about there already. Since 1980, the planet has experienced a 50-fold increase in the number of places experiencing dangerous or extreme heat; a bigger increase is to come. The five warmest summers in Europe since 1500 have all occurred since 2002, and soon, the IPCC warns, simply being outdoors that time of year will be unhealthy for much of the globe. Even if we meet the Paris goals of two degrees warming, cities like Karachi and Kolkata will become close to uninhabitable, annually encountering deadly heat waves like those that crippled them in 2015. At four degrees, the deadly European heat wave of 2003, which killed as many as 2,000 people a day, will be a normal summer. At six, according to an assessment focused only on effects within the U.S. from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, summer labor of any kind would become impossible in the lower Mississippi Valley, and everybody in the country east of the Rockies would be under more heat stress than anyone, anywhere, in the world today. As Joseph Romm has put it in his authoritative primer Climate Change: What Everyone Needs to Know, heat stress in New York City would exceed that of present-day Bahrain, one of the planetís hottest spots, and the temperature in Bahrain ďwould induce hyperthermia in even sleeping humans.Ē The high-end IPCC estimate, remember, is two degrees warmer still. By the end of the century, the World Bank has estimated, the coolest months in tropical South America, Africa, and the Pacific are likely to be warmer than the warmest months at the end of the 20th century. Air-conditioning can help but will ultimately only add to the carbon problem; plus, the climate-controlled malls of the Arab emirates aside, it is not remotely plausible to wholesale air-condition all the hottest parts of the world, many of them also the poorest. And indeed, the crisis will be most dramatic across the Middle East and Persian Gulf, where in 2015 the heat index registered temperatures as high as 163 degrees Fahrenheit. As soon as several decades from now, the hajj will become physically impossible for the 2 million Muslims who make the pilgrimage each year.

It is not just the hajj, and it is not just Mecca; heat is already killing us. In the sugarcane region of El Salvador, as much as one-fifth of the population has chronic kidney disease, including over a quarter of the men, the presumed result of dehydration from working the fields they were able to comfortably harvest as recently as two decades ago. With dialysis, which is expensive, those with kidney failure can expect to live five years; without it, life expectancy is in the weeks. Of course, heat stress promises to pummel us in places other than our kidneys, too. As I type that sentence, in the California desert in mid-June, it is 121 degrees outside my door. It is not a record high.

III. The End of Food

Praying for cornfields in the tundra.  :(

Climates differ and plants vary, but the basic rule for staple cereal crops grown at optimal temperature is that for every degree of warming, yields decline by 10 percent. Some estimates run as high as 15 or even 17 percent. Which means that if the planet is five degrees warmer at the end of the century, we may have as many as 50 percent more people to feed and 50 percent less grain to give them. And proteins are worse: It takes 16 calories of grain to produce just a single calorie of hamburger meat, butchered from a cow that spent its life polluting the climate with methane farts.

Pollyannaish plant physiologists will point out that the cereal-crop math applies only to those regions already at peak growing temperature, and they are right ó theoretically, a warmer climate will make it easier to grow corn in Greenland. But as the pathbreaking work by Rosamond Naylor and David Battisti has shown, the tropics are already too hot to efficiently grow grain, and those places where grain is produced today are already at optimal growing temperature ó which means even a small warming will push them down the slope of declining productivity. And you canít easily move croplands north a few hundred miles, because yields in places like remote Canada and Russia are limited by the quality of soil there; it takes many centuries for the planet to produce optimally fertile dirt.

Drought might be an even bigger problem than heat, with some of the worldís most arable land turning quickly to desert. Precipitation is notoriously hard to model, yet predictions for later this century are basically unanimous: unprecedented droughts nearly everywhere food is today produced. By 2080, without dramatic reductions in emissions, southern Europe will be in permanent extreme drought, much worse than the American dust bowl ever was. The same will be true in Iraq and Syria and much of the rest of the Middle East; some of the most densely populated parts of Australia, Africa, and South America; and the breadbasket regions of China. None of these places, which today supply much of the worldís food, will be reliable sources of any. As for the original dust bowl: The droughts in the American plains and Southwest would not just be worse than in the 1930s, a 2015 NASA study predicted, but worse than any droughts in a thousand years ó and that includes those that struck between 1100 and 1300, which ďdried up all the rivers East of the Sierra Nevada mountainsĒ and may have been responsible for the death of the Anasazi civilization.

Remember, we do not live in a world without hunger as it is. Far from it: Most estimates put the number of undernourished at 800 million globally. In case you havenít heard, this spring has already brought an unprecedented quadruple famine to Africa and the Middle East; the U.N. has warned that separate starvation events in Somalia, South Sudan, Nigeria, and Yemen could kill 20 million this year alone.

IV. Climate Plagues

What happens when the bubonic ice melts?

Rock, in the right spot, is a record of planetary history, eras as long as millions of years flattened by the forces of geological time into strata with amplitudes of just inches, or just an inch, or even less. Ice works that way, too, as a climate ledger, but it is also frozen history, some of which can be reanimated when unfrozen. There are now, trapped in Arctic ice, diseases that have not circulated in the air for millions of years ó in some cases, since before humans were around to encounter them. Which means our immune systems would have no idea how to fight back when those prehistoric plagues emerge from the ice.

The Arctic also stores terrifying bugs from more recent times. In Alaska, already, researchers have discovered remnants of the 1918 flu that infected as many as 500 million and killed as many as 100 million ó about 5 percent of the worldís population and almost six times as many as had died in the world war for which the pandemic served as a kind of gruesome capstone. As the BBC reported in May, scientists suspect smallpox and the bubonic plague are trapped in Siberian ice, too ó an abridged history of devastating human sickness, left out like egg salad in the Arctic sun.

Experts caution that many of these organisms wonít actually survive the thaw and point to the fastidious lab conditions under which they have already reanimated several of them ó the 32,000-year-old ďextremophileĒ bacteria revived in 2005, an 8 million-year-old bug brought back to life in 2007, the 3.5 millionĖyearĖold one a Russian scientist self-injected just out of curiosity ó to suggest that those are necessary conditions for the return of such ancient plagues. But already last year, a boy was killed and 20 others infected by anthrax released when retreating permafrost exposed the frozen carcass of a reindeer killed by the bacteria at least 75 years earlier; 2,000 present-day reindeer were infected, too, carrying and spreading the disease beyond the tundra.

What concerns epidemiologists more than ancient diseases are existing scourges relocated, rewired, or even re-evolved by warming. The first effect is geographical. Before the early-modern period, when adventuring sailboats accelerated the mixing of peoples and their bugs, human provinciality was a guard against pandemic. Today, even with globalization and the enormous intermingling of human populations, our ecosystems are mostly stable, and this functions as another limit, but global warming will scramble those ecosystems and help disease trespass those limits as surely as Cortťs did. You donít worry much about dengue or malaria if you are living in Maine or France. But as the tropics creep northward and mosquitoes migrate with them, you will. You didnít much worry about Zika a couple of years ago, either.

As it happens, Zika may also be a good model of the second worrying effect ó disease mutation. One reason you hadnít heard about Zika until recently is that it had been trapped in Uganda; another is that it did not, until recently, appear to cause birth defects. Scientists still donít entirely understand what happened, or what they missed. But there are things we do know for sure about how climate affects some diseases: Malaria, for instance, thrives in hotter regions not just because the mosquitoes that carry it do, too, but because for every degree increase in temperature, the parasite reproduces ten times faster. Which is one reason that the World Bank estimates that by 2050, 5.2 billion people will be reckoning with it.

V. Unbreathable Air

A rolling death smog that suffocates millions.

Our lungs need oxygen, but that is only a fraction of what we breathe. The fraction of carbon dioxide is growing: It just crossed 400 parts per million, and high-end estimates extrapolating from current trends suggest it will hit 1,000 ppm by 2100. At that concentration, compared to the air we breathe now, human cognitive ability declines by 21 percent.

Other stuff in the hotter air is even scarier, with small increases in pollution capable of shortening life spans by ten years. The warmer the planet gets, the more ozone forms, and by mid-century, Americans will likely suffer a 70 percent increase in unhealthy ozone smog, the National Center for Atmospheric Research has projected. By 2090, as many as 2 billion people globally will be breathing air above the WHO ďsafeĒ level; one paper last month showed that, among other effects, a pregnant motherís exposure to ozone raises the childís risk of autism (as much as tenfold, combined with other environmental factors). Which does make you think again about the autism epidemic in West Hollywood.

Already, more than 10,000 people die each day from the small particles emitted from fossil-fuel burning; each year, 339,000 people die from wildfire smoke, in part because climate change has extended forest-fire season (in the U.S., itís increased by 78 days since 1970). By 2050, according to the U.S. Forest Service, wildfires will be twice as destructive as they are today; in some places, the area burned could grow fivefold. What worries people even more is the effect that would have on emissions, especially when the fires ravage forests arising out of peat. Peatland fires in Indonesia in 1997, for instance, added to the global CO2 release by up to 40 percent, and more burning only means more warming only means more burning. There is also the terrifying possibility that rain forests like the Amazon, which in 2010 suffered its second ďhundred-year droughtĒ in the space of five years, could dry out enough to become vulnerable to these kinds of devastating, rolling forest fires ó which would not only expel enormous amounts of carbon into the atmosphere but also shrink the size of the forest. That is especially bad because the Amazon alone provides 20 percent of our oxygen.

Then there are the more familiar forms of pollution. In 2013, melting Arctic ice remodeled Asian weather patterns, depriving industrial China of the natural ventilation systems it had come to depend on, which blanketed much of the countryís north in an unbreathable smog. Literally unbreathable. A metric called the Air Quality Index categorizes the risks and tops out at the 301-to-500 range, warning of ďserious aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderlyĒ and, for all others, ďserious risk of respiratory effectsĒ; at that level, ďeveryone should avoid all outdoor exertion.Ē The Chinese ďairpocalypseĒ of 2013 peaked at what would have been an Air Quality Index of over 800. That year, smog was responsible for a third of all deaths in the country.

VI. Perpetual War

The violence baked into heat.

Climatologists are very careful when talking about Syria. They want you to know that while climate change did produce a drought that contributed to civil war, it is not exactly fair to saythat the conflict is the result of warming; next door, for instance, Lebanon suffered the same crop failures. But researchers like Marshall Burke and Solomon Hsiang have managed to quantify some of the non-obvious relationships between temperature and violence: For every half-degree of warming, they say, societies will see between a 10 and 20 percent increase in the likelihood of armed conflict. In climate science, nothing is simple, but the arithmetic is harrowing: A planet five degrees warmer would have at least half again as many wars as we do today. Overall, social conflict could more than double this century.

This is one reason that, as nearly every climate scientist I spoke to pointed out, the U.S. military is obsessed with climate change: The drowning of all American Navy bases by sea-level rise is trouble enough, but being the worldís policeman is quite a bit harder when the crime rate doubles. Of course, itís not just Syria where climate has contributed to conflict. Some speculate that the elevated level of strife across the Middle East over the past generation reflects the pressures of global warming ó a hypothesis all the more cruel considering that warming began accelerating when the industrialized world extracted and then burned the regionís oil.

What accounts for the relationship between climate and conflict? Some of it comes down to agriculture and economics; a lot has to do with forced migration, already at a record high, with at least 65 million displaced people wandering the planet right now. But there is also the simple fact of individual irritability. Heat increases municipal crime rates, and swearing on social media, and the likelihood that a major-league pitcher, coming to the mound after his teammate has been hit by a pitch, will hit an opposing batter in retaliation. And the arrival of air-conditioning in the developed world, in the middle of the past century, did little to solve the problem of the summer crime wave.

VII. Permanent Economic Collapse

Dismal capitalism in a half-poorer world.

The murmuring mantra of global neoliberalism, which prevailed between the end of the Cold War and the onset of the Great Recession, is that economic growth would save us from anything and everything.
But in the aftermath of the 2008 crash, a growing number of historians studying what they call ďfossil capitalismĒ have begun to suggest that the entire history of swift economic growth, which began somewhat suddenly in the 18th century, is not the result of innovation or trade or the dynamics of global capitalism but simply our discovery of fossil fuels and all their raw power ó a onetime injection of new ďvalueĒ into a system that had previously been characterized by global subsistence living. Before fossil fuels, nobody lived better than their parents or grandparents or ancestors from 500 years before, except in the immediate aftermath of a great plague like the Black Death, which allowed the lucky survivors to gobble up the resources liberated by mass graves. After weíve burned all the fossil fuels, these scholars suggest, perhaps we will return to a ďsteady stateĒ global economy. Of course, that onetime injection has a devastating long-term cost: climate change.

The most exciting research on the economics of warming has also come from Hsiang and his colleagues, who are not historians of fossil capitalism but who offer some very bleak analysis of their own: Every degree Celsius of warming costs, on average, 1.2 percent of GDP (an enormous number, considering we count growth in the low single digits as ďstrongĒ). This is the sterling work in the field, and their median projection is for a 23 percent loss in per capita earning globally by the end of this century (resulting from changes in agriculture, crime, storms, energy, mortality, and labor).
Tracing the shape of the probability curve is even scarier: There is a 12 percent chance that climate change will reduce global output by more than 50 percent by 2100, they say, and a 51 percent chance that it lowers per capita GDP by 20 percent or more by then, unless emissions decline. By comparison, the Great Recession lowered global GDP by about 6 percent, in a onetime shock; Hsiang and his colleagues estimate a one-in-eight chance of an ongoing and irreversible effect by the end of the century that is eight times worse.

The scale of that economic devastation is hard to comprehend, but you can start by imagining what the world would look like today with an economy half as big, which would produce only half as much value, generating only half as much to offer the workers of the world. It makes the grounding of flights out of heat-stricken Phoenix last month seem like pathetically small economic potatoes. And, among other things, it makes the idea of postponing government action on reducing emissions and relying solely on growth and technology to solve the problem an absurd business calculation.
Every round-trip ticket on flights from New York to London, keep in mind, costs the Arctic three more square meters of ice.

VIII. Poisoned Oceans

Sulfide burps off the skeleton coast.

That the sea will become a killer is a given. Barring a radical reduction of emissions, we will see at least four feet of sea-level rise and possibly ten by the end of the century. A third of the worldís major cities are on the coast, not to mention its power plants, ports, navy bases, farmlands, fisheries, river deltas, marshlands, and rice-paddy empires, and even those above ten feet will flood much more easily, and much more regularly, if the water gets that high. At least 600 million people live within ten meters of sea level today.

But the drowning of those homelands is just the start. At present, more than a third of the worldís carbon is sucked up by the oceans ó thank God, or else weíd have that much more warming already. But the result is whatís called ďocean acidification,Ē which, on its own, may add a half a degree to warming this century. It is also already burning through the planetís water basins ó you may remember these as the place where life arose in the first place. You have probably heard of ďcoral bleachingĒ ó that is, coral dying ó which is very bad news, because reefs support as much as a quarter of all marine life and supply food for half a billion people. Ocean acidification will fry fish populations directly, too, though scientists arenít yet sure how to predict the effects on the stuff we haul out of the ocean to eat; they do know that in acid waters, oysters and mussels will struggle to grow their shells, and that when the pH of human blood drops as much as the oceansí pH has over the past generation, it induces seizures, comas, and sudden death.

That isnít all that ocean acidification can do. Carbon absorption can initiate a feedback loop in which underoxygenated waters breed different kinds of microbes that turn the water still more ďanoxic,Ē first in deep ocean ďdead zones,Ē then gradually up toward the surface. There, the small fish die out, unable to breathe, which means oxygen-eating bacteria thrive, and the feedback loop doubles back. This process, in which dead zones grow like cancers, choking off marine life and wiping out fisheries, is already quite advanced in parts of the Gulf of Mexico and just off Namibia, where hydrogen sulfide is bubbling out of the sea along a thousand-mile stretch of land known as the ďSkeleton Coast.Ē The name originally referred to the detritus of the whaling industry, but today itís more apt than ever. Hydrogen sulfide is so toxic that evolution has trained us to recognize the tiniest, safest traces of it, which is why our noses are so exquisitely skilled at registering flatulence. Hydrogen sulfide is also the thing that finally did us in that time 97 percent of all life on Earth died, once all the feedback loops had been triggered and the circulating jet streams of a warmed ocean ground to a halt ó itís the planetís preferred gas for a natural holocaust. Gradually, the oceanís dead zones spread, killing off marine species that had dominated the oceans for hundreds of millions of years, and the gas the inert waters gave off into the atmosphere poisoned everything on land. Plants, too. It was millions of years before the oceans recovered.

IX. The Great Filter

Our present eeriness cannot last.

So why canít we see it? In his recent book-length essay The Great Derangement, the Indian novelist Amitav Ghosh wonders why global warming and natural disaster havenít become major subjects of contemporary fiction ó why we donít seem able to imagine climate catastrophe, and why we havenít yet had a spate of novels in the genre he basically imagines into half-existence and names ďthe environmental uncanny.Ē ďConsider, for example, the stories that congeal around questions like, ĎWhere were you when the Berlin Wall fell?í or ĎWhere were you on 9/11?í Ē he writes. ďWill it ever be possible to ask, in the same vein, ĎWhere were you at 400 ppm?í or ĎWhere were you when the Larsen B ice shelf broke up?í Ē His answer: Probably not, because the dilemmas and dramas of climate change are simply incompatible with the kinds of stories we tell ourselves about ourselves, especially in novels, which tend to emphasize the journey of an individual conscience rather than the poisonous miasma of social fate.

Surely this blindness will not last ó the world we are about to inhabit will not permit it. In a six-degree-warmer world, the Earthís ecosystem will boil with so many natural disasters that we will just start calling them ďweatherĒ: a constant swarm of out-of-control typhoons and tornadoes and floods and droughts, the planet assaulted regularly with climate events that not so long ago destroyed whole civilizations. The strongest hurricanes will come more often, and weíll have to invent new categories with which to describe them; tornadoes will grow longer and wider and strike much more frequently, and hail rocks will quadruple in size. Humans used to watch the weather to prophesy the future; going forward, we will see in its wrath the vengeance of the past. Early naturalists talked often about ďdeep timeĒ ó the perception they had, contemplating the grandeur of this valley or that rock basin, of the profound slowness of nature. What lies in store for us is more like what the Victorian anthropologists identified as ďdreamtime,Ē or ďeverywhenĒ: the semi-mythical experience, described by Aboriginal Australians, of encountering, in the present moment, an out-of-time past, when ancestors, heroes, and demigods crowded an epic stage. You can find it already watching footage of an iceberg collapsing into the sea ó a feeling of history happening all at once.

It is. Many people perceive climate change as a sort of moral and economic debt, accumulated since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution and now come due after several centuries ó a helpful perspective, in a way, since it is the carbon-burning processes that began in 18th-century England that lit the fuse of everything that followed. But more than half of the carbon humanity has exhaled into the atmosphere in its entire history has been emitted in just the past three decades; since the end of World War II, the figure is 85 percent. Which means that, in the length of a single generation, global warming has brought us to the brink of planetary catastrophe, and that the story of the industrial worldís kamikaze mission is also the story of a single lifetime. My fatherís, for instance: born in 1938, among his first memories the news of Pearl Harbor and the mythic Air Force of the propaganda films that followed, films that doubled as advertisements for imperial-American industrial might; and among his last memories the coverage of the desperate signing of the Paris climate accords on cable news, ten weeks before he died of lung cancer last July. Or my motherís: born in 1945, to German Jews fleeing the smokestacks through which their relatives were incinerated, now enjoying her 72nd year in an American commodity paradise, a paradise supported by the supply chains of an industrialized developing world. She has been smoking for 57 of those years, unfiltered.

Or the scientistsí. Some of the men who first identified a changing climate (and given the generation, those who became famous were men) are still alive; a few are even still working. Wally Broecker is 84 years old and drives to work at the Lamont-Doherty observatory across the Hudson every day from the Upper West Side. Like most of those who first raised the alarm, he believes that no amount of emissions reduction alone can meaningfully help avoid disaster. Instead, he puts his faith in carbon capture ó untested technology to extract carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which Broecker estimates will cost at least several trillion dollars ó and various forms of ďgeoengineering,Ē the catchall name for a variety of moon-shot technologies far-fetched enough that many climate scientists prefer to regard them as dreams, or nightmares, from science fiction. He is especially focused on whatís called the aerosol approach ó dispersing so much sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere that when it converts to sulfuric acid, it will cloud a fifth of the horizon and reflect back 2 percent of the sunís rays, buying the planet at least a little wiggle room, heat-wise. ďOf course, that would make our sunsets very red, would bleach the sky, would make more acid rain,Ē he says. ďBut you have to look at the magnitude of the problem. You got to watch that you donít say the giant problem shouldnít be solved because the solution causes some smaller problems.Ē He wonít be around to see that, he told me. ďBut in your lifetime ÖĒ

Jim Hansen is another member of this godfather generation. Born in 1941, he became a climatologist at the University of Iowa, developed the groundbreaking ďZero ModelĒ for projecting climate change, and later became the head of climate research at NASA, only to leave under pressure when, while still a federal employee, he filed a lawsuit against the federal government charging inaction on warming (along the way he got arrested a few times for protesting, too). The lawsuit, which is brought by a collective called Our Childrenís Trust and is often described as ďkids versus climate change,Ē is built on an appeal to the equal-protection clause, namely, that in failing to take action on warming, the government is violating it by imposing massive costs on future generations; it is scheduled to be heard this winter in Oregon district court. Hansen has recently given up on solving the climate problem with a carbon tax, which had been his preferred approach, and has set about calculating the total cost of extracting carbon from the atmosphere instead.

Hansen began his career studying Venus, which was once a very Earth-like planet with plenty of life-supporting water before runaway climate change rapidly transformed it into an arid and uninhabitable sphere enveloped in an unbreathable gas; he switched to studying our planet by 30, wondering why he should be squinting across the solar system to explore rapid environmental change when he could see it all around him on the planet he was standing on. ďWhen we wrote our first paper on this, in 1981,Ē he told me, ďI remember saying to one of my co-authors, ĎThis is going to be very interesting. Sometime during our careers, weíre going to see these things beginning to happen.í Ē

Several of the scientists I spoke with proposed global warming as the solution to Fermiís famous paradox, which asks, If the universe is so big, then why havenít we encountered any other intelligent life in it? The answer, they suggested, is that the natural life span of a civilization may be only several thousand years, and the life span of an industrial civilization perhaps only several hundred. In a universe that is many billions of years old, with star systems separated as much by time as by space, civilizations might emerge and develop and burn themselves up simply too fast to ever find one another. Peter Ward, a charismatic paleontologist among those responsible for discovering that the planetís mass extinctions were caused by greenhouse gas, calls this the ďGreat FilterĒ: ďCivilizations rise, but thereís an environmental filter that causes them to die off again and disappear fairly quickly,Ē he told me. ďIf you look at planet Earth, the filtering weíve had in the past has been in these mass extinctions.Ē The mass extinction we are now living through has only just begun; so much more dying is coming.

And yet, improbably, Ward is an optimist. So are Broecker and Hansen and many of the other scientists I spoke to. We have not developed much of a religion of meaning around climate change that might comfort us, or give us purpose, in the face of possible annihilation. But climate scientists have a strange kind of faith: We will find a way to forestall radical warming, they say, because we must.

It is not easy to know how much to be reassured by that bleak certainty, and how much to wonder whether it is another form of delusion; for global warming to work as parable, of course, someone needs to survive to tell the story. The scientists know that to even meet the Paris goals, by 2050, carbon emissions from energy and industry, which are still rising, will have to fall by half each decade; emissions from land use (deforestation, cow farts, etc.) will have to zero out; and we will need to have invented technologies to extract, annually, twice as much carbon from the atmosphere as the entire planetís plants now do. Nevertheless, by and large, the scientists have an enormous confidence in the ingenuity of humans ó a confidence perhaps bolstered by their appreciation for climate change, which is, after all, a human invention, too. They point to the Apollo project, the hole in the ozone we patched in the 1980s, the passing of the fear of mutually assured destruction. Now weíve found a way to engineer our own doomsday, and surely we will find a way to engineer our way out of it, one way or anotherThe planet is not used to being provoked like this, and climate systems designed to give feedback over centuries or millennia prevent us ó even those who may be watching closely ó from fully imagining the damage done already to the planet. But when we do truly see the world weíve made, they say, we will also find a way to make it livable.. For them, the alternative is simply unimaginable.


Agelbert NOTE: This is not about the "failure of imagination"; this is about the stupidity (i.e. EVIL) of boundless greed. We stop the pollution by the boundlessly greedy, strip their assets AND put them in prison, or we perish.

This is not hard to understand, though too many do everything they can to avoid understanding it. 

Job 28:28 KJV

And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; And to depart from evil is understanding.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: July 02, 2017, 04:16:23 pm »

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity


Whatever is finally determined by scientists as the exact combination of factors that forms these monster waves, it is well known that wave height and ferocity is a function of the ferocity and duration of the winds.

ΔT = plus 2C or greater guarantees ferocious winds of long during over wide areas in a consistent direction.

We are already experiencing the beginning of the abrupt climate change that is bringing these destructive winds due to the increase in frequency and severity of cyclonic movements over the oceans.

Hurricanes and typhoons are the DIRECT result of overheated ocean surface water. As heat increases, so will they continue to increase in frequency and severity, setting new records. As soon as the surface temperature of the ocean is at or above 27.8C (82F), they can form.

And the sea surface temperature (SST) continues to steadily rise.

Below is a NOAA graphic of the SST Anomaly as of June 15, 2017:

From a June 20, 2017 NOAA article:

Don't let that average global temperature lull you into thinking the risk of hurricanes is the same as always. The sea surface temperature in the hurricane forming areas is much higher. Which means that, on top of everything else, we will get more hurricanes.

Recipe for a Hurricane

The higher the ocean surface temperature, the more often they will form to wreak havoc with ships and coasts.

We now must apologize for interrupting this article to bore you readers with some fine print:

Agelbert NOTE: The following includes snippets of an excerpt from the excellent scientifically accurate book, "The Wave. Copyright ©2010 Susan Casey. Published by Doubleday Canada, an imprint of the Doubleday Canada Publishing Group, which is a division of Random House of Canada Limited".

I am posting said snippets of said book review under Fair Use for the purpose of Commentary. I am not posting for commercial purposes. Even though Susan Casey and her publisher may benefit from my praise of her book, which provides ample evidence for increased giant wave activity, I do not benefit monetarily.

Consequently, I am sure these snippets of the book review excerpts posted below are done under Fair Use - for a limited and "transformative" purpose (i.e. Commentary) through which the public will reap benefits (it may even save thousands of lives). Nevertheless, if the Daily Kos legal eagles are concerned that I may be infringing on a copyright here, I will delete the entire article.That ends the fine print.

Now to get back to benefiting the biosphere loving public!
Susan Casey gives us an eye opening look at giant waves.

The book titled, "The Wave" is the overall scope; Casey links how the Earth's weather is changing to how waves are growing, and there's no denying the stats: there is a clear correlation. She visits various scientists and marine salvage folks and shares their stories; they all agree that we're seeing the oceans get nuttier, and it's only just beginning.

The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks, and Giants of the Ocean by Susan Casey

Susan Casey, National Post ∑ Monday, Sept. 20, 2010

The clock read midnight when the 100-foot wave hit the ship, rising from the North Atlantic out of the darkness. Among the ocean's terrors a wave this size was the most feared and the least understood, more myth than reality -- or so people had thought. This giant was certainly real. As the RRS Discovery plunged down into the wave's deep trough, it heeled 28 degrees to port,
The above graphic is a scale simulation of 295 ft. ship heeling 28 degrees to port in the trough of a 100 ft. wave by Agelbert.

rolled 30 degrees back to starboard, then recovered to face the incoming seas. What chance did they have, the 47 scientists and crew aboard this research cruise gone horribly wrong? A series of storms had trapped them in the black void east of Rockall, a volcanic island nicknamed Waveland for the nastiness of its surrounding waters. More than 1,000 wrecked ships lay on the seafloor below.

Scale simulation by Agelbert

Captain Keith Avery steered his vessel directly into the onslaught, just as he'd been doing for the past five days. While weather like this was common in the cranky North Atlantic, these giant waves were unlike anything he'd encountered in his 30 years of experience.

And worse, they kept rearing up from different directions. Flanking all sides of the 295-foot ship, the crew kept a constant watch to make sure they weren't about to be sucker punched by a wave that was sneaking up from behind, or from the sides.

No one wanted to be out here right now, but Avery knew their only hope was to remain where they were, with their bow pointed into the waves. Turning around was too risky; if one of these waves caught Discovery broadside, there would be long odds on survival. It takes 30 tons per square metre of force to dent a ship.

A breaking 100-foot wave packs 100 tons of force per square metre and can tear a ship in half. Above all, Avery had to position Discovery so that it rode over these crests and wasn't crushed beneath them.

He stood barefoot at the helm, the only way he could maintain traction after a refrigerator toppled over, splashing out a slick of milk, juice and broken glass (no time to clean it up--the waves just kept coming).

Up on the bridge everything was amplified, all the night noises and motions, the slamming and the crashing, the elevator-shaft plunges into the troughs, the frantic wind, the swaying and groaning of the ship; and now, as the waves suddenly grew even bigger and meaner and steeper, Avery heard a loud bang coming from Discovery's foredeck. He squinted in the dark to see that the 50-man lifeboat had partially ripped from its 2-inch-thick steel cleats and was pounding against the hull.

Below deck, computers and furniture had been smashed into pieces. The scientists huddled in their cabins nursing bruises, black eyes and broken ribs. Attempts at rest were pointless. They heard the noises too; they rode the free falls and the sickening barrel rolls; and they worried about the fact that a 6-foot-long window next to their lab had already shattered from the twisting. Discovery was almost 40 years old, and recently she'd undergone major surgery. The ship had been cut in half, lengthened by 33 feet, and then welded back together. Would the joints hold? No one really knew. No one had ever been in conditions like these.

One of the two chief scientists, Penny Holliday, watched as a chair skidded out from under her desk, swung into the air and crashed onto her bunk. Holliday, fine boned, porcelain-doll pretty and as tough as any man on board the ship, had sent an e-mail to her boyfriend, Craig Harris, earlier in the day. "This isn't funny anymore," she wrote. "The ocean just looks completely out of control." So much white spray was whipping off the waves that she had the strange impression of being in a blizzard. This was Waveland all right, an otherworldly place of constant motion that took you nowhere but up and down; where there was no sleep, no comfort, no connection to land, and where human eyes and stomachs struggled to adapt, and failed.

Ten days ago Discovery had left port in Southampton, England, on what Holliday had hoped would be a typical 3-week trip to Iceland and back (punctuated by a little seasickness perhaps, but nothing major).

RRS Discovery in calm seas

Along the way they'd stop and sample the water for salinity, temperature, oxygen and other nutrients. From these tests the scientists would draw a picture of what was happening out there, how the ocean's basic characteristics were shifting, and why.

These are not small questions on a planet that is 71% covered in salt water.
As the Earth's climate changes -- as the inner atmosphere becomes warmer, as the winds increase, as the oceans heat up -- what does all this mean for us? Trouble, most likely, and Holliday and her colleagues were in the business of finding out how much and what kind. It was deeply frustrating for them to be lashed to their bunks rather than out on the deck lowering their instruments. No one was thinking about Iceland anymore.

The trip was far from a loss, however. During the endless trains of massive waves, Discovery itself was collecting data that would lead to a chilling revelation. The ship was ringed with instruments; everything that happened out there was being precisely measured, the sea's fury captured in tight graphs and unassailable numbers.

Months later, long after Avery had returned everyone safely to the Southampton docks, when Holliday began to analyze these figures, she would discover that the waves they had experienced were the largest ever scientifically recorded in the open ocean. The significant wave height, an average of the largest 33% of the waves, was 61 feet, with frequent spikes far beyond that.

At the same time, none of the state-of-the-art weather forecasts and wave models-- the information upon which all ships, oil rigs, fisheries and passenger boats rely -- had predicted these behemoths. In other words, under this particular set of weather conditions, waves this size should not have existed. And yet they did.


You could call them whatever you wanted -- rogues, freaks, giants -- but the bottom line was that no one had accounted for them. The engineers who'd built the Draupner rig had calculated that once every 10,000 years the North Sea might throw them a 64-foot curveball in 38-foot seas. That would be the maximum. Eighty-five-foot waves were not part of the equation, not in this universe anyway.

But the rules had changed. Now scientists had a set of numbers that pointed to an unsettling truth: Some of these waves make their own rules. Suddenly the emphasis shifted from explaining why giant waves couldn't simply leap out of the ocean to figuring out how it was that they did.

This was a matter of much brow sweat for the oil industry, which would prefer that its multimillion-dollar rigs not be swept away. It had happened before. In 1982 the Ocean Ranger, a 400-foot-long, 337-foot-high oil platform located 170 miles off the coast of Newfoundland, was struck by an outsize wave in heavy weather. We'll never know how big the wave was exactly, for there were no survivors. Approved for "unrestricted ocean operations," built to withstand 110-foot seas and 115-mile-per-hour winds, considered "indestructible" by its engineers, the Ocean Ranger had capsized and sank close to instantly, killing all 84 people on board.

In the nautical world things were even more troubling. Across the global seas ships were meeting these waves, from megaton vessels like the Munchen -- oceangoing freighters and tankers and bulk carriers -- down to recreational sailboats.

At best, the encounters resulted in damage; at worst, the boat vanished, taking all hands with it. "Two large ships sink every week on average [worldwide], but the cause is never studied to the same detail as an air crash. It simply gets put down to 'bad weather,' " said Dr. Wolfgang Rosenthal, senior scientist for the MaxWave Project, a consortium of European scientists that convened in 2000 to investigate the disappearing ships.


MS MŁnchen

December 12, 1978: Considered unsinkable, the Munchen was a cutting-edge craft, the flagship of the German Merchant Navy. At 3:25 a.m. fragments of a Morse code Mayday, emanating from 450 miles north of the Azores, signaled that the vessel had suffered grave damage from a wave.

Artist's conception of MS MŁnchen facing a giant wave.

But even after 110 ships and 13 aircraft were deployed -- the most comprehensive search in the history of shipping -- the ship and its 27 crew were never seen again.

A haunting clue was left behind: Searchers found one of the Munchen's lifeboats, usually stowed 65 feet above the water, floating empty. Its twisted metal fittings indicated that it had been torn away. "Something extraordinary" had destroyed the ship, concluded the official report. *

The Munchen's disappearance points to the main problem with proving the existence of a giant wave:
If you run into that kind of nightmare, it's likely to be the last one you'll have.

The force of waves is hard to overstate. An 18-inch wave can topple a wall built to withstand 125-mile-per-hour winds, for instance, and coastal advisories are issued for even five-foot-tall surf, which regularly kills people caught in the wrong places.

The number of people who have witnessed a 100-foot wave at close range and made it back home to describe the experience is a very small one.


* Agelbert NOTE: The container ship El Faro sank during Hurricane Juaquin on October 1, 2015. All 33 crewmembers perished. The lifeboats on El Faro were also 65 feet above the water line. From the condition of the lifeboat that was recovered, the evidence indicates a giant wave sank the El Faro. The authorities have not admitted this as of yet. But I am not the only one that strongly suspects that the condition of the lifeboat is evidence that a giant wave sank El Faro (Spanish for "Lighthouse"). 

Coast Guard Investigates El Faro Life Boat

Warming oceans are with us now and increasing the violence of the oceans. By chance, I recorded the SST (Sea Surface Temperature) off the East Coast of the USA the day before Hurricane Juaquin sank the El Faro container ship. Here's the September 30, 2015 (8 day average - proof  that it was really consistently hot out there!) screenshot:

Notice all that ocean surface at 27.8C (82F) hurricane forming minimum temperature or greater.

Here's two days later (one day after the El Faro Container ship sank). I superimposed the hurricane location. It is a one day average SST so the conditions when the El Faro sank are displayed.  I was not aware that the El Faro had been lost at the time I made these screenshots. Notice the cooler spot on the ocean precisely where Hurricane Juaquin is lashing El Faro. A hurricane transfers several degrees of water temperature directly to the atmosphere, which, in turn, increases the ferocity of the winds. Ferocious winds produce ferocious waves.

El Faro departed Jacksonville en route to San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The El Faro was one of TWO cargo ships that went down because of Hurricane Juaquin (the 215 ft. MV Minouche that went down didn't make national headlines, because people, perhaps, might start to get "unnecessarily alarmed" about the increasing shipping losses from our increasingly violent oceans). All 12 crew of the MV Minouche were rescued.

MV Minouche

The Coast Guard pilot's voice shakes as he describes conditions they have never before experienced in rescue attempts when they were searching for the El Faro and rescuing the crew of the MV Minouche.

US Coast Guard search for El Faro; 12 rescued from MV Minouche
The El Faro, that went down with a crew of 33, all lost, 294 cars, trailers and trucks, along with hundreds of containers, had a type of lifeboat that is a death boat in stormy seas.

Here's a comment by a fellow who's handle is deckofficer:

Hurricane Joaquin vs. M/V El Faro's final voyage, weather and decision-making...

I guess the only point I would like to make is some owners don't seem to value the lives of their crews. Schedules are tight and safety equipment is in many cases the bare minimum for certification. In the case of SS El Faro (it is my understanding this is a steam ship, not diesel) the open life boats as high on the super structure as they were meets requirements but certainly doesn't offer the all sea state conditions of deployment as free fall enclosed life boat capsules. If these souls are lost at sea, it is maddening that the simple added investment of better emergency egress would have saved their lives. I have done more lifeboat drills than I can remember, and for the older style gravity systems there was a good reason these drills only occurred on calm days.

When sea state is overwhelming and you have lost propulsion and need to abandon ship, do you want this....

Or this....


USCG Unlimited Tonnage Open Ocean (CMA)


Free fall enclosed life boat capsules are a great idea. They should be mandatory. The fact that they aren't is mute evidence of the neoliberal Empathy Deficit disordered "cost/benefit analysis" that values goods more than lives. As long as people continue to line up to crew the ships, management will cut corners on life support.

And the Libertarians will cheer them on demanding all those "government regulations" be eliminated so the shippers can make more money without "government interference".   

But the greedball shippers are increasingly going to have a bit more to worry about than whether they have a labor force or not. Thanks to the fossil fuel industry socialized cost of CO2 pollution (even though Big Oil is getting a bit of payback from the oceans with oil rig difficulties and tanker losses), this is no longer going to be about whether the "demand" for products "justifies" cargo shipping. 

I am grateful to Paul Beckwith of the University of Ottawa for alerting me to the threat from violent oceans that mankind faces.

Paul Beckwith is a part time professor at the University of Ottawa and a post graduate studying and researching abrupt climate change, with a focus on the arctic.

An Ocean Full of 30 meter Tall Waves

by Paul Beckwith

Published on Jul 23, 2015

"Near the end of the previous warm period (Late-Eemian) when the sea level was +5 to +9 meters higher than today, persistent long period long wavelength waves 30 meters high battered the Bahamas coastline. Will we see these massive storm generated waves soon? No ship could survive this..." 

If the ships cannot handle the seas (NO ship is designed, or can cost effectively be designed, to handle anywhere near 100 tons per square meter of force on her hull), shipping itself will no longer be cost effective unless cargo ships morph into cargo submarines. The cost of doing that is staggering. Even if they designed them to ride just beneath the wave turbulence, they still would have to submerge to one half the wavelength of ocean waves.

The wave that hit the Draupner platform in 1995 was over 90 ft. high and had a wavelength of 231 meters (which it covered in only 12 seconds! - 45 mph). To avoid these waves, a submerged cargo vessel or tanker would have to withstand pressures at a minimum of 116 meters below sea level.

That may be a piece of cake for a normal submarine but it would cost multiples of what cargo and tanker vessels cost now to make cargo submarines and tankers capable of routinely submerging to 400 or 500 feet.

And in water that is too shallow to get under the wave action, they will not avoid being damaged or sunk. Those waves Paul Beckwith mentions will be visiting the coastlines regularly in a ΔT = plus 2C (and beyond) world.

During WW2 the Germans actually made submarine tankers. They nicknamed them "Milk Cows". The German type XIV U-Boat could resupply other boats with 432 t (425 long tons) of fuel. I'm sure ExxonMobil will look into it when the going gets REALLY rough on the oceans, instead of doing the right thing and giving up fossil fuels. They aren't known for their ability to consider the wider consequences of their greed based, short term profit motive stupidity. But I digress.  ;D

Besides the large increase in sea level, the wave action predicted makes every hull design of modern shipping inadequate. It will be very hard to sustain our level of civilization without the benefits of modern shipping.

Redesigning hulls will not work for the simple reason that the waves, now called "rogue" waves, of those oceans will be routine. 30 to 35 meter tall waves exert forces on a hull of about 100 tons per square meter. No modern hull design exceeds 30 tons per square meter.
Hellespont Alhambra (now TI Asia), a ULCC TI class supertanker, which are the largest ocean-going oil tankers in the world

To give you a better idea of the huge threat a giant wave or three is to a large tanker or cargo vessel,  I took some screenshots from a video of a wave laboratory testing the effects of 72 ft. waves on a modern supertanker. I'm sure Big Oil is paying attention, regardless of what they say in public.  ;)

3D simulation by Agelbert of tanker model is below the wave tank screenshot

5: The above is catastrophic for a tanker. 6: Supertanker scale model in scale 72 ft. waves is rolled and sinks.

The tanker completely capsized. In a real world situation, this is a death blow to the crew because it happens too fast to get survival gear on or reach the lifeboats, even if they are the emergency egress sealed type you saw earlier. That is why both tanker and cargo ships do everything they can to avoid being broadsided. In the real world, when the engines are lost in these types of seas, the only way to survive is to immediately abandon ship on a free fall enclosed life boat capsule.

If the above series of screen shots are not convincing enough to the reader of the threat shipping faces from giant waves, the following video series will leave no doubt in your mind that world shipping is incapable of handling the routine 30 to 35 meter waves that the Hansen et al June 2015 paper predicts for a ΔT = plus 2C (and beyond) world.

The following video series is the first of an excellent BBC series that describes the difficulties that shipping faces with giant waves. Some of the material I have covered is presented with some added background provided. You will learn much from these videos. You will learn that absolutely nothing I have told you is exaggeration or hyperbole.

The threat is real and it is getting worse. I urge you to set aside some time to view them because this concerns our future as a civilization. We are not prepared for a ΔT = plus 2C  world (and beyond).


Global Civilization is threatened within 25 years or less by the scientifically predicted ocean surface wave activity in the Hansen et al June 2015 study * and the Dutton et al July 2015 study ** evidencing a 6 to 25 meter (19 to 82 feet!) sea level increase in the geological record when the CO2 parts per million (PPM) atmospheric concentration was between 300 and 400 PPM.

As of April of 2017, the CO2 concentration passed 410PPM. It is increasing at over 3PPM per year.

* Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 15, 20059Ė20179, 2015 doi:10.5194/acpd-15-20059-2015 © Author(s) 2015. CC Attribution 3.0 License.

Ice melt, sea level rise and superstorms: evidence from paleoclimate data, climate modeling, and modern observations that 2 C global warming is highly dangerous
J. Hansen1, M. Sato1, P. Hearty2, R. Ruedy3,4, M. Kelley3,4, V. Masson-Delmotte5, G. Russell4, G. Tselioudis4, J. Cao6, E. Rignot7,8, I. Velicogna8,7, E. Kandiano9, K. von Schuckmann10, P. Kharecha1,4, A. N. Legrande4, M. Bauer11, and K.-W. Lo3,4


** Science 10 July 2015: Vol. 349  no. 6244  DOI: .1126/science.aaa4019 

Sea-level rise due to polar ice-sheet mass loss during past warm periods
A. Dutton1,*,  A. E. Carlson2,  A. J. Long3,  G. A. Milne4,  P. U. Clark2,  R. DeConto5,  B. P. Horton6,7,  S. Rahmstorf8,  M. E. Raymo9

Furthermore, the rate of increase is also rising, evidencing, not only the lack of concerted action by the governments of the industrialized nations of the world to stop using fossil fuels, but an increase in their use, along with the incredibly destructive policies of subsidizing the exploration for fossil fuels.

If drastic action is not taken to avert this violent oceans catastrophe for human civilization, our global civilization will collapse into "sea-locked" regions unable to conduct trade across the oceans except via air transportation, a method that is not economically feasible to use for bulk cargo.

Port facilities and coastal airport facilities will become unusable. In addition, the salt water fishing industry would also collapse, both from the violent oceans and the increasing rate of marine extinctions, creating joblessness, food shortages and widespread hunger.

At least 25 percent of the world's arable land, all of which is low lying and near sea coasts, will be lost due to salt water invasion of the water table, even several miles from the coasts.


To prevent a collapse of global civilization into a group of "sea locked" areas, we must act now to prevent the oceans from being too stormy for shipping.

This requires the following:

1. The manufacture of internal combustion engines, and spare parts, used to power utility scale power plants, land, sea and air vehicles and emergency generators for public or private use, be they large or small, is to be outlawed, unless they are designed to run exclusively (low temperature alloys ONLY - 2/3 lighter engine blocks - they break down due to high waste heat if run on fossil fuels) on ethanol or some other biofuel. All aircraft must be powered by biofuels until electrically powered or hydrogen powered aircraft replace current jet engines. All ocean going oil tankers are to be recycled for low cost EV metals. All remaining ships of all sizes must be electrically powered as well, unless they can be modified to run on biofuels. Biofuels must be used to bridge the gap while phasing out the internal combustion engine in industry, the military and transportation by air, land or sea.

2. All ships must have enclosed egress lifeboats capable of surviving 35 meter waves.

3. Small engines, like those used for lawn mowers. leaf blowers or weed whackers are to be outlawed. All ordinances requiring lawns are to be outlawed. All lawn, gardening or snow removal power equipment not running on E100 is to be electrically powered without any exceptions or grace period.

4. A program to phase out of all uses of fossil fuels within one year must begin immediately. All gasoline stations are to have at least two E100 pumps. A gasoline tax of one dollar per gallon is to be levied to existing gasoline or other distillate fuels tax. The tax is to be increased by one additional dollar per gallon every month.

5. All governments must provide an EV for gas guzzlers consumer trade program at no cost to the owner until all on road and off road vehicles that are not fueled exclusively with E100 (100% ethanol) have been recycled.

6. All public and private buildings (including the military) are to be modified to have 100% renewable energy for heating and cooling. Zero percent financing and a 30 year amortization period is to be provided to all private households and landlords for the purchase and installation of Renewable Energy infrastructure. No household is entitled to heat and cool more than 500 square feet per occupant (No exceptions). Monitoring devices are to placed on all large houses in general and mansions in particular with heavy fines for violations.

7. After all buildings are heated and cooled with renewable energy, the remaining energy needs, plus a surplus, are to be generated by renewable energy in order to begin the process of returning to less than 350PPM (Parts Per Million) of CO2 (Carbon Dioxide). Carbon will be sequestered with renewable energy machines.

8.The manufacture, sale or use of fossil fuel based pesticides or chemical fertilizers for agriculture is to be outlawed with a six month phase out grace period.

9. The manufacture and sale of any product, including, but not limited to, pharmaceuticals and plastics, using fossil fuels as a feed stock is to be prohibited by law. A one year grace period will be allowed for transition to the use of plant based carbohydrates as feed stock.

10. Water use is to be heavily regulated.

11. Military budgets are to be limited to no more than 5% of tax receipts.

12. All subsidies for fossil fuels are be declared null and void in every country in the world. All rigs, refineries, tanker trucks, pipelines and other fossil fuel industry plant and equipment are to be recycled within a five year period. The fossil fuel industry stock holders are to shoulder the cost of this. Corporate bankruptcies of fossil fuel corporations will not limit the liability of the corporation stock holders according to a worldwide proclamation of Force Majeure. Executives, board members and all other stock holders will be liable for all recycling costs according to ownership records over the last 50 years.

And, as "radical" as the above seems to status quo lovers, that is just the start of what MUST be done.

Massive conservation efforts must be undertaken to preserve and protect all animals now threatened with extinction. All governments must put these efforts on the level of war time demands simply because our survival as a civilization and possibly as a species is threatened.

A wartime mobilization scenario has been proposed that is somewhat less radical than what I propose. I would certainly support that action (Any Port in the Catastrophic Climate Change Storm 😇).

We cannot function without the use of the oceans. We will not be able to use those oceans if we don't lower the CO2 atmospheric content to at least 350 PPM.

And even then, with the 6 meter or more (over 19 feet!) rise in sea level locked into the  ΔT = plus 2C  world, we will lose the use of all port facilities, coastal cities and arable land near sea level within a decade or, optimistically speaking in regard to the IPCC RCP-8.5 "Business as Usual" scenario, by 2050. Our civilization does not have the money to rebuild and replant and relocate millions of people as the seas go up and fly all cargo when the seas can't be used, PERIOD.

It is only possible to avoid a collapse of global civilization by drastic measures, and only if those measures are undertaken within a decade.

If not, then mankind will be split into several "sea locked" groups watching the oceans acidify and the temperature increase to the point when the methane bursts from the thawed clathrates in the Arctic ocean bottom. Then the ΔT = plus 2C world will be a distant mild memory in comparison to the  ΔT = plus 4C and beyond runaway GHG hell.

Sadly, I do not see any of evidence that any government is championing drastic action. 

Yes, ALL governments will eventually realize that we are in an Existential Catastrophic Climate Crisis. But every day of delay multiplies the costs of ameliorating the damage from climate change exponentially.

Oil Tanker named "Prestige" sinks. Is this the Writing on the Oil Tanker Hull Wall for Big Oil?

It is small consolation to me that these oil tankers will not survive the coming oceans. But there is a certain logic to it.

If you find this article of importance to our survival as a species or the survival of civilization, please pass it on with or without attribution. People need to properly understand the nature of our climate problem in general, and the fossil fuel industry's blame for profiting from it in particular, in order to embrace the outlawing of the burning of fossil fuels.

They must be held accountable and they must NOT be allowed to influence energy policy ever again. They successfully sabotaged and/or watered down all the reforms proposed at the December 2015 COP21 Climate Conference, as they have done at all the other global climate conferences through corruption or threats. Our survival and the welfare of the children of the world depends on stopping these criminals NOW.


Please Help the Children have an Opportunity to Live in a Viable Biosphere.

The following was written for the COP21 conference. Included are the names of all that signed on. Daily Kos, Iím glad to say, signed on to this document:

Many will read this and scoff. They do not accept the FACT that Business as usual is a death sentence for global civilization. They do not accept the FACT that nature does not negotiate. They do not accept the FACT that Incremental/half measures are like being half pregnant with Rosemary's baby. 

They will say that there is absolutely no way that the governments of the world will undertake even a tiny portion of the recommendations I list as sine qua non for our survival as a global civilization. 

Perhaps they are right about the governments. If they are, then perhaps we will, because of the successful degrading of democracy and the biosphere by the fossil fuel industry over the course of about a century, experience the roaring oceans and the collapse of all human civilization, not just global civilization.

If so, then the ocean violence, including its dramatic effects on human civilization, now predicted by science, was accurately described in prophesy a long time ago.

But whether you believe the above prophesy is valid or not, I think it safe to assume that our future ocean surface will be very unsafe. And below the surface, it will be even worse for the marine species we all depend on.

Suggested viewing:

Agelbert NOTE: Learn about biological stability of systems, negative feedbacks, positive feedbacks, population trends, ocean acidification and the very important issue of increasing anoxic (oxygen starved) conditions in the oceans directly caused by the continued burning of fossil fuels in the video below. Dr. Lubchenco is one of several credentialed leading climate scientists at this conference:

Biological Extinction | Discussion #11

Casina Pio IV

Published on Mar 2, 2017
How to Save the Natural World on Which We Depend PAS-PASS Workshop
Casina Pio IV, 27 February-1 March 2017

On our 4.54 billion year old planet, life is perhaps as much as 3.7 billion years old, photosynthesis and multi-cellularity dozens of times independently around 3.0 billion years old, and the emergence of plants, animals, and fungi onto land, by at least the Ordovician period, perhaps 480 million years ago, forests appearing around 370 million years ago, and the origin of modern groups such as mammals, birds, reptiles, and land plants subsequently. The geological record shows that there have been five major extinction-events in the past, the first of them about 542 million years ago, and suggests that 99% of the species that ever lived (5 billion of them?) have become extinct. The last major extinction event occurred about 66 million years ago, at the end of the Cretaceous Period, and, in general, the number of species on earth and the complexity of their communities has increased steadily until near the present.

Suggested Reading:

Greenland now a major driver of rising seas: study    June 26, 2017 by Marlowe Hood

More summer sunshine leading to increased Greenland ice melt June 28, 2017
A team of scientists, led by the University of Bristol, has discovered that a marked decrease in summer cloud cover during the last 20 years has significantly accelerated melt from the Greenland ice sheet.

Greenland ice sheet may melt completely with 1.6 degrees of global warming March 12, 2012

Storms caused massive Antarctic sea ice loss in 2016   
June 26, 2017

The Real Sea Monsters: On the Hunt for Rogue Waves
By Lynne Peeples | September 2, 2009

Rogue waves are no fish tale
Once regarded as extremely rare, satellite photos and radar imagery have documented the existence of numerous rogue waves, and it turns out that they are far more common than previously thought.

Wave Power Could Contribute 10% Of Global Electricity Demand By 2050 June 28th, 2017 by Joshua S Hill

Water, Energy and Waste Sustainable Development in Large Cities Masdar Engage Contest Entry Submitted December 20, 2013 by A. G. Gelbert

If you missed the first two parts, you can read them at the links below.

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART ONE

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART TWO

You may print or post any part or the whole of the three parts of this article, with or without attribution, as many times as you wish. Spread these timely warnings far and wide. Remember, the biosphere we need to preserve is the only one we have. Without a Viable Biosphere, we cannot survive. We cannot have a viable biosphere unless we stop burning fossil fuels.

"We do not need a 'new' business model for energy because we never had one. What we need, if we wish to avoid extinction, is to plug the environmental and equity costs of energy production and use into our planning and thinking. " -- A.G. Gelbert

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 27, 2017, 04:46:49 pm »

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity


On top of the disaster for civilization that a rise in seal level of 6 meters (over 19 FEET!) represents from the loss of coastal arable land, coastal cities, shipping ports and airports, there is the problem of wave activity. 

Which brings us back to shipping and the ocean surface.  Of particular concern to ocean shipping in a ΔT = plus 2C (and greater) atmosphere are the following facts about waves.


Because that world will have more energy both in the oceans and in the atmosphere. That world will have, not just greater average wind speeds, particularly over unobstructed surfaces like the oceans, but a greater duration of higher wind velocities (speed in a relatively constant direction) over thousands of miles. High wind velocity and duration over hundreds or thousands of miles is a recipe for giant waves.

Here's a very brief primer on waves so you can grasp the impact of giant wave characteristics on shipping.

First, the high points of the waves are called "crests" and the low points of the waves are called "troughs". The crest is the part that starts to curl over and turn foamy when waves hit the beach. The difference in height between the crest and the trough is called the wave height.

The "amplitude" is one half the wave height. So if you have "50-foot seas", you have wave crests 25 feet above calm sea level and troughs 25 feet below it. The amplitude of 50-foot seas is 25 feet.

In the ocean, the trough of a wave is just as far below sea level as the crest is above sea level. 

Energy, not water, moves across the ocean's surface. Water particles only travel in a small circle as a wave passes.

How are waves energy?

The best way to understand waves as energy is to think of a long rope laid on the ground. If you pick up one end and give it a good snap --there's a ripple effect all the way to the other end -- just like the waves on the ocean! That means that energy is applied at one end and it moves to the other end.

What provides the energy?

In the case of ocean waves, wind provides the energy. Wind causes waves that travel in the ocean. The energy is released on shorelines. Some of the energy of waves is also released against the hulls of ships at sea. The larger the vessel surface being impacted by the wave, the more force is exerted against that surface. Being hit by a single giant wave from the front of the bow or the rear of the stern is normally within the structural design limits of a large vessel. But being broadsided can either sink a ship or severely damage it.

1973: A rogue wave off the coast of Durban, South Africa, strikes the 12,000-ton cargo ship Bencrauchan. The ship is towed into port, barely floating.


What determines the size of the wave?

The size of a wave depends on:

1. the distance the wind blows (over open water) which is known as the "fetch",

2. the length of time the wind blows, and

3. the speed of the wind.

The greater these three, the larger the wave.

The distance waves are apart is called the "wavelength". Wavelength is typically measured between the crests of two adjacent waves, but it could be measured from trough to trough or from any point on one wave to the same point on the next wave. You will get the same distance no matter where you measure.

Finally, the "frequency" of the wave specifies how many wave wavelengths go by in a set amount of time. So this is dependent not only on the speed of the waves, but on their wavelength.


The "period" of a wave must also be considered. The period of a wave is the amount of time it takes for one wavelength to occur. 

Frequency and period are distinctly different, yet related, quantities. The frequency of a wave is how many wavelengths occur in a given amount of time.


Ship hulls are designed to withstand about 15 to 20 tons per square meter. They can handle up to 30 tons per square meter only if they bend to take the blow.

When a wave with a height of 30 meters (100 ft.) is spoken of, only half that much of it is what is above the sea level. That doesn't do a ship much good because the ship will ride down the 15 meter trough before it gets hit by the 30 meter monster.  And "riding" down the trough is somewhat of a misnomer.

Large ships, because of the combined weight of the ship and the cargo, have a lot of inertia. If the ship is moving forward at about 13 kts (15 mph) and a giant wave is approaching it a 45 mph (this has been documented and is routine), you have a relative speed of the wave to the ship of 60 mph. The wavelength of a 30 meter wave is about 230 meters (this has also been documented).
Even if the combined speed against such a wave is just 45 mph because the captain has slowed his ship to reduce hull stress, the ship experiences a drop of ocean beneath it of 50 feet in 6 seconds, followed by the a rise of 100 feet in another six seconds.

Initially the ship just dives bow first and everybody on it feels like they are in free fall. When the ship hits the trough bottom, its inertia is still driving the bow down as the seas rise 100 feet. The bridge superstructure is impacted and often the windows are blown in and the bridge, with all its electronics, is flooded.
If that causes the engines to fail, the ship will probably sink. That is because the waves and wind will then turn the ship broadside to the waves. When a ship is broadside to the waves, it will either get rolled and sink or get holed by the force of a giant wave. Whether it sinks  or not depends on how long the severe sea state continues. This ship was hit broadside by a "rogue" wave, but survived.

Thirty meter waves have a force of about 100 tons per square meter, depending on the frequency and period of the wave. Waves of the same height with a higher frequency and shorter period are traveling faster, so they have much more force.

1976: The oil tanker Cretan Star in Indian Ocean off Bombay radios for help: ďVessel was struck by a huge wave that went over the deck.Ē The ship is never heard from again. The only sign of the vessel's fate was 6 km oil slick.


1980: A huge wave was reported to have slammed into the oil tanker Esso Languedoc off the east coast of South Africa. First mate Philippe Lijour, aboard the supertanker Esso Languedoc, took this rare photo.


1981: A giant wave seemed to want to teach a crude oil tanker named "Energy Endurance" (Gross tonnage, 97,005 tons. DWT, 205,808 tons) what REAL energy endurance is all about.


There is no amount of cargo that a large vessel can safely carry under these conditions, regardless of the design claims about "safe" DWT tonnage for cargo and tanker ships you read about earlier in this article. 

Where are the largest waves found?

The largest waves are found in the open ocean. Waves continue to get larger as they move and absorb energy from the wind.

Waves at Sea

Waves at sea are created by winds blowing across the water surface and transferring energy to the water by the impact of the air. Small ripples develop first, and frictional drag on their windward side causes then to grow larger, or to collapse and contribute part of their expended energy to larger waves.

Consequently, large waves capture increasing amounts of energy and continue to develop as long as the wind maintains sufficient strength and constant direction.

As more and more energy is transferred to the water surface. waves become higher and longer, and travel with increasing velocities; 50-foot waves are not uncommon in the open ocean, and waves more than 100 feet high have been reported.


2002: December 15, 2002, MS Hanseatic of the Radisson Seven Seas was struck by a large rogue wave while on a coastal cruise of New Zealand.

Above you see a scale simulation of two small vessels in 50 ft. seas. The wavelength is fairly large, so these vessels are handling a very dangerous sea state okay. The wave is 50 feet from crest to trough. The danger increases when the wind gets stronger. That is because the wind increases the wave height and the wave frequency while the wavelength gets shorter.

When large waves are present, the shorter the wavelength, the steeper and more dangerous the wave. And, as mentioned earlier, a higher frequency of large waves makes them even more dangerous because they have much more energy to be delivered as a force against the hull of a ship. It is simple physics that getting hit with a wall of water at 44 mph is potentially far, far more than twice as damaging as the same wall of water hitting you at 22 mph.

Larger vessels, while generally more sea worthy, have weaknesses that small vessels do not have. A small vessel with properly battened hatches can bob like a cork in a storm. In the above situation, the sail boat would probably have the sails reefed (taken in). It will survive as long as it isn't smashed against a reef or a rock. 

But a large vessel, because it is much longer than it is wide, is weakest in the middle and along the sides from bow to stern. The bow and stern act as giant levers moved by the wave crests and troughs with the fulcrum located somewhere in the middle.

The middle either sags or it "hogs" (bends up instead of down). There is no ship that can be made strong enough to handle the massive metal fatigue inducing stresses of repeated sagging and hogging that would occur in seas populated with 30 meter waves. Here is an example of a container ship that hit a reef. It did not sink right away. But you can see that it buckled and cra cked on the side from the up, down and sideways wave movement of the ends of the ship.

Individual "rogue waves" (also called "freak waves", "monster waves", "killer waves", and "king waves") much higher than the other waves in the sea state can occur.

NOAA ship Delaware II in bad weather on Georges Bank.

... the largest ever recorded wind waves are common ó not rogue ó waves in extreme sea states.

For example: 29.1 m (95 ft) high waves have been recorded on the RRS Discovery in a sea with 18.5 m (61 ft) significant wave height, so the highest wave is only 1.6 times the significant wave height.
The biggest recorded by a buoy (as of 2011) was 32.3 m (106 ft) high during the 2007 typhoon Krosa near Taiwan.


Giants of the Oceans

Naval architects have always worked on the assumption that their vessels are extremely unlikely to encounter a rogue. Almost everything on the sea is sailing under the false assumption that rogue waves are, at worst, vanishingly rare events. The new research suggest thatís wrong, and has cost lives. Between 1969 and 1994 twenty-two super carriers were lost or severely damaged due to the occurrence of sudden rogue waves; a total of 542 lives were lost as a result.

G. Lawton. Monsters of the deep. New Scientist, 170(2297):28Ė32, 2001.

Freak, rogue or giant waves correspond to large-amplitude waves surprisingly appearing on the sea surface. Such waves can be accompanied by deep troughs (holes), which occur before and/or after the largest crest.

There are several definitions for such surprisingly huge waves, but the one that is more popular now is the amplitude criterion of freak waves, which define them as waves with heights that exceed at least twice the significant wave height. The significant height is the height of at least one third of the largest waves in a given area being traversed by a ship.

According to orthodox oceanography, rogue waves are so rare that no ship or oil platform should ever expect to encounter one. But as the shipping lanes fill with supercarriers and the oil and gas industry explores ever-deeper parts of the ocean, rogue waves are being reported far more often than they should.

The most spectacular sighting of recent years is probably the so-called New Year Wave, which hit Statoilís Draupner gas platforms in the North Sea on New Yearís Day 1995. The significant wave height at the time was around 12 metres. But in the middle of the afternoon the platform was struck by something much bigger. According to measurements made with a laser, it was 26 metres from trough to crest.

Hundreds of waves been recorded by now that are at least twice the significant wave height, and several waves at larger than three times the significant wave height. Waves with an "Abnormality index" (Ai) larger than three (Ai > 3) are known.

Alexey Slunyaev Christin Kharif, Efim Pelinovsky. Rogue Waves in the Ocean. Springer Berlin Heidelberg, 2009.

The New Year Wave is an example of a wave with an Ai = 3.19.

Christian Kharif and Efim Pelinovsky. Physical mechanisms of the rogue wave phenomenon. European Journal of Mechanics - B/Fluids, 22(6):603 Ė 634, 2003.

I obtained the above information from a paper submitted to the mathematics department of the University of Arizona. Here is a summary:

"In this project, the rogue wave phenomenon is introduced along with its importance. The main equations governing both linear and nonlinear theory are presented. The three main linear theories proposed to explain the rogue rave phenomenon are presented and a linear model reproducing rogue waves due to dispersion is shown. A nonlinear model for rogue waves in shallow water is also exhibited."

I have skipped the math. The information is state of the art and the references are impeccable.

[1] Alexey Slunyaev Christin Kharif, Efim Pelinovsky. Rogue Waves in the Ocean. Springer Berlin Heidelberg, 2009.

[2] K.B. Dysthe, HE Krogstad, H. Socquet-Juglard, and K. Trulsen. Freak waves, rogue waves, extreme waves and ocean wave climate. Mathematics Departments in Bergen and Oslo, Norway. Available at: www. math. uio. no/-karstent/waves/index_ en. html, July, 2007.

[3] R.S. Johnson. A modern introduction to the mathematical theory of water waves. Cambridge Univ Pr, 997.

[4] Christian Kharif and Efim Pelinovsky. Physical mechanisms of the rogue wave phenomenon. European Journal of Mechanics - B/Fluids, 22(6):603 Ė 634, 2003.

[5] G. Lawton. Monsters of the deep. New Scientist, 170(2297):28Ė32, 2001.

[6] Pengzhi Lin. Numerical Modeling of Water Waves. Taylor and Francis, 2008. 13

And that is why the conclusions are so unsettling.


1. Precise physical mechanisms causing the rogue waves phenomenon remain unknown.

2. Rogue waves should be considered when designing ships and marine platforms to reduce the number of vessels sunk worldwide.


Ocean Ranger severely listing in a storm after being hit by a "rogue" wave.

Ironically, the first industry that started to feel the effects of an angrier ocean was the fossil fuel industry. You've already read about some oil tanker damage and losses. They continue to this day despite alleged vessel "design improvements".

But the 120 million dollar "unsinkable" Ocean Ranger, a giant ocean going oil platform damaged from a "rogue" wave, really got their attention. All hands perished. This was a wake up call to the scientists that studied waves and was of much concern to the fossil fuel industry.

The wave hit too high and damaged some electronics. The platform began to list. The operator made the right moves but the valves that should have closed, opened more. The last that was heard from them was that they were listing at about 15 degrees and going to the lifeboat stations.

Ocean Ranger reported experiencing storm seas of 55 feet (17 m), with the odd wave up to 65 feet (20 m), thus leaving the unprotected portlight at 28 feet (8.5 m) above mean sea level vulnerable to wave damage. Some time after 21:00, radio conversations originating on Ocean Ranger were heard on the Sedco 706 and Zapata Ugland, noting that valves on Ocean Ranger's ballast control panel appeared to be opening and closing of their own accord. The radio conversations also discussed the 100-knot (190 km/h) winds and waves up to 65 feet (20 m) high. Through the remainder of the evening, routine radio traffic passed between Ocean Ranger, its neighbouring rigs and their individual support boats. Nothing out of the ordinary was noted.

At 00:52 local time, on 15 February, 1982, a Mayday call was sent out from Ocean Ranger, noting a severe list to the port side of the rig and requesting immediate assistance. This was the first communication from Ocean Ranger identifying a major problem. The standby vessel, the M/V Seaforth Highlander, was requested to come in close as countermeasures against the 10Ė15-degree list were proving ineffective.

The onshore MOCAN supervisor was notified of the situation, and the Canadian Forces and Mobil-operated helicopters were alerted just after 1:00 local time. The M/V Boltentor and the M/V Nordertor, the standby boats of the Sedco 706 and the Zapata Ugland respectively, were also dispatched to Ocean Ranger to provide assistance.

At 1:30 local time, Ocean Ranger transmitted its last message: "There will be no further radio communications from Ocean Ranger. We are going to lifeboat stations." Shortly thereafter, in the middle of the night and in the midst of severe winter weather, the crew abandoned the rig. The rig remained afloat for another ninety minutes, sinking between 3:07 and 3:13 local time.

All of Ocean Ranger sank beneath the Atlantic: by the next morning all that remained was a few buoys. Her entire complement of 84 workers Ė 46 Mobil employees and 38 contractors from various service companies Ė were killed.

It turns out that the math formulas for wave action were incorrect. But it took over a decade to get some proof that they were incorrect. The fossil fuel industry apparently filed the tragedy away as a freak incident. They certainly did not seem that concerned, considering they did everything possible to keep from having to build more sturdy (i.e. double hulled) tankers with the help of the Reagan and the first Bush Administration.

Scientists, up until the 1980's, had believed that it was impossible for an ocean wave on this planet to be higher than 80 feet. This, despite eye witness accounts from mariners to the contrary. As usual, the non-credentialed folks could not convince the scientists that there were waves out there that exceeded 100 feet.

AND that those waves appeared in seas that were only half as high (or less) as the giant wave(s) (sometimes they came in a group of three - they call them the three sisters - the women always get the blame - lol!). Impossible, proclaimed the scientist worthies. Fish tales! 

But in 1995, a laser wave height measuring device on an oil platform provided the first concrete evidence that the happy math was wishful thinking. :P You saw the graph of the 1995 New Year Wave earlier in this article. In this video it is modelled in 3D.

As you all know, when the fossil fuel industry wants action, it gets action. And it gets government funded action that you and I pay for and they don't pay a penny for. But I digress. ;D Faster that you can say fossil fuel profits are threatened, a three week satellite survey of the oceans was undertaken. Four giant waves were observed and measured in just three weeks! 

Not only was the math wrong, but, as referenced earlier in this article, "rogue" waves were not really "rogue" at all!

Of course, at that time, no connection to wave activity and global warming had been established.

Snark alert.  ;D Yes, it's true that scientists are taught, like all the rest of us that cook every now and then, that warmer waters can be a bit more turbulent, but it's a big ocean out there, right?

Well, the attitude of the scientific community is changing, at least in regard to these giant waves.

The cause of rogue waves is still an area of active research. One theory under investigation cites ďconstructive interference,Ē which is a result of several smaller waves overlapping in phase, combining to produce one massive wave. Another working hypothesis is based on the ďnon-linear SchrŲdinger effect,Ē in which energy is ďsoaked upĒ from neighboring waves to create a monster wave. Still other researchers are looking into the possibility that wave energy is being focused by the surrounding environments, or that wind action on the surface is amplifying existing effects.


Suggested mechanisms for the formation of freak waves include the following:


End of PART TWO.

If you missed PART ONE, you may read it HERE.

The updated final Part three was published July 2, 2017 here and at the Daily Kos.

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: Part 3 of 3 parts
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 26, 2017, 05:14:50 pm »

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity


In this three part article I explain what the scientific community defines as the "Business as Usual" scenario in regard to atmospheric pollutants fueling Global Warming. A brief review of the existential threat to marine life that this scenario represents will follow.

Subsequently, I discuss global shipping. I provide a summary of the tremendous importance of blue water (deep ocean) cargo shipping to global civilization. You will be surprised at how vital to global civilization blue water cargo shipping is. All the military vessels, all the pleasure yachts and even all the fishing fleets are insignificant in tonnage compared to that of ocean going cargo and tanker vessels.

I then leave the subject of shipping and the types of cargo vessels, which I return to at the end, to provide the reader with a graphic climate history of the Northern Hemisphere, from the last Glacial Maximum to the present, followed by the, scientifically based, predicted sea level and land vegetation changes in the "Business as Usual" scenario within the next 85 years.

The discussion then returns to cargo ships and their behavior in rough seas. I provide graphics to explain what has been learned about ocean waves in the last 40 years that shocked the scientific community and caused them to go back to the drawing board on the science and math formulas of hydrodynamics in regard to maximum wave heights. Some tragic cargo vessel losses from "rogue" waves (that turned out not to be as "rogue" as science had thought) are presented as evidence that the oceans are becoming increasingly dangerous to shipping.

Finally, the Hansen et al paper, published in June of 2015, is referenced as evidence of a coming abrupt sea state change that will make modern blue water surface cargo shipping either too costly or impossible. The reason for this will be explained in detail with graphics showing ocean wave action and modern shipping design limitations.

Included in the last section that ties all the others together is a reference to another scientific paper published in July of this year (2015) that provides evidence that the worst case scenario ("Business as Usual") modeled by the scientific community severely understates the amount of sea level rise in the next 85 years.

I conclude with recommendations on what the governments of the industrialized countries of the world need to do within the next decade in order to prevent a collapse of civilization (or worse) within the next 25 years.

Let us begin with these nuggets of climate science from NASA:

Carbon Dioxide Controls Earth's Temperature

Water vapor and clouds are the major contributors to Earth's greenhouse effect, but a new atmosphere-ocean climate modeling study shows that the planet's temperature ultimately depends on the atmospheric level of carbon dioxide.

Without non-condensing greenhouse gases, water vapor and clouds would be unable to provide the feedback mechanisms that amplify the greenhouse effect.

The study ties in to the geologic record in which carbon dioxide levels have oscillated between approximately 180 parts per million during ice ages, and about 280 parts per million during warmer interglacial periods. To provide perspective to the nearly 1 C (1.8 F) increase in global temperature over the past century, it is estimated that the global mean temperature difference between the extremes of the ice age and interglacial periods is only about 5 C (9 F).

"When carbon dioxide increases, more water vapor returns to the atmosphere. This is what helped to melt the glaciers that once covered New York City," said co-author David Rind, of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies. "Today we are in uncharted territory as carbon dioxide approaches 390 parts per million in what has been referred to as the 'superinterglacial'."

"The bottom line is that atmospheric carbon dioxide acts as a thermostat in regulating the temperature of Earth," Lacis said.
"The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has fully documented the fact that industrial activity is responsible for the rapidly increasing levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.

It is not surprising then that global warming can be linked directly to the observed increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide and to human industrial activity in general


So, if you read some happy talk from the fossil fuel industry that it's the "water vapor" that is causing global warming, be sure and reference the above study (and the companion study also mentioned at the link) just before you call them on their ignorance, or worse, their duplicity.

You just read about the huge difference a mere 5 degrees C (Centigrade) can make.
Here's a graphic to give you an idea about how effective our greenhouse gas (GHG) shell is at keeping us from turning into a ball of ice.

Greenhouse gases are vital to regulating Earth's temperature. But there is a goldilocks band of these gases that must be adhered to in order to provide a viable biosphere.

In addition, GHG changes in concentration within that band must proceed, down or up, at or slower than a certain rate in order to allow the organisms that live in that biosphere to adapt to the changes or they will go extinct.

Industrial civilization has BOTH exceeded the upper margin of the GHG band by a huge margin AND has done it at a rate far above the ability of most complex non-microscopic organisms to adapt to these violent changes. Mammalian vertebrates, among the complex organisms on Earth, are the least able to adapt to rapid GHG concentration changes.

There is no precedent in the geological record for the increase in CO2 caused by the burning of fossil fuels over the last century. And the rate those fossil fuels are being burned is increasing, not slowing down or ceasing.

Non-self aware mammalian vertebrates, unlike us, cannot use technology to adapt. This is the part the CEO of ExxonMobil (Rex Tillerson) forgot accidentally on purpose when he said, "We will adapt to that". Mr. Tillerson is an idiot or a liar (possibly both). Those "qualities" seem to be a job requirement for those that work in the fossil fuel industry.

Mr. Tillerson's optimistic happy talk is not based on climate science or the geological record.

"Mass extinctions due to rapidly escalating levels of CO2 are recorded since as long as 580 million years ago."


Whether we humans want to admit it or not, we need the 75% of all of Earth's species in danger of extinction from climate change. I know it is really hard for the fossil fuel industry predators 'R' US crowd to wrap their greedy heads around this, but it's hard to live on a diet of hydrocarbons. And if we don't stop burning them, both our plant and animal food supply, along with thousands of other species of other earthlings that make this planet viable, will go extinct.

This is not hyperbole. Mass extinctions are part of the geological record. In all but one of those mass extinctions, the rapid rise in GHG was the cause of the extinctions. Furthermore, in all the former mass extinctions, the RATE of rise in GHG was much slower than today.

"As our anthropogenic global emissions of CO2 are rising  at a rate for which no precedence is known from the geological record with the exception of asteroid impacts, another wave of extinctions is unfolding."


According to the latest scientific studies on Global Warming, "Business as Usual", touted as the basis for the continued health of global civilization, is actually the greatest threat to global civilization and our species that we have ever faced.

Before we get to what exactly is meant by, "Business as Usual", let us first review the human caused pollution effects on ocean physical chemistry and temperature and marine species biochemistry.

The following review references an analysis of oceans that totally omits a growing problem for worldwide shipping. Although the review is mostly very bad news, it may turn out to be, in terms of what deals the collapse triggering blow to human civilization as we know it, the "good" news.

The World Ocean Review

The ocean may be buffering the most severe consequences of climate change for now. But in the long run we can only hope to avoid these if we strictly curb GHG emissions today.

Experts are concerned that hundreds of thousands of tonnes of methane hydrate could break down due to the warming of seawater Ė gas masses that are lying inertly in solid, frozen form in the sea floor sediments today. A portion of the methane, which is a powerful greenhouse gas, could then rise into the atmosphere and further accelerate the process of climate change Ė a vicious circle.

The oceans absorb many millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide annually. They are the largest ďsinkĒ for anthropogenic CO2 emissions. The excess carbon dioxide, however, upsets the chemical equilibrium of the ocean. It leads to acidification of the oceans, the consequences of which are unpredictable. Acidic water disrupts the sense of smell in fish larvae, carbonate formation by snails, and the growth rates of starfish. The phytoplankton, tiny algae in the ocean and vital nutrient basis for higher organisms, are also affected by acidification.

The coastal environment is still being damaged by effluent and toxic discharges, and especially by nutrients conveyed to the ocean by rivers. Thousands of tonnes of nitrogen and phosphorus compounds flow into the ocean around the world, causing an explosion in algal reproduction. In many coastal regions the catastrophe begins with the death of the algae. Bacteria feed on the algal remains and consume oxygen in the water. In these oxygen-depleted zones all higher life forms die off. Efforts to reduce nutrient levels have been successful in Western Europe.

Worldwide, however, the input of nutrients is becoming increasingly problematical. People are, without a doubt, abusing the oceans in many respects, and this is increasing the stress on marine organisms. Through over-fertilization and acidification of the water, rapid changes in water temperature or salinity, biological diversity in the ocean could drop worldwide at increasing rates. With the combination of all these factors, the disruption of habitats is so severe that species will continue to disappear.

Clearly the oceans continue to be the ďlast stopĒ for the dregs of our civilization, not only for the persistent chemicals, but also our everyday garbage. Six million tonnes of rubbish end up in the ocean worldwide every year. The trash is a fatal trap for dolphins, turtles and birds. Plastic is especially long-lived and, driven by ocean currents, it collects in the central oceans in gyres of garbage covering hundreds of square kilometres. A new problem has been identified in the microscopically small breakdown products of plastics, which are concentrated in the bodies of marine organisms.


That World Ocean Review I just quoted from, after laying out the hard facts, incredibly goes on to happily discuss ocean mining opportunities and methane hydrate harvesting plans for "energy products" for "energy independence". The only caveat they supply is more of an epitaph for human willful denial of facts than a precautionary warning. Please file the following in the WTF!? category.

Energy from burning ice

In addition to abundant minerals, there are large amounts of methane hydrate beneath the sea floor. Some countries hope to become independent of energy imports by exploiting marine gas hydrate deposits near their own coasts. The technology for production, however, is not yet available. Furthermore, the risks to climate stability and hazards to marine habitats associated with extraction of the methane hydrates must first be clarified.


Yes, it seems the DANGER of extracting methane hydrates has not been "CLARIFIED" enough. Neither the Permian Extinction geological record nor the PETM (PaleoceneĖEocene Thermal Maximum) geological record has "clarified" the methane issue enough.

Hello? Is this, a more recent pre-human epoch, CLARIFICATION enough for you fellows providing your business friendly "World Ocean Review ", claiming, among other wonders of optimistic prose, that the sea level is only going to rise about 180 cm by century's end?

The following alarming, but still too conservative, MIT study EXCLUDES the ABRUPT climate change positive feedback loop effects we are now beginning to experience.

Do they think this MIT study needs "clarification"?

And the DANGER of an acidified ocean to most marine species, which will clearly be exacerbated by the methane bomb, has not been clarified? Didn't Professor Gerardo Ceballos, lead author of a study published in June of 2015 on the Sixth Mass Extinction we are now entering, with particular emphasis on marine mammal extinction threats, get the word?

I think he and his fellow scientists CLARIFIED the methane issue AND the CO2 pollution issue rather well. For those that do not get it, the CO2 pollution, now baked in, is already threatening marine mammals with extinction. When methane hydrates are added to the mix from a warmed ocean, acidification will accelerate and trigger anoxic conditions throughout the ocean water column, thereby destroying the food chain. That is a death sentence for most non-microscopic marine life and a large portion of the microscopic oxygen producing microscopic phytoplankton as well.

These scientifically challenged, insultingly naive, business friendly, bland statements sold as "sober advice" are precisely the kind of double talk that has placed humanity in the polluted situation it finds itself.

Some have blamed the scientific community.

They forget that scientists are mostly employees. They forget that businesses gag their reports or keep their published, peer reviewed papers from the public on a regular basis. So the criminally negligent here are business leaders, not scientists.

My experience with reading these big picture reviews of our terribly polluted situation is that they seem to feel obligated to give some peppy, optimistic, happy talk at the end.

Do these people understand what "business as usual" means? It appears that either they don't or willfully avoid doing so.

The IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) has a scientific name for Business as Usual. They have modeled it. They have a number for it. It's called the RCP-8.5. RCP stands for Representative Concentration Pathway.

Business as usual is a death sentence for over 75% (or more) of life on Earth.

The people that defend business as usual are deluded. There is evidence, which I will present, that even the RCP-8.5 scenario is too conservative. And yet the methane issue needs "clarification"?

Dr. Scott Goetz (Deputy Director and Senior Scientist of the Woods Hole Research Center) has that thousand yard stare for a reason.


Friends, there is a crime being committed. But the guiltiest parties do not want to pay for their share of the damage. And that is why these reviews lack the urgency that they need to have in order to successfully convince government policy makers to alter our destructive trajectory.

But I have discussed that in my recent article, Dianoia is sine qua non to a viable biosphere.  So, I will move on to other matters of concern to humanity.

Global shipping

Human civilization has come to rely on the relatively inexpensive movement of millions of tons of cargo over the oceans.

It is difficult or impossible to avoid a collapse without the use of the oceans.

To underline the importance of cargo shipping as the lifeblood of civilization, you need to look at the massive amount of tonnage these ships move globally on a daily basis.

Tankers, bulk carriers and container ships are the most important means of transportation of our time. Each year they carry billions of tonnes of goods along a few principal trade routes. Containerization has revolutionized global cargo shipping, bringing vast improvements in efficiency.

Throughout history the oceans have been important to people around the world as a means of transportation. Unlike a few decades ago, however, ships are now carrying goods rather than people.

Deadweight tonnage (abbreviated to dwt) or tons deadweight (TDW) is a measure of how much mass a ship is carrying or can safely carry; it does not include the weight of the ship.

Agelbert NOTE: Please take note of the caveat, "safely carry".  More on what that means later.

In terms of carrying capacity in dwt,

tankers account for 35 per cent,

bulk carriers account for 35 per cent,

container ships 14 per cent,

general cargo ships 9 per cent

and passenger liners less than 1 per cent.

In all, the global merchant fleet has a capacity of just under 1192 million dwt.

Shipping Activity of Tankers, Cargo and Cruise Ships on October 12, 2015:

The growth of the global merchant fleet according to type of vessel (as at 1 January [sic]) 2009.

There is a LOT of shipping out there and a LOT of ships. If the above graphics have not brought home to you how much shipping is going on 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, take a look at this:

In summary, this is what is out there going hither and yon across the oceans on a regular basis:
Singapore anchorage

Most of those affordable products in our homes are a direct result of a the uninterrupted global lifeblood of efficient blue ocean shipping. If that shipping was no longer possible, global civilization would be impossible because it would be unaffordable. It is, therefore, extremely important to ensure that human civilization can use those oceans for routine cargo transportation. 

The oceans, as was pointed out earlier in this article, are a giant heat sink. The more CO2 we pump into the air, the hotter the oceans get. When the oceans get hotter, they become more active. This means trouble for shipping.

Insurance companies do not like that. They analyze the risks of blue water shipping and track any trends that might increase those risks. They have actuaries that pay a lot of attention to losses of insured ships.

All commercial shipping is insured. You and I are billed for insuring, not just the merchant fleets, but the military ships too! That's what the "defense budgets" lobbied for by all those welfare queen corporations, constantly whining about that "dangerous world out there", are all about.

Well, it looks like all shipping is going to find out how DANGEROUS the oceans, not some invented threat about bellicose humans, can be. The insurance actuaries already know that the "terrorist" or piracy threat on the high seas is insignificant compared to the threat of sinking from rough seas.

Of course you haven't read that in the papers. But you will read it here. And I will provide evidence for it.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. To understand what is happening in the oceans today, we need to go back in time about 20,000 years. We need to go back to the Last Glacial Maximum.

WHY? Because the sea state, as well as the sea level, is a function of the average global temperature. In addition, the vegetation changes that accompany changes in the average global temperature can have deleterious effects on the sea state, totally separate from the dire extinction threat these temperature changes represent to marine organisms.

The Environmental Change Model (ECM)

The following series of graphics deals with accurately modeled representations of the climate in a large part of the Northern Hemisphere centered on the Arctic. A link to the science and the source is provided. The average global temperature and pertinent data on the ice cover and types of vegetation is provided. Of particular importance to the reader are the different types of Tundra coverage. The legend has color codes for the graphical representations.

NOTE: The Greek letter "DELTA" ="Δ". It is used in science to mean, "Change in". The referenced average global temperature is what we have today (about 15 degrees Centigrade = T).

So, ΔT = - 6C is a change in average temperature of minus 6 degrees centigrade from today. THAT was when there was a two mile high glacier sheet edge near what is now New York City. That was also when the oceans were 120 meters = 394 feet lower than they are today.


Notice how much dry and moist Tundra there was.
Notice the range and size of the types of forests and the polar desert coverage too. At a glance you can see that this was a very dry world in comparison to our world.

Fast forward to ΔT = - 0.5C.
This was the Little Ice Age of 1850. That was just before the industrial pollution revolution had gotten up to full biosphere trashing speed.

Sea level is close to the present level. Notice how the forest cover has changed. Notice how the Tundra moved north as the ice retreated. Notice how the forests and the forest Tundra transition changed.

Tundra responds in one of two ways when it goes above freezing. It has to do with the available oxygen. If there isn't enough in the soil, the microbes resort to anaerobic metabolism and make lots of methane. This is NOT methane locked in the Tundra. This is NEW methane. This is unrelated to the methane hydrates frozen on the ocean bottom, but it is still an additional feedback mechanism that increases the RATE of atmospheric heating. So these mechanisms are, by definition, not linear. They can become self reinforcing. That means they can go exponential.

Below, please find, the world we all grew up in (ΔT = 0C.). I have labeled some areas for clarity. The Tundra continues to shrink, as does the ice coverage. The forest transition area creeps north and the forests grow along with the prairie grass covered areas. There is less ice.

Which brings us the IPCC RCP-8.5 scenario labeled "Business as Usual".

This scenario is considered "worst case". It does not expect us to hit  ΔT = plus 2C until 2050. The boundless optimism of the IPCC sounds a lot like those fellows doing the "World Ocean Review" that mentioned the methane "issue" needed "clarification" right after they admitted that the PRESENT conditions were causing the extinction of most marine animals.  zimg]http://www.pic4ever.com/images/gaah.gif[/img

Please look at this graph:

The line with the number "1" is the  IPCC RCP-8.5 scenario. The temperature increases in lines 2 and 3 ARE NOT in the IPCC RCP-8.5 scenario.

ΔT = plus 2C is considered extremely dangerous.

The IPCC projects a mere 0.5 meters sea level increase by 2050. But the July 2015 study that I reference in the graphic claims a sea level rise greater or equal to 6 meters (over 19 feet!) is evidenced in the geologic record for this type of temperature rise.

The IPCC projected sea ice decline will give you more context to understand why it is unrealistic to believe that we will not hit the  ΔT = plus 2C until 2050.

But nevertheless, the IPCC RCP-8.5 scenario for ΔT = plus 2C is instructive because the Tundra is disappearing. You know what that means for increased methane release, don't you?

A note about the word, "Equilibrium" on the graphic: The word "Equilibrium" means that the full effects of the temperature change are being felt throughout the planet. Glaciologists had previously thought that "equilibrium" effects on ice sheets took centuries or millennia.

Now, because of empirical observations on the Greenland ice sheet, Antarctica and various glaciers in the world, they have come to accept that equilibrium is reached in decades or in years, depending on the temperature anomaly increase. As you know, or should know, the polar regions have warmed over 3C MORE than the rest of the planet in the last 50 years. 

The huge differential was not plugged in to the IPCC models so they are too conservative on ice retreat and sea level rise. So, if somebody tells you that all this is a long way off, they are uninformed or working for the fossil fuel industry.

I will return to the dangers of the ΔT = plus 2C (and beyond) world in a moment.

For now, I wish to show you the rest of the IPCC RCP-8.5 scenario projections. Please remember that they are conservative projections and the effects portrayed will most likely arrive 25 years or more earlier than predicted. Also please remember that the actual sea level increase (see graphic below),

Science 10 July 2015: Vol. 349 no. 6244 DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa4019
Sea-level rise due to polar ice-sheet mass loss during past warm periods

according to the July 2015 paper referenced previously, will be several METERS, not feet, above the predictions.

ΔT = plus 3C

Sometime after the loss of the ice cap, all the Tundra will have thawed. ALL the trapped gases, be they CO2 or CH4, will be released. Added grasses absorbing CO2 will not be enough to counteract the warming acceleration.

There are those who expect a negative feedback from the stopping of the thermohaline oceanic current circulation (stopped by all the cold fresh water melted off the Greenland ice cap into the oceans). Perhaps that will help slow the heating (north of about 45 degrees latitude - below that they will roast even more!) for a decade or so. But it will do nothing to calm the ocean surface.

ΔT = plus 4C

The worst effect is that Arctic ocean bottom frozen clathrates will thaw and the methane will be released. The planet will continue warming increasingly faster past  ΔT = plus 4C.

That will exacerbate ocean conditions even more. With more and more heat energy present, the ocean surface will get increasingly more turbulent. And we will already be well past the ΔT = plus 2C mark.

As evidenced by the two referenced scientific studies, both published recently this year (2015), and the woefully conservative IPCC predictions on the rate of the North Polar Ice Cap retreat, Antarctic and Greenland ice cap melt rates, and temperature rise rate, sea level will most likely rise a minimum of 6 meters within 10 years, not 35 years. We are talking about 2025, not 2050, for a ΔT = plus 2C world. We are not preparing adequately for that.

For those who will point to the increase in size of the floating ice around Antarctica as evidence that the Earth is not really warming, I beg to differ.

The fact that the Antarctic land mass IS losing ice has been measured with satellites. It is losing ice because of global warming. It is true that the floating ice around Antarctica has increased and will continue to increase as long as the Antarctic land mass is shedding melt water.

This is because of two factors. The first one is that there are very high winds around Antarctica, unimpeded by any land mass. The second factor is that fresh water freezes more rapidly on the ocean surface than salty water.

That's why salt is spread on roads in winter. On the ocean, the water molecules must rid themselves of the sodium and chloride ions dissolved in them before they can freeze. All the ice floating on the oceans is water ice. It has no salt in it.

And as long as that floating ice is the product of melt water from the Antarctic land mass, it will ADD to sea level.

And when the sea level goes up just 6 feet, never mind the 19 feet or more increase expected with CURRENT CO2 levels, all shipping port facilities (and most coastal airport facilities too!) in the world are no longer usable without gargantuan and heroic efforts requiring trillions of dollars in costs for every foot the land and port infrastructure must be raised.

It seems that the countries (see every industrialized country on the planet) dragging their feet on CO2 reduction actions do not understand this. There are, as of this writing, over 140 countries investing trillions of dollars in port facilities.

No, they aren't raising the level of the port facilities to prepare for rapidly rising sea levels. They are trying to cash in on container shipping by building more container shipping infrastructure.   

Don't these governments listen to their climate scientists?

End of PART ONE.

Climate Change, Blue Water Cargo Shipping and Predicted Ocean Wave Activity: PART TWO

for reading this article. Have a good day.
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 17, 2017, 05:16:21 pm »

Agelbert NOTE: Here you can view a discussion of biodiversity, climate change and the impact on Africa.   

Also there is a discussion of biomass bio-energy and how it can replace fossil fuels.

Biological Extinction | Discussion #16

Casina Pio IV

Published on Mar 2, 2017

How to Save the Natural World on Which We Depend

PAS-PASS Workshop
Casina Pio IV, 27 February-1 March 2017

Agelbert NOTE: The first speaker in the first video in the series pointedly singled out the meter reading (see below)
of most of TPTB in regard to those most adversely impacted by deleterious Climate Change, even though TPTB actually are TOTALLY responsible for visiting this damage on the the biosphere.

The first speaker goes on to say that if this problem of greedy nationalism and lack of empathy is not solved, we might as well give up.

I agree with him that the problem is one of lack of ethics, not lack of resources.

Biological Extinction | Discussion #1

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 17, 2017, 02:54:31 pm »

Biological Extinction | Discussion #7

Casina Pio IV

Published on Mar 2, 2017

How to Save the Natural World on Which We Depend

PAS-PASS Workshop
Casina Pio IV, 27 February-1 March 2017

Agelbert NOTE: Technofixes, so far, have always eventually failed because the central issue is an ethical one, not a resource availability one, which is merely the symptom of unethical behavior by TPTB. Technofixes have just kicked the resource can down the road.

While we ARE tool makers, and will never escape that propensity to tinker, we also can choose to be ethical about our tools or unethical. If technology is applied ethically (i.e. by ensuring the protection of ALL the species affected that are known to provide a healthy habitat for humans), then technology could be a wise choice. However, if we don't learn to add and subtract with biosphere math, we are doomed.

I am in the process of posting various videos on a  recent Biological Extinction conference attended by eminent scientists, economists and scholars. They include many hours of no bullshit hard facts, thankfully free of profit over planet polluter propaganda from the fossil fuel industry crooks and liars. There is no fossil fuel pie in the sky at that conference. There are over 15 videos, some as short as 27 minutes, some as long as nearly two hours. The only major gripe I have, and that is with a very small portion of the conference, is the push by the Swiss to celebrate all things GMO (for the poor in India and Africa and China  ;)) when the Swiss DO NOT eat GMO foods. So, the Monsanto money has biased the Swiss, unfortunately.

But overall, the conference is excellent. One eminent scientist lady (Dr. Lubchenco) describes our situation as a "death of a thousand cuts" global degradation of the biosphere. She calls the oceans the "Wet West" analogous to the "Wild West" term, because the pollution, overfishing and just plain exploiting of everything is at the "anything goes" level.

Renewable Revolution
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 16, 2017, 02:29:10 pm »

Tomorrow is Yesterday...
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 13, 2017, 09:06:14 pm »

Agelbert NOTE: Learn about biological stability of systems, negative feedbacks, positive feedbacks, population trends, ocean acidification and the very important issue of increasing anoxic (oxygen starved) conditions in the oceans directly caused by the continued burning of fossil fuels in the video below:

Biological Extinction | Discussion #11

Casina Pio IV

Published on Mar 2, 2017
How to Save the Natural World on Which We Depend PAS-PASS Workshop
Casina Pio IV, 27 February-1 March 2017

On our 4.54 billion year old planet, life is perhaps as much as 3.7 billion years old, photosynthesis and multi-cellularity dozens of times independently around 3.0 billion years old, and the emergence of plants, animals, and fungi onto land, by at least the Ordovician period, perhaps 480 million years ago, forests appearing around 370 million years ago, and the origin of modern groups such as mammals, birds, reptiles, and land plants subsequently. The geological record shows that there have been five major extinction-events in the past, the first of them about 542 million years ago, and suggests that 99% of the species that ever lived (5 billion of them?) have become extinct. The last major extinction event occurred about 66 million years ago, at the end of the Cretaceous Period, and, in general, the number of species on earth and the complexity of their communities has increased steadily until near the present.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 12, 2017, 11:48:02 pm »

Security Experts Identify 12 Likely Triggers of War as the Planet Warms
Lorraine Chow 09 June 2017

Climate change isn't just causing glaciers to melt, sea levels to rise and forests to set fire. It has becoming increasingly evident that Earth's rising temperatures also threatens international security.

In fact, an analysis released Friday by the Center for Climate and Security has identified 12 "epicenters," or categories, where the world's rising temperatures could trigger major global conflict.

"Any one of the climate and security epicenters can be disruptive," said Caitlin Werrell, co-president of the Center for Climate and Security and editor of the report, Epicenters of Climate and Security: The New Geostrategic Landscape of the Anthropocene. "Taken together, however, these epicenters can present a serious challenge to international security as we understand it."

The categories include eroding state sovereignty, low-lying nations going underwater, as well as the disruption in the global coffee trade that employs 125 million people worldwide.

Previous studies have identified how terrorist groups in certain regions are taking advantage of increasingly scarce natural resources such as water and food as a "weapon of war." Additionally, a U.S. military report from 2014 called climate change a "catalyst for conflict" and a "threat multiplier." President Obama once said that "no challenge poses a great threat than climate change, and it's an "immediate risk to our national security."

Meanwhile, President Trump and many top officials in his administration brush off or reject the science of climate change. Conservative media has also mocked the idea that climate change is related to the growth of terrorism. And let's not forget Trump's middle finger to the world when he dropped the U.S. out of the Paris climate agreement, which has been signed by every nation on Earth except war-torn Syria and Nicaragua, which didn't think the accord was strong enough.

The Center for Climate and Security report stresses why mitigating climate change should be the highest priority for governments and institutions around the world.

"This report demonstrates the kind of cross-sectorial thinking needed to anticipate and mitigate climate-related systemic risksórisks that will be disruptive at local, national, regional and global levels," said Francesco Femia, co-president of the Center for Climate and Security and editor of the report. "Security risks thousands of miles away can have an effect on us at home. Understanding that can help advance preventive rather than reactive solutions."

These are the 12 epicenters identified by the security experts in the report:

1. Eroding State Sovereignty: An inability to absorb the stresses of a rapidly-changing climate may erode state sovereignty (Francesco Femia and Caitlin Werrell);

2. Disappearing Nations: Many low-lying nations are in danger of being completely submerged by rising seas (Andrew Holland and Esther Babson);

3. Conflict Over Melting Water Towers: Climate change can increase tensions and conflict among the 4 billion people dependent on mountain ďwater towers" (Troy Sternberg);

4. Conflict Over Fisheries: A warming ocean is driving critical fish stocks into contested waters, contributing to conflict between states (Michael Thomas);

5. Tensions in a Melting Arctic: Increased activity in a melting Arctic raises new security and geopolitical risks (Katarzyna Zysk and David Titley);

6. Weaponized Water: As climate change exacerbates water stress, non-state actors, including international terrorist organizations, are increasingly using water as a weapon (Marcus King and Julia Burnell);

7. Disrupted Strategic Trade Routes: Climate change will place strains on maritime straits that are critical for global trade and security (Adam H. Goldstein and Constantine Samaras);

8. Compromised Coffee Trade: Climate change may also disrupt critical global trading networks, like the coffee trade. which currently supports 125 million people worldwide (Shiloh Fetzek);

9. More (and Worse) Pandemics: Climate change may increase the likelihood and range of pandemics, which could threaten global security (Kaleem Hawa);

10. Flooded Coastal Megacities: Rapidly expanding coastal megacities are threatened by climate impacts like sea level rise, which can destabilize nations (Janani Vivekenanda and Neil Bhatiya);

11. Increased Displacement and Migration: Climate change is becoming a more significant driver of migration and displacement (Robert McLeman);

12. Enhanced Nuclear Risks: Climate change, nuclear security, and policies that are not sensitive to both simultaneously, can increase regional and global security threats (Christine Parthemore)

Here is a video introduction to the report:

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 09, 2017, 07:34:48 pm »

Agelbert NOTE: The first half of the program (CAROLYN BAKER Ė THE AMERICAN SHADOW) is rather depressing. I am a Christian and all Christians are branded as deniers living in La La Land. Anyone that has seen what I post knows I am not denying the threat of Catastrophic climate change. I think a REAL Christian understands that our situation is because of humanity's sinful lack of responsibility for not being good stewards of the environment. The "Christians" in the USA that pretend God is going to "take care of it" are PSEUDO-Christians. That is, they are NOT Christians; they are hyper-nationalist clueless morons that worship a flag instead of the Lord Jesus Christ. And, yeah, most of the "Christian" churches in the USA are exactly like that. But I won't change my label because right wing fascists have co-opted it for profit over biosphere propaganda purposes. Carolyn Baker is right when she quoted George Carlin that "America is an Oil company with an Army". But I wish she would not cast Christianity in such a negative light.  :(

The second half of the podcast with Naomi Oreskes is far more informative. 

She makes it clear that the claim by so many scientists, and many other, otherwise objective people  ;), that emotion is "irrational" is exactly backwards. 

Scientists framing scientific studies in statistical terms and refusing to use stark and strong terms like "dire threat" or "Existential threat" is the norm because using words like "bad" is supposed to be "irrational". 

Neuroscience has now proven that framing a threat in dry, unemotional terms is actually a DISSERVICE to the scientific method because it results in less awareness of the threat by those communicated with.

Emotion is actually sine qua non for rational argument, the exact opposite of what the "common wisdom" of the scientific community normally sticks to like a religion.

Consequently, the scientific community has FAILED to convince the leaders of the nations of the world to objectively weigh the threat in terms of the catastrophic damage that is unavoidable when governments support the polluters instead of stopping the polluters from polluting.

THE IRRATIONAL FEAR scientists have of being labelled "emotional" people "crying wolf" has contributed to increasing the probability of our extinction due to lack of timely action to stop and reverse runaway Global Greenhouse Warming.

It's TIME for scientists to become RATIONAL about there responsibility to show a LOT of emotion    on any issue that warrants it.

Not doing so is IRRATIONAL behavior, not "prudent, measured, dry, reasonable, scientific, etc." as we, who have any science background, were taught.

This flawed method is exactly what the polluters  have used against the dissemination of the reality of our plight due to the burning of fossil fuels.


In our second interview, scientist and author Naomi Oreskes takes us into the future when Trump wins and we all do nothing about climate change. She calls it the track to extinction.

Oreskes is a leading American earth scientist in her own right. Sheís also a historian of science. Currently Naomi  is Professor of the History of Science and Affiliated Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences, at Harvard University.


You can learn more about Naomi here in her Wikipedia entry. One of her most cited papers is the 2004 ďThe Scientific Consensus on Climate ChangeĒ published in the journal Science.

Oreskes is the author of the seminal book ďMerchants of DoubtĒ shows how industry hires scientists to create doubt in the public mind about well-understood dangers.

This strategy was crafted for the tobacco industry (and worked for almost 40 years) Ė but then applied by the chemical industry for many toxins, including DDT. It was further adapted by energy and electricity companies to throw doubt on global warming science.

In 2010, I interviewed Dr. Oreskes.  You can download the interview here or listen to it, below.

In 2014, Oreskes brought out her new book ďThe Collapse of Western Civilization: A View from the FutureĒ. The book description is:

ďThe year is 2393, and the world is almost unrecognizable. Clear warnings of climate catastrophe went ignored for decades, leading to soaring temperatures, rising sea levels, widespread drought andófinallyóthe disaster now known as the Great Collapse of 2093, when the disintegration of the West Antarctica Ice Sheet led to mass migration and a complete reshuffling of the global order. Writing from the Second Peopleís Republic of China on the 300th anniversary of the Great Collapse, a senior scholar presents a gripping and deeply disturbing account of how the children of the Enlightenmentóthe political and economic elites of the so-called advanced industrial societiesófailed to act, and so brought about the collapse of Western civilization.Ē
Itís all science-based fiction. Climate change is shown as it ramps up, while humans continue in denial, as we do now. A top scientist makes it real.

Listening to this interview by Francesca Rheannon, Oreskes seemed to perfectly capture our present, just as Donald Trump announced the United States would pull out of the Paris climate agreement. I couldnít say it better.


The authors of the Paris agreement cleverly realized that democracies can change course with any election. So the agreement contains a clause that allows a country to exit, but only four years after filing to leave. That means the United States will technically be part of the agreement, right up to the 2020 general election.

Itís still possible a new President could repair the damage. Or is it? We donít know if other countries will want to bail out of the Paris accord, following Trumpís lead. So far, the opposite is happening. Nicaragua, which didnít sign because they didnít think the agreement went far enough, is now saying they will join. And as you know, almost a hundred America Mayors and Governors have announced they will continue to act to help America reach itís emission reduction goals. Will Trumpís action stimulate faster reductions? Weíll see.


On the Pacifica Radio Network, Francesca Rheannon produces the series ďWriterís voiceĒ. On Pacifica, I found this about Francesca:

ďFrancesca Rheannon is an independent radio producer and show host. She is producer and co-host of Writerís Voice, a talk show about writing, writers and their works, that has been on the air since 2004. She also is a freelance broadcast news reporter, who has produced features for public radio stations, Sprouts on Pacifica, and The Homelessness Marathon. She lives in South Hadley, MA.Ē

Find all her great programs at writersvoice.net.

We are out of time. If you can afford to help this radio show keep going, donations of any amount are always welcome. Radio stations do not pay me for this program. Your donations help me provide Radio Ecoshock free to everyone, all over the world.

Iím Alex Smith. Thank you for listening to Radio Ecoshock.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 05, 2017, 08:10:16 pm »

Massive 12,000-Year-Old Methane Blowout Craters In Arctic Ocean Still Venting Methane, Research Finds

June 5th, 2017 by James Ayre


Enormous methane expulsions from the Arctic Oceanís seafloor some 12,000 years ago created hundreds of kilometers-wide craters :o  in the region ó which are apparently still to this day leaking large amounts of methane ó according to new research published in the journal Science.

ďThe massive craters were formed around 12,000 years ago, but are still seeping methane and other gases.Ē Illustration: Andreia Plaza Faverola

Full article with additional graphics:

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 03, 2017, 06:06:06 pm »

The 6th Mass Extinction Event is here * Geologic History shows why CO2 caused Global Warming before
Marc Haneburght

Published on Jun 1, 2017

Runaway Climate Change is causing exponential major flooding (happening now) due to more heavy rainfall on Earth, and are taking too much nutrients by rivers into the oceans, creating anoxia events. A deadly purple sulfur bacteria. Too much is never a good thing. It's what made oil deposits happen in the past.

In the past the dinosaurs roamed the planet during the start of an extinction event, now it will be us. The next clever beings might learn in time what we did wrong, maybe not.

The planet might turn into Mars because of nobody being at the controls of nuclear power plants that will destroy the ozone with massive amounts of radiation.

Oceanic anoxic events or anoxic events (anoxia conditions) refer to intervals in the Earth's past where portions of oceans become depleted in oxygen (O2) at depths over a large geographic area. During some of these events, euxinia, waters that contained H2S hydrogen sulfide, developed. Although anoxic events have not happened for millions of years, the geological record shows that they happened many times in the past.

Anoxic events coincided with several mass extinctions and may have contributed to them. These mass extinctions include some that geobiologists use as time markers in biostratigraphic dating. Many geologists believe oceanic anoxic events are strongly linked to slowing of ocean circulation, climatic warming, and elevated levels of greenhouse gases.

Global warming. The biggest story ever. Too big for the general public.  >:(

Agelbert NOTE: MUST SEE video! To skip ancient history, begin at the 32 minute mark.

This video is tremendously educational and instructive because it demonstrates exactly how our scientists accurately determined CO2 levels in the distant past, as long ago as 200 million years, when today's oil deposits are believed to have been formed.

How did they do it? ??? They found 200 million year old fossils of a plant called a Ginko, that did NOT "evolve" AT ALL  ;D, all the way to the present (leaf structure is identical to modern Ginko leaves).

Permian Ginko leaf fossil on left  - Modern Ginko Leaf on right

The Ginko has pores in the underside of the leaves. The number of pores it forms is a function, as has been determined by empirical evidence, of the available atmospheric CO2. IOW, the more  CO2, the more pores.

The fossilized Ginkos leaf pore totals, exactly as the leaf pore totals of modern Ginko test plants grown in increasingly higher CO2 containing atmospheres, evidence 4 times the CO2 level of pre-industrial human civilization. THAT was an ice free world.

HOWEVER, that was NOT a "tropical paradise", as the fossil fuel fascist propagandist crooks and liars want you to believe.

Once the ice is GONE, some death dealing chemical processes begin until just about every macroscopic oxygen breathing life form is dead. It begins with the death of most of the species populating the Marine Trophic Pyramid. HOW? ???

When the ice is gone, the ocean currents that circulate oxygen throughout the oceanic depths in a 500 year cycle come to a HALT. This makes more and more parts of the ocean anoxic, so all the oxygen breathers die or flee closer to the still oxygenated shallows.

Meanwhile, the high CO2 levels acidify the oceans, killing off the Oxygen producing phytoplankton (can't make their Calcium Carbonate structure - like mollusks also can't - despite having more CO2 "food" available) that had become widespread with the early initial increase of CO2 levels (see massive algae blooms going on as we speak).

The dead Phytoplankton begin to sink through the shallows, triggering bacterial feeding frenzy activity of a type of purple bacteria that decomposes phytoplankton, hates oxygen, but needs sunlight (it uses the sun but excretes H2S - Hydrogen sulfide poisonous gas, not  oxygen).

So THEN the shallows become anoxic too. Then what is left of the oxygen breathers die. This not "just evolution", as the idiots who compare our fossil fuel based civilization's stupid and suicidal greedy activity to massive volcanic eruptions, as if  humans have as little free will as a volcano, ridiculously claim. But the imbeciles who wish to perpetuate the fossil fuel burning status quo frequently resort to this craven attempt to avoid responsibility for the harm being done.

Allowing the CO2 to get so high that it triggers the death of most marine life is Genocidal Criminal Negligence.

What just happened in the death of the Great Barrier reef is just the beginning of the heating process resulting from too much CO2. There is still a lot of ice. There is still oceanic circulation and oxygenation.

But ALREADY, JUST THE HEAT is killing the most important marine life nurseries in the oceans.

SO WHAT, you might ask. The dinosaurs were around for millions of years. Don't we have lots of time too?   

WHY? ???

Because the RATE we are putting CO2 in the atmosphere is THOUSANDS of TIMES FASTER than when the massive volcanic eruptions caused CO2 triggered extinctions!

When the  ice is gone and that rotten egg  smell from ubiquitous  Hydrogen sulfide poisonous gas reaches your nostrils, expect a VERY brief growth industry in canned oxygen.  But don't expect the Fossil Fuel Fascist "industry"   to admit they destroyed the biosphere for short term profit.

Coming soon to your home: DOOM WEEK ON PLANET EARTH

The Fossil Fuelers   DID THE Climate Trashing, human health depleting CRIME,   but since they have ALWAYS BEEN liars and conscience free crooks, they are trying to AVOID   DOING THE TIME or     PAYING THE FINE!     Don't let them get away with it! Pass it on!   
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 03, 2017, 02:45:40 pm »

It's probably too late for most of us to materially change things for the better. This message from some very good, decent and hard working people trying to convince the world in general, and the USA in particular, to learn to add and subtract in biosphere math, pretty much sums it up:  :(


June 2, 2017

Trump to Paris, World: Itís Not You, Itís US. Only US. Ever.   

Well friends, itís been quite a ride, and itís far from over. But weíre in no mood for snarky analysis.
Instead of our regular sass, indulge us, please, for a moment. Weíd like to get a little personal. (Well, third person plural, anyway.)
Like many of you, weíve dedicated a lot of time on Paris. Years of work went into laying the groundwork for the global agreement. Getting reporters familiar with the nuances of international diplomacy, working with scientists to quantify emission scenarios, helping grassroots groups and frontline communities tell their stories, and so much more. Itís been a core part of our work, and our lives, for years.
All, it feels, for nothing. Cast aside by a con man who got conned.
But did we fail? Have we lost? Was our effort, the communityís, the scientistsí, the mediaís, was it all a waste?
Maybe it was. But we tried. We poured our hearts and souls and brains into this work, day after day after day. Long hours connecting with scientists and reporters all over the world, so many weekends responding to one baseless attack after another, so many nights spent trying not to think about the fact that if we donít do our job right, the only thing at stake is the long term suitability of the planet for sustaining life. No biggie. No stress. The weight of the world totally isnít on our shoulders. (At least we share that burden with so many wonderful people.)
But unfortunately, there is little that could be done to stop fossil fuel companies from funding politicians to do their bidding. Thereís little more we can do to convince Murdoch (and now Mercer) media to tell the truth about the climate, no matter how many times we point out their lies. And it takes more than a few years to undo the damage of decades of concerted efforts by the Koch brothers and others to politicize and delegitimize science and evidence in the eyes of conservatives, swayed by deceptively simple talking points.
So excuse us while we take some time to lament the unraveling of what weíve spent years building. Weíre sure youíre doing the same. This is certainly a setback, but not the end of the line. The fight continues, as it has and as it will.

With that, weíll leave you for the weekend with a message we desperately need to hear, and one you probably could stand to hear as well: Itís not your fault.

Itís not your fault. T-150

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 01, 2017, 06:18:10 pm »

Nixon oversaw US Peak Crude Oil, when in 1970 the Texas Railroad Commission who effectively limited Texan oil production to maintain price stability, lifted all restrictions on production. Nixon could forsee that decreasing US oil production would lead to increasing oil imports and huge outgoings of Dollars.  So he decoupled the Dollar from Gold allowing it to float, effectively removing all limits on money-printing. He also realised that publicly acknowledging Peak Oil would have dramatic effects on the oil majors future prospects, and share price, so Peak Oil was never to be acknowledged.

By 1977 the situation had become:

Carter's "Fireside chat" of 1977 shows he clearly understood about Peak Oil and its consequences.

as did Obama's in his 2013 speech
What is true is that we canít just drill our way out of the energy and climate challenge that we face.  (Applause.)  Thatís not possible.

And while the climate challenge would bite some time after 2030   , the energy challenge will bite before 2020   . Which would worry you more? 

How could they NOT know, with all the experts and unpublished data that they have access to, and internal oil company forecasts for production that they are privy to? 

So Trump must know that too, even if he doesn't want to believe it. He probably knows the exact year that the Peak Oil problem will become impossible to hide, and what year the whole economy will collapse, and how much longer it can be put off by how much more money-printing. It's not something that can be set aside for idealogical reasons. The next crash will be the last.

Your grasp of the peak oil math is accurate, but your grasp of the relative importance of catastrophic climate change versus peak oil is woefully inaccurate, if not sadly upside down. WHY?

Before I answer that, please realize that that Big Oil, despite knowing the peak oil math, stubbornly have tried to cling to their UPSTREAM "business model". The following graphic is irrefutable evidence that Big Oil, HAVING THE MONEY to transition to clean energy, IGNORED their own peak oil research and DOUBLED DOWN on UPSTREAM (i.e. exploration for, and exploitation of, oil and gas sources   ) investments:

They certainly could have spent that 900 BILLION DOLLARS in Renewable energy, but greedily (and stupidly ) decided NOT TO on the basis of extending the day of reckoning for peak oil (and BLATANTLY ignoring the fact that said upstream activity would goose catastrophic climate change even more). So, that gigantic amount of money argues against all the claims you just made about Big Oil (and Trump) "knowing the score", even though Carter and Nixon DID know the score (Obama did NOT really know the score! His mealy mouthed attempts to do "all the above" in energy technologies was clear evidence of that.)

Yet, you continue to believe that Big Oil is acting rationally by giving more importance to fueling civilization than trying to stop polluting it to extinction. The two dangers cannot be weighed logically as you continue to attempt to do. Now to answer the "WHY?" I first presented to you above.

Let us assume, for the sake of non-argument, that your RCP 4.5 scenario assumptions, which is probably where you get the rationale for the year 2030 being the leading front of costly climate change impacts, are accurate (I think we are in RCP 8.5 or worse territory now, but we have argued that before and you are sticking with your conservative RCP 4.5 view no matter what.  :P ).

Peak civilization sustaining ENERGY (which is what you REALLY MEAN by "peak oil"  ;)) is, as you claim, a sort of light switch type (i.e. sudden) event that triggers a major collapse.

Of course we all want to avoid that. Of course, the trajectory we are on NOW will definitely produce that collapse eventually.

However, your estimate of the date of said collapse being around 10 years prior to the major catastrophic climate events is NOT a proper or reasonable rationale for prioritizing looking for more fossil fuels above transitioning to clean energy and banning fossil fuel use BECAUSE:

1) Lack of energy for most people to live a decent life will cause a lot of death and misery, but won't make us go extinct. After the main event, a new equilibrium will be established within a few decades or less. It is NOT the end of the world and should NOT be treated like the number one priority for the perpetuation of a viable biosphere and the human species.

2) Lack of energy will NOT cause multiple biosphere species extinctions, many of which WE NEED to avoid going extinct ourselves.

3) Catastrophic climate change will continue to WORSEN for over a CENTURY (or up to 1,000 YEARS!) after the first impacts are felt (as they are NOW, not in 2030, being felt).

I really do not see why this is so hard for you to grasp. We live in an interconnected system of biological activity. THAT is in DANGER. THAT is the first, 2nd, 3rd, (keep going for over a 100 years counting) PRIORITY  for action in the defense of the biosphere, if we wish to survive.

An integral part of surviving is to STOP POLLUTING THE PLANET. Any claim to "delaying" the collapse, as a rationale to engage in MORE oil and gas UPSTREAM investment and exploitation    , actually makes the collapse MORE LIKELY SOONER, in addition to increasing the probability of our extinction for not taking timely action to preserve the biosphere.

This is not all that hard to figure, Palloy. The fossil fuel "industry" doesn't want to let go of their "business model". So they keep making excuses that counteract the good advice of their own scientists. As long as the fossil fuelers like Putin and Exxon etc, et al call the shots and pull the Trump strings, we ARE SCREWED. Greed has destroyed their ability to reason. It's time you accepted that sad reality is based on irrational greed, not "peak oil" math.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: May 28, 2017, 05:26:22 pm »

Agelbert NOTE: Knarf is a Buddhist that lives a principled life in a monastery. I applaud his behavior though I do not share his beleifs.

I truly would want to see all Christians like Algebert "do the right thing". All Christians right now, do not understand the nature of love and compassion that AG and many other Religious people do. Most of the time the Religious person is just following the sheep like path that their "leaders" impress on them. We have all seen the the TV evangelist type, and the fallen from grace type, but most follow their leaders advice on how to act and they are usually driven by their mixed up ideas about their Religion. So, this unethical behavior that drove us to this point of collapse has little to do with heart of the message in Religion. If we dictate morality, and ethical behavior we have become like our enemies who dictate the way we go about trashing the earth's environment.

If we have a massive propaganda campaign saying "You have a choice!" "Do the right thing", I have a feeling that a few people might understand, but most have heard it, and have chosen to live with half baked ideas, and thereby have half baked actions and solutions. Religion aside, people can be knowledgeable, sincere, compassionate, and really care about our planet and where we are heading. It is up to the individual to grow into maturity, which right now is not happening to us humans. I don't see any way TPTB are going to change their agenda. They won't change their behavior even after massive protests and riots.

  If we act in an open minded way to each other about the facts and the suffering that surrounds us, and NOT project our egoistic notions onto these things, there might be a chance to turn a few, if not many people's mental grooves to a sane approach to living simply, and acting for the best way to solve our adolescent predispositions.

  I do not believe in Karma, reincarnation, reaping what you sow, or "justice" by a divine creator. In reality it just doesn't happen that way unless  the person uses the "fake news" approach. I think that when we all realize that we are basically ignorant of what life is about, and quit feeding ourselves like pigs and raping the earth, we might have a chance to create a habitable world and live in peace with each other. 

My friend, the issue is not now, or ever was, religion. I said that believing in God helps to understand that nature, which interacts with all life in a harmony humans can just barely grasp enough to follow, must be obeyed if we wish to do the right thing. The WRONG thing is what we are doing.

I agree religion will not help.

But until TPTB, regardless of what you or I think or believe, decide that we ARE doing the WRONG thing now by disobeying nature, we ARE DOOMED.

Knarf, when you are in a hole, it is logical and reasonable to stop digging. But first TPTB need to ADMIT we are in a hole. They haven't done that yet.

And if those 5 billion or so people on the bottom of the economic ladder all decide to listen to what you and I agree on and live responsibly and in harmony with each other and the biosphere, we are still doomed because the 17% or so on the top will continue to do 80% plus of the extinction coffee damage.

Whether you or I believe in Karma or retribution is irrelevant to TPTB. They know most people will die. They don't care, Knarf. They are intelliburros. Their scientists are grasping at silly Darwinian 'apex predator' straws to try to explain all this evil, self destructive behavior away.

If you do not wish to believe that evil exists, then that's up to you. But it is rather obvious to the casual observer that humans  engage in destructive behavior that will probably off our species. If that is not a consequence of MISSING THE MARK (i.e. sin), I don't know what is.

Actions have consequences and we have free will. Any scientist will agree without even bringing the issue of religion into the picture.

Our problem is lack of ethical behavior. We solve it or we are toast.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: May 28, 2017, 04:26:03 pm »

May 27, 2017, 03:49:13 AM

Agelbert Note: Quote from the above article:

Innovation does not solve problems, it creates them.

The above is an excellent example of a half-truth. The author is focusing, without mentioning it, on Dilworth's  idea that humans are too smart for their own good, as discussed in his the peer reviewed book Dilworth wrote showing how we-the-people had to pay about $468 a barrel  :o  :P (effective price to police the middle east for oil) in the FIRST Gulf war instead of using that money to become independent of Middle East oil. He showed how TPTB "justified"  that stupidity in the quote below:

Dilworth (2010-03-12). Too Smart for our Own Good (pp. 399-400). Cambridge University Press. Kindle Edition.

"As suggested earlier, war, for example, which represents a cost for society, is a source of profit to capitalists. In this way we can partly understand e.g. the American military expenditures in the Persian Gulf area. Already before the first Gulf War, i.e. in 1985, the United States spent $47 billion projecting power into the region. If seen as being spent to obtain Gulf oil, It AMOUNTED TO $468 PER BARREL, or 18 TIMES the $27 or so that at that time was paid for the oil itself.

In fact, if Americans had spent as much to make buildings heat-tight as they spent in ONE YEAR at the end of the 1980s on the military forces meant to protect the Middle Eastern oil fields, THEY COULD HAVE ELIMINATED THE NEED TO IMPORT OIL from the Middle East.

So why have they not done so? Because, while the $468 per barrel may be seen as being a cost the American taxpayers had to bear, and a negative social effect those living in the Gulf area had to bear, it meant only profits for American capitalists.
Note: I added the bold caps emphasis on the barrel of oil price, money spent in one year and the need to import oil from the Middle East.

Yes, making we-the-people pay for war and other polluter fun and games IS a form of INNOVATION that CREATES problems and certainly DOES NOT solve problems; it exacerbated TWO problems: 1) the pollution problem AND 2) the concentration of wealth in fewer hands democracy destroying problem.

But it continues to be a half truth. From Dilworth's point of view, the innovation in human medicine of washing our hands and other other methods of antisepsis CREATES a bigger problem than it solves, simply because that boosts the human population beyond the available resources. (see: bacteria consuming agar n a petri dish quicker as the population increases, thereby hastening their demise - despite the instinctive ring circling delay attempt).

To take that argument to its logical end, the "innovation" of a large brain that gave us tool making created more problems than it solved for our ancestors, who proceeded to kill and eat anything or anybody that was either in their way, was edible, or both.

However, despite the above logic, which boils down to "Humans, like T-Rex, just DO WHAT THEY DO",  the argument is flawed.

HOW SO ? ???

The argument ignores the FACT that at each and every innovation event in human history, a bifurcation of he future viability level of the species, projected just before that innovation, occurred. The ASS-U-MEption that a more stable biosphere would have been obtained had our population been kept in check by disease, dumbness or whatever cannot be proven because we didn't go that route. It's just an assumption, like the deep ecologists have that humans are a disease on earth and the biosphere will be better off without us.

True, innovations SEEM to increase the rate we use up available resources in a fixed biosphere area, which temporarily increases the species footprint on the biosphere while decreasing the long term viability of that species as its increasingly bigger footprint crowds out the other species it needs to survive.

They way things look NOW, the trajectory is extinction for humans, of course. That cannot be denied by any person with critical thinking skills (unless they work for the fossil fuel industry - they don't hire people with those skills  ;D).

BUT, at each and every bifurcation brought by innovation, an ETHICS BASED QUESTION WAS ASKED AND ANSWERED BY TPTB. Consistently, corrupt leaders with short term horizons ignored the Precautionary Principle of Science. And as specialization in human fields of endeavor increased, less and less people in decision making authority at the top had the skills or the inclination to look at the total biosphere cause and effect picture to determine if the human innovation was deleterious to it, to our eventual detriment. And EVEN when an obvious detriment to life was evidenced, profit over people and planet prevailed.


So, are we doomed if we CONTINUE to allow TPTB to refuse to make ETHICAL BEHAVIOR sine qua non in our society?

Absolutely. But we are not doomed because we are self aware, can innovate and do stupid things. WE are doomed because we made a conscious CHOICE to do so. It's called SIN (missing the mark). We DO have free will, despite what many, like the deep ecologists, claim to the contrary. But all these modern Darwin worshiping "highly evolved" intelliburros out there want to eschew, demean, disdain, ridicule and reject forget all concepts of ethics, right and wrong, morality, the concept of SIN or absolutely anything that gets in the way of them doing their selfish thing.

So much do the intelliburros fastidiously cling to to their relativist and rebellious mindset, that rather than ADMIT humanity made mistakes, and needs to correct them through ethical behavior, they claim that we rigidly just DO WHAT WE DO and throw up their hands, as the author of the article is doing.

I wrote some time ago, when discussing Dilworth's information about the Fossil Fuel Industry Capitalists:

The Fracking, pollution and GW we are being assaulted with are SYMPTOMS of the DISEASE killing our biosphere, not the disease itself.

If we don't seriously address this DISEASE of Sh it Canned Ethics for Short Term Profits of the fossil fuel FOOLS that are despoiling our biosphere and accelerating planetary pollution, the big die offs (including large segments of the human population) begin at 2030.

This totally unjustified profit, never mind the needless lose of lives, then increases the power of the fossil fuel corporations to perpetuate a biosphere harming dirty fuel status quo. How? By "funding" politicians with rather large "donations" to keep renewable energy from competing with dirty energy.

If all this was just about power politics, I might not be that concerned. Humans, particularly the overly ambitious and aggressive ones, have always fought and schemed to control and fleece the population at large.
But now we know the future of our biosphere is at stake. Now we know the entire edifice of dirty energy is a knife in the back of the biosphere that will destroy our species and many others.

The system, as defined by the fossil fuel fascist dystopia that currently runs most of the human affairs among the 1 billion population in the developed world that is saddling the other 6 billion, who are totally free of guilt for causing it, with this climate horror we are beginning to experience, IS quite stubborn and does not wish to change the status quo.

Mother nature will force it to do so.

Whether it is done within the next two decades or not (i.e. a switch to 100% PLUS bioremediation Renewable Energy steady state economy) will dictate the size of the consequent die off, not only of humans but thousands of other species as well.

We are now in a climate cake that has been baked for about 1,000 years according to atmospheric, objective, proven with experimental data, science.

If the crash program to switch to renewable energy is to begin soon, I expect the trigger for the crash program will be the first ice free arctic summer (according to my estimates) in 2017. But millions of people demanding a transition to 100% renewable Energy will give us a fighting chance to win the Climate Victory.

You can help us leave dirty energy sources that are killing us behind.

All we have to do is use Common Sense, admit we were WRONG, and make ETHICAL BEHAVIOR sine qua non in human affairs.

We HAVE A CHOICE. But how can we make that choice if people no longer believe there is a difference between good and evil behavior? The short answer is that we can't. The apparently "easy" choice will always be taken. THAT IS WHAT GOT US HERE. THAT IS WHAT UNTHINKING, NON-TOOLMAKING, NON-SINNING BACTERIA DO in a petri dish with agar running out (after their instinctive ring 'circling' attempts collapse).


All we have to do is stop pretending otherwise. WE understand nature pretty well. It's time we obeyed her and put everybody who doesn't in jail. THAT is the INNOVATION in human affairs that would NOT create a bigger problem than the one it solved. You don't have to believe in God to admit you were wrong and that biosphere math MUST be our guide, but it helps;D

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: May 11, 2017, 07:15:33 pm »

Tony Seba on Disruptive Technologies at SeouLA 2017

Published on Apr 5, 2017

Stanford Instructor Tony Seba explained how major global industries such as energy and transportation will undergo a complete "disruption" by the year 2030 in an address to guests of the Pacific Council and the Korea Foundation in downtown Los Angeles on March 31, 2017.

The address was part of the inaugural SeouLA Forum, made possible by the generous support of the Korea Foundation. Following his remarks, a discussion with Mr. Seba was moderated by Jennifer Faust, executive director of the Pacific Council.

Learn more about the Pacific Council: www.pacificcouncil.org.

Agelbert NOTE: The WATER savings ALONE, PROVE that Renewable Energy is the ONLY energy we will use in the NEAR FUTURE.  ;D

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: April 30, 2017, 06:59:11 pm »

Will We Grow Tall?

Will food really be grown in tall terraced towers in the middle of town in the future? Can there be truly sustainable cities that produce all of their own food?

 This video is a brilliant visual collage of photographs and artist renderings of vertical farms and futuristic green cities.

 Remember, it must first be imagined before it can be created- so let's keep imagining any and all possibilities for growing food locally.

 That goes for right now-- and into the future!

 --Bibi Farber

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: April 24, 2017, 02:34:51 pm »

Agelbert NOTE: Republican Climate Change Denying Florida will eventually be swamped by the ocean, not just from sea level rise, but much sooner by SINKING from a DISSOLVING coral base.
There is a God.

How an Argument Led to a Big Discovery: An Interview with USGS Scientist Kim Yates

Posted On April 24, 2017 by Sarah Cooley

Dr. Kim Yates, research oceanographer with the U.S. Geological Survey. Credit: Benjamin Drummond for Ocean Conservancy. (at article link)

The Ocean Conservancy ocean acidification team has spent time in Florida over the past year talking with fishermen and scientists to better understand how changes in ocean chemistry are affecting Floridaís coastal communities and its marine resources, including its iconic coral reefs and fish. On our most recent visit, we interviewed Dr. Kim Yates, an oceanographer with the U.S. Geological Survey, who is an expert on ocean acidification impacts on coral reef ecosystems about vanishing sea floors and how arguing with a boat captain led her to a major scientific discovery.

Ocean Conservancy: Dr. Yates, how does ocean acidification affect coral reefs and the ecosystems around them?

Dr. Kim Yates: The animals that create coral reefs thrive in a particular range of pH and carbonate, which is a chemical they use to help build their skeletons. Reefs provide habitat for fish and other reef life, but the skeletons of reef organisms also naturally break down and make sand. And much of that sand supports a lot of ecosystems around the reef. That sand also helps nourish beaches along coral reef coastlines. Ocean acidification causes reefs to slow down their growth rate, and when that happens, they donít break down into as much sand that supports the surrounding ecosystems and even the beaches. And when the pH of seawater decreases from ocean acidification, it can actually even cause the sand thatís made out of that carbonate material to start dissolving.

OC: But corals only border some areas of Florida. Why should the whole state pay attention to ocean acidification?  ???

KY: One of the most unique and interesting things about the state of Florida is that our entire state sits on top of what we call a carbonate platform, or rock made out of the same material as coral skeletons. We donít know how ocean acidification is going to affect the bedrock that supports our entire state. When ocean acidification decreases the pH of seawater, it can cause that carbonate material to dissolve. So this problem of ocean acidification is not just localized to our coral reefs, or to our shellfish beds, itís a statewide problem for Florida.

OC: What inspired you to look at Floridaís bedrock and sand, and not just living corals?

KY: That research actually started with an argument I had with a boat captain. One day we were working out in the Florida Keys on a reef and I was snorkeling around, looking for a place to put some instrumentation down on the sea floor. And the captain told me to motion to him when I found a good place and he would bring to boat over, close enough so we could put the instrumentation on the sea floor. So I looked around, and I found the spot, and I motioned to the boat captain, but the boat captain wouldnít come over. And so I motioned to the boat captain again and he still wouldnít come over. And so, somewhat frustrated, I swam all the way back to the boat and I said, ďCaptain, you told me to let you know when I wanted you to come over and anchor the boat. And you wouldnít come. Whatís going on?Ē He said, ďI canít bring the boat over there. Itís only two feet deep.Ē I looked at him and said, ďNo, thereís 12 feet of water over there.Ē And he said, ďNo thereís not,Ē and he pulled out the chart, and he laid it on the table and said, ďSee, itís only 2 feet deep.Ē Sure enough, the chart said two feet deep. I had to put him in the water and swim him over to show him there was actually 12 feet of water there.  :o

Thinking about it later, I realized there was either a serious problem with the nautical chart or we were missing ten feet of sea floor in that location. As it turns out, many modern day nautical charts actually combine sea floor or water depth data from decades past. So if youíre looking at a 2010 nautical chart, it might combine data measured by hand from the 1870s and the 1930s and the 1950s as well as modern data measured by satellite. And so we launched a large-scale investigation, comparing all of the historical water depth data to modern elevation data.

Dr. Yates prepares her equipment to collect data. Photo Credit: Benjamin Drummond for Ocean Conservancy. (at article link)

OC: What did your research show?

KY: We discovered that coral reef degradation in Florida has caused a dramatic decrease in regional sea floor elevation. In other words, coral reef breakdown is flattening the sea floor.

But coral reefs and a bumpy sea floor are important for slowing down big waves. When you stand on a beach and watch surfers, they are usually way offshore because thatís where the big waves are. You can see those big waves breaking offshore, and the surfers ride them as they are breaking. But, by the time the waves reach the beach where you are standing, they are much smaller. Thatís because coral reef structure and shallow seafloor breaks the big waves up offshore before they make it to the beach. When you lose that shallow seafloor or coral reef structure, or both, those big waves can make it to the beach before they break up. There, they will cause more erosion and damage along the coastline. The shallow seafloor and coral reefs act as a natural barrier that breaks up large waves before they hit the coastline.

South Florida is particularly vulnerable to sea level rise because the highest areas on land in the Florida Keys are only about six feet above sea level. So when you have incoming storm waves, everyday waves and coastal erosion, itís much more concerning when youíre only living about six feet above sea level. Reefs are a key defense protecting us from ocean waves. Our research is going to help USGS better predict how these changes are going to affect these coastal communities today and into the future.

Dr. Yatesí research made the front page of the Miami Herald on April 21. Learn more about how she and her fellow scientists have uncovered the phenomenon of a vanishing sea floor off the coast of Florida.


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