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General News    H2'ed 11/21/19

Thousands Of Climate Scientists Warn Of 'Untold Suffering'

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"Untold suffering."

Is that dire enough?

It's a warning 11,000 scientists from 153 countries pose humanity faces unless it effects major societal transformations.

That warning published in the journal BioScience goes on to explain:

"We declare clearly and unequivocally that planet Earth is facing a climate emergency. The climate crisis has arrived and is accelerating faster than most scientists expected. It is more severe than anticipated, threatening natural ecosystems and the fate of humanity."

In order to avoid the catastrophic fallout the climate emergency forebodes, scientists urge ending population growth, leaving fossil fuels in the ground, halting forest destruction, and slashing meat consumption.

Lead author, Oregon State University professor William Ripple, said the cycle of recent extreme weather motivated him to initiate the study aiming to establish a full range of climate breakdown cause and effects "vital signs," not merely due to carbon emissions and surface temperature rise.

The study's scientists admonish:

"The climate crisis is closely linked to excessive consumption of the wealthy lifestyle. Despite 40 years of global climate negotiations, with few exceptions, we have largely failed to address this predicament. Especially worrisome are potential irreversible climate tipping points. These climate chain reactions could cause significant disruptions to ecosystems, society, and economies, potentially making large areas of Earth uninhabitable. We urge widespread use of the vital signs [to] allow policymakers and the public to understand the magnitude of the crisis, realign priorities and track progress."

Study co-author, the University of Sydney's Thomas Newsome, adds the most chilling warning:

"You don't need to be a rocket scientist to look at the graphs and know things are going wrong. But it is not too late."

To avoid crossing an irreparable tipping point, scientists suggest humanity take the following actions:

  • Use energy more efficiently and institute robust carbon taxes to slash fossil fuel use;
  • Stabilize the global population, ballooning by 200,000 people per day, through ethical approaches such as better education for girls;
  • Cease nature's destruction, restore forests and mangroves to absorb CO2;
  • Adopt plant-based diets and reduce food waste;
  • Shift economic goals away from gross domestic product (GDP) growth.

Scientists aver this "transformative change, with social and economic justice for all promises far greater human well-being than does business as usual."

This comes at a time the deforestation of the Amazon rainforest has reached its highest level in a decade.

And, of course, earlier this month Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Donald Trump sent a letter to the United Nations, initiating the Paris Climate Accords withdrawal process.

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Ted Millar is a writer and teacher. His work has been in featured in myriad literary journals, including Straight Forward Poetry, Better Than Starbucks, the Broke Bohemian, Caesura, Circle Show, Cactus Heart, Third Wednesday, and The Voices (more...)
 

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Don Smith

Become a Fan (Member since Feb 25, 2009), 22 fans, 143 articles, 596 quicklinks, 1832 comments, 45 diaries
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Where are the trolls eager to deny the settled science? I wonder if they're paid, if they're ideologues, or if they're just deluded.

Submitted on Thursday, Nov 21, 2019 at 8:53:13 PM

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David Wieland

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Hmm. You seem obsessed with trolling. Data checking might be a more useful obsession.

Real science is never "settled" but is an endless quest for better understanding of the universe. Scientists are humans, however, and are as capable of delusion as anyone. As Richard Feynman put it, "The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool."

Unfortunately climate science seems to attract those interested in what has been termed "advocacy science". Yes, they are paid and are ideologues, sadly. As revealed in some of the Climategate emails, they even lobby each other for awards. It's quite the incestuous club. Instead of research into climate, the field is fraught with "studies" that reveal "new" disasters that will befall us if the model projections are right, which they never have been.

Submitted on Friday, Nov 22, 2019 at 2:43:00 AM

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David Wieland

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This Bioscience article is not a study but an opinion letter (Bioscience categorized it as Viewpoint) that solicited signatures by clicks on a web page button.

As I commented on another OEN article:

It seems you fell for that "World Scientists' Warning" like most media (but here's one that didn't). I think we all know by now that journalism is suffering and is plagued by uncritical acceptance of stuff that should be challenged. You linked to the article in Bioscience, but you must not have checked the source. (The "Alliance of World Scientists" is apparently a project of some professors at Oregon State's forestry department.)

We're now plagued with alarmists, some of whom are scientists and most of whom just repeat (or embellish) previous alarming claims. There's no actual science involved, but it's become a powerful political movement to foster anxiety. Greta says "I want you to panic." Competent adults would say that's the worst thing people can do, interfering as it does with rational critical thinking.

Submitted on Friday, Nov 22, 2019 at 3:05:53 AM

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Tom Calarco

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Dave: Why don't you simply go to NASA's website and look at the data. There are far more true scientists than those at Oregon State who agree that the situation with Global Warming is heading for catastrophe unless we take measures quickly. Why don't you also look at the IPCC Report? You can download it at this link: .ipcc.ch/report/srccl/


Furthermore, just go to YouTube and watch the "plethora" of videos showing what is happening in the Arctic and Antarctic.


If you want something dumb downed for people like yourself, go to the Weather Channel.


Do you realize that in your comments, David, you haven't provided one iota of evidence to back up your claims?

Submitted on Friday, Nov 22, 2019 at 6:05:03 AM

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