• Xtrix
    99
    I didn't see a thread yet, so I figured it's worth creating one.

    Being in the middle of crushing heat waves, draughts, and floods all at the same time, even those climate "skeptics" are saying we should probably do something -- just in case all the world's climatologists are correct.

    Is it already too late?

    If so, will we reach tipping points no matter what policies we enact?

    Will we actually turn ourselves into Venus?

    If it's not too late, what exactly can we do to contribute to mitigating it?

    Is there ANYONE out there who still doesn't consider this the issue of our times?
  • Xtrix
    99
    Just saw this, apropos:

    Democrats have a year to save the planet.

    Not really a joke...or an exaggeration.
  • jgill
    7
    Is it already too late?Xtrix

    I suspect it might be if one thinks of significantly slowing the process. I don't see the nations of Earth coming together in a meaningful way, but I could be wrong. Even were they to do so it might be best to prepare for change wherever possible.

    I was a meteorologist many, many years ago. Too long ago to be of any use.

    Just saw this, apropos:Xtrix

    "The earth may be parched and sweltering, but all is not lost, for Americans finally got in the game."

    What a joke.
  • Benkei
    35
    And when they don't we can blame the Democrats!
  • Kenosha Kid
    18
    even those climate "skeptics" are saying we should probably do something -- just in case all the world's climatologists are correct.Xtrix

    Except these guys maybe:

    EE5gbRFUwAIot-w.jpg

    I'm usually an optimist but my gut feel is that democracies will reject any government that makes meaningful commitments. Rather, 'normal' will just be adjusted ever downwards until you're barbecuing your own son in a cave in a mile-high trash pile wondering if this is really what God intended.
  • javra
    7
    Is it already too late?Xtrix

    Since I’m not big on defeatism: Too late relative to what? Too late for us to live as we’ve so far lived in relation to the climate? But of course it is! (At the very least, we should have taken the Kyoto Protocol a bit more seriously, but its too late for that now.) Is it too late for future generations to not have it as bad as it would be were humanity to go about its business as usual. Nope, not at all. One interesting fact I’ve so far learned in life, no matter how bad things get, things can always get worse.*

    This however pivots on how much most of us care about future generations. At the very least the kids we're related to.

    Is there ANYONE out there who still doesn't consider this the issue of our times?Xtrix

    Yes. Most of the people I’m surrounded by, for starters. Then there is a fair sum of the same in government. Also in the media …

    ---------

    * Doctor calls up a guy saying, “Your tests are in. I’ve got bad news and worse news. Which do you want to hear first?” Guy replies, “The bad news”. Doc: “The tests are conclusive in you having only 24 hours left to live.” Guy: “What the hell can possibly be worse?” Doc: “I forgot to tell you yesterday.”

    … kind of thing.
  • Echarmion
    1
    If so, will we reach tipping points no matter what policies we enact?Xtrix

    Kinda hard to say since no-one knows what the tipping points are exactly, but I think it's unlikely enough will be done to avoid very serious climate changes.

    Will we actually turn ourselves into Venus?Xtrix

    That seems rather unlikely. The planet has seen runaway greenhouse effects before.

    If it's not too late, what exactly can we do to contribute to mitigating it?Xtrix

    The best way is probably to organise and join in mass protests. No individual consumer level decisions are likely to be very effective. Or rather the effective decisions are very impractical and so unlikely to be adopted by enough people to make a difference.

    Is there ANYONE out there who still doesn't consider this the issue of our times?Xtrix

    There are probably more people emotionally invested in the outcome of the next big soccer match than in climate change.
  • TheMadFool
    26
    Is there ANYONE out there who still doesn't consider this the issue of our times?Xtrix

    Climate change is not a disease, it's a symptom. I know quite a few doctors and they all say, while relieving the symptom has its merits, treating the disease is the primary goal!

    What, in your opinion, is the disease?
  • ssu
    29
    Is it already too late?Xtrix
    No, the sun will not kill all life on this planet for some 5 billion years or so. The future after that is bleak for life on our planet.

    SUN-EARTH.jpg

    If so, will we reach tipping points no matter what policies we enact?Xtrix
    First you should define just what is the tipping point you refer to. Or what you have in mind with climate change.

    Will we actually turn ourselves into Venus?Xtrix
    No. If people take your question literally and not as a figure of speech. (Do you know the environment in Venus?)

    If it's not too late, what exactly can we do to contribute to mitigating it?Xtrix

    A lot of things. Radical changes, not so radical changes and everything between. Unfortunately there the actual policy actions, the scientific socio-economic policy discourse, and the politicized agenda-driven public debate have veered all into different realms.

    But we can have an effect on our environment. Even if I'm not so sure that with the current numbers of nuclear weapons detonating all of them would actually cause a nuclear winter. A super-volcano eruption would make global warming not the climate change we are worried about.
  • Isaac
    13
    The best way is probably to organise and join in mass protests. No individual consumer level decisions are likely to be very effective. Or rather the effective decisions are very impractical and so unlikely to be adopted by enough people to make a difference.Echarmion

    What would be the object of these protests if the changes required are considered too impractical to be adopted? Presumably, living in a democracy, such changes are going to be ephemeral at best, window-dressing at worst if the population hasn't the stomach to adopt them.
  • Echarmion
    1
    What would be the object of these protests if the changes required are considered too impractical to be adopted? Presumably, living in a democracy, such changes are going to be ephemeral at best, window-dressing at worst if the population hasn't the stomach to adopt them.Isaac

    Well, stuff that is impractical for the individual might not be if it was coordinated by the community. A simple example is avoiding to drive the car - impractical if you need to regularly travel longer distances without access to public transport. But can be solved communally.
  • Albero
    2
    I used to think it was too late, and we were all going to die, but then I came across this Quora called Doomsday Debunked: https://robertinventor.com/Quora/DebunkingDoomsday.htm

    It's run by a guy and a team of volunteers who made a career out of reading academic/sciency papers so they put this blog together to fact check scary end of the world scenarios, climate change included. No, they definitely aren't climate deniers , more like climate realists and they seem pessimistic/optimistic depending on the scenario. The news really likes to amp up "tipping points" and "earth will be venus" crap but these scenarios are usually cherry picked or blown way out of proportion. Hell, the IPCC doesn't even think "collapse of civilization" is on the trajectory despite what the Guardian articles make you think

    In fact, their debunk here on the "Venus Earth" scenario really soothed a lot of my fears
    https://debunkingdoomsday.quora.com/Not-as-scary-as-it-seems-Planet-at-risk-of-heading-towards-Hothouse-Earth-state
  • frank
    10
    Yep. The oceans will eventually absorb all of the CO2 we emit and the climate will return to baseline. In the worst case scenario, most of it will be absorbed in 10,000 years.

    No Venus.
  • Isaac
    13


    I get the theory, but doesn't it leave a rather unconvincing model of a governing system that somehow has no way of determining what services are required other than by waiting for the information to be painted onto a placard?

    If people are willing to travel long distances without their cars, as in the example you give, but can't simply decide as an individual to do so, are you suggesting that information wouldn't come to light without a protest?
  • Echarmion
    1
    I get the theory, but doesn't it leave a rather unconvincing model of a governing system that somehow has no way of determining what services are required other than by waiting for the information to be painted onto a placard?Isaac

    We don't have a governing system whose goal is to determine what services are required though. LIke yeah it would be cool if we could simply expect the leaders we put in power (or that we are not willing or able to dislodge) to make the best decisions on the available evidence, but that isn't the case, is it?

    If people are willing to travel long distances without their cars, as in the example you give, but can't simply decide as an individual to do so, are you suggesting that information wouldn't come to light without a protest?Isaac

    No, I'm suggesting that the only way to get the powers that be to move is to properly scare them.
  • Isaac
    13
    We don't have a governing system whose goal is to determine what services are required though.Echarmion

    No, but I didn't refer to the services that were 'required'. I was talking about the services that are desired. So...

    I'm suggesting that the only way to get the powers that be to move is to properly scare them.Echarmion

    Why would they need to be scared into providing a really popular and sought after solution?
  • Echarmion
    1
    Why would they need to be scared into providing a really popular and sought after solution?Isaac

    Why wouldn't they be? Is your impression that current governments around the world are on average very good at dealing with medium to long term crisis? If your answer is "no", I don't understand the point of this line of questioning.

    Presumably we're both aware of the basic reasons behind why many reasonable and scientifically well supported policies aren't enacted by governments around the world, democratic or otherwise, in fields like environmental protection, consumer protection, healthcare etc.
  • Kasperanza
    2
    I say we burn more fossil fuels, since that's the only thing that powers air conditioning, water irrigation, and generally allows us to create the proper climate. Let the earth change; it's ridiculous to assume that we can stop it. I'm not going to let this new religion of the left convince me that the planet as a whole matters at the expense of my immediate environment. That I must save the planet with petty, trivial actions like recycling and turning off the lights.
  • Kasperanza
    2
    Also, it's fascism because people shut you down for not wanting to give up your freedom of choice due to fear mongering and "science."
  • tim wood
    8
    What I do not see mentioned above is the interests of the young as expressed by them. I'm too old to worry much. But the children of the world are looking down a real gun barrel that's pointed at them. When enough of them understand that and grasp that as a fact, then they will start to change things, and pretty quickly. Nor do I see them indulging in great patience - why should they? I give it one generation. In 35 years, everyone 35 or older today will be, obviously, 70 or older then. And it will be interesting to see what the young then will and will not tolerate. But by then I imagine almost everyone will have a high level of eco-sensitivity. There may well be eco-police, eco-laws, and eco-crimes at a level just not possible today. That, and nearly all of today's bad actors will be dead.

    And a generalized system of rationing, of water, of fuel, of access to transportation, of food, of electricity. No doubt mitigated by new technologies.

    It's common where I live, and I'm sure other places, for some fool to sit in a hot car in a hot parking lot running his car a/c while he plays some video game. In other words, getting into a 3,000 pound steel box parked in a hot sun that will quickly raise the car's interior temperature to 130-150 degrees, parked on a pavement too hot to stand on, idling the engine at around 400-500 degrees, polluting in almost every way his immediate surroundings, so that he might enjoy a bit of a cool breeze. All the while a nice shady tree a one minute walk, or an air-conditioned store or library nearby that would be glad to have him. I don't think tomorrow's children will do that, or tolerate it if it happens.
  • Cheshire
    12
    If corporations knew they could never be held liable for it, then moving past the propaganda into collective reality might be attainable.
  • Xtrix
    99
    Is it already too late?
    — Xtrix
    I suspect it might be if one thinks of significantly slowing the process. I don't see the nations of Earth coming together in a meaningful way, but I could be wrong.
    jgill

    Well there's really no alternative I can see -- so you're either wrong or we're dead. What we feel about this shouldn't really matter -- rather, what is the evidence? There's little reason to believe it can't be done, in fact we know it can be. So what's the real problem? That people like you and I and others aren't pushing hard enough for it.

    I'm usually an optimist but my gut feel is that democracies will reject any government that makes meaningful commitments.Kenosha Kid

    As I said to Jgill above, it's not really about gut feelings. This isn't a problem we can be optimistic or pessimistic about -- I don't think that applies. We're either going to make it happen or we're dead. I do like that cartoon though.

    This however pivots on how much most of us care about future generations. At the very least the kids we're related to.javra

    Exactly.

    Is there ANYONE out there who still doesn't consider this the issue of our times?
    — Xtrix

    Yes. Most of the people I’m surrounded by, for starters. Then there is a fair sum of the same in government. Also in the media …
    javra

    Well I meant less about climate deniers and more about people who accept the science and still place it low on their priorities.

    If so, will we reach tipping points no matter what policies we enact?
    — Xtrix

    Kinda hard to say since no-one knows what the tipping points are exactly, but I think it's unlikely enough will be done to avoid very serious climate changes.
    Echarmion

    We do know what the tipping points are. If you're looking for something like exact numbers, you won't find it, but we have very good idea about what will trigger an irreversible spiraling.

    Tim Lenton has done a lot of work on this.

    https://www.carbonbrief.org/explainer-nine-tipping-points-that-could-be-triggered-by-climate-change

    https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-019-03595-0

    You think it's unlikely that anything gets done. So essentially we're doomed, in your eyes. Interesting perspective.

    The best way is probably to organise and join in mass protests. No individual consumer level decisions are likely to be very effective. Or rather the effective decisions are very impractical and so unlikely to be adopted by enough people to make a difference.Echarmion

    I agree.

    Climate change is not a disease, it's a symptom. I know quite a few doctors and they all say, while relieving the symptom has its merits, treating the disease is the primary goal!

    What, in your opinion, is the disease?
    TheMadFool

    Depends on the level of analysis. But on the whole, aspects of human nature -- in the case, greed -- that have been magnified by a system that prioritizes private power -- namely, capitalism.

    If so, will we reach tipping points no matter what policies we enact?
    — Xtrix
    First you should define just what is the tipping point you refer to. Or what you have in mind with climate change.
    ssu

    There are multiple potential tipping points. See above for some links, or you can Google "climate tipping points."

    Climate change in this context refers to a rapid change in the Earth's climate driven by human activities, especially the burning of fossil fuels.

    If what this comment really implies, however, is something like "the climate always changes," then there's no sense in continuing. That's just the latest line for climate change denial, and I have no interest.
  • Xtrix
    99
    The news really likes to amp up "tipping points" and "earth will be venus" crap but these scenarios are usually cherry picked or blown way out of proportion. Hell, the IPCC doesn't even think "collapse of civilization" is on the trajectory despite what the Guardian articles make you thinkAlbero

    What "cherry picking" are you referring to?

    https://news.mongabay.com/2021/01/were-approaching-critical-climate-tipping-points-qa-with-tim-lenton/

    Also, you may want to take a look at what the IPCC is saying about tipping points:

    https://grist.org/science/leaked-un-report-warns-of-climate-tipping-points/

    True, they haven't mentioned the "end of civilization," but they include various scenarios that certainly lead to that. But even if it's not the end, it would be a hell on earth. People would probably survive a nuclear war, too...should we therefore not be concerned? Is that really an argument?

    In fact, their debunk here on the "Venus Earth" scenario really soothed a lot of my fears
    https://debunkingdoomsday.quora.com/Not-as-scary-as-it-seems-Planet-at-risk-of-heading-towards-Hothouse-Earth-state
    Albero

    This website is kind of a joke.

    The Venus question is not meant literally.

    We can nit-pick about "collapse of civilization" or anything else if we want to, but it's simply another form of denial. If you're happier because you found a website that "debunks" the "doomsday" scenarios that those awful "climate alarmists" talk about, you're welcome to. But I suggest balancing that with questions for actual climatologists, someone like Dr. Lenton (linked above) -- who has quite a different view.

    The fact remains that we're already seeing signs all around us of a rapidly warming planet, and its effects are also all around us -- right now. Not off in the future -- not according to some model. There are such things as tipping points, and there is a real chance we can make the Earth a nearly-unlivable hellhole (true, maybe not exactly Venus, and people may still survive).

    This "debunking" website seems to be obsessed with the fact that it may not happen for a long time to come -- centuries, even. But even there they're likely wrong, given the increase in global temperature, droughts, wildfires, floods, etc., that we're already experiencing -- and giving what scientists are warning us about, including the IPCC.

    As the CO2 keeps rising (somewhere near 400 ppm), we'll see more and more warming. That's locked in for decades. We can all push to do something about it, or we can pacify ourselves by reading only what makes us feel better, and thus helping the worst outcome come true. Not a hard decision, in my view, but to each his own.
  • Xtrix
    99
    I say we burn more fossil fuelsKasperanza

    Let the earth change; it's ridiculous to assume that we can stop it.Kasperanza

    So that makes a total of 2 or 3 climate deniers so far. My advice: go back to your echo chamber. You won't learn anything here, since you don't care to in the first place.
  • Xtrix
    99
    What I do not see mentioned above is the interests of the young as expressed by them. I'm too old to worry much. But the children of the world are looking down a real gun barrel that's pointed at them. When enough of them understand that and grasp that as a fact, then they will start to change things, and pretty quickly. Nor do I see them indulging in great patience - why should they? I give it one generation.tim wood

    An interesting point. Notice that polls of younger people (including those identifying as Republicans) show that they are much more concerned about climate change. We're also seeing movements across the globe -- Greta Thunberg, the Sunrise Movement, etc. All youth-led. That gives me great hope and is very inspiring -- but also pretty embarrassing, given that the adults have failed them so much that they have to pick up the slack.

    I hope you're right, and that it takes only one generation. We'll see. I just hope that it's not too late by then in terms of salvaging a relatively decent existence.
  • Kasperanza
    2


    Don't you realize that you're guilty of what you just criticized me of?

    You're ignoring someone who disagrees with you and only choosing to talk to people that fundamentally agree with you. So much for not living in an echo chamber. I don't get the feeling that you have anything to learn from me.

    Also, I'm NOT denying climate change. I'm saying that we shouldn't fight climate change. Burning more, not less, fossil fuels will improve our lives. As I said. Fossil fuels allow for electricity, air conditioning, and water irrigation.

    People who are opposed to fossil fuels, are against a cheap, reliable, and powerful source of energy. If you take away fossil fuels it will hurt everyone economically, and essentially decrease everyone's quality of life.
  • Kasperanza
    2
    I'm more fearful of people who will use climate change as an excuse to seize political power and eliminate our freedoms.

    Freedom and free-minds are our best bet towards a bright and positive future, not government policies or restrictions.
  • Xtrix
    99
    Don't you realize that you're guilty of what you just criticized me of?

    You're ignoring someone who disagrees with you and only choosing to talk to people that fundamentally agree with you.
    Kasperanza

    No, not with me, with the overwhelming scientific consensus and the undeniable evidence. You choose to ignore all of that -- that's fine. People believe in a flat earth and deny the holocaust -- I have no interest in engaging with them either. At least not on this thread.
  • jgill
    7
    Well there's really no alternative I can see -- so you're either wrong or we're deadXtrix

    Oh my. I can be wrong and we all will still die. But not all from climate change.

    That people like you and I and others aren't pushing hard enough for it.Xtrix

    I could push every minute of every day, along with everyone else, but that's probably not enough to keep those gulf streams warming Europe in place. London and Dublin are further north than Calgary, Canada, and are roughly the same latitude as southern Alaska. Get your woolies out, mates!
  • Kasperanza
    2


    Climate change is happening. So what? I'm not denying that. I'm saying we should burn more fossil fuels anyway. We should not enforce government policies; we should let free people decide for themselves. That's what I'm saying. I'm not denying the science.
  • Kasperanza
    2
    What about the possibilities of the climate changing for the better? Does the science really say that all climate change is bad? Climate change can be good and open up new opportunities.
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