The last presidential debate ignored climate change. As Kelly Rigg puts it,

Think of our CO2 emissions pathway as a superhighway, down which we are barrelling at breakneck speed. Up ahead is a brick wall spanning the highway. It's not a wall of climate impacts -- we are already experiencing those and more are unavoidable whatever we do. The wall is the point of no return, the moment when our emissions cross the threshold between dangerous climate change and globally catastrophic climate change.

... our elected leaders are blithely ignoring the world's climate scientists, most of whom are too polite to actually shout. But make no mistake, scientists are telling us to take our foot off the accelerator pedal and hit the brakes... fast.

... if you think there's only a marginal difference between a 2° and 4° world (which are just off-ramps along the superhighway to a 6° world or higher) think again. Consider this quotefrom climate scientists Kevin Anderson and Alice Bows:

"There is a widespread view that a 4 degrees C future is incompatible with an organised global community, is likely to be beyond "adaptation," is devastating to the majority of ecosystems, and has a high probability of not being stable (i.e., 4 degrees C would be an interim temperature on the way to a much higher equilibrium level)."

[emphasis mine]

Climate Change: Will Presidential Candidates Pass the 'Invisible Br...

Now we know the candidates failed.

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Replies to This Discussion

Alan, I thought I was the only one with environmental concerns and speaking out about them. I recognized environmentalists were being trivialized and demonized and along comes the glorification of race cars. Oh Dear! Ruth writes so powerfully about it, and you express  concerns, as do many on this site and that encourages me. 

If a person can believe delusions of religion, they can believe delusions of politicians and the 1%. That means we have a lot of things to do between today and on the occasion of our last breaths. 

To Ruth...You may be right. It is happening faster than I thought.

A fantastic article, Alan! Thanks.

Systemic Causation. Is it in Urban Dictionary?

You're welcome...I would have to check the U/D to see how new it is.  Lakoff is a linguist, like me.  He came up at the same time I did.  That's why he talks knowledgeably about semantics and words.

Here's a large animated gif paraphrasing George Lakoff on systemic causation.

An impressive piece of work, Ruth.  I hope enough people are LISTENING and are willing to ACT.

I love your new GIF Ruth! It is like a PPT presentation! Very well done!

Well said and illustrated!! I too hope enough people get the message with their whole brains.

Ruth, great series of photos to illustrate the principle. Thanks. 

And thank you, too, Joan, for sharing George Lakoff's warning ("Climate change and weasel words") and further raising our awareness!

Note that all of this is likely to happen before the year 2100. Temperatures could rise as much as 6 C degrees by then, leading to the collapse of the Amazon (goodbye oxygen), as well as glacier and sea ice melt.

Yes, it's happening quickly - much faster than I thought only a few years ago. In fact, the rate is increasing, not decreasing, from several different forces.


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