[Vision2020] Global Climate Change Responses - A Proposal

Ted Moffett starbliss at gmail.com
Tue May 18 12:18:51 PDT 2010

On 5/13/10, Paul Rumelhart <godshatter at yahoo.com> wrote:

> The idea behind this proposal is that we should be concentrating on the
> potential harm and not on the perceived causes.  That way, we're covered
> no matter what the cause of the warming is.

If the hundreds of billions of tons of human CO2 emissions we have injected
into the atmosphere are a significant contributing cause of the increase in
global average temperature and the numerous environmental impacts now
scientifically measured (sea level increase and ocean warming, ocean
acidfication, Antarctica and Greenland ice mass loss, Arctic sea ice loss,
mountain glacier loss, species shifting ranges, atmospheric water vapor
increase, increases in extreme precipitation events, etc.) how will not now
focusing on causes of climate change result in humanity "being covered no
matter what the cause of the warming is."?  If our CO2 emissions are a major
cause of the increase in temperatures, continuing these emissions while
waiting for more data will not result in humanity being "covered," but in an
increase in the environmental, economic and human impacts from these

Given the odds from this 2009 study from MIT Integrated Global Systems
Model, to bet that our CO2 emissions are not a significant contributor to
climate change is a very bad bet.  Note the statement about the more recent
study showing more temperature increases than previously estimated.  As the
study of climate science has progressed in the past decade, more evidence is
mounting that the impacts of human activity on climate are of a greater
magnitude then previously thought:


Quote from website above:

"The new projections, published this month in the American Meteorological
Society's Journal of Climate, indicate a median probability of surface
warming of 5.2 degrees Celsius by 2100, with a 90% probability range of 3.5
to 7.4 degrees. This can be compared to a median projected increase in the
2003 study of just 2.4 degrees."

Of course humanity should be now planning for profound impacts from climate
change, some of which are very likley at this point, even if all human
impacts on the environment stopped today.  And more than just adapting to a
changing environment, we should be investing in extreme
geo-engineering proposals to modify global climate, which may become
necessary, given the very low odds that humanity will significantly lower
CO2 emissions (and other human impacts on climate) in the next few decades.

Some nations are now planning to invest huge sums in protecting against the
impacts of anthropogenic climate warming, such as sea level rise.  The US
should also be now planning to adapt to sea level increase.

Consider the Delta Report from the Netherlands, stating that "Great urgency
attaches to the implementation of this advice." regarding predictions of .65
to 1.3 meter sea level rise by 2100, and 2 to 4 meters by 2200, from climate
change, with costs estimates of 40 plus billion in euros to implement a plan
for flood protection through 2050.  This report is prescient in indicating
clearly that choices we are making now to mitigate climate change will have
impacts for centuries, a time frame human economic and political planning
rarely addresses:





Vision2020 Post: Ted Moffett
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