More than 90 percent of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) is suffering some level of coral bleaching and will likely never return to its original state, a new study from the Australian Research Council Center of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies released Tuesday confirms.
This was fast wasn't it? Think back to when you first learned that the Great Barrier Reef was being threatened? We all knew corals were bleaching but we are talking about a reef a thousand miles long. Was it last year? The year before? Two hotter than ever before years? A decade of hotter than? How fast is fast? This was fast.
What if it doesn't stop getting hotter? Yeah El Niño didn't help but what if El Niño passes and it stays this hot and keeps getting hotter? The El Niño factor has become the excuse to avoid urgency. That 'Oh it is because of El Nino' explanation. It is not justified. El Niño contributes of course but El Niño is not the cause of global warming. What if it stays this hot from now on?
What if it stays this hot?
What if it never gets any cooler again?
The What If that became the Now What?
It is going to stay hot and get hotter. We are locked in to over 2 C. To top it off, people voted for a pro-fracker yesterday who is subsidized, in part, by the fossil fuel industries: HC. They also voted for a climate change denier.
How does anyone happily/peacefully function in life with this knowledge?
Corals tend to be out of sight and out of mind to temperate zone dwellers and those who live inland. But their role throughout the geologic history of complex life on earth is enormous. The coral and warm-water reef environments is the origin of all limestone on earth and an enormous store of fossil carbon. That humans - through warming and ocean acidification could completely wipe out carbonate-secreting sea life is terrifying. Certainly the worst thing since the great Permian-Triassic extinction 252 my ago at least.
The best explanation for Fermi's paradox is becoming more apparent...
Your question at first seems simplistic but upon reflection, as soon as you try to answer what it asks, it becomes deeply profound. You nailed the future there. How does one live knowing what is happening? How does one raise a child to be hopeful and open to all the possibilities ahead in the future if you know that those possibilities are rapidly shrinking and the misery index is rising? How do you imbue enthusiasm and a positive outlook to a child when the words become a bitter untruth as soon as you try to speak them?
A seriously great question. How do we function in the days ahead? There is no going back to unknowing what we now know.
I sometimes feel like I'm screaming at the top of my lungs in a soundproof room. People just can't hear when their ears are occluded by their rectum.
You ask the ultimate question.
My answer is to give it up to the young people who will have to guide this nation through the perilous years ahead. Why is it that so many of us older folks won't get out of the way and let them lead? They are showing us where they want to go in their majority support for Sanders. But the folks who are supposed to have wisdom by virtue of their years remain glued to the status quo.
Young folks will have to face the worst of this battle. Let's give them the tools and the power they need to get started.
I know this is preaching to the choir - but for sharing
We hear so much bad climate news that it becomes almost hard to react after awhile but this seems to be really terrible news. The Paris agreement may result in finally getting emissions off the business-as-usual track but all those countries that made pledges really need to step it up. What is happening to the reefs should be an incentive not to procrastinate.
Global industrial civilization bequeaths a trashed planet. Are you at all surprised to learn that this astonishing natural community and heritage called the Great Barrier Reef is nearly dead?
And it won't get better by electing better politicians, or by putting up solar panels and windmills, or though buying Tesla cars, or by recycling. It can only begin to get better when the deforesting stops, the mining stops, the factory farms stop, the agricultural system stops, the destruction of the oceans stops, the despoiling of the air, land and water stops.
You can't have both an industrial lifestyle and a living planet. You must let go of one, or the other. This is a choice each of us must make.
Well, I woupd think that we would continue functioning as humans. I've thought the same thoughts. But the world will turn with or without us. Thats all i can come up with unfortunetly. It is sad to think that children will grow up having to have technology to provide a safe living environment, such as air conditiong, not to make a joke, I mean that seriously. Can someone live in Death Valley? If so, what life is that?
The thing is that while in America we will live from air conditioned car to air conditioned building and sleep in air conditioned bedrooms etc. but what will those who don't even have electricity do? What do people who work outside do in 120F temps? It sure seems to me that the world will become an uglier place where survival makes people rationalize subjecting others to further suffering just so they can escape a little of it themselves. Would the wealthy first world do without air conditioning? I doubt it. We could hurry to keep the fossil fuels in the ground and keep the world from have to suffer through heat that kills (a summertime regular occurrence ahead of us I think) but instead we delay as the senate vote shows. We create one hell of a world ... Literally.
Those 7 billion people are barreling towards starvation under the industrial system, many already are starving, having been stripped of their ability to live on the land. You don't care much about that, though, do you? Your time is coming.
It's just a matter of time for the rest of us as the water is depleted, the soil erodes, the desertification expands, the climate as we've known it collapses. If you think something like the Great Barrier Reef dying is not a dire warning that the ability of the planet to sustain both human and non-human life is failing you're either a fool or in denial.
I'm not any sort of "leader" but if you want one vision of a soft landing for global industrial civilization, it would be a gradual shutting down of industry while simultaneously transitioning to local Fukuoka-style farms. Of course, that would cut Monsanto out of the deal, and that won't happen.
As for the "wimpy" Great Barrier Reef, wait till you discover how similarly wimpy your own body is as the biosphere within and around you dies too.
Most life is actually wimpy as you put it. We for example have a limited temperature range just like corals except we wear clothing and use heating or cooling and we move to other places etc. Coral is adapted to specific conditions which haven't changed much until recently and then they changed rapidly.
I don't know about the rest of you, but I am going to get into my massive SUV and drive to the beach to enjoy this unusually warm day and get a tan! [note sarcasm] Sound like many people that you know or see on the roads in this age of climate Armageddon?
Oh, I forgot to add that I will stop at my local fast-food joint and get one or more of their largest burgers to eat while I soak my precious feet in the strangely warm ocean.
It struck me that so many people loved that new 'Mad Max' movie because this culture is almost looking forward to an utterly trashed environment where people can race around in gargantuan trucks committing homicide and suicide with careless abandon. I think the word for it is "Thanatos".
The capitalist system is largely at fault for the blind money-driven pathology that many suffer. Think of how so many have been raised to pursue worldly success and material gain. Cause and effect.
That's an interesting observation. I agree that many people (largely males) are enthralled by destruction on the big screen or football stadium or war zone 5000 miles away, but will likely change their tune when they experience it personally. Most would be surprised out of their wits to experience violence on the level of Mad Maxx.
It's a kind of cultural virus that has now infected every corner of the globe. And cultures/nations/people that try to resist it are hit with the full imperial force of Western military, financial, and "intelligence" power until they surrender to the dictates of the system. Global industrial capitalism is absolutely totalizing. No one and nothing is exempted from participation.
Beyond the colonization of nations and peoples, it seeks to colonize minds. It does this through advertising, propaganda, repetition, incessant displays of military might and "glory".
I always thought the funniest thing about the right is how they can't shut up about "freedom" yet are fanatical adherents to, and supporters of, the single most totalitarian system ever devised, one that has already killed some 205+ million people and is rapidly killing everything else: