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Dealing With Climate Fear

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/06/09/dealing-climate-fear

Well I would have put it this way
but I cant argue

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To Jill Richardson from manysummits in Calgary:

If you are ‘hors de combat’ - fine - it happens - others will fight on.

But I sense you are not actually out of the fight - just temporarily demoralized and possibly confused.

In my opinion, having children is the single best thing to do.

Drive your car, take airplanes, whatever - do whatever is required to keep yourself on an even keel - your impact is not worth worrying about, except perhaps for how you vote, as you yourself suggest.

Once you reach the conclusion that you personally will not stop, dead in its tracks, what is coming, I suggest more research.

It’s what I am doing, that and urban glacial field work on Nose Hill and elsewhere here in Calgary Alberta.

The great environmental threat, as I see it, right now, is the slowing down of the Gulf Stream, the AMOC (Atlantic Meridionial Overturning Circulation - Wally Broecker’s ocean conveyor), and the linked slowdown in the SMOC (southern ocean), where the formation of Antarctic Bottom Water is being compromised.

In short, fresh water from melting glaciers and polar ice sheets is currently flooding the North Atlantic near Greenland and off Antarctica.

Also in a nutshell, this is what causes truly ‘Abrupt Climate Change’, as depicted in the film “The Day After Tomorrow”, albeit it a dramatized and implausible version of a conveyor shutdown.

But the effect of even a substantial slowdown of the conveyor would be dramatic indeed, and would reverberate around the world, as we are leveraged too highly to extended and complex supply chains, and that with a population, not of Ice Age Mammoth Hunters, but of seven and a half billion mostly domesticated humans.

This is what James Hansen has warned about in his “Ice Melt” paper of 2016.

If you and I and perhaps one percent of the population spend the time understanding how the last ice age glacial maximum transitioned to the current interglacial, and the bumps and bruises and abrupt climate swings which ensued, we would be, I think, doing our jobs well.

If one percent of the population truly understands the situation, Ralph Nader thinks the word will spread, even to the politicians.

In case you missed them (the New Scientist article is a lay summary of the scientific paper at bottom):

The great thaw: Charting the end of the ice age

Global warming preceded by increasing carbon dioxide concentrations during the last deglaciation

We can’t solve climate change alone and much less our leaders.

Direct democracy can.

So, let me grasp what you are telling people, that they should be hypocritical, by continuing to live a modern, industrial style life, having children, that will starve to death, or some other calamity and just pretend that going to work at some job that produces lawn ornaments or weapons, is okay and what they are doing doesn’t matter. So, yes, I agree, that it is THE SYSTEM that needs to change… BUT HOW?.. are we really, going to dig up all the raw materials for a complete grid change throughout the world?.. Have you heard of “The Sixth Mass Extinction?”… knocking off more habitat, for what?.. To build more casinos, that will run on renewable power? To allow the rich to fly anywhere any time they want?, To cheer on our professional sports teams, flying them from city to city to watch them throw a ball around?.. So, you are telling people, not to REFLECT on their lifestyles… that the behaviors of each individual doesn’t add up to the behavior of our whole species?.. I beg to differ. I think it is cruel to tell people "oh, go ahead and have 5 kids…no biggy…. They’ll be fine!.. The problem, is not so much what kind of energy we use to make our electricity, no, it is our EXPECTATIONS… Anthropologists have stated that humans thrived best, in hunter gatherer tribes of 50 to 200 people. That was before the concept of ownership became a sociopathic obsession. If you think we are going to fix this now, I feel sorry for you. I was, a fighter, at one time, cheering on renewables… hey, did you know, it takes 53 cement trucks just to lay the cement foundation for ONE windmill?.. Did you know that to repair one, sometimes, a helicopter is required to take the repairman to the top?.. how much rare earth deposits are there and WHICH countries are going to “get them”…?? WHEN, are we going to see a weather catastrophe, cause serious issue for ANOTHER nuclear plant?..WHY are we not DEMANDING THE DECOMISSIONING of all nuclear power plants… oh, wait, they are talking about putting a lot of small ones all over people’s neighborhoods… gee I am so excited…

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The biggest single change anyone can make is to change their diet and eat the plants rather than eat the animals that eat the plants. Shutting down industrial animal agriculture will force the debate the Dems & RINOs refuse to have.

Manysummits,

What a strange comment!

What does everyone taking up a hobby in paleoclimatology (while continuing to fly and drive that SUV) address the problem at all?

Oh… your article is parody, right?

What an awful opinion piece.

First of all NEVER expect result from electing so-called “leaders”. Change happens, through disruptive action in the streets. If the people lead, the leaders will follow.

Second, what ever happened to individual action? Yes, I know, activism is taking a beating under new, young, Jordan Pertersonist hard-right which has deployed this accusatory concept of so-called “virtue signaling” which posits that social/climate justice activism is a “mental disorder” which is part of the “cultural Marxist threat to western, white civilization”.

The proper response of course if to tell these fascists to go fuck themselves.

Ultimately, we have to practice what we preach - so everybody (especially the middle class) needs to engage in visible gestures to decarbonize their household economy. Replace driving with walking, public transit or 2 wheel transport (pedal, electric or <150cc gas). Rooftop solar is a very high visibility or if you are in a “electric choice” state buy wind or solar electricity.

Getting 1 percent to do this will be a catalyst for further change.

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I don,t think that the very worst case scenarios on climate change and decline in biodiversity will happen. I am not downplaying these two threats but enviromental alarmism is not taking into account the rather large constraints on fossil fuel production that are already kicking( example is if you delete unconventional oils like shale oil,tar sands,etc oil production has peaked around 2006) Constraints that will kick in harder in future decades and also an other issue is that the Oil companies don,t any longer have the Capital to develop new oil fields, New oil discovery,s both during 2017 and 2020 were less than a quarter of global oil production for those years and most discovery’s for last year were just in Russia. As for biodiversity loss some country’s are making significant steps in protecting the biodiversity( New Zealand has marine boxes off its coast that prohibit fishing inside them and this helps both the sea environment,tourism and even parts of the fishing industry) and even family’s and individuals could help by for example by avoiding plastic bags as much as possible and even keeping a bird feeding station.

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