We’re Probably Not Going To Make It

Over the years, I've created any number of simple, "burning Earth" collages for articles documenting ominous geopolitical developments or generalized angst among a species bent on destroying itself. The version that sits atop this article is actually new, although it's similar to another I've used on occasion. The flaming planet visuals are deliberately hyperbolic, even when they can be taken a semblance of literally (e.g., when California is ablaze or someone, somewhere, has blown something up

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8 thoughts on “We’re Probably Not Going To Make It

  1. Last weekend we had 22 degrees F temps in the southeast, as far south as FL.

    Meanwhile the Arctic had +50 degrees F HIGHER THAN NORMAL
    and the Antarctic had +70 degrees F HIGHER THAN NORMAL.

    We apparently swaped weather with the North Pole, this explains how it happened:

    The Arctic alone contains more than twice as much carbon locked in the permafrost as is already in the atmosphere.
    And the permafrost is melting faster than scientists even imagined.

    There are so many ways the earth is falling apart it’s hard to keep up these days:

  2. Eight billion of us speeding along recklessly towards a brick wall. There will definitely will be a cull, it s just a question of how large.

    And like all culls before it, the weight of death will disproportionately fall upon the lower socioeconomic classes. That said, it will not be the poor within our countries that will die and suffer in vast numbers, but rather in a inter-connected global economy, the poor developing world nations will lose numbers in biblical proportions.

    The West has two main advantages, the wealth to mitigate and milder climates that offer a cushion. Poor nations that already reside in hostile climates are in deep trouble. Think of the unfortunates that live Bangladesh, Cambodia, and much of Africa…

  3. When we accepted the theory that competition in capitalist free markets leads to more efficient use of resources, who among us realized that we would just be killing ourselves more efficiently? Unable to think of any competing theories that produced better results, I have to agree with my wife when she says “earth has a deadly virus and it is us”.

  4. Humans respond best to crises. Humans have the ability to change the earth’s climate. I expect geo-engineering to reduce global carbon and temperature, in the next century. We (people) won’t hold warming to 2 C, so we’ll bring it down with carbon capture, orbital reflectors, and energy restructuring at a massive scale. Sure, this is the least efficient way to handle things, but what’s new about that. When will we do this? The pain to the richest countries has to be greater – a lot greater.

    1. I am reminded of a common scenario in action movies: The good guy and the bad buy are on a sinking boat (or in a burning building, or in an unpiloted helicopter, a speeding train with a dead operator, etc), where clearly they will need to address the sinking boat problem somehow. But the good guy and the bad guy are engaged in a mortal fight. They cannot disengage in order to right the boat, even though nobody wins if the boat sinks. Of course, in the movies, the good guy wins the fight, and has enough time to save the boat, or find a life raft. I don’t know if life will play out as it does in the movies. We will very likely burn every ton of fossil fuel we can get out of the ground, because the benefit of doing goes goes to those who mine the fossil fuel, sell it and burn it, whereas the costs of doing so are externalized. Will the US, China, Europe, India, really be able to cooperate to carry out appropriate geoengineering? I’m skeptical.

      1. “the benefit of doing goes goes to those who mine the fossil fuel, sell it and burn it, whereas the costs of doing so are externalized. Will the US, China, Europe, India, really be able to cooperate”

        None of those, except the US, are major fossil fuel producers, and for the US, fossil fuel is a very small part of its economy.

        1. Some links about geo-engineering and carbon capture.




          These topics are non grata in some environmentalist circles, because they could distract from emissions reduction or be used to justify continued fossil fuel usage. I think we (humans) won’t get serious about them until (unless) it becomes clear that we have failed to hold warming to 2 C by emissions reduction alone.

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