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12/5/2012 1:07:38 PM

Tags: Climate Change, Global Warming, World Bank Report, Michael Kelberer

 World Bank Report coverA new report from the World Bank — not your typical group of alarmist tree-huggers, eh? — has this to say:

1. The consensus for a decade now has been that we have to avoid going over 2 degrees Celsius of global warming at all costs. The report says that even if all emissions-reductions commitments are kept, we’ll blow by that limit on our way to 4 degrees Celsius (that’s over 9 degrees Fahrenheit) of warming by the end of the century. If those commitments aren’t kept, and so far we haven’t come close, we’ll hit 4 degrees by 2060. (Not in the report, but extrapolating out, we would then hit an incredible 8 degrees of warming by the end of the century. The last ice age was only 5 degrees of temperature change.)

2. The impact of a 4-degrees-warmer world will be "unprecedented heat waves, severe drought, and major floods in many regions, with serious impacts on human systems, ecosystems, and associated services."

3. Trends: the observed changes in climate have been escalating, not stabilizing and certainly not slowing down.

What will the 4-degree world look like? According to the report:

1. Extreme heat — with consequences (heat-related deaths, forest fires, harvest losses) that “could be expected to vastly exceed the consequences experienced to date, and potentially exceed the adaptive capacities of many societies and natural systems.” 

2. Rising sea levels — expect a rise of 0.5 — 1 meter (that’s more than 3 feet) at a minimum, with several meters more in the centuries to follow (there’s a lot of momentum in climate change — we can’t just shut it off today and expect things to return to normal tomorrow).  You’ve seen the maps — this affects a huge percentage of the area where we human beings live.

3. Everything we rely on for our daily lives will be affected: clean water, crops, food animals, even just the ability to travel around safely. Life as we know it, basically, will be drastically altered, mostly for the worse.

Remember — this is the forecast for only 4 degrees of warming.

Any hope?  

The report states what we’ve known for the last two or three decades, that we have the “technical and economic” means to avoid the worst impacts of global warming. It even holds out hope we can keep the warming below 2 degrees if we act in time. 

I don’t share that hope — the 2 degree number was a politically chosen one and, at the time it was chosen, the full effects of feedback loops was not incorporated into the scientific models.

Besides, the technology and money won’t help if we don’t have the political will to use them. So far, it’s been nearly completely lacking. Let’s hope the Climate Change talks going on in Doha this week get us started on the path.

You can get the report here: World Bank Report 


 


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Post a comment below.

 

SCOTTI WOOSNAM
12/10/2012 6:00:56 AM
Don't want to make too much hay here, as my intent in reading on MEN is to enjoy myself, not get into political discourse. What you're asking for above though, Tim, is pure nonsense. It's asking for the quelling of what is probably innate in every human. Discovery. Think for a second here if Columbus had adopted your line of thinking. Just get smarter and save Spain or Europe as a whole... There wouldn't be a USA in it's form now. And the 'We will never' attitude shows me how close minded you are about human endeavor. Heck. We will never walk on the moon. We will never cross that vast ocean. We will never get that promotion. Negativity breeds it. Better men have done all those things because they decided NEVER isn't a word in their vocabulary. I believe we CAN live on this Earth and do it well, AND we can expand our horizons to other planets and moons and then, perhaps galaxies. I won't be here to see it, but it fires my imagination to think that the next new frontier is always just beyond our reach, and we, as humans, always manage to reach it. You can live in your world. I'll live in mine.

Rodent
12/9/2012 4:59:56 AM
There is no anthropogenic global warming, just normal variations on the climate over time. "Global warming" is just an excuse for global government, and a fascist global government at that.

An American
12/7/2012 4:53:22 PM
Tim apparently the sand that you have your head buried in is rife with liberal mantra clap trap that is full of junk science and computer models based on faulty projections designed to give bad government an excuse to raise taxes and waste money. Those of us who actually follow real scientist not computer model leftist alarmist know that global warming has been debunked thoroughly.

t brandt
12/7/2012 2:05:41 PM
Consider these facts, easily verified by a web search:(1) World temps have not changed over the past 16 years.(2) One - third of the fossil fuels ever used by man have been burned, adding to atm co2, over those same 16 yrs. Only possible conclusion: if there are any climate effects of co2 at all, they are overshadowed by other factors....It's not the pollution, it's loss of habitat that's the problem. The article itself is shear nonsense. During the Holocene Optimum, 7000 yrs ago, temps were 3degC higher than now and Mankind flourished. Just about everthing is better with warmer temps: more biodiversity; more rainfall; higher crop yields; lower heating costs etc etc.

Michelle Minto
12/7/2012 2:07:31 AM
One thing I enjoy about Mother Earth is that they rarely advocate for this sort of thing. I embrace an all natural quasi homesteading lifestyle, but I do not endorse large scale government action which merely wastes billions of dollars and makes the elite wealthier and wealthier while every single day carbon waste increases. What government does is merely steal our money for this "good cause" and pat themselves on the back on the golfcourse. Thanks anyway. The proof is all around us. Endless spending results merely in foolish people feeling good and the rich getting richer.. and more pollution. Every SIngle Time.

TIM NELIN
12/6/2012 3:28:58 PM
OK, so maybe we should stop spending billions and trillions on useless projects like exploring Mars or Jupiter or Venus and use that money to solve the problems that really matter. We will never live on any other planet, and we will never mine the resources of other planets, so what is the point, other than simple curiousity. Learning what the origins of life are is not going to change anything, and knowing how the universe began will not save us from ourselves, so lets get smarter and save our own home, namely EARTH!!!

TIM NELIN
12/6/2012 3:22:09 PM
Do you realize that we are denuding the earth of the one thing that supports life more than any other, and that is trees-that produce the majority of the oxygen we breathe? Suffocating in our own pollution might be our true fate! Not a pretty picture, HUH?

TIM NELIN
12/6/2012 3:18:39 PM
Sorry, Jamie, but your head is in the sand. Not only is global warming real, but we are running out of resources that support our lifestyles. The next twenty years will show us the future. After that, the problem will be self-perpetuating and we will be unable to stop it. At this point, all we have done is slow down the acceleration of pollution and are nowhere near stopping it. Good luck with your future and that of your children and grandkids! We must start looking at the future in terms of 100-500 years, not next week!

Jamie Pole
12/6/2012 1:16:43 PM
There is no such thing as global warming. The concept is a leftist mantra that has been disavowed by nearly all of its original proponents. The data simply isn't there to support it. If you ask true scientists, they will tell you that the loudest proponents are either avowed leftists, or have been threatened into supporting the concept. The Earth experiences cycles where temperatures rise and fall. Did fires from cavemen cause the last ice age? I'm not saying that humans aren't polluting the planet, but let's worry about REAL problems, rather than those that have been fabricated for political gain. We need to keep politics and science separate.










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