Australia’s top climate scientist says “we are already deep into the trajectory towards collapse” of civilisation, which may now be inevitable because 9 of the 15 known global climate tipping points that regulate the state of the planet have been activated.
Evidence shows we will also lose control of the tipping points for the Amazon rainforest, the West Antarctic ice sheet, and the Greenland ice sheet in much less time than it’s going to take us to get to net zero emissions, Steffen says.
“The Doomsday Book” covers all of these doomsday scenarios. The option we have is to rally as a species, change course, and get to net zero emissions immediately. These chapters are relevant:
“The Doomsday Book” by Marshall Brain lays out this scenario in amazing detail and offers solutions to prevent this doomsday scenario from unfolding. You can order the book today on Amazon and other retailers.
As discussed in the mass extinction chapter of the book, over-fishing is a gigantic threat in the world’s oceans. At the current pace of industrial fishing, the oceans will soon be stripped bare. And China is one of the key offenders when it comes to over-fishing:
China’s exploitation of the world’s fish stocks is far greater than previously thought, with research showing the country has more than 12,000 vessels fishing beyond its waters, three times more than previous estimates.
The Chinese fleet is the biggest contributor to the “global fisheries crisis”, which has resulted in two thirds of the world’s commercial stocks being overfished or fished to the limit, according to a report by the Overseas Development Institute, a think tank.
One approach described in the book would be to ban industrial fishing to allow ocean species to recover and to switch to aquaculture. See the mass extinction chapter of the book for details.
In the Global Warming chapter of the Doomsday Book, the heating that planet is and will experience cannot be ignored. Unless humanity changes course quickly and decisively, the consequences are dire. This article discusses one of the more starling near-term effects, where parts of planet earth become inaccessible to humans who are not in an air conditioned vehicle or suit. The heat and humidity are simply too high for a human to survive.
Humans’ ability to efficiently shed heat has enabled us to range over every continent, but a wet-bulb temperature (TW) of 35°C marks our upper physiological limit, and much lower values have serious health and productivity impacts. Climate models project the first 35°C TW occurrences by the mid-21st century. However, a comprehensive evaluation of weather station data shows that some coastal subtropical locations have already reported a TW of 35°C and that extreme humid heat overall has more than doubled in frequency since 1979. Recent exceedances of 35°C in global maximum sea surface temperature provide further support for the validity of these dangerously high TW values. We find the most extreme humid heat is highly localized in both space and time and is correspondingly substantially underestimated in reanalysis products. Our findings thus underscore the serious challenge posed by humid heat that is more intense than previously reported and increasingly severe.
The Scherer plant in Juliet, GA — 25.3 million tons
The Miller plant in Quinton, AL — 20.6 million tons
The Bowen plant in Cartersville, GA — 20.5 million tons
The Gibson plant in Owensville, IN — 20.4 million tons
The W.A. Parish plant in Thompsons, TX — 20 million tons
The Navajo plant in Page, AZ — 19.9 million tons
The Martin Lake plant in Tatum, TX — 19.8 million tons
The Cumberland plant in Cumberland City, TN — 19.6 million tons
The Gavin plant in Cheshire, OH — 18.7 million tons
The Sherburne County plant in Becker, MN — 17.9 million tons
The Bruce Mansfield plant in Shippingport, PA — 17.4 million tons
The Rockport plant in Rockport, IN — 16.6 million tons
That is 236 megatons of carbon dioxide emissions in these 12 power plants. The article states:
Globally, power generation emits nearly 10 billion tons of CO2 per year. The U.S., with over 8,000 power plants out of the more than 50,000 worldwide, accounts for about 25 percent of that total or 2.8 billion tons. CARMA shows that the U.S.’s biggest CO2 emitter is Southern Co. with annual emissions of 172 million tons, followed by American Electric Power Company Inc., Duke Energy Corp., and AES Corp.
Since the article was written in 2007, you might think that all of these would have been decommissioned in the last 13 years and replaced with something cleaner. You would be wrong. The good news is that two of them have closed, but the other 10 are still open, generating megatons of carbon dioxide every year. Each one has its own Wikipedia page:
In a move that environmentalists warned could further imperil hundreds of endangered species and a protected habitat for the sake of profit, President Donald Trump on Friday signed a proclamation rolling back an Obama-era order and opening nearly 5,000 square miles off the coast of New England to commercial fishing.
“We’re opening it today,” Trump said during a roundtable talk in Maine with commercial fishermen and the state’s former governor Paul LePage. “What reason did he have for closing 5,000 miles? That’s a lot of miles. Five thousand square miles is a lot. He didn’t have a reason, in my opinion.”
“Opening up the nation’s only marine national monument in the Atlantic will help no one but a handful of fishers while risking irreparable damage to the marine wildlife that have no other fully protected areas off our eastern seaboard.” —Bob Dreher, Defenders of Wildlife
The reason behind the establishment of the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument in 2016, conservation groups hastened to point out, was to shield endangered species and their ecosystem from harmful intrusion and permanent damage by commercial interests.
This move is the opposite of what humanity should be doing to prevent the sixth mass extinction event from occurring. Instead, we should be protecting more and more of the ocean and ending commercial fishing altogether. See the mass extinction chapter of the book for details.
A very interesting article in TheAtlantic discussing doomsday planning for the United States notes that:
The Trump administration has hollowed out the very bureaucracy that’s in charge of the planners. The president has cycled through five homeland-security secretaries and five homeland-security advisers (who also serve as national continuity coordinators) in three years, and has dismantled the apparatus that was expressly designed to inform his response and allow the government to function efficiently during emergencies. Through a succession of national security advisers, the NSC staff was dramatically reduced, culminating in John Bolton’s decision to close a dedicated pandemic-response cell inside the NSC’s global-health security and biodefense directorate. Bolton also pushed out a key official who had both the title and institutional knowledge to shape policy on contingency and continuity, Thomas Bossert, who was a senior member of Bush’s national-security staff and one of the few remaining links between the NSC and federal-preparedness officials.
Animal and plant species are dying off around the world at the fastest rate since the mass-extinction event that killed the dinosaurs 66 million years ago, scientists warn. A new study, by an international team of researchers, found more than 500 land-based animal species will be on the brink of extinction within the next two decades.
“When humanity exterminates populations and species of other creatures, it is sawing off the limb on which it is sitting, destroying working parts of our own life-support system,” said Professor Ehrlich.
As discussed in the book, humanity must stop using all fossil fuels. One easy place for this to happen is through the elimination of coal-fired power plants. This article shows how easy (and economically rewarding) the elimination of coal-fired power plants could be:
The International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena) has found that up to 1,200 gigawatts of the world’s existing coal capacity could cost more to run than the cost of new utility-scale solar plants. If energy companies replaced only their most expensive coal plants with new solar power projects or onshore wind farms, totalling 500 GW globally, they could save up to $23bn (£18bn) every year and wipe out 5% of last year’s total global carbon emissions, according to Irena.