Category Archives: Mass Extinction

David Attenborough: “Our planet is headed for disaster.”

Sir David Attenborough to 60 Minutes on climate change: “A crime has been committed”

Attenborough no longer minces words nor leaves his viewers wondering where he stands on the issue of climate change. In the new film, he laments Earth’s decline and states emphatically, “Our planet is headed for disaster.”

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 pre-order the book today on the pre-order page.

Noam Chomsky: The world is at the most dangerous moment in human history

Noam Chomsky: The world is at the most dangerous moment in human history

The US professor warns that the climate crisis, the threat of nuclear war and rising authoritarianism mean the risk of human extinction has never been greater. 

It is a chilling warning. And it is understated. If we break out some of the more serious side effects of Climate Change individually (e.g. a mass extinction event, rainforest collapse, sea level rise, climate migration, etc.) we can see that climate change alone will have epic effects. Then add in all of the economic stress and dysfunction caused by the pandemic. Don’t forget the unexpected things like the locust plague.

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 pre-order the book today on the pre-order page.

Humans Wiped Out Two-Thirds of the World’s Wildlife in 50 Years

Humans Wiped Out Two-Thirds of the World’s Wildlife in 50 Years

The study analyzed population sizes of 4,392 monitored species of mammals, fish, birds, reptiles, and amphibians from 1970 to 2016, reports Karin Brulliard for the Washington Post. It found that populations in Latin America and the Caribbean fared the worst, with a staggering 94 percent decline in population. All told, the drastic species decline tracked in this study “signal a fundamentally broken relationship between humans and the natural world,” the WWF notes in a release.

The net effect will be Earth’s sixth mass extinction event, as described here:

MASS EXTINCTION

It is preventable if humanity would take action to stop it.

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 pre-order the book today on the pre-order page.

Earth Hasn’t Warmed This Fast in Tens of Millions of Years

Earth Hasn’t Warmed This Fast in Tens of Millions of Years

In the hottest phases, more than 50 million years ago, temperatures on Earth were more than 10 degrees Celsius hotter than they are today. But it’s important to note that it took the planet thousands or even millions of years to reach these levels—and that was long before humans ever walked the Earth.

In the current case, temperatures will rise in a hundred years instead of thousands or millions. The incredible rapidity will be a defining characteristic of this era of global warming.

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 pre-order the book today on the pre-order page.

Noam Chomsky Predicts a Doomsday Future

In this article Noam Chomsky points out a number of doomsday scenarios that will manifest if we do not change course:

Noam Chomsky: “Trump Is the Worst Criminal in History, Undeniably”

This sounds strong, but it’s true: Trump is the worst criminal in history, undeniably. There has never been a figure in political history who was so passionately dedicated to destroying the projects for organized human life on earth in the near future.

That is not an exaggeration. People are focused now on the protests; the pandemic is serious enough that we will emerge from it at terrible cost. The cost is greatly amplified by the gangster in the White House, who has killed tens of thousands of Americans, making this the worst place in the world [for the coronavirus]. We will emerge [from the pandemic, but] we’re not going to emerge from another crime that Trump has committed, the heating of the globe. The worst of it is coming — we’re not going to emerge from that.

The ice sheets are melting; they’re not going to recover. That leads to exponential increase in global warming. Arctic glaciers, for example, could flood the world. Recent studies indicate that on the present course, in about fifty years, much of the habitable part of the world will be unlivable. You won’t be able to live in parts of South Asia, parts of the Middle East, parts of the United States. We’re approaching the point of 125,000 years ago, when sea levels were about twenty-five feet higher than they are now. And it’s worse than that. The Scripps Oceanographic Institute just came out with a study that estimated that we are coming ominously close to a point [similar to] 3 million years ago, when sea levels were fifty to eighty feet higher than they are today.

All around the world, countries are trying to do something about it. But there is one country which is led by a president who wants to escalate the crisis, to race toward the abyss, to maximize the use of fossil fuels, including the most dangerous of them, and to dismantle the regulatory apparatus that limits their impact. There is no crime like this in human history. Nothing. This is a unique individual. And it’s not as if he doesn’t know what he’s doing. Of course he does. It’s as if he doesn’t care. If he can pour more profits into his pockets and the pockets of his rich constituency tomorrow, who cares if the world disappears in a couple of generations?

As far as the government is concerned, we’re seeing something pretty interesting. Parliamentary democracy has been around for 350 years, starting in England in 1689 with the so-called Glorious Revolution, when sovereignty was transferred from the royalty to the parliament. The beginnings of parliamentary democracy in the United States [came] about a century later. Parliamentary democracy is not just based on laws and constitutions. In fact, the British constitution is maybe a dozen words. It’s based on trust and good faith, the assumption that people will act like human beings.

Take Richard Nixon. Pretty rotten guy, but when the time came that he had to leave office, he left office quietly. Nobody is expecting that with Trump. He doesn’t act like a human being. He’s off somewhere else. He [doesn’t] even make appointments that can be confirmed by the Senate. Why bother? I don’t like somebody, I’ll throw them out. One Republican, Lisa Murkowski, dares to raise a small question about his nobility, [and he] came down on her with a ton of bricks — I’m going to destroy you.

It’s not fascism. It’s what I said before: tin-pot dictator of some small country where they have coups every couple of years. That’s the mentality.

Congress, the Senate, happens to be in the hands of a soul mate of his, Mitch McConnell — in many ways the real evil genius of this administration, dedicated to destroying democracy long before Trump. When [Barack] Obama was elected, McConnell said openly to the public, “My main goal is to ensure that Obama can achieve nothing.” Okay. That’s saying, “I want to destroy parliamentary democracy,” which is based, as I said, in good faith and trust in the interchange.

The Senate. the so-called world’s greatest deliberative body, is reduced to passing legislation that will enrich the very rich, empowering the corporate sector, and making judicial appointments to stack the judiciary with young, ultraright, mostly incompetent justices who can ensure for a generation that no matter what the public wants, they’ll be able to block it.

It’s a deep hatred of democracy and fear of democracy. That’s not unusual among the elites; they don’t like democracy for obvious reasons. But this is something special.

That’s on top of the pandemic, on top of the global warming crisis, the crisis of nuclear weapons, which is equally severe. Trump is dismantling the entire arms-control regime, greatly increasing the risk of destruction, virtually inviting enemies to develop weapons to destroy us that we [won’t be able to] stop.

Trump is taking the worst aspects of capitalism, particularly the neoliberal version of capitalism, and amplifying them. Let’s just take the pandemic. Why is there a pandemic? In 2003, after the SARS epidemic, which was a coronavirus, it was well understood by scientists — they were saying, “Another coronavirus, much more serious than this, is very likely. Now here are the steps we have to take to prepare for it.” Somebody has to take the steps. Well, there is a pharmaceutical industry, but extraordinarily wealthy, huge labs can’t do it. You don’t spend money on something that might be important ten years from now — stopping a future catastrophe is not profitable. That’s a capitalist crisis.

Government has the resources; they have great labs. But then comes something called Ronald Reagan, at the beginning of the neoliberal assault on the population, arguing that government is the problem, not the solution — meaning we have to take decisions away from government. Government is influenced by people. Now we have to put [decisions] in the hands of unaccountable private institutions which have no influence from the public. In the United States, that’s sometimes called libertarianism. That’s the beginning of the neoliberal assault.

George H. W. Bush established a presidential scientific advisory council board. Obama called it into office, correctly, the first day of his administration and asked them to prepare a pandemic warning reaction system. A couple of weeks later, they came back with a system that was put in place. January 2017, the wrecker comes into office. First days of his administration, [Trump] dismantles the whole system to respond to a pandemic; started defunding the Centers for Disease Control [and Prevention] (CDC) and every health-related aspect of government, year after year. Eliminated programs of American scientists in China working with Chinese scientists to identify potential coronavirus threats and throws it out. So when [the coronavirus] hit, the United States was uniquely unprepared — thanks to the wrecker.

And then it got worse. He refused to react to it. Other countries responded to it, some of them very well and very quickly. It’s almost gone, mostly under control. Not in the United States. He didn’t care. For months, US intelligence couldn’t get the White House to say, “There’s a serious crisis.” Finally, according to reports, he noticed that the stock market was declining, and then said, “We have to do something.” What he has done is just chaos.

But a large part of the problem is pre-Trump. Why aren’t the hospitals ready? Well, they run on a business model. That’s neoliberalism. It has to be just-in-time delivery. They don’t want to lose a cent. So we don’t have an extra hospital bed; we have to make sure the CEOs of the private hospitals get millions of dollars a year in compensation. Can’t have an extra bed — you cut into that. So everything’s parroted above. The nursing homes, which are privately owned, are reduced to minimal functioning, because we can make more money that way, if we’re a private-equity corporation that owns them. Now we can contribute to Trump’s campaign so he can have a photo-op with us, telling us how wonderful we are for destroying the nursing homes, killing all the elderly people.

It goes deep into issues well before Trump, but he is a unique phenomenon — again, the worst criminal in human history, so his minor crimes are to destroy American democracy and to amplify a pandemic killing over a hundred thousand people. But those are minor crimes by his standards.

Chomsky covers many doomsday scenarios from the book in just this one short paragraph: “That’s on top of the pandemic, on top of the global warming crisis, the crisis of nuclear weapons, which is equally severe. Trump is dismantling the entire arms-control regime, greatly increasing the risk of destruction, virtually inviting enemies to develop weapons to destroy us that we [won’t be able to] stop.” All of these chapters are in play:

Humanity must change course to avoid catastrophe. In the ideal case, the United States would lead the way.

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 pre-order the book today on the pre-order page.

The biggest threat to humanity right now is the rising carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere

The biggest threat to humanity right now is the rising carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere. If this continues it will lead to all of these doomsday scenarios:

It will be catastrophe on top of catastrophe, essentially ruining the planet. Therefore this article is a wake up call:

Rise of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere continues unabated

The amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) in Earth’s atmosphere continues to rise, say scientists. On June 4, 2020, scientists from NOAA and Scripps Institution of Oceanography announced that atmospheric CO2 measured at Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii reached a seasonal peak of 417.1 parts per million for 2020 in May, the highest monthly reading ever recorded.

400 parts per million was once considered to be a “red line”. We are now well above that, and the consequences are dire unless humanity changes course:

Progress in emissions reductions is not visible in the CO2 record. We continue to commit our planet – for centuries or longer – to more global heating, sea level rise, and extreme weather events every year. If humans were to suddenly stop emitting CO2, it would take thousands of years for our CO2 emissions so far to be absorbed into the deep ocean and atmospheric CO2 to return to pre-industrial levels.

This is why humanity needs a war-level of effort to eliminate fossil fuels and then start pulling carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. This needs to happen immediately, and is within our power.

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 pre-order the book today on the pre-order page.

‘Collapse of Civilisation is the Most Likely Outcome’: Top Climate Scientists

This article puts the future of humanity in stark terms:

‘Collapse of Civilisation is the Most Likely Outcome’: Top Climate Scientists

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.

Also:

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 pre-order the book today on the pre-order page.

China has “more than 12,000 vessels fishing beyond its waters, three times more than previous estimates.”

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:

Giant Chinese fishing fleet depletes stocks around world

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.

Accelerating Mass Extinction in the Oceans

This article desrbes the kinds of policies that accelerate Earth’s sixth mass extinction event:

‘Quietly Putting Hundreds of Species at Risk,’ Trump Opens 5,000 Square Miles of Atlantic Ocean to Commercial Fishing: “Ancient and slow-growing deep sea corals, endangered large whales and sea turtles, and an incredible array of fish, seabirds, sharks, dolphins and other wildlife—these are the species and habitats that will pay the price.”

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.

We stand on the brink of mass extinction

The latest article raising the alarm about the upcoming mass extinction event:

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.

See also:

The sixth extinction