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Mon Nov 26, 2012, 08:21 AM

Chris Hedges: Stand Still For the Apocalypse


from truthdig:



Stand Still For the Apocalypse

Posted on Nov 26, 2012
By Chris Hedges


AP/Elizabeth Dalziel
In much of the world, including China and the United States, dirty energy remains cheap and plentiful, with disastrous consequences
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Humans must immediately implement a series of radical measures to halt carbon emissions or prepare for the collapse of entire ecosystems and the displacement, suffering and death of hundreds of millions of the globe’s inhabitants, according to a report commissioned by the World Bank. The continued failure to respond aggressively to climate change, the report warns, will mean that the planet will inevitably warm by at least 4 degrees Celsius (7.2 degrees Fahrenheit) by the end of the century, ushering in an apocalypse.

The 84-page document,“Turn Down the Heat: Why a 4°C Warmer World Must Be Avoided,” was written for the World Bank by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Climate Analytics and published last week. The picture it paints of a world convulsed by rising temperatures is a mixture of mass chaos, systems collapse and medical suffering like that of the worst of the Black Plague, which in the 14th century killed 30 to 60 percent of Europe’s population.

A planetwide temperature rise of 4 degrees C—and the report notes that the tepidness of the emission pledges and commitments of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change will make such an increase almost inevitable—will cause a precipitous drop in crop yields, along with the loss of many fish species, resulting in widespread hunger and starvation. Hundreds of millions of people will be forced to abandon their homes in coastal areas and on islands that will be submerged as the sea rises. There will be an explosion in diseases such as malaria, cholera and dengue fever. Devastating heat waves and droughts, as well as floods, especially in the tropics, will render parts of the Earth uninhabitable. The rain forest covering the Amazon basin will disappear. Coral reefs will vanish. Numerous animal and plant species, many of which are vital to sustaining human populations, will become extinct. Monstrous storms will eradicate biodiversity, along with whole cities and communities. And as these extreme events begin to occur simultaneously in different regions of the world, the report finds, there will be “unprecedented stresses on human systems.” Global agricultural production will eventually not be able to compensate. Health and emergency systems, as well as institutions designed to maintain social cohesion and law and order, will crumble. The world’s poor, at first, will suffer the most. But we all will succumb in the end to the folly and hubris of the Industrial Age. And yet, we do nothing.

“It is useful to recall that a global mean temperature increase of 4°C approaches the difference between temperatures today and those of the last ice age, when much of central Europe and the northern United States were covered with kilometers of ice and global mean temperatures were about 4.5°C to 7°C lower,” the report reads. “And this magnitude of climate change—human induced—is occurring over a century, not millennia.” ...................(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/stand_still_for_the_apocalypse_20121126/



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Arrow 28 replies Author Time Post
Reply Chris Hedges: Stand Still For the Apocalypse (Original post)
marmar Nov 2012 OP
xchrom Nov 2012 #1
RKP5637 Nov 2012 #2
dotymed Nov 2012 #3
heaven05 Nov 2012 #15
WinkyDink Nov 2012 #4
LisaLynne Nov 2012 #6
Junkdrawer Nov 2012 #13
Hydra Nov 2012 #23
workinclasszero Nov 2012 #5
Stonepounder Nov 2012 #7
salinen Nov 2012 #8
stuntcat Nov 2012 #19
Hydra Nov 2012 #24
BlancheSplanchnik Nov 2012 #9
AlbertCat Nov 2012 #10
ewagner Nov 2012 #11
heaven05 Nov 2012 #12
triplepoint Nov 2012 #14
liberal_at_heart Nov 2012 #16
JDPriestly Nov 2012 #17
blackspade Nov 2012 #18
marmar Nov 2012 #22
Javaman Nov 2012 #27
geardaddy Nov 2012 #20
Madmiddle Nov 2012 #21
markpkessinger Nov 2012 #25
Javaman Nov 2012 #28
DollarBillHines Nov 2012 #26

Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 08:23 AM

1. du rec. nt

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 08:40 AM

2. It's time for the traditional Industrial Age to fully end, it's been long overdue. n/t

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:10 AM

3. Greed has ensured the destruction of our species.

Who knows how long it will take for Earth to become inhabitable again...

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Response to dotymed (Reply #3)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:37 AM

15. with the

methane release. maybe never.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:18 AM

4. The 1% won't mind.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:22 AM

6. Exactly.

Those who understand what is happening figure their money will be able to protect them.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #4)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:35 AM

13. Ever read (the book) The War of the Worlds?

The 1% will be like the gold hoarder who is trampled to death underneath the wagons of the fleeing masses.

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Response to Junkdrawer (Reply #13)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 04:39 PM

23. They're already planning on living underground

They've just been pushing a bizarre experiment before that- how many of us can they kill before they retreat?

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:22 AM

5. So the fruits of unlimited capitalism are..

..the end of the world.

Got that humanity?

Remember that the next time some teabag repig slams socialism.

Hug your kids, pity and pray for them.

They will try to survive in the garbage dump planet we destroyed and curse us when they fail.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:28 AM

7. I've said for a long time that humanity,

as a species, will turn out to be one of nature's most spectacular failures. The last time around it was a large meteorite that caused a general die-off. This time around it will be humans.

Oh, and by the way, the 'radical changes' necessary to ameliorate the coming disaster? Ain't gonna happen. Although not sure what the 1% are going to do, living in their gated communities at the poles, when there is no one to buy their products and nothing to spend their money on.

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Response to Stonepounder (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 09:48 AM

8. Mankind?

 

doesn't deserve this place anymore.

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Response to Stonepounder (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 11:04 AM

19. +1

Our satisfaction with ourselves over all the things we achieve is just a pro-species thing. "Oh look what a genius MY kid is, what a wit!"
And yes, science and music are great, but the effect we will have on this beautiful world and all the other species we'll erase.. that real effect.. will be our big legacy.
But the lucky ones who protect themselves from the violence of the next few decades will still feel great about humanity's wonderful rise. It's a god-like feeling every species has about itself, no matter what. It would take a higher evolution for a species to get past that instinct, and it's a terrible instinct when the species is acting as a deadly virus on the only host it will ever find.

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Response to Stonepounder (Reply #7)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 04:42 PM

24. Welcome to DU!

And the 1% have built/are building massive underground cities. Not big enough for all of us, of course.

I hope they enjoy each other's company enough for that though. Sounds perfectly hellish to me.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:01 AM

9. three words:

Population.
Population.
Population.


Oh sure, sustainability efforts are top priority, but without radical reduction in HUMAN populations everywhere, those efforts will be as effective as a band aid for Ebola.

Or, Nature's gonna do it for us. Wars, violence and disease have helped keep our numbers down but it would be better if we would take responsibility to do it consciously and peacefully.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:09 AM

10. To paraphrase Carl Sagan....

(he's talking about overpopulation...but you get the idea)

Something WILL BE DONE about it. WE can do something about it, or we can let Mother Nature do something about it. And you really don't want Mother Nature to be doing anything about it because she is indifferent to human needs. She will use famine and disease.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:25 AM

11. Freshman year of college...1965

I heard the name "Malthus" for the first time....and wondered...why aren't we taking this seriously?

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:34 AM

12. faux news

christian rightists, our own member of different congressional 'science' committees deny this based on the premise that 'god' would not provide something to us that would eventually create the chaos and misery mentioned in this article. One small thing these people are forgetting, provision is one thing, wise management is another. humans who buy the denial route, hundreds of millions, will continue to obfuscate and distract with their helpers in the media, science committees and christian right wing groups looking for rapture until it is too late for all of us, IF it's not too late already? Go human race! eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we ...?

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:37 AM

14. We've Just One More Generation To Go Until Our Extinction!

 

Last edited Sun Dec 9, 2012, 10:23 AM - Edit history (5)


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Are you ready for the country...because its time to die...
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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:44 AM

16. I think one of the problems has been the threat is too vague

If they could tell leaders of countries how the warming would affect their country or state directly and how it would affect their economy specifically you may see more action. After Sandy you hear more people recognizing and saying the words global warming. I think as each country starts to see the first economic hits from some of these first big changes you will see change. It will take countries actually being hit by a drought, flood, typhoon, hurricaine, or other superstorm before you will see a unified front. But I do think it will happen. Countries will act when it starts affecting their economy. The question of course is will it be too late.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #16)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:51 AM

17. Good point.

Plus. Politicians think in terms of action, and no one every states concretely what action needs to be taken beyond what we are already doing.

What factories need to close? What products, other than oil and coal, should we stop using?

There is so much confusion about what we need to do. Nuclear? Lots of dangers. Solar? Expensive.

Is there some other solution that would require less adjustment, less sacrifice?

Considering the time is short, we all need some clarity seems to me.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #16)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 10:53 AM

18. It's happening now.

By the time folks wake the fuck up and act, it will be too late.

We are in free fall now. We as a species need to decide between a hard landing or a terminal one.
That requires leadership from the folks who control the levers of power.
Unfortunately leading on this issue cuts into their profit margin.

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Response to blackspade (Reply #18)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 01:25 PM

22. Yep. I've accepted that it's too late, and people won't change.


Nature will force the change, and it won't be pretty.


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Response to blackspade (Reply #18)

Wed Nov 28, 2012, 02:58 PM

27. today is too late...

30 years ago was the last minute.

50 years ago could have mitigated it all.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 11:18 AM

20. That picture hasn't changed in 30 years.

30 years ago I lived in Beijing and I saw the same thing... coal, coal, and more coal. Used for everything, even cooking.

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 11:18 AM

21. In the meantime

giant consumer driven cities, like all the metropolitan areas in this country, will continue to burn fossil fuels and eat products grown in the country and wonder why our world is gonna burn. I'm glad I don't live in or near these areas of the country. The Indigenous people of the land had it right with the way they lived off the land...

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Response to Madmiddle (Reply #21)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 04:43 PM

25. People who live in metropolitan areas . . .

. . . such as, for example, NYC, tend to have a significantly lower carbon footprint than their suburban and rural compatriots. Just sayin'.

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Response to Madmiddle (Reply #21)

Fri Nov 30, 2012, 08:30 AM

28. What powers your computer? Good intentions? nt

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Response to marmar (Original post)

Mon Nov 26, 2012, 04:48 PM

26. Mother Nature bats last

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