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Sat Nov 17, 2012, 12:23 PM

PETM V 2.0 - PriceWaterhouse Study Finds Avoiding 6C Increase By 2100 "Almost Impossible"

The world is destined for dangerous climate change this century with global temperatures possibly rising by as much as 6C because of the failure of governments to find alternatives to fossil fuels, a report by a group of economists has concluded.

It will now be almost impossible to keep the increase in global average temperatures up to 2100 within the 2C target that scientists believe might avert dangerous and unpredictable climate change, according to a study by the accountancy giant PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

An analysis of how fast the major world economies are reducing their emissions of carbon dioxide from fossil fuels suggests that it may already be too late to stay within the 2C target of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, it found.

To keep within the 2C target, the global economy would have to reach a "decarbonisation" rate of at least 5.1 per cent a year for the next 39 years. This has not happened since records began at the end of the Second World War, according to Leo Johnson, a PwC partner in sustainability and climate change. "Even doubling our current rate of decarbonisation would still lead to emissions consistent with 6C of warming by the end of the century. To give ourselves a more than 50 per cent chance of avoiding 2C will require a sixfold improvement in our rate of decarbonisation," he said.

EDIT

http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/temperatures-may-rise-6c-by-2100-says-study-8281272.html

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Reply PETM V 2.0 - PriceWaterhouse Study Finds Avoiding 6C Increase By 2100 "Almost Impossible" (Original post)
hatrack Nov 2012 OP
SubgeniusHasSlack Nov 2012 #1
aletier_v Nov 2012 #3
OKIsItJustMe Nov 2012 #10
GliderGuider Nov 2012 #2
hatrack Nov 2012 #4
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #13
GliderGuider Nov 2012 #15
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #17
GliderGuider Nov 2012 #23
CRH Nov 2012 #29
wtmusic Nov 2012 #5
hatrack Nov 2012 #6
wtmusic Nov 2012 #7
CRH Nov 2012 #30
CRH Nov 2012 #8
hatrack Nov 2012 #9
CRH Nov 2012 #11
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #22
CRH Nov 2012 #26
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #32
NoOneMan Nov 2012 #33
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #34
NoOneMan Nov 2012 #35
GliderGuider Nov 2012 #36
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #37
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #12
NoOneMan Nov 2012 #14
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #16
NoOneMan Nov 2012 #18
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #19
NoOneMan Nov 2012 #20
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #21
joshcryer Nov 2012 #24
hatrack Nov 2012 #27
AverageJoe90 Nov 2012 #31
joshcryer Nov 2012 #25
hatrack Nov 2012 #28

Response to hatrack (Original post)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 12:25 PM

1. Human hubris has doomed the planet.

 

That and the willful ignorance and cynical prevarication of the denialist tools of the oligarchs.

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Response to SubgeniusHasSlack (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 01:05 PM

3. The planet will be fine, like a snake sloughing off a skin

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Response to aletier_v (Reply #3)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 07:26 PM

10. That all depends on what you call "the planet"

Personally, I care about more than just the water-covered rock I call home.

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 12:51 PM

2. Hot?? You want hot? Take a look at that Kardashian woman...

I fucking hate having my doomerism confirmed by fucking economists...

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Response to GliderGuider (Reply #2)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 05:08 PM

4. Yes, when it's so bad that even economists confirm your worst suspicions . . .

You know you're fucked.

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Response to GliderGuider (Reply #2)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 10:10 PM

13. Like a fat-cat Wall Street institution like PWC?

Honestly, P.W.C. needs to fuck off and let the real scientists do their work.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #13)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 10:35 PM

15. No, I love that they're getting involved like this. People actually listen to them.

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Response to GliderGuider (Reply #15)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 12:51 AM

17. Like Wall Street bankers, for example?

Many Americans are still (rightly) upset about Wall Street's malfeasance during the Bush era. You really think most will listen to a financial instituion, a pillar of the same financial structure that failed us in '08? I'm sorry, but no, and anyone who thinks otherwise is just not willing to face up to reality.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #17)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:55 AM

23. Maybe like politicians.

Who might join me in saying, "Crap if even the economists are calling it that way..."

BTW, have you gotten around to the "Kevin Anderson experience" yet? If not, I can promise you an eye-opening time. Anderson is one of the guys Bill McKibbon listens to.

http://www.bristol.ac.uk/cabot/documents/anderson-ppt.pdf
http://www.indymedia.org.uk/media/2012/11//502497.mp3

The .mp3 is the audio track of his talk, the .ppt is the Powerpoint deck he presented. They are meant to be used together.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #17)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 11:25 AM

29. Hey Joe, you want to face up to reality, ...

use the two links Glider posted above. They are all about those 'real scientists' and their watered down consensus models from 2007 IPPC report. It will also give you a peak at the impact of just 4*C, never mind a totally unmanageable 6*C.

The only hope at 6*C is very high tech, yet to be invented, fully self sustainable, probably underground communities; that maybe, a very few very rich people will construct for themselves, but not the average joe.

You might want to buddy up to the Bushs', I understand they have a beautiful and sustainable land locked property in Paraguay, almost a perfect location on the 'right' side of the equator, and nestled within a fascist society well versed in corrupt military government. I'm sure their recent purchase, was forward looking. They will certainly try to be exclusive members of 6*C club.

So you might be correct, some for a while, might survive at 6*C, but not your average joe. You won't be invited, your party will be over.

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 05:23 PM

5. Fine, but how will the job market be in this warmer economy?

You know, the important stuff...

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Response to wtmusic (Reply #5)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 06:17 PM

6. In a warmer world, wouldn't the Kardashians wear less clothing?

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Response to hatrack (Reply #6)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 06:29 PM

7. Exactly. Instead of wasting money on carbon sequestration, we should be investing in bikinis!

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Response to hatrack (Reply #6)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 11:38 AM

30. You want hot, ... tune into the intro on Sunday Night Football, ...

I never watch the game, but never miss the intro. Faith Hill is smokin' hot, still at 45.

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 06:36 PM

8. Hey hatrack, paint a picture of 6*C for casual readers, ...

4*C in the long run is unmanageable for 90% of the human population. Tell others what happens at 6*C. PETM is beyond the nightmares most people envision, why even joe might be humbled.

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Response to CRH (Reply #8)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 07:22 PM

9. PETM - estimated 25-30% of all species went extinct - not exactly Permian, but not fun . . .

The PETM - Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum - took place about 55 million years ago. There's some debate on what caused the sudden rise in temperatures that put such a hurt on life on Earth.

There's pretty good evidence of a spike in volcanic activity substantially boosting atmospheric CO2 content, though there's also some discussion of whether a clathrate release may have also been triggered by the 6C rise.

I'll quote from "Under A Green Sky" by Peter Ward:

"Compared with today, the amount of dust making its way to the deep ocean over much of Paleocene time was rather less. But near the Paleocene-Eocene boundary they observed a striking threefold reduction in deep-sea dust. They also noticed another interesting rock type: volcanic ash. Like dust, this fine material makes its way to the seafloor from the atmosphere, but it is put up there by volcanic eruption, not atmospheric storms. While dust levels decreased across the boundary, volcanic ash levels increased. This increase could be due to only a sudden increase in global volcanic activity, about 58 to 56 million years ago. Further work in many places around the globe confirmed these findings as being global phenomena, not anomalous events limited to one ocean basin.

EDIT

Jim Zachos of Santa Cruz estimated that in a short interval of time the difference in temperatures from equator to pole changed markedly. Wheras in the Paleocene epoch the difference in seawater termperature between equator and pole was a hefty 17 degrees Celsius (it is an even heftier 45 degrees now), the difference had shrunk to only 6 degrees by early Eocene times. And as the high latitudes warmed, the heat exchange between the two regions slowed, reducing both the number and ferocity of storms. The world went calm and got very hot; a further consequence was mass extinction.

At the end of it all, this work on the Paleocene Thermal Event, the various geologists, chemists and paleontologists could distill a complex history ending in a lot of dead things on Earth down to an interesting series of events. First, Earth experienced a short-term rise in volcanism, and a consequence of this heightened number of explosive eruptions, as well as the more gentle eruptions, of flood basalts was a vast increase in the amount of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases entering the atmosphere. Very quickly, the air and oceans of our planet warmed. The warmer oceans contained less oxygen, and deep-ocean organisms, used to living in cool, highly oxygenated water, found themselves in the equivalent of hot poison and quickly died out. On land, the warmer air also changed the distribution of plants and trees and some organisms died out. But it was a far cry from the wholesale destruction of the Earth-changing K-T event of only five million years prior. It is pretty safe to say that the extinctions in the oceans were more catastrophic than those on land. In neither case did the number of dead species come anywhere close to the extinctions in the Ordovician, Devonian, Permian, Triassic or Cretaceous - the Big Five - each typified by the dying out of more than 50 percent of the species then on Earth. In the Paleocene event, the victims represented less than half the number.

EDIT

Side note - the PETM took place in a geological eyeblink, about 20,000 years for the 6C rise, maybe a bit less. We're now on track to accomplish the same feat in about 150 years.

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Response to CRH (Reply #8)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 08:44 PM

11. I think 'tool monkeys', ... will have a very hard time, ...

there is no adaption, no time for evolution. If it isn't stopped at 4*C, which already is a huge challenge to maintaining a resemblance of civilization, future history will be written without homo sapiens. From the curve of rising CO2 concentrations and the resulting projections of rising temperatures, in the time frame we are presently faced, 4*C is transitory, and six is inevitable if we continue to consume fossil fuels.

The only course for the future with the status quo we are living today, is placing our 'faith', not in God, but geo engineering. We are betting, we don't roll craps. If this is not unsettling, well, ... enjoy the high.

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Response to CRH (Reply #11)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:00 AM

22. You greatly underestimate humanity's capability, then.

Even if 6*C comes to pass, and it could under business-as-usual, even then, it wouldn't spell the end of humanity.
Even if some may not wish to admit it, for whatever reason, we will still be here 100 years from now, barring, perhaps, an unprecedented K/T asteroid strike or gamma ray burst, or something on that scale.

We are unlike any other creature on Earth; we aren't totally invincible by any means, but at least we can change our fate; from challenging to Olympian in this case.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #22)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 08:33 AM

26. Like I said above, enjoy your high. n/t

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Response to CRH (Reply #26)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 05:52 PM

32. And do enjoy your low, please. ;-) n/t

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #22)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 06:32 PM

33. What difference does it really make?

 

Look, we knew reasonably well that mutually assured destruction was somewhat of a fallacy; there would always be a few distraught humans living in bunkers that could withstand the fallout and live a considerable amount of time. So a nuclear holocaust wasn't ever 100% total human extinction, but did that make the option any more favorable? Not really.

Your argument is that essentially some of us wise apes may make it (probably bankers that have contingency plans and the power to follow through with them), but for the vast amount of people, we have no resilience in the face of climate change (baring perhaps myself who lives on an island, close to nature, in a far away land). But denying the absolute worse case doesn't make a very, very bad case any more acceptable to everyone whose genetic lines will be wiped out (undermining their very biological reason for existence). In any case, those forgetting to account for the fortunate lives of the most-privileged who make it are surely not practicing hyperbole. And quality of life is yet another concern among anyone just squeezing through a bottleneck (a cataclysmic event caused from a warming world mixed with depleted glacier aquifers and depleted fertilizing resources, all spelling famine).

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Response to NoOneMan (Reply #33)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 07:00 PM

34. Well.....

Look, we knew reasonably well that mutually assured destruction was somewhat of a fallacy; there would always be a few distraught humans living in bunkers that could withstand the fallout and live a considerable amount of time. So a nuclear holocaust wasn't ever 100% total human extinction, but did that make the option any more favorable? Not really.


Maybe not, but unlike ACC as a singular event, nuclear war damn well indeed could have wiped out a majority of the world's population by itself.

Your argument is that essentially some of us wise apes may make it (probably bankers that have contingency plans and the power to follow through with them), but for the vast amount of people, we have no resilience in the face of climate change (baring perhaps myself who lives on an island, close to nature, in a far away land).


Partly true, but you also misunderstand a poriton of my argument; I have indeed stated that humanity, while not invincible, really is more resilient than some may think. And as for those elites who happen to be scum? They're actually likely to be amongst the first to be written off if the s**t really does hit the fan, in most countries(although, hypothetically assuming the continuation of today's status quo, a few countries like Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Iran, Singapore, might be amongst the exceptions).

But denying the absolute worse case doesn't make a very, very bad case any more acceptable to everyone whose genetic lines will be wiped out (undermining their very biological reason for existence).


True, but the absolute worst case isn't human extinction, though.

In any case, those forgetting to account for the fortunate lives of the most-privileged who make it are surely not practicing hyperbole. And quality of life is yet another concern among anyone just squeezing through a bottleneck (a cataclysmic event caused from a warming world mixed with depleted glacier aquifers and depleted fertilizing resources, all spelling famine).


I don't doubt that some sort of bottleneck is very possible but I don't think we can safely predict the future beyond a point.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #34)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 07:18 PM

35. "humanity, while not invincible, really is more resilient than some may think"

 

Maybe, and maybe not.

Past humans facing bottlenecks had hundreds of thousands of years of ancient knowledge about the land and ecosystems that were not yet cultivated, exploited and destroyed.

We have abandoned that knowledge and opted for centralized production of food via monocropping, with inputs that may not be readily available in the future.

Don't mistake oil-based technological leapfrogging (that produced systems vulnerable to failure) with resilience (which relies on independent, redundant, localized systems).

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Response to NoOneMan (Reply #35)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 07:33 PM

36. It's more than a bit ironic that those with the most traditional knowledge

are living as the poor in areas that are already resource-poor and may be most vulnerable to climate change. I'm thinking here of the indigenous peoples of the world, and also the lower echelon of the peasant farmers that make up the global movement of Via Campesina. I say "lowest echelon" because you don't need to climb very far up the ladder before you become beholden to purchased seeds, manufactured fertilizers, and oil.

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Response to NoOneMan (Reply #35)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 09:56 PM

37. True to an extent, but it doesn't really change things much.


Past humans facing bottlenecks had hundreds of thousands of years of ancient knowledge about the land and ecosystems that were not yet cultivated, exploited and destroyed.


Okay, and?


We have abandoned that knowledge and opted for centralized production of food via monocropping, with inputs that may not be readily available in the future.


Not entirely. In fact, there's a growing movement of people who want to de-centralize, so to speak. Remember the lessons about WWII-era Victory Gardens? Those are starting to be brought back.

Don't mistake oil-based technological leapfrogging (that produced systems vulnerable to failure) with resilience (which relies on independent, redundant, localized systems).


I'm not, believe me.

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 10:08 PM

12. Forgive me, but PriceWaterhouseCoopers? The financial giant?

I'm sorry, but I'm going to need a far more reliable source than a Wall Street fat-cat company. It's kinda like Goldman Sachs doing a study on deforestation, you know? These banksters crashed the fucking economy, guys. Why in the hell should we trust them on any subject, period? I'll stick to the IPCC and Peter Sinclair, thank you very much.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #12)

Sat Nov 17, 2012, 10:23 PM

14. Have you listened to that Anderson presentation yet?

 

It has very interesting information about the IPCC models

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Response to NoOneMan (Reply #14)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 12:47 AM

16. I haven't had the chance, and why couldn't you just use the DU Mail function?

Seriously.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #16)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 01:01 AM

18. Mail is a construct of sick civilization

 

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Response to NoOneMan (Reply #18)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 01:08 AM

19. What kind of an answer is that?

If you really, really want me to see the Anderson film so badly, just send me a personal message or whatever(yes, that would be the DU Mail function.).

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #19)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 01:50 AM

20. I thought it was a funny one

 

But I tend to over-react

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Response to NoOneMan (Reply #20)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 01:58 AM

21. Well, I didn't think it was....sorry. =(

In all honesty, if you really, really want me to see the Anderson clip so badly, just send me the link via DU's Mail function and I'll get to it whenever possible.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #21)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:44 AM

24. GG already posted it here:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1127&pid=28079

The PDF converted PPT slides are kind of broke but just listen to the audio which accompanies them.

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Response to AverageJoe90 (Reply #12)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 08:55 AM

27. It's not a climatological study, it's an analysis of how fast we're decarbonizing energy production

Short answer - not nearly fast enough.

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Response to hatrack (Reply #27)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 02:40 PM

31. True, I suppose.

I just don't think PWC is doing us any favors, though. Too many Americans are upset with Wall Street, and I do have concerns that this could backfire on us.

Perhaps my concerns may turn out to be unneeded, but we'll see, I suppose.

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 03:45 AM

25. Except, after 5-10 years of drought they will start geoengineering.

What they won't expect is that the sulphates that they introduce into the atmosphere will destroy the ozone layer. :O

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Response to joshcryer (Reply #25)

Sun Nov 18, 2012, 08:59 AM

28. Yes, and once sulphate injection begins, it can't ever, ever stop

Doesn't matter what it costs, doesn't matter what it does to what's left of the Earth's biological systems, doesn't even matter what it does to human health, if it's not too outrageous in its side effects.

But let's go ahead and do it. We're fucking Prometheus with supercomputers. What could possibly go wrong?

Besides, the alternative might require lifestyle changes. Ick!

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