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dirty earthSo put down the Ambien, Prozac, Viagra and crotch-shots on Fox/GOP_TV Kool-Aid, turn off the television and pull your head out of your ass, because sea levels across the Northeast coast of the United States rose nearly 3.9 inches between 2009 and 2010, according to a new study from researchers at the University of Arizona and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The waters near Portland, Maine, saw an even greater rise — 5 inches — over the two-year period.

While scientists have been observing higher sea levels across the globe in recent decades, the study found a much more extreme rise than previous averages. Such an event is “unprecedented” in the history of the tide gauge record, according to the researchers, and represents a 1-in-850 year event.

“Unlike storm surge, this event caused persistent and widespread coastal flooding even without apparent weather processes,” the study’s authors wrote. “In terms of beach erosion, the impact of the 2009-2010 [sea level rise] event is almost as significant as some hurricane events.”

You are a clear and present danger to my grnad-children’s future.

Fear me.

drought 2095So put down the Ambien, Prozac, Viagra and crotch-shots on Fox Kool-Aid and turn off the television, because California is in its fourth year of drought, which has left its water reserves dry and cost its economy billions of dollars. Imagine these conditions across southern and central U.S. for another 30 years. There’s an 80 percent chance that 30-year droughts will be the new normal for the region after 2050, if we continue to burn through fossil fuels at the current rate, according to a NASA study published Thursday in the journal Science Advances. They expect higher temperatures will dry out the soil, increasing droughts.

A megadrought of that length is like nothing the U.S. has experienced before. But there’s still something we can do about it. NASA scientists note that the sooner we take action on greenhouse gas emissions, the better the chances are to avert a megadrought: NASA looked at what happens if greenhouse gas emissions start to come down worldwide by mid-century, and the risk of a megadrought drops to 60 percent.

Digby askes the clearest question: what do you suppose will happen when all that dark brown land no longer can produce the food needed to feed all the people who live there? And when water becomes scarce?

You are a clear and present danger to my grandchildren’s survival.

Fear me.

British broadcaster and naturalist Sir David Attenborough once asked: “Are we happy to suppose that our grandchildren may never be able to see an elephant except in a picture book?”

13 Species We Might Have To Say Goodbye To In 2015

dirty earthThis year marked the 100th anniversary of the death of the last passenger pigeon, Martha, who managed to survive only 14 years in captivity after her species became extinct in the wild. More recently, Angalifu, a 44-year-old northern white rhinoceros, died at the San Diego Zoo, leaving just five other white rhinos worldwide, all in captivity. Chances are our grandchildren will never get to see this remarkable creature.

In fact, the world is losing dozens of species every day in what experts are calling the sixth mass extinction in Earth’s history. As many as 30 to 50 percent of all species are movingtoward extinction by mid-century — and the blame sits squarely on our shoulders.

“Habitat destruction, pollution or overfishing either kills off wild creatures and plants or leaves them badly weakened,” said Derek Tittensor, a marine ecologist at the World Conservation Monitoring Centre in Cambridge. “The trouble is that in coming decades, the additional threat of worsening climate change will become more and more pronounced and could then kill off these survivors.”

The Sixth Extinction Is Here — And It’s Our Fault

The Earth appears to be in the early stages of the Sixth Extinction, the latest in a series of mass biodiversity losses that have punctuated the history of life on the planet, according to a paper published in Science this week.

The defining characteristic of the current round — the latest since the dinosaurs disappeared about 65 million years ago — seems to be driven mostly by the actions of humankind. We’re steadily encroaching on the habitat of millions of species while fundamentally altering the environment.

More than 320 terrestrial vertebrates have become extinct since 1500, according to the researchers at Stanford University. Surviving species have declined in abundance by about 25 percent, particularly devastating the ranks of large animals like elephants, rhinoceroses and polar bears.

And it’s only likely to get worse. The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Changereport in 2007 predicts that an increase of 3.5 degrees Celsius, within the range of scientistic forecasts for 2100, could wipe out 40 to 70 percent of the species assessed so far.

There have been five mass extinction events in Earth’s history. In the worst one, 250 million years ago, 96 percent of marine species and 70 percent of land species died off. It took millions of years to recover.

You are a clear and present danger to my grandchildren’s survival.

Fear me.

Who will remember what this age was like? And how will it be remembered?

The Golden Age, by Christy Rodgers

freddykruegerunclesamThe vast fields of oil-stained asphalt surrounding the gargantuan concrete temples in which there were no collective public rituals, only individual ones, requiring currency transactions. The heads of mountains sliced off and their guts ripped out and their veins bleeding black waste through the bleak towns. The dry exurban plains of the brown world glittering everywhere with acres of windblown plastic trash. The mountains of waste, as tall as Everest, as deep as the oceans. The waste, the waste, the waste.

The superhighways, the soft wheels turning everywhere. The global triumph of the private car. The daily traffic jams. A city disgorges ten million vehicles and they inch along a ten-lane freeway. What’s the saddest pretty thing in the world? At night in the western desert, the endless line of diamonds winding up the grade, the endless line of rubies winding down. A whole separate history unfolding inside each car. A history whose unique and intricate detail will disappear like a melting snowflake leaving behind only a genetic trace – perhaps – and a tiny increase in local entropy. “All these memories will be lost… like tears in the rain.” What is human?

Outside each car? The Sixth Extinction

The contingent sanctuaries, the oases in the desert of the real. The last river you can drink from. The last forest where you can go a whole week without hearing the noise of a single machine. The last tundra from which you can see the pulsing velvet blackness of the night sky unpolluted by any other light. The last village where no wants to leave and no one has to leave to make money. The last glacier? The last uncontacted tribe. The Last Poets.

Sowing the wind, reaping the whirlwind.

The sense that it was all foretold, by word-poets, image-poets, first and last. It was all foreseen long before the Bomb went off or the Wall came down – thewhat, if not the how. What “freedom” would look like. The infinity of darkness under all the lights, the silence under all the noise, the reverberating sound of the final crash echoing distantly, daily, somewhere in our minds. Which never comes but is always here, our constant companion, close as our own shadow, from now on, world without end, amen.

You all are a clear and present danger to my grandchildren’s future.

Fear me.

There is a lot to feel good about as far as the U.S. climate movement and what we did and accomplished in 2014. Without question, we are heading into 2015 with some wind at our back and, to continue the relevant metaphor, the sun to light our way forward. by Ted Glick

6) And still no West Coast coal exports:  In the words of climatesolutions.org, “Stopping any new coal export off the West Coast continues to be a major stake in the ground for the climate movement. iww-kat_0.thumbnailOur Power Past Coal coalition campaign has made major advances in the past year, with two proposals pulled off the table in Oregon, and the Washington Dept. of Ecology announcing a broad scope of review for the impacts of the proposed coal export terminal at Cherry Point north of Bellingham, WA. Now with three export proposals off the table, we continue to watchdog the remaining three proposals and partner with community leaders to build a powerful constituency for building a better, more prosperous future in the region.”

graffitiSo put down the Ambien, Prozac, Viagra and crotch-shots on Fox Kool-Aid and turn off the television, because even a 10 percent loss of Antarctica’s ice would cause catastrophic flooding of coastal cities.

“Almost three miles of ice buries most of Antarctica, cloaking a continent half again as large as the United States. But when an Antarctic ice shelf the size of Manhattan collapsed in less than a month in 2002, it shocked scientists and raised the alarming possibility that Antarctica may be headed for a meltdown. Even a 10 percent loss of Antarctica’s ice would cause catastrophic flooding of coastal cities unlike any seen before in human history. What are the chances of a widespread melt? “Secrets Beneath the Ice” explores whether Antarctica’s climate past can offer clues to what may happen. NOVA follows a state-of-the-art expedition that is drilling three-quarters of a mile into the Antarctic seafloor. The drill is recovering rock cores that reveal intimate details of climate and fauna from a time in the distant past when the Earth was just a few degrees warmer than it is today. As researchers grapple with the harshest conditions on the planet, they discover astonishing new clues about Antarctica’s past—clues that carry ominous implications for coastal cities around the globe.” NOVA | Secrets Beneath the Ice – PBS

 

You should be reading Dr Cole every day.

From Ten Good Things about the Year 2014

New gains for legalizing marijuana. With the majority of the country now supporting legalization, and Colorado and Washington proving that it actually works, new gains were achieved at the ballot box in Oregon, Alaska and Washington D.C. World leaders like former UN head Kofi Annan and presidents from Latin America called for an end to the drug war and for legally regulating drugs. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder continued to speak out against racist mandatory minimum drug laws and mass incarceration, while President Obama made national news declaring that marijuana is not more harmful than alcohol.

Massive wins for gay marriage. In decision after decision, courts in 18 states struck down gay marriage bans. It is now legal for gay couples to marry in 35 of the 50 states. A year ago, only about a third of Americans lived in states that permitted same-sex marriage. Today, nearly 65 percent of Americans do, making 2014 perhaps the biggest turning point in the history of same-sex marriage in the United States.

Raises for minimum wage workers. From ballot initiatives and grassroots organizing to major legislative efforts, campaigns to raise the minimum wagegained momentum across the country. Voters, cities and statehouses passedminimum wage increases. The states included Alaska, Arkansas, Nebraska, New Jersey and South Dakota; cities included San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Louisville and Portland,OR. And the calls for raises came from workers themselves: Black Friday saw the largest strikes ever against Walmart, with pickets and strikes at 1,600 stores in 49 states. And on December 5, fast-food workers went on strike in 190 cities. Congress might not be able to push through national legislation, but workers and local communities are not waiting!

imagesSo put down the Ambien, Prozac, Viagra and crotch-shots on Fox Kool-Aid, turn off the television and pull your head out of your ass, because NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration have both confirmed that 2014 is set to be the warmest year in recorded human history.

And, as 2014 draws to a close it seems likely to be the first calendar year that recorded no sub-zero temperatures in Anchorage, Alaska, the National Weather Service reported Sunday.

According to NWS, the last time that Anchorage saw temperatures that dropped below zero was December 26, 2013—although the city briefly hit zero degrees exactly on February 11 of this year. The balmy forecast for the next few days means it is safe to say Anchorage will not see any negative temperatures before the year is up, NWS meteorologist Mike Ottenweller told the Alaska Dispatch News.

“With as much certainty as a meteorologist can put behind anything, there is no chance we will go below zero before the end of the year,” Ottenweller said.

This is not the first time in recent history that Anchorage has seen long-term warm temperatures, having gone without sub-zero days from January 18, 2000 to November 30, 2001. However, the relatively warm temperatures mean that 2014 is the first calendar year, from January 1 to December 31, that the NWS did not record a single sub-zero day in the Alaskan city since the service began tracking temperature in 1952.

Albert Einstein once wrote “When the bees die, in four years we die…

beesLarge fields in Ontario, Canada, were planted with GMO corn and millions of dead bees were the result of that action. To be more precise, Dave Schuit, a local bee keeper in Elmwood, lost about 37 million bees, or about 600 hives, which affected his production greatly.

“Once the corn started to get planted our bees died by the millions,” Schuit explained.

What is more devastating, while bee keepers blame the neonicotionids or “neonics” for the massive bee deaths and many countries in EU have banned neonicotionid class of pesticides, the US Department of Agriculture still has not banned the neonicotionoids manufactured by Bayer CropScience Inc.

Researchers claim that two of Bayer’s best-selling insecticides, Imidacloprid and Clothianidin, are able to get into pollen and nectar, and damage any beneficial insects, let’s take bees for an example. The marketing of these pesticides coincided with the high death rates in EU countries and the US.

Nathan Carey is another local farmer who says that this spring he noticed that the number of bees on his farm significantly decreased, and he believes that the use of insecticides led to the disappearance of bees.

Scientists have long struggled to find the real cause of the massive deaths, a phenomenon they call “colony collapse disorder” (CCD). The number of honeybees in the US keeps decreasing, a situation that lasts for seven years.

 

dirty earthSo put down the Ambien, Prozac, Viagra and crotch-shots on Fox/CNN Kool-Aid and turn off the television, because in spite its formidable lineage, the Amundsen Sea is widely recognized as the weakest link in the West Antarctic’s splintering chain of ice sheets. But only now is it becoming clear just how fast change is coming.

There, the melting rate tripled in the past decade. Since 1992, the researchers found, the loss rate accelerated by 6.1 gigatons per year. Between 2003 and 2009, that rate nearly tripled to 16.3 gigatons per year. That surge in the melt rate, according to scientists at the University of California at Irvine, means the region, in the past 21 years, shed a Mount Everest-sized amount of ice every two years.

You are a clear and present danger to my grand-children’s future.

Fear me.

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