It is hard for us to take in the reality that the earth is an extinction machine. It doesn’t need us, and we cannot control it. The “ecological crisis” we hear so much about, and which I have written so much about and worked to stave off—well, who says it is a crisis? Humans do—and educated, socially concerned humans at that. For the earth itself, the Holocene Extinction is not a crisis—it is just another shift. Who determined that the planet should remain in the state in which humans find it conducive? Is this not a form of clinging to mutable things, and one that is destined to make us unhappy? When we campaign to “save the earth,” what are we really trying to save? And which earth?
“This is the first time we’re set to reach the 1C marker and it’s clear that it is human influence driving our modern climate into uncharted territory,” said Stephen Belcher, director of the Met Office’s Hadley Centre, said. “We have passed the halfway mark to the 2C target.”
Periodically, in the vast spans of time that have proceeded us, our planet’s living beings have been purged by planetary catastrophes so extreme they make your typical Ice Age look like the geological equivalent of a stroll in the park. Scientists count just five mass extinctions in an unimaginably long expanse of 450 million years, but they warn we may well be entering a sixth.
. . . → Read More: The Four Horsemen Of The Sixth Mass Extinction, Jeremy Hance
Reposted from Rolling Stone
Historians may look to 2015 as the year when shit really started hitting the fan. Some snapshots: In just the past few months, record-setting heat waves in Pakistan and India each killed more than 1,000 people. In Washington state’s Olympic National Park, the rainforest caught fire for the first time . . . → Read More: The Point Of No Return: Climate Change Nightmares Are Already Here, By Eric Holthaus
The new normal is that there is no longer any “normal.” The new normal regarding climate disruption is that, for the planet, today is better than tomorrow.
In early July, I asked Truthout readers to share the weather anomalies they are witnessing on their home turf. Large numbers of readers responded with a range of harrowing observations, from vanishing snow, to shifts in seasons, to skyrocketing temperatures, to wildfires and floods. People often conceptualize climate disruption in very theoretical terms – as if it is a phenomenon that will take place in the future. However, as the Truthout community knows, the impacts of planetary warming are very real – and they are happening now.
. . . → Read More: Mourning The Changes That Surround Us: Readers Speak Out, By Dahr Jamail
Editor’s Note: What this means is that a 4 degrees C rise in temperature is baked into Arctic drilling in the short term. In the long term, the rise will be 6 degrees C. 6 degrees C is unequivocally not survivable by any life form on this planet. Can we please stop using the words . . . → Read More: Stop Calling It Climate “Change”: This Is Climate Catastrophe: Royal Dutch Shell Drives Earth Over The Edge
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