Tuesday, June 25, 2019

It’s time to pursue hospice, by Guy McPherson

It’s time to pursue hospice



A Hearing was held by the New York City Council Committee on Environmental Protection on June 24, 2019, on the Resolution Declaring a climate emergency and calling for an immediate emergency mobilization to restore a safe climate. Below is Guy McPherson's testimony.

Thank you for the opportunity to address the Council’s Committee on the topic of Resolution 864. The topic under discussion is the most important in the history of our species. We face a stunningly severe existential risk that is routinely ignored or downplayed by governments, the corporate media, and paid climate scientists.

I am Guy McPherson, professor emeritus of conservation biology at the University of Arizona. I began my tenure at that University in 1989. I was granted tenure and promoted to associate professor, and then full professor, earlier than is customary. I am one of the relatively few people in history to achieve the status of full professor before turning 40 years of age. My lengthy resume is replete with scholarly publications, including dozens of peer-reviewed journal articles, the “gold standard” by which the process of science creates reliable knowledge. I received the highest awards given by each of the two transdisciplinary colleges at the University of Arizona, and I was granted the honor of emeritus status upon declining further paychecks from the university at the young age of 49 years. To stave off boredom during these two decades, I also served as a faculty member at the University of California-Berkeley, Southern Utah University, and the tiny liberal-arts school, Grinnell College.

But this isn’t about me. We are meeting here today to discuss the most important topic in human history.

I left active service in the academy more than a decade ago to set an example. I stepped away from the monetary system, which I knew was driving anthropogenic climate change and also the worst of the Mass Extinction Events on Earth. I hoped that many people would follow my lead as I lived off-grid in a straw-bale house, secured my water supply with two solar pumps and a hand pump, grew a vast majority of my food, defecated in a bucket, and contributed to the creation of a decent human community. These actions seemed like great sacrifices at the individual level. They did not produce the desired outcome, in part because the sacrifices did not “scale up” to the level of society.

We are in the midst of abrupt, irreversible climate change. We are in the midst of the Sixth Mass Extinction on Earth. As a result of these two, ongoing phenomena, we are faced with near-term human extinction.

Earth is currently at the highest global-average temperature experienced by Homo sapiens. There is no known technology to reduce the global-average temperature. We seem intent upon raising the global-average temperature until all habitat is gone, for humans and many other species.

There are several paths by which we could abruptly lose habitat for humans throughout the world. Habitat loss is already driving refugee crises in the Middle East, northern Africa, the South Pacific, Central America, and within the United States. The refugees attempting to cross the southern border of this country are not seeking a vacation to Disney Land. Rather, they are seeking a means of survival for themselves and their families.

How shall we act in the face of the greatest existential threat our species has ever encountered? The approach offered by Extinction Rebellion is to declare a climate emergency. This approach has been adopted by several government entities around the world. It is a fine starting point.

If declaring a planetary-scale emergency is the starting point, what follows? Where do we go from here?

If we are all going to die – and we are – then how shall we proceed, as a society? If our species is going extinct in the near future – and it is – then how shall we proceed, as a community? These are the two critical questions I pose to you today. These are the important questions I would like the Council, and all of us, to ponder during the coming days and weeks.

How we respond to these two questions defines our humanity. Is there a better measure of our character than how we face our individual death and the demise of our species?

I’m here to ask these questions. Unlike Socrates, I’m here to do more than ask difficult questions: I will also propose a response. Before I reveal my response, I would like to read a short passage from Viktor Frankl’s 1946 book, Man’s Search for Meaning. Written shortly after Frankl was a prisoner-of-war in Nazi Germany, Man’s Search for Meaning was published. It has inspired millions of people, including me.

“Between a stimulus and a response there is a space. In that space is the power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom. The last of human freedoms is to choose one’s attitude in any set of circumstances.”

I would add that we can choose not only our attitude, but also our actions. Again, what better measure of our character than how we respond in the face of impossible odds?

I support Extinction Rebellion in its call for a climate emergency. However, abundant evidence indicates it is too late for a declaration of emergency to prevent our imminent extinction. The strategy I propose goes beyond sounding the alarm. I propose planetary hospice.

Lest you believe otherwise, I am not proposing we “give up” the fight against climate change. However, as the best-informed doctor in the room, and probably on the planet, I believe it is time to accept that we are in Stage 4 as a species. I’ll repeat that, because it’s important to understand: The living planet is almost certainly in the fourth and final stage of a terminal condition. Neither hope nor action will stave off the Sixth Mass Extinction. Neither hope nor any known combination of actions will slow or stop human extinction. It is long past time we admitted hospice is the appropriate way forward.

How do people act when they accept their imminent demise? How do people respond to palliative care within hospice? A quick look into these issues suggests a path forward for this community.

Physicians, especially oncologists, used to lie regularly to their patients. Through the 1960s, lying was considered perfectly appropriate. After all, hope was viewed as unimpeachably good, and removing hope by presenting the facts was therefore undesirable.

More recently, and with much discussion among medical doctors and ethicists, it has become acceptable to tell the full truth to patients. Based upon research conducted during the last few decades, hope is no longer viewed as a motivator for many patients. In response, physicians tend to reveal the full truth to patients. It seems the medical community is ‘catching up’ with common sense in concluding that hope is a poor motivator for action.

It’s time to tell the full truth. It’s time to pursue hospice, with as much honesty, integrity, and compassion as we can muster. It’s time to admit that ignoring the decades-long warnings about climate change have led directly to the expected outcome. It’s time to comfort the afflicted, which includes each of us.

I am often asked for advice about how to live during these tenuous times. In response, I recommend living fully. I recommend living with intention. I recommend living urgently, with death in mind. I recommend the pursuit of excellence. I recommend the pursuit of love. In light of the short time remaining in your life, and my own, I recommend all of the above, louder than before. More fully than you can imagine. To the limits of this restrictive culture, and beyond. Live like you are dying. The day draws near.

Each of us was born into a set of living arrangements over which we have no control. The scorched-Earth policies we have adopted and implemented during the last two centuries have led to the expected outcome: a scorched Earth.

The time for blame has long passed. The time for shaming others has long passed. No blame, no shame: At the edge of extinction, only love remains. Let’s pursue hospice as one expression of our love.


References:

Yesterday’s Testimony, by Guy McPherson
https://guymcpherson.com/2019/06/yesterdays-testimony/





Friday, June 21, 2019

Beyond climate tipping points

Beyond climate tipping points
Greenhouse gas levels exceed the stability limit of the
Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets

by Andrew Glikson

Abstract

The pace of global warming has been grossly underestimated. As the world keeps increasing its carbon dioxide (CO₂) emissions, rising in 2018 to a record 33.1 billion ton of CO₂ per year, the atmospheric greenhouse gas level has now exceeded 560 ppm (parts per million) CO-equivalent, namely when methane and nitrous oxide are included. This level surpasses the stability threshold of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets. The term “climate change” is thus no longer appropriate, since what is happening in the atmosphere-ocean system, accelerating over the last 70 years or so, is an abrupt calamity on a geological dimension, threatening nature and human civilization. Ignoring what the science says, the powers-that-be are presiding over the sixth mass extinction of species, including humanity.

As conveyed by leading scientists “Climate change is now reaching the end-game, where very soon humanity must choose between taking unprecedented action, or accepting that it has been left too late and bear the consequences” (Prof. Hans Joachim Schellnhuber) ... “We’ve reached a point where we have a crisis, an emergency, but people don’t know that ... There’s a big gap between what’s understood about global warming by the scientific community and what is known by the public and policymakers” (Prof. James Hansen).


Rising greenhouse gases and temperatures

By May 2019 CO₂ levels (measured at Mauna Loa, Hawaii) reached 414.66 ppm, growing at a rate of 3.42 ppm/year, well above the highest rate recorded for the last 65 million years. The total CO, methane (CH) and nitrous oxide (NO) expressed as CO-equivalents has reached at least 560.3 ppm (Table 1) (at a very low forcing value for methane ¹), the highest concentration since 34 - 23 Million years ago, when atmospheric CO ranged between 350 and 500 ppm.

Table 1. Total atmospheric CO2e from CO2, CH4 and N2O
CO2
CO2 rate
CH4
CH4 rate
N2O
414.66 ppm 
3.42 ppm/year
1865.4 ppb
9.2 ppm/year
332ppb
CO2 ppm 
rise/year
CH4 forcing ≥25 CO2e
CH4 ppb
rise/year
N2O forcing = 298 CO2e
CO2 ppm 
414.7

CH4 ppm forcing
1.865 x ≥25 =
46.6 ppm CO2e 
(equivalent)

N2O ppm forcing
0.332 x 298 =
99 ppm CO2e 
(equivalent)

Total CO2e: 414.7+46.6+99 = >560.3 ppm CO2
¹A methane forcing value of 25 x CO2 is very low. Higher forcing values are more appropriate.
Plus: SF₆, CHF3, CH2F2, CF4, C2F6, C3F8, C4F10, C4F8, C5F12, C6F1


Figure 1. Projected CO₂ levels for IPCC emission scenarios

The current rise of the total greenhouse gas levels to at least 560 ppm CO-equivalent, twice the pre-industrial CO2 level of 280 ppm, implies that global warming has potentially reached +2°C to +3°C above pre-industral temperature. Considering the mitigating albedo/reflection effects of atmospheric aerosols, including sulphur dioxide, dust, nitrate and organic carbon, the mean rise of land temperature exceeds +1.5°C (Berkeley Earth institute).

The threshold for collapse of the Greenland ice sheet is estimated in the range of 400-560 ppm CO₂ at approximately 2.0 - 2.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures, and is retarded by hysteresis (where a physical property lags behind changes in the effect causing it). The threshold for the breakdown of the West Antarctic ice sheet is similar. The greenhouse gas level and temperature conditions under which the East Antarctic ice sheet formed about 34 million years ago are estimated as ~800–2000 ppm at 4 to 6 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial values. Based mainly on satellite gravity data there is evidence the East Antarctic ice sheet is beginning to melt in places (Jones, 2019), with ice loss rates of approximately 40 Gt/y (Gigaton of ice per year) in 1979–1990 and up to to 252 Gt/y in 2009–2017 (Rignot et al., 2019).

The cumulative contribution to sea-level rise from Antarctic ice melt was 14.0 ± 2.0 mm since 1979. This includes 6.9 ± 0.6 mm from West Antarctica, 4.4 ± 0.9 mm from East Antarctica, and 2.5 ± 0.4 mm from the Antarctic Peninsula (Rignot et al., 2019). Based on the above the current CO-equivalent level of at least 560 ppm closely correlates with the temperature peak at ~16 million tears ago (Figures 2 and 5), when the Greenland ice sheet did not exist and large variations affected the Antarctic ice sheet (Gasson et al., 2016).

Figure 2. Updated Cenozoic pCO₂ and stacked deep-sea benthic foraminifer oxygen isotope curve for 0 to
65 Ma (Zachos et al., 2008) converted to the Gradstein timescale (Gradstein et al., 2004).
ETM2 = Eocene Thermal Maximum 2, PETM = Paleocene/Eocene Thermal Maximum.

Transient melt events

As the glacial sheets disintegrate, cold ice-melt water flowing into the ocean ensue in large cold water pools, a pattern recorded through the glacial-interglacial cycles of the last 450,000 years, manifested by the growth of cold regions in the north Atlantic Ocean south of Greenland and in the Southern Ocean fringing Antarctica (Figures 3 and 4). The warming of the Arctic is driven by the ice-water albedo flip (where dark sea-water absorbing solar energy alternate with high-albedo ice and snow) and by the weakening of the polar boundary and jet stream. Penetration of Arctic-derived cold air masses through the weakened boundary results in extreme weather events in North America, Europe and northern Asia, such as the Beast from the East event.

Warming of +3°C to +4°C above pre-industrial levels, leading to enhanced ice-sheet melt, would raise sea levels by 2 to 5 meters toward the end of the century, and likely by 25 meters in the longer term. Golledge et al. (2019) show meltwater from Greenland will lead to substantial slowing of the Atlantic overturning circulation, while meltwater from Antarctica will trap warm water below the sea surface, increasing Antarctic ice loss. The effects of ice sheet-melt waters on the oceans were hardly included in IPCC models. Depending on the amplifying feedbacks, prolonged Greenland and Antarctic melting (Figures 3 and 4) and a consequent freeze event may ensue, lasting perhaps as long as two to three centuries.


Figure 3. (A) Global warming map (NASA 2018). Note the cool ocean regions south of Greenland
and along the Antarctic. Credits: Scientific Visualization Studio/Goddard Space Flight Center;
(B) 2012 Ocean temperatures around Antarctica, (NASA 2012).

21st–23rd centuries uncharted climate territory

Modelling of climate trends for the 2100-2300 by the IPCC AR5 Synthesis Report, 2014 portrays predominantly linear models of greenhouse gas rise, global temperatures and sea levels. These models however appear to take little account of amplifying feedbacks from land and ocean and of the effects of cold ice-melt water on the oceans. According to Steffen et al. (2018) “self-reinforcing feedbacks could push the Earth System toward a planetary threshold” and “would lead to a much higher global average temperature than any interglacial in the past 1.2 million years and to sea levels significantly higher than at any time in the Holocene”.

Amplifying feedbacks of global warming include:
  • The albedo-flip in melting sea ice and ice sheets and the increase of the water surface area and thereby the sequestration of CO₂. Hudson (2011) estimates a rise in radiative forcing due to removal of Arctic summer sea ice of 0.7 Watt/m², a value close to the total of methane release since 1750.
  • Reduced ocean CO₂ intake due to lesser solubility of the gas with higher temperatures.
  • Vegetation desiccation and loss in some regions, and thereby reduced evaporation with its cooling effect. This factor and the increase of precipitation in other regions lead to a differential feedbacks from vegetation as the globe warms (Notaro et al. 2007).
  • An increase in wildfires, releasing greenhouse gases.
  • Release of methane from permafrost, bogs and sediments and other factors.
Linear temperature models do not appear to take into account the effects on the oceans of ice melt water derived from the large ice sheets, including the possibility of a major stadial event such as already started in oceanic tracts fringing Greenland and Antarctica (Figure 3). In the shorter term sea level rises include the Greenland ice sheet (6-7 meter sea level rise) and West Antarctic ice sheet melt (4.8 meter sea level rise). Referring to major past stadial events, including the 8200 years-old Laurentian melt event and the 12.7-11.9 younger dryas event, a prolonged breakdown of parts of the Antarctic ice sheet could result in major sea level rise and extensive cooling of northern and southern latitudes, parallel with warming of tropical and mid-latitudes (Figure 4) (Hansen et al., 2016). The clashes between polar-derived cold weather fronts and tropical air masses are bound to lead to extreme weather events, echoed in Storms of my grandchildren (Hansen, 2010).

Figure 4. Model Surface-air temperature (°C) for 2096 relative to 1880–1920 (Hansen et al. 2016).
The projection portrays major cooling of the North Atlantic Ocean, cooling of the circum-Antarctic Ocean 

and further warming in the tropics, subtropics and the interior of continents, including Siberia and Canada.

Summary and conclusions
  1. Global greenhouse gases have reached a level exceeding the stability threshold of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, melting at an accelerated rate
  2. The current growth rate of atmospheric greenhouse gas of 3.42 ppm CO₂/year is the fastest recorded for the last 55 million years
  3. Allowing for the transient albedo enhancing effects of sulphur dioxide and other aerosols, mean global temperature has reached about 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures. 
  4. Due to hysteresis the large ice sheets outlast their melting temperatures. 
  5. Cold ice melt water flowing from the ice sheets at an accelerated rate will reduce the temperature of large ocean tracts in the North Atlantic and circum-Antarctic. Strong temperature contrasts between cold polar-derived air and water masses and tropical air and water masses would result in extreme weather events, retarding agriculture in large parts of the world. 
  6. Humans will survive in relatively favorable parts of Earth, such as sub-polar regions and sheltered mountain valleys, where hunting of surviving fauna may be possible.
  7. In the wake of partial melting of the large ice sheets, the Earth climate would shift to polarized conditions including reduced polar ice sheets and tropical to super-tropical regions such as existed in the Miocene (5.3 - 23 million years ago) (Figure 5). 
Figure 5. Late Oligocene–Miocene inferred atmospheric CO2 fluctuations and effects on global temperature
based on Stromata index (SI) of 25 and 12 Ma (late Oligocene to late middle Miocene) fossil leaf remains;
(A) Reconstructed late Oligocene–middle Miocene CO2 levels based on individual independently
calibrated tree species; (B) Modeled temperature departure of global mean surface temperature from
present day, calculated from mean CO2 estimates by using a CO2–temperature sensitivity study. Red
discontinuous lines: 2019 CO2-e levels and 2019 temperatures (discounting the aerosol masking effects).
Current greenhouse gas forcing and global mean temperature are approaching Miocene Optimum-like composition, bar the hysteresis effects of reduced ice sheets (Figure 5). Strong temperature polarities are suggested by the contrasts between reduced Antarctic ice sheet and super-tropical conditions in low to mid-latitudes. Land areas would be markedly reduced due to a sea level rise of approximately 40 ± 15 meters.


Andrew Glikson
Dr Andrew Glikson
Earth and climate scientist
Australian National University
Canberra, Australian Territory, Australia
geospec@iinet.net.au

Books:
The Archaean: Geological and Geochemical Windows into the Early Earth
The Asteroid Impact Connection of Planetary Evolution
Asteroids Impacts, Crustal Evolution and Related Mineral Systems with Special Reference to Australia
Climate, Fire and Human Evolution: The Deep Time Dimensions of the Anthropocene
The Plutocene: Blueprints for a Post-Anthropocene Greenhouse Earth
Evolution of the Atmosphere, Fire and the Anthropocene Climate Event Horizon
From Stars to Brains: Milestones in the Planetary Evolution of Life and Intelligence





Sunday, June 16, 2019

High Temperatures over the Arctic


Melt extent over Greenland was well over 40% on June 12, 2019.

The surface melt map that day (on the right) shows many coastal areas for which data are missing, as indicated by the grey color.

As the June 13, 2019, NASA Worldview satellite image (underneath, right) shows, snow and ice in many coastal areas has melted away.

Four nullschool images are added below. The first one shows air temperatures over Greenland as high as 22.7°C or 72.9°F on June 13, 2019, at 1000 mb. Also note the high temperatures visible over East Siberia and the East Siberian Arctic Shelf (ESAS).

A second nullschool image shows that a temperature of 0.9°C or 33.5°F was recorded at the North Pole on June 15, 2019. Temperatures above the melting point of ice have been recorded at the North Pole for some time now.

The third nullschool image shows that temperatures as high as 30.5°C or 86.8°F are forecast for June 19, 2019, near Tiksi, which is on the coast of Siberia where the Lena River flows into the Laptev Sea and the Arctic Ocean.

What causes this? As the Arctic is heating up faster than the rest of the world, the path of the jet stream is changing. On June 19, 2019, the jet stream is forecast to move from Siberia to the Laptev Sea at speeds as high as 192 km/h or 119 mph.

The satellite image shows smoke from fires getting pushed by strong winds over the Laptev Sea on June 16, 2019. Smoke settling on ice makes it darker, further speeding up the melting.
[ Temperatures over Greenland as high as 22.7°C or 72.9°F on June 13, 2019, at 1000 mb ]
[ Temperature of 0.9°C or 33.5°F at the North Pole on June 15, 2019 ]
[ temperatures as high as 30.5°C or 86.8°F are forecast for June 19, 2019, near Tiksi, Siberia ]
[ jet stream is forecast to move from Siberia to the Laptev Sea as fast as at 192 km/h or 119 mph June 19, 2019 ]
[ fires getting pushed by strong winds on June 16, 2019, over the Laptev Sea (at bottom of image)  ]
In conclusion, temperatures over the Arctic are high. Changes to the jet stream due to the rapid heating of the Arctic are causing hot air to move deep into the Arctic, including over the Laptev Sea all the way to the North Pole, while high temperatures in Siberia are warming up the water of rivers, causing warm water to flow into the Arctic Ocean.  

The situation is dire and calls for comprehensive and effective action, as described in the Climate Plan.





Monday, June 10, 2019

When Will We Die?


A rise of more than 5°C could happen within a decade, possibly by 2026. Humans will likely go extinct with a 3°C rise and most life on Earth will disappear with a 5°C rise. In the light of this, we should act with integrity.

When will we die?

The outlook for people living now is that they will die before the end of the century. After all, even in more developed regions, people statistically die at an age below 75 years, as the image on the right illustrates.

The image calls up questions regarding possible shortening of life expectancy due to global heating.

A 2018 study by Strona & Bradshaw indicates that most life on Earth will disappear with a 5°C rise (see box on the right).

The first question therefore is whether and how fast such a rise could eventuate.

Furthermore, global heating projections for the year 2100 may seem rather irrelevant to many people, as they do not expect to be alive by the year 2100.

A second question therefore is what makes most sense, focusing on the year 2100, or on how much temperatures could rise over the next decade.

Clouds tipping point

A recent study points at a tipping point of 1,200 ppm CO₂e when marine stratus clouds start to disappear, resulting in an additional global heating of eight degrees Celsius (8°C or 14.4°F).

In other words, such a rise from clouds feedback would clearly suffice to cause extinction of most life on Earth.

Could this tipping point be crossed soon?

At its high-end, the A1F1 scenario used by the IPCC reaches a CO₂e level of 1550 ppm by the year 2100 (see screenshot below).

As discussed, the year 2100 is rather distant. The question is, could this 1,200 ppm CO₂e tipping point be crossed earlier, say, within one decade?

On May 15, 2019, scripps.ucsd.edu recorded a carbon dioxide level of 415.7 ppm at Mauna Loa, Hawaii. NOAA recorded a methane level of 1.867 ppm for December 2018. As shown at the FAQ page, methane is 150 times as potent as a greenhouse gas over the next ten years compared to carbon dioxide. Accordingly, this 1.867 ppm of methane causes global heating of 280.05 ppm CO₂e.

Seafloor methane

Imagine a burst of methane erupting from the seafloor of the Arctic Ocean that would add an amount of methane to the atmosphere equal to twice the methane that is already there. Twice the 1.867 ppm of methane is 3.734 ppm, which at 150 times the potency of carbon dioxide translates into a CO₂e of 560.1 ppm.

Adding this to the current levels of carbon dioxide and methane results in a level of 1255.85 ppm CO₂e, well exceeding the 1,200 ppm CO₂e tipping point and thus triggering the extra 8°C rise.



Above image was created with content from a recent paper by Natalia Shakhova et al. It shows that the outlook is much more grim than many people realize.


Above image illustrates the danger, as an ominous sign of what's on the way. Methane levels as high as 2.975 ppm were recorded on June 11, 2019, at 469 mb. A peak this high is likely to have originated from the seafloor.


Above image shows a solid-colored magenta area over the ESAS that afternoon, further indicating that large amounts of methane did erupt earlier that day from destabilizing sediments in the ESAS.

Koalas declared functionally extinct

The Australian Koala Foundation has declared Koalas "functionally extinct". While there still are some 80,000 Koalas left, it is unlikely that Koalas will be able to escape full extinction for long.

Climate change-driven droughts and heat waves are causing dehydration and heat stress, leading to organ failure and premature death.

A rapid temperature rise could make virtually all species on Earth go extinct. As the above-mentioned study points out, even the most robust lifeforms on Earth will likely disappear with a 5°C rise, as species on which they depend will die.

Near Term Human Extinction

For mammals, which depend on a lot of other species, extinction is likely to come earlier.  When looking at near-term human extinction, a 3°C rise from preindustrial will likely suffice to cause extinction.

In 2019, the global temperature could already be 1.85°C above preindustrial and a rapid temperature rise could take place over the next few years.

A lot of good action is possible, as described in the Climate Plan, which offers the greatest amount of flexibility in local implementation, within the constraints of the need to act on climate change as acknowledged, e.g. at the Paris Agreement.

Nonetheless, humans likely are already functionally extinct, as is most life on Earth. This may come as a surprise to many people, but that shouldn't stop people from doing the right thing.

The above image reflects the joint CO₂e impact of carbon dioxide and methane. In addition, there is the impact of further greenhouse gases, such as nitrous oxide and CFCs, as described in a recent post. There are more warming elements, such as albedo loss associated with the decline of the snow and ice cover. These warming elements could jointly push up the temperature rise to some 10°C above preindustrial, while the clouds feedback could add a further 8°C on top of that.

Sulfates do have a cooling effect, but this effect may fall away as society grinds to a halt and stops co-emitting sulfates alongside other emissions in the process of burning fuel, as Guy McPherson has pointed out repeatedly, e.g. in this recent post.

In the video below, recorded at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks on 4 April 2019, Guy McPherson explains how loss of habitat can lead to extinction of species and how global heating can lead to extinction of virtually all life on Earth.


Added below is a video edited by Tim Bob of Guy McPherson talking in Juneau, Alaska, in April, 2019.



In the video below, Examples of Rapid Extinction, Guy McPherson gives examples of species that went extinct rapidly in the past, warning that to rule out rapid extinction of humans would be foolish.



Links

• United Nations, world population prospects, 2017, Life expectancy
https://www.un.org/en/development/desa/population/publications/pdf/popfacts/PopFacts_2017-9.pdf
https://www.un.org/development/desa/publications/world-population-prospects-the-2017-revision.html

• Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) AR4 (2007), Working Group I: The Physical Science Basis
https://archive.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/spmsspm-projections-of.html

• Co-extinctions annihilate planetary life during extreme environmental change, by Giovanni Strona and Corey Bradshaw (2018)
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-35068-1

• Climate Plan
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/climateplan.html

• Extinction
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/extinction.html

• Possible climate transitions from breakup of stratocumulus decks under greenhouse warming, by Tapio Schneider et al.
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41561-019-0310-1

• FAQ #13: What is the global warming potential of methane?
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/faq.html#13

• Methane hydrates
https://methane-hydrates.blogspot.com/2013/04/methane-hydrates.html

• Methane, measured by the Infrared Atmospheric Sounding Interferometer (IASI) residing on the MetOp polar orbiting satellites
https://www.ospo.noaa.gov/Products/atmosphere/soundings/iasi

• A rise of 18°C or 32.4°F by 2026?
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2019/02/a-rise-of-18c-or-324f-by-2026.html

• Greenhouse Gas Levels Keep Accelerating
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2019/05/greenhouse-gas-levels-keep-accelerating.html

• Stronger Extinction Alert
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2019/03/stronger-extinction-alert.html

• Understanding the Permafrost–Hydrate System and Associated Methane Releases in the East Siberian Arctic Shelf, by Natalia Shakhova, Igor Semiletov and Evgeny Chuvilin
https://www.mdpi.com/2076-3263/9/6/251

• Guy McPherson at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks, April 2019
https://guymcpherson.com/2019/04/the-first-of-two-presentations-at-the-university-of-alaska-fairbanks/

• Guy McPherson in Juneau, Alaska, April 2019
https://guymcpherson.com/2019/05/presentation-in-juneau-alaska

• Seven Distinct Paths to Loss of Habitat for Humans, by Guy McPherson
https://weeklyhubris.com/seven-distinct-paths-to-loss-of-habitat-for-humans


Koalas

Koala habitat 1788 versus 2018
From: savethekoala.com
https://www.savethekoala.com/our-work/act-or-axe

• A report claims koalas are ‘functionally extinct’ – but what does that mean?
https://theconversation.com/a-report-claims-koalas-are-functionally-extinct-but-what-does-that-mean-116665

• Australian Koala Foundation calls on the new Prime Minister to protect the Koala
https://www.savethekoala.com/sites/savethekoala.com/files/uploads/AKF_press_release_10_may_2019.pdf

• Koalas become 'Functionally Extinct' in Australia with just 80,000 left
https://www.ecowatch.com/koalas-functionally-extinct-australia-2637183484.html

• Koalas declared “functionally extinct”
https://inhabitat.com/koalas-declared-functionally-extinct

• Why the Heck Do So Many Koalas Have Chlamydia?
https://www.livescience.com/62517-how-koalas-get-chlamydia.html