Reminder: A New Government is Not a Solution to the Climate Emergency – Action is Required!

Since Australia’s 21 May national election, I’ve been too busy working on a series of articles on the genesis of the ‘Teal Tsunami’ of climate friendly community independents that is transforming Australian government to post much else. However, replacement of the COALition Government whose solution to the climate emergency was denial by one that at least accepts that the emergency is real still does not solve the problem. Today’s post is a reminder that effective action becomes more urgent with every day that passes.

By David Spratt, 10/08/2022 in Climate Code Red

High-profile paper on “catastrophic” climate impacts echoes our “What Lies Beneath” analysis on fat-tail, existential risks and IPCC reticence, published four years ago

Last week, just as a new paper on catastrophic climate risks was hitting the media, I received an email:

It would appear some scientists are now, finally, openly speaking about what you yourself have long been describing as the ‘high end’ or ‘fat tail’ risks associated with climate change and want UN scientists to look into the risks of catastrophic climate change. Here’s the link to the article on the BBC website…  On two occasions when reading this article I did punch the air on your behalf; when it mentions the need for more emphasis on tipping points and for the IPCC to produce a special report on catastrophic climate failure..

It wasn’t the only one. 

So what does this new paper say?  Well, in essence, some very similar things to our report What Lies Beneath: The underestimation of existential climate risks.

Read the complete article: http://www.climatecodered.org/2022/08/high-profile-paper-on-catastrophic.html

As early as 2016 based on my backgrounds in evolutionary biology and technology, I was beginning to publish the same message. If we humans don’t stop and reverse global warming we face near-term (i.e., in less than a century) global mass extinction, including the extinction of our own species and families. See

And, as if this wasn’t enough to highlight the reality of the dangers we face from inaction, the bulk of my posts here in Climate Sentinel News present the ever growing evidence that the impacts we are already facing from the climate emergency are increasing in magnitude, frequency, and death tolls. We are clearly approaching a physical point of no return, beyond which we can do nothing to escape the one-way road to mass extinction.

Parliament needs to declare a state of emergency and begin total mobilization to stop all carbon emissions and begin works to scrub excess carbon from the atmosphere. The latter will require more research, but the most promising technologies I can see from my wide general knowledge all involve either:

  • biological sequestration in the oceans, especially fertilizing ocean ‘deserts’ with iron to grow algae and farming of zooplankton and fish to take the captured carbon to the sea floors along with their deaths; or
  • reflecting solar radiation away from our planet, perhaps using carbonate aerosols (e.g., chalk dust), which in addition to reflecting light will when it falls out help neutralize excess acidity of the oceans produced by its absorption of excess CO2.

PARLIAMENTARIANS NEED TO BEGIN ACTING NOW, AND VOTERS IN UPCOMING STATE ELECTIONS NEED TO ELECT MORE CLIMATE FRIENDLY COMMUNITY INDEPENDENTS TO RE-ENFORCE AND EXECUTE CLIMATE ACTION AT THE LOCAL LEVEL

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

July 2022 Climate – still on road to extinction

Australia has a new government. Every month we fail to stop global warming is a month closer to global mass extinction. Still no visible progress towards solution.

https://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/charctic-interactive-sea-ice-graph/

The graphic above downloaded today shows the current state of sea-ice surrounding the Antarctic continent. Despite what seems to be a cold winter in Victoria, its coverage indicated by the teal blue line in the chart is 530 km2 smaller than it has ever been before for this time of the year. There are many more indicators that the climate is still deteriorating towards making Earth uninhabitable for its present life forms (including humans!) at an accelerating rate.

The following news items underline the dangers this represents for humans.

Model-analyzed temperatures at 12Z Tuesday, July 19, 2022 (noon GMT) were transcending average values for the time of day and season by 12 to 24 degrees Celsius—or 22 to 33 degrees Fahrenheit—over large parts of northwestern Europe. (Image credit: tropicaltidbits.com) [from the article]

by Bob Hensen, 17/07/2022 in Eye on the Storm, Yale Climate Connections

Horrific heat descends upon Western Europe: 104°F in London

Dozens of all-time record highs melted on Monday and Tuesday under a searing, deadly European heat wave that has caused at least 1,169 heat-related deaths in Spain and Portugal. The heat wave has also brought the hottest day on record for many locations in France and the hottest temperatures — by far — ever observed in the United Kingdom.

The record-smashing heat in Europe’s normally mild, maritime northwest corner was eerily comparable to the astounding heat wave in the U.S. Pacific Northwest and far southwest Canada in June 2021. The latter was found to have been “virtually impossible” without human-produced climate change.

By 9 a.m. GMT on Tuesday, July 19, London’s Heathrow Airport had already surged past 90°F, and at 12:50 p.m., the airport’s official observing site for London recorded what, if confirmed, would be the hottest temperature in London history: 40.2 degrees Celsius, or 104.4 degrees Fahrenheit.

Read the complete article

Record high temperatures and extreme weather events are being recorded around the world. Photograph: Ian Logan/Getty Images [from the article]

by Robin McKie, 31/07/2022 in the Guardian

‘Soon it will be unrecognisable’: total climate meltdown cannot be stopped, says expert

Blistering heatwaves are just the start. We must accept how bad things are before we can head off global catastrophe, according to a leading UK scientistRobin McKie.

The publication of Bill McGuire’s latest book, Hothouse Earth, could not be more timely. Appearing in the shops this week, it will be perused by sweltering customers who have just endured record high temperatures across the UK and now face the prospect of weeks of drought to add to their discomfort.

And this is just the beginning, insists McGuire, who is emeritus professor of geophysical and climate hazards at University College London. As he makes clear in his uncompromising depiction of the coming climatic catastrophe, we have – for far too long – ignored explicit warnings that rising carbon emissions are dangerously heating the Earth. Now we are going to pay the price for our complacence in the form of storms, floods, droughts and heatwaves that will easily surpass current extremes.

Read the complete article

In the run-up to the May 21st Federal Election, I posted many more articles documenting the increasing risk of mass extinction that humans face if we do not stop and reverse the runaway acceleration that is flipping our global climate to the Hothouse Earth state.

In the Election Australians replaced the Liberal/National COALition with a more climate friendly Labor government supported by an extensive cross-bench of climate-friendly independents (‘teals‘) and Greens.

The Government has very little time (if any – see the article above) to act to stop carbon emissions and to do what we can to remove some of the past excesses from the atmosphere.

TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE!

Featured image:

Time series graphs showing the variation in the three most important greenhouse gases as observed and recorded by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Global Monitoring Laboratory at Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii.

The carbon dioxide data on Mauna Loa shown in the top row constitute the longest record of direct measurements of CO2 in the atmosphere. They were started by C. David Keeling of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in March of 1958 at a facility of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [Keeling, 1976]. The first graph shows atmospheric CO2 concentrations over the last five complete years of the Mauna Loa CO2 record plus the current year. The second graph shows annual mean CO2 growth rates for Mauna Loa. In the graph, decadal averages of the growth rate are also plotted, as horizontal lines for 1960 through 1969, 1970 through 1979, and so on.

The middle row charts the growth of atmospheric methane: the first graph shows the full NOAA time-series starting in 1983, The red circles are globally averaged monthly mean values centered on the middle of each month. The black line and squares show the long-term trend (in principle, similar to a 12-month running mean) where the average seasonal cycle has been removed.The second graph summarizes annual increases in atmospheric CH4 based on globally averaged marine surface data.

The bottom row charts the growth of atmospheric N2O (Nitrous oxide) beginning in 2001, when NOAA began to have confidence in the data. Values for the last year are preliminary pending recalibrations of standard gases and other quality control steps. The second graph plots the annual increase in atmospheric N2O in a given year, i.e., the increase in its abundance (mole fraction) from January 1 in that year to January 1 of the next year, after the seasonal cycle has been removed (as shown by the black lines in the first figure). It represents the sum of all N2O added to, and removed from, the atmosphere during the year by human activities and natural processes.

As yet, there is NO evidence that any of these values are beginning to stop increasing, let alone decrease, as the result of any human actions.

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

S Hemisphere already seeing 2080 storms now

New studies show winter storms in the Southern Hemisphere are already reaching intensities predicted for 2080. Climate emergency is real!

Winter storms in the Southern Hemisphere. Credit: NASA Worldview (from the article)

By Weizmann Institute of Science, 26 May 2022 in Phys Org

New data reveals climate change might be more rapid than predicted

A new study, published today in Nature Climate Change, will certainly make the IPCC—and other environmental bodies—take notice. A team of scientists led by Dr. Rei Chemke of Weizmann’s Earth and Planetary Sciences Department revealed a considerable intensification of winter storms in the Southern Hemisphere. The study, conducted in collaboration with Dr. Yi Ming of Princeton University and Dr. Janni Yuval of MIT, is sure to make waves in the climate conversation. Until now, climate models have projected a human-caused intensification of winter storms only toward the end of this century. In the new study, Chemke and his team compared climate model simulations with current storm observations. Their discovery was bleak: It became clear that storm intensification over recent decades has already reached levels projected to occur in the year 2080.

Chemke, Ming and Yuval’s study has two immediate, considerable implications. First, it shows that not only climate projections for the coming decades are graver than previous assessments, but it also suggests that human activity might have a greater impact on the Southern Hemisphere than previously estimated. This means that rapid and decisive intervention is required in order to halt the climate damage in this region. Second, a correction of the bias in climate models is in order, so that these can provide a more accurate climate projection in the future.

Read the complete article….

Featured Image: NASA. Remote sensing from orbit has now been observing for decades how our planet is changing and providing massive amounts of data for increasingly accurate forecasts of climate change. Our futures depend on taking these predictions seriously…..

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

Climate emergency! The one election issue that matters

Today’s Breakthrough Institute report shows we are tipping climate thresholds like dominoes as we slide down runaway warming’s road to Hell

Featured Image: Cover picture from the emailed announcement received 17/05/2022 of Breakthrough Institute’s new publication “Climate Dominoes“, by David Spratt and Ian Dunlop. This report summarizes the vast array of evidence showing that the climate emergency we currently face is truly existential as we progressively trip over important thresholds increasing the rate of warming as we slide down the road to a global mass extinction event in Earth’s “Hothouse” Hell.

Where the current election is concerned, stopping the warming and managing the associated climate emergency are genuinely the only issues that matter. If we fail to stop the warming we started as a consequence of the Industrial Revolution, there will soon be no humans left to be concerned about anything. Making the economy the most important election issue without putting climate repair as the absolute first priority only ensures there will soon be no economy at all.

[Climate Dominoes] should be read and acted on by governments and their advisors, by the financial communities of the world, and by scientists, engineers, social scientists and philosophers. Precautionary action is needed now to avoid, to the extent possible, further tipping points being triggered.

This is a code red situation. No government is taking it seriously enough. We must urgently seek productive collaboration between sub-national, national, and international bodies to do more to combat climate issues equitably, with determination and speed.

From the Forward by Prof. Sir David King, Fellow of the Royal Society

Good leaders are guided by physical reality, not belief and dogma; and history has proved that science is our best tool for understanding that reality

Climate Dominoes encapsulates the body of Earth and climate science that our would-be Parliamentary leaders and members should consider as Australia progresses through time into evermore threatening climatic future …. A future that will be determined by the laws of physics and biology; irrespective of whatever fables, faith, belief, dogma and a miasma of self-serving humbug, bulldust, misrepresentation, and outright lies made by a bevy of puppet politicians representing super-wealthy vested interests.

Who would you prefer to have in government to represent you in the current climate emergency? — ranting puppets of narcissistic special interests (e.g., fossil fuel multi-billionaires) trying to make you believe in fairy tales about how good life is now and how much better their magic future will be for you while they squeeze the last cent of profit out of killing the world? … Or the alternative: qualified, ethical, independent thinkers and doers from your own community who understand how science works in order to see and understand the actual reality you live in……. Which kind of candidate would you trust to manage the real and growing climate emergency you can see and feel around you seriously look at the reality around you? E.g. increasing heatwaves, raging wildfires, dust storms, windstorms, floods, pandemics, dying reefs and forests, eroding shore lines, etc….

Following is the text of the Climate Dominoes’s overview that describes the main thesis of the work, and its absolute relevance to our upcoming election in Australia and the would-be leaders we are electing. Other than some added emphasis (in italics) and parenthetical comments, I have not changed the text. It is here because I completely agree with it, and so readers will understand that many scientists besides myself also see the same dangers. Superscript numbers refer to references that can be found at the end of the published document.

OVERVIEW: WHEN TIPPING POINTS COLLIDE

As global heating reduces the extent of floating Arctic sea-ice each northern summer, heat-reflecting ice is replaced by heat-absorbing dark ocean water, adding energy to the Arctic system, and driving more melting. This is a “positive feedback”, a self-reinforcing change. Examples abound in the climate system. On Greenland, for example, warming is reducing the height of the ice, and this lower elevation means it will melt more, because the temperature is higher at lower altitudes.

Sixteen years ago, James Hansen warned that: “The problem that we face now is that many [climate] feedbacks that came into play slowly in the past, driven by slowly changing forcings, will come into play rapidly now, at the pace of our human-made forcings, tempered a few decades by the oceans thermal response time.” ” 4

Those feedbacks can drive non-linear (or abrupt) change that is difficult to forecast. That happened to Arctic sea-ice in the summer of 2007, when a collapse in the ice extent led one experienced glaciologist to exclaim that it was melting “100 years ahead of schedule”;5 actually, the scientific understanding was 100 years behind reality! The same thing is happening in Antarctica now, according to the new observations of the Thwaites Glacier.

A group of eminent scientists point to “biosphere tipping points which can trigger abrupt carbon release back to the atmosphere… permafrost across the Arctic is beginning to irreversibly thaw and release carbon dioxide and methane… the boreal forest in the subarctic is increasingly vulnerable”. [Note: Working directly with the satellite record, I have made an extensive study of rapidly growing frequency, size and ferocity of wildfires in the Siberian Arctic that totally validates this point.] They say that other tipping points could be triggered at low levels of global warming with “a cluster of abrupt shifts between 1.5 °C and 2°C…” 6

Positive feedbacks, with or without abrupt change, can drive a system past its tipping point, which is a critical threshold at which small change causes a larger, more critical change to be initiated, taking components of the Earth system from one state to a discreetly different state. In other words, the system has reached a point of fragility such that it will move to a different state due to its own internal dynamics, even if there is no further external forcing (such as additional warming). [Climate Sentinel News has a number of articles on tipping points.]

An overview from Australia’s Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes describes a number of key aspects of tipping points:7

  • The implications of tipping points are not thoroughly quantified in the major IPCC analyses. [See my review of the limitations in the IPCC’s scientific methodology and publishing. Their work almost inevitably understates the magnitude of the climate emergency.]
  • Some tipping point changes are irreversible on timescales of centuries to millennia.
  • We do not know exactly how close we are to a tipping point, or even whether we have already passed it. We also do not always know if the changes are reversible, and if so, on what timescales.
  • There are tipping points that while not yet triggered may already be fully committed to. For example, the warming required for the West Antarctic Ice Sheet to permanently melt might have already been reached.
  • Climate models lack the mechanisms to robustly simulate many tipping points, and the interactions between tipping points that could lead to cascading impacts. Therefore our understanding of the risks is limited.
  • Since the risk is hard to quantify, global negotiations around climate change have not appropriately taken into account the risks of initiating tipping points, which is essentially a gamble on the future of the Earth’s climate.

Tipping may be irreversible on relevant time frames, such as the span of a few human generations. For example, ice sheets can disintegrate abruptly — and drive up sea levels — much faster than they can gain mass. So whilst sea levels could rise two or three metres this century — and rates as high as five metres per century have been recorded in the past — it could take thousands of years to reset the ice and get sea levels back down.

This is an example of hysteresis, or bifurcation of a system, where it may be more difficult, or impossible, to return to its previous state. Extinctions are an example of the latter. Carbon Brief explains: “In some cases, there is evidence that once the system has jumped to a different state, then if you remove the climate forcing, the climate system doesn’t just jump back to the original state – it stays in its changed state for some considerable time, or possibly even permanently.” 8

Major tipping points are interrelated and may cascade,9 as illustrated. Interactions between these climate systems could lower the critical temperature thresholds at which each tipping point is passed.10

For example, Earth is approaching a temperature range above which the photosynthesis rate is projected to decline, affecting the storage of carbon in the terrestrial biosphere (the “land sink”).11 This will accelerate the warming rate, trigger further sea-ice loss, more melting on Greenland and freshwater injection into the North Atlantic, helping to further slow the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), often known as the “Gulf Stream”. This in turn would change rainfall patterns over the Amazon and further weaken its carbon stores and Earth’s land sink. And so it goes on.

Physical interactions among the Greenland and West Antarctic ice sheets, AMOC and the Amazon rainforest tend to destabilise the network of tipping elements. The polar sheets are often the initiators of these cascade events,12 with evidence that Greenland and West Antarctica have passed their tipping (see following sections).

In 2012, James Hansen warned of scientists’ fear about the Arctic and the cascading of tipping points triggered in the Arctic: “Our greatest concern is that loss of Arctic sea ice creates a grave threat of passing two other tipping points – the potential instability of the Greenland ice sheet and methane hydrates… These latter two tipping points would have consequences that are practically irreversible on time scales of relevance to humanity.” 13 [Note: there is even more to the methane story than just methane hydrates as discussed in my presentation on the Siberian wildfires linked above.]

Cascading events may in turn lead to a “Hothouse Earth” scenario, in which climate system feedbacks and their mutual interaction drive the Earth System climate to a “point of no return”, whereby further warming would become self-sustaining (that is, without further human-caused perturbations).14 This planetary threshold could exist at a temperature rise as low as 2°C, possibly even in the 1.5°C–2°C range.15

The problem, elaborated in a 2019 paper, “Climate tipping points — too risky to bet against”, is that time is close to running out: “We argue that the intervention time left to prevent tipping could already have shrunk towards zero, whereas the reaction time to achieve net zero emissions is 30 years at best. Hence we might already have lost control of whether tipping happens. A saving grace is that the rate at which damage accumulates from tipping — and hence the risk posed — could still be under our control to some extent” (emphasis added).16

Likewise, former UK Chief Scientist Sir David King warns that: “What global leaders do in the next three to-five years will determine the future of humanity.”17

Tipping point analyst Prof. Tim Lenton says that the evidence from tipping points alone “suggests that we are in a state of planetary emergency: both the risk and urgency of the situation are acute… If damaging tipping cascades can occur and a global tipping point cannot be ruled out, then this is an existential threat to civilization”.18 [As discussed in my IPCC presentation, linked above, few scientists will actually point out what should be emphasized is that they are actually discussing is a threat to the continued existence of the human species — i.e., near term human extinction]

Who is most qualified and likely to lead “productive collaboration between sub-national, national, and international bodies to do more to combat climate issues equitably, with determination and speed”? Our existing COALition Government of spin merchants, clowns, knaves and fools representing special interest, or an alliance government led by Labor kept focused on the climate emergency by Greens and a ‘teal’ flock of genuine community-based independent thinkers and doers forcing the career politicians to stay focused on the job of solving the climate crisis.

Just how extraordinary many of the teals are is documented in earlier articles in this series (click title to open link):

Applying your decision to preferential voting on the ballot

If you believe that our present COALition government will govern in your interests rather than their patrons in the fossil fuel and related industries, then go with the flow and don’t concern yourself with the likely consequences of going down their fossil fueled road towards runaway global warming. On the other hand, if you think it is better to work for a sustainable future where your children and their children can hope for a happy future, Vote Climate One can help you elect a government that will actively lead and support this effort.

Our Climate Sentinel News provides access to factual evidence about the growing climate crisis to support your thinking; and our Traffic Light Voting System gives you easy to use factual evidence about where each candidate in your electorate ranks in relation to their commitment to prioritize action on the climate emergency. This should make it easier to decide your voting preferences before confronting a long ballot paper in the voting booth.

We need to turn away from the the Apocalypse on the road to hothouse hell, and we won’t do this by continuing with business as usual!

It seems to have taken the clear thinking of Greta Thunberg, a 16 year-old girl who concluded school was pointless as long as humans continued their blind ‘business as usual’ rush towards extinction.

greta-act-as-if-the-house-was-on-fire
Listen to Greta’s speech live at the World Economic forum in Davos 2019. Except for her reliance on the IPCC’s overoptimistic emissions budget, everything she says is spot on that even she, as a child, can understand the alternatives and what has to happen.

In other words, wake up! smell the smoke! see the grimly frightful reality, and fight the fire that is burning up our only planet so we can give our offspring a hopeful future. This is the only issue that matters. Even the IPCC’s hyperconservative Sixth Assessment Report that looks at climate change’s global and regional impacts on ecosystems, biodiversity, and human communities makes it clear we are headed for an existential climate catastrophe if we don’t stop the warming process.

Scott Morrison and his troop of wooden-headed puppets are doing essentially nothing to organize effective action against the warming. In fact all they doing is rearranging the furniture in the burning house to be incinerated along with anything and everyone we may care about.

In Greta’s words, “even a small child can understand [this]”. People hope for their children’s futures. She doesn’t want your hopium. She wants you to rationally panic enough to wake up, pay attention to reality, and fight the fire…. so our offspring can have some hope for their future.

Let’s hope that we can stop global warming soon enough to leave them with a future where they can survive and flourish
Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

UN Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction:

Our World at Risk: Transforming Governance
for a Resilient Future 2022

United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (2022). Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction 2022: Our World at Risk: Transforming Governance for a Resilient Future. Geneva

Preface

As this Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction 2022 (GAR2022) goes to print, the world finds itself in some of the darkest days in living memory. The war in Ukraine becomes more devastating every day, and COVID-19 has affected every corner of the world. The latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report warns that without immediate and deep emission reductions across all sectors, keeping global warming below the 1.5°C threshold will be impossible.

In the years since the previous GAR, the COVID-19 pandemic has shown starkly how a hazard can cascade across systems, but also how people and societies can adopt new behaviours when the problem and the needs for action are clear.

GAR2022 highlights country case study examples, tools and ideas for how to address systemic risk and transform how we think about risk – including addressing biases and prejudices of which we are sometimes not conscious. It also encourages action to make risk governance fit for purpose in the context of the climate emergency and an increasingly complex and interconnected world.

GAR2022 is a call to action to better understand and act to address systemic risk and to invest in building resilient communities and global systems. Whether we can achieve [this] in the coming years to 2030 is decisive in the race to reach the Sustainable Development Goal targets, for a sustainable and resilient future for all.

There is no time to waste; we need to act now.

DOWNLOAD THE COMPLETE REPORT….

Why is this report important to Australian voters?

Even if you haven’t been impacted directly, evidence from a wide variety of sources surveyed and reported on Vote Climate One’s Climate Sentinel News documents the fact that increasing numbers of humans (including those of us living here in Australia) have been battered, impoverished, injured and even killed in a growing crescendo of ‘natural’ disasters and catastrophes. Many of these ‘extreme’ events are clearly associated with the accelerating warming of our planet. Clearly we need to improve our disaster risk reduction.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Screenshot-Global-Assessment-Report-on-Disaster-Risk-Reduction-2022_0..png

Not only are the disasters becoming more frequent, but they are both becoming more extensive in terms of their areas of impact and numbers of people harmed, and they are beginning to concatenate/overlap. Here, the next disaster may follow the first disaster so closely that people affected have not had time to recover fully from the first — greatly increasing their impoverishment and diminishing their hopes for a better future. The repeated floodings of northern coastal areas of NSW and areas of Queensland including Brisbane are clear examples of this.

In line with the UN IPCC’s Assessment Reports on Climate Change, the UN has published a series of Global Assessment Reports on disaster risk reduction and management. Here the focus is on identifying disaster risks and working out how to avoid/control the risks and minimizing the consequences of those that actually happen. Much of the analysis reflects the logic of a complex systems engineering analytical point of view.

Part I of the present report looks at the concept of risk in complex social systems and the roles of human actions in generating risk and what people need to learn from this.

Part II focuses on the roles of human biases and communications in creating and managing risks associated with the social systems.

Part III explores possible solutions for better understanding, managing risks, and risk mitigation strategies in the social systems exposed to the risks.

Contents of Chapter 12,

Here, Chapter 12 explores how we can transition from our existing chaotic and ineffective states of ‘ungovernance’ based on ‘beliefs’ of the day, to rational, evidence-based thinking about risky aspects of complex system in the real world. A couple of days ago, I considered in some detail the differences between believing and thinking in a major essay, Corrupt leaders, casual media, gullible believers.

How and to what extent our Government leaders come to understand and apply the ideas and concepts explored, explained, and developed in this UN Assessment Report will have a profound impact on the future qualities of life we can achieve as Australian citizens.

We Australians have a choice to make on Saturday 21st May

What kind of people do you want to be responsible for governing our country now that we are on the cusp of what will be probably the historically most crucial decisions relating to how we manage the accelerating climate crisis, along with possibly increasingly virulent pandemics (e.g., H5N1 Avian Flu potentially crossing species barriers) as ecosystems become more chaotic with warming: ● Scotty the marketing guru who is Capt Humbug for his troop of puppets and knaves peddling faith and belief in the fossil fuel industry? Or ● Independent thinkers and green parties who have publicly committed themselves to tackling the climate emergency as their first priority if elected to Parliament?

If you believe that our present COALition government will govern in your interests rather than their patrons in the fossil fuel and related industries, then go with the flow and don’t concern yourself with the likely consequences of going down their fossil fueled road towards runaway global warming. On the other hand, if you think it is better to work for a sustainable future where your children and their children can hope for a happy future, Vote Climate One can help you elect a government that will actively lead and support this effort.

Our Climate Sentinel News provides access to factual evidence about the growing climate crisis to support your thinking; and our Traffic Light Voting System gives you easy to use factual evidence about where each candidate in your electorate ranks in relation to their commitment to prioritize action on the climate emergency. This should make it easier to decide your voting preferences before confronting a long ballot paper in the voting booth.

We need to turn away from the the Apocalypse on the road to hothouse hell, and we won’t do this by continuing with business as usual!

It seems to have taken the clear thinking of Greta Thunberg, a 16 year-old girl who concluded school was pointless as long as humans continued their blind ‘business as usual’ rush towards extinction.

greta-act-as-if-the-house-was-on-fire
Listen to Greta’s speech live at the World Economic forum in Davos 2019. Except for her reliance on the IPCC’s overoptimistic emissions budget, everything she says is spot on that even she, as a child, can understand the alternatives and what has to happen.

In other words, wake up! smell the smoke! see the grimly frightful reality, and fight the fire that is burning up our only planet so we can give our offspring a hopeful future. This is the only issue that matters. Even the IPCC’s hyperconservative Sixth Assessment Report that looks at climate change’s global and regional impacts on ecosystems, biodiversity, and human communities makes it clear we are headed for an existential climate catastrophe if we don’t stop the warming process.

Scott Morrison and his troop of wooden-headed puppets are doing essentially nothing to organize effective action against the warming. In fact all they doing is rearranging the furniture in the burning house to be incinerated along with anything and everyone we may care about.

In Greta’s words, “even a small child can understand [this]”. People hope for their children’s futures. She doesn’t want your hopium. She wants you to rationally panic enough to wake up, pay attention to reality, and fight the fire…. so our offspring can have some hope for their future.

Let’s hope that we can stop global warming soon enough to leave them with a future where they can survive and flourish.

Featured image: We live on a finite planet – what we do to it has consequences. From William P. Hall (2019). We’re told we are facing climate and ecological emergencies – Is it so? What do we do about them?

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

UN global assessment report on disaster risk reduction

New UN report forecasts an increasing frequency of colliding and concatenating climate catastrophes and disasters from global warming

A car is flipped over after a tornado tore through the area in Arabi, La., Tuesday, March 22, 2022 in a part of the city that had been heavily damaged by Hurricane Katrina 17 years earlier. A United Nations report release on Monday, April 25, 2022, says disasters are on the rise and are just going to get worse. A new UN report says the number of disasters, from climate change to COVID-19, are going to jump to about 560 a year by 2030. (AP Photo/Herald Herbert)

by Seth Borenstein, 26/04/2022 in AP News

Weary of many disasters? UN says worse to come

A disaster-weary globe will be hit harder in the coming years by even more catastrophes colliding in an interconnected world, a United Nations report issued Monday says.

If current trends continue the world will go from around 400 disasters per year in 2015 to an onslaught of about 560 catastrophes a year by 2030, the scientific report by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction said. By comparison from 1970 to 2000, the world suffered just 90 to 100 medium to large scale disasters a year, the report said.

The number of extreme heat waves in 2030 will be three times what it was in 2001 and there will be 30% more droughts, the report predicted. It’s not just natural disasters amplified by climate change, it’s COVID-19, economic meltdowns and food shortages. Climate change has a huge footprint in the number of disasters, report authors said.

Read the complete article….

Editors Comment: We have important choices to make in the upcoming election: Vote for our business as usual government who still largely act as if there was no emergency (e.g., keep shoveling as much coal as they can onto the fires of global warming), won’t prepare for disasters, and won’t hold a hose when a disaster happens; or you can try to elect candidates who have provided evidence that they will put action on the climate emergency at the top of their Parliamentary agendas. If you make the latter choice, Vote Climate One gives you Climate Sentinel News to inform your decision and our Traffic Light Voting Guides for every Australian electorate to show you how each candidate in your electorate ranks on climate action.

Featured image: Fig. 2. Occurrence by disaster type: 2020 compared to 2000-2019 annual average. Climate Action and Disaster Risk Reduction. From GLOBAL ASSESSMENT REPORT ON RISK REDUCTION – Our World at Risk: Transforming Governance for a Resilient Future.

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

Engineered solar panels harvest energy at night

Stanford University engineers have added thermoelectric generation to solar panels enabling them to harvest heat energy radiating to space

Soon, solar panels could work at night. Photo: Nuno Marques via Unsplash / from the article

by Sarah Roach, 7/4/2022 in Protocol

Stanford engineers make solar panels work at night: Meet the thermoelectric generator, what could be solar panels’ newest friend.

The Stanford team used a device known as a thermoelectric generator. As the name hints, the device generates electricity from difference in temperature between the ambient air and solar cells. The device basically harvests energy that passes between solar panels back into space at night, a process known as radiative cooling. (That process isn’t limited to solar panels, either.)

It has a particularly strong effect on clear nights, which is when the researchers found they were able to generate the most power. The new system can offer a “continuous renewable power source” throughout both the day and nighttime and could cost less to maintain over the long run compared to battery storage, according to the new paper published in Applied Physics Letters.

Read the complete article….

Featured image: A thermoelectric circuit composed of materials of different Seebeck coefficient (p-doped and n-doped semiconductors), configured as a thermoelectric generator. / Ken Brazier – self-made, based on w:Image:ThermoelectricPowerGen.jpg by CM Cullen (which is GFDL 1.2 and CC-by 2.5 licensed) via Wikimedia

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

Corrupt leaders, casual media, gullible believers

This is the recipe for extinction when facing existential catastrophe. A lesson on the difference between thinking and believing

We humans face a very real risk of runaway global warming that we have triggered by burning fossil carbon accumulated over millions of years in around 150 years. We have already passed the trigger points where the warming will continue without further human contributions; and are approaching the point of no return where nothing that humans could do would stop positive feedbacks from continuing the warming until Earth’s “Hothouse” state is reached.

Rather than promoting and facilitating effective responses to control and resolve the crisis, much of the world’s media and political ‘leadership’ seems to be working to primarily to promote and protect the continued growth of the fossil fuel industry from ‘harm’ by citizens more concerned to promote and protect their families from the existential consequences of runaway warming.

The crisis

Climate Sentinel News has presented a plethora of fact-based science that Earth’s Climate System is being driven by humanity’s greenhouse gas emissions towards a point of no return.

Here, increasing global temperatures will generate enough natural positive feedbacks to ‘run away’ into a global ‘hothouse’ of lethally high temperatures and insanely extreme weather. Given the exponential nature of positive feedbacks, only a few more decades of heating will drive global temperatures to extremes that will be lethal to most life – resulting in global mass extinction for most large and complex organisms — including humans.

A fundamental problem is the ease by which many people are conned by marketeers, faith-healers, demagogues and other humbuggers that tell them what they want to believe and that there is nothing to fear (i.e., ‘this is coal – – don’t be ‘fraid, don’t be scared‘)….

Facts vs Beliefs

Some of our religions and many of our political ‘leaders’ try to teach us that our “beliefs” are all-important. They teach that we must accept and believe in whatever ‘truth’ they teach by ‘faith and faith alone’ — at least that was what I was being taught in Sunday school shortly before refusing to go any more. (Fortunately my parents were easy enough about religion that they accepted my decision – others haven’t been so lucky).

Science teaches us that we need to base our decisions and actions on what we think and know about reality based on facts and evidence provided by the world we live in. This gives us the best chances to anticipate and react rationally to whatever the real-world throws at us.

Although I tacitly understood most of this from my science education, it was a master machinist who had a vast knowledge of what you could do with a block of metal from many years of hands on experience, that taught me the deeply visceral difference between believing and thinking.

As I finished my BS degree in Zoology and started my postgraduate work I was working part time as a research assistant in a hospital-based neurophysiology research lab where Norm hand-made all-kinds of precision scientific and microsurgical equipment from blocks of metal, glass tubing, and other sorts of bulk materials as required. Other than technical stuff for the job, the only reading Norm ever admitted to was the Bible and Shakespeare’s complete works, because these taught him everything he wanted to know about people. Our lunch-break was the best time of the day, when Norm and I would have long rambling discussions of world affairs and the future (in a time when one could be optimistic about he future).

Many of my flights of fancy unconsciously included the words “I believe that…” as if this was a telling point in the argument. The day finally came when Norm had had enough of my fancy talk, and decided to teach me a lesson in humility.

He stopped responding to any and all of my attempts to start a conversation. After a week or so of the silent treatment, I broke down and begged for him to tell me what was so wrong. He thought a bit, and answered: “Bill, I’m fed up with your ‘beliefs’. I don’t give a damn what you believe…. It’s what you THINK that matters…. ‘He who assumes, zooms‘ [as in taking a pratfall]. Since I’m not interested in talking about baseless beliefs, whenever you used the world ‘believe’ I decided there was nothing worth discussing. However, when you start a statement with ‘I think, there is an assumption of a rational chain of reasoning based on some fact-based evidence.” This would have been around 1963-64. Since then I have worked to remove ‘I believe’ from my vocabulary, and to ensure that my statements are underpinned by rational connections with real-world evidence.

The following search strings show you the evidence that Climate Sentinel News has reported about the fact-based science: ● “Road to Hothouse Hell“, ● “Existential Risk“; and our LNP COALition Government’s responses to the evidence:

Unfortunately, Australia is presently governed by a PM from marketing who actively spruiks whatever humbug his special interest patrons appear to want.

Lesson begins

Here is a real-life televised interview between some media people and Miranda Whelehan on ITV’s Good Morning Britain (11 April 2022 | Just Stop Oil). The interview lasts 10 minutes – but displays the stark reality as to how the ‘seriously’ some commercial media take the climate emergency.

The ‘parody’ using parts of Whelehan’s interview demonstrates Hollywood’s imagination in the movie Don’t Look Up was limited in comparison to the reality of British morning TV. Too many people believe what they hear/see on TV in preference to thinking about the extent of what they hear/see is actually based on evidence of reality.

Australia today

Unfortunately, the next parody by Juice Media isn’t a parody at all. Juice is far more factual than you will hear from most COALition politicians (along with many others). The evidence underlying almost every statement has already been discussed on Climate Sentinel News; and there would be even more if I had the time and stamina to produce it.

Sorry about the profanity, though.

Unfortunately, polite English doesn’t have strong enough words words to express how many people who think rationally feel about a government that is supposed to keep Australians safe but spends billions of our dollars shoveling more coal on the fires causing global warming….

What to do about the situation

Vote Climate One is comprised of a group of volunteers who decided to pool our various resources to document the issues and the consequences of ignoring them. Our primary goal is to do what we can to replace the existing puppet government in league with the fossil fuel industry with people who have provided evidence that they will prioritize action on the climate emergency in government. Towards achieving this goal, (1) we are ranking every candidate in every Australian electorate as to the evidence we have as to their willingness to place action on the climate emergency as their first priority in parliament, and (2) establish Climate Sentinel News as a way to detail evidence that the crisis is real, and of the COALition’s malfeasance in protecting Australian citizens from the dangers of global warming.

Another Juice Media parody that isn’t a parody at all, explains how preferential voting can be used to change our government for the better.

Juice Media describes Australian preferential voting quite effectively. It is up to Australian voters to use this process effectively to get the kind of government you want.

Vote Climate One works under the assumption that there are a lot of people who have been swayed in the past by the rhetoric and what the Juice Ladies call ‘shitfuckery’ to vote for fossil fuel puppet parties and and individuals protecting and promoting the fossil fuel industry. In the past this could be justified by their (supposed) support for economic growth and employment opportunities. However, in in the present, as our understanding of climate change grows, it is increasingly evident that the fossil fuel interests and their puppets are paving the road to mass extinction by still working to expand the burning coal, oil and gas.

We think that if they are given the facts and understanding of the differences between thinking and believing many past voters for the LNP and similar puppets will consider voting for people who have pledged to put action on the climate emergency at the tops of their agendas if elected to Parliament. Climate Sentinel News focuses on what we know about climate change and think about it. Our Traffic Light Voting System ranks every candidate in every electorate with our traffic lights and provides a form you can fill out at home before voting to ensure your preferences have the best chance of giving you the election results you want.

The bad news is that if Capt Humbug’s government remains in power, they have proved that they can be quite effective in distracting from and blocking effective action to resolve solve the climate emergency. If Humbug has its way, Australia will have done nothing effective to slow and stop our progress towards runaway global warming and what may prove to be the end of humanity in our world’s worst global mass extinction event.

The good news from the IPCC and other scientific bodies is that if we accept we are facing the crux of the crisis and unite with other nations who take the risk of extinction seriously, we still have a very few years where it is still possible to stop and reverse the warming process. However, to do this we will need the backing and support of a progressive government that puts action on climate change at the top of its Parliamentary agenda, as the candidates we have flagged with our ‘green light’ have done.

Featured Image: Scott Morrison: From the Australian, Paul Murray Live – 14/03/2022.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says he is supportive of Australia’s fossil fuel industry – and particularly coal, which he says will be around for “decades to come”. “When it comes to the coal industry, it’s worth $35 billion to us every year in exports, and that’s money Australia needs to grow our economy,” Mr Morrison said. “What you need in today’s energy economy is you need to continue to run your coal-fired power stations for as long as you possibly can and that is our policy … we want them to run as long as they possibly can.” Coal-fired power stations will continue to run to back up renewable power sources, although Mr Morrison said gas would play a larger role in the energy mix in years to come. Mr Morrison added that building a new coal-fired power station would be difficult because of the state government planning powers, which would “probably never allow them to do it”.

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

Global warming report for March 2022 shows rise

James Hansen’s March 2022 global average temperature still trending up (close to all-time record for the month) when temps normally drop

By Hansen et al., 15/04/2022 from Climate Science, Awareness and Solutions, Columbia Univ,

March Temperature Update & Butterfly Report

March was notably warm (Fig. 1), more than 1.3°C warmer than the average March in 1880-1920, despite continued La Nina cooling of the Pacific. Because of the present planetary energy imbalance – discussed in prior posts – we expect 2022 to be substantially warmer than 2021. [my emphasis] The imbalance is due to surging growth rates of GHGs (greenhouse gases), solar irradiance rising from its recent minimum, and perhaps the aerosol forcing becoming less negative, although the latter remains speculative given the absence of measurements of the global aerosol forcing.

The imbalance – excess energy coming in – is not enough to push the 2022 annual temperature above the 2020 record, but it will soon do that. Meanwhile, models forecasting the tropics favor continuation of the La Nina this summer, which favors strong tropical storms.

Read the complete article….

Editors note: Hansen’s Climate Science, Awareness and Solutions Lab in the Earth Institute at Columbia University is an excellent source of graphics summarizing the current state of global warming and the climate emergency

Featured Image: Fig. 1.  Monthly global surface temperature anomaly (°C) relative to 1880-1920 mean. / From the article.

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.

Famine is a likely result if global warming not stopped

Genetically restricted cultivars of major food crops likely to be early casualties of extreme temps and weather as world continues warming

Top: Cavendish banana plants infected with Panama 4 in the Philippines where the fungus has destroyed tens of thousands of acres of plantations. Below: on the left is the Cavendish plant root infected with the pathogen Panama 4, on the right is a healthy root. Photographs: Fernando Garcia-Bastidas / from the article

by Nina Lakhani, et al., 14/04/2022 in The Guardian

Our food system isn’t ready for the climate crisis: The world’s farms produce only a handful of varieties of bananas, avocados, coffee and other foods – leaving them more vulnerable to the climate breakdown

The climate breakdown is already threatening many of our favorite foods. In Asia, rice fields are being flooded with saltwater; cyclones have wiped out vanilla crops in Madagascar; in Central America higher temperatures ripen coffee too quickly; drought in sub–Saharan Africa is withering chickpea crops; and rising ocean acidity is killing oysters and scallops in American waters.

All our food systems – agriculture, forestry, fisheries and aquaculture – are buckling under the stress of rising temperatures, wildfires, droughts, and floods. 

Even in the best-case scenario, global heating is expected to make the earth less suitable for the crops that provide most of our calories. If no action is taken to curtail the climate crisis, crop losses will be devastating. 

Read the complete article….

Featured Image: A corn crop blighted with Southern corn leaf blight and stalk rot (Bipolaris maydis), by J.C. Wells, North Carolina State University, Bugwood.org / Creative Commons License   licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 License. / via Forestry Images

Views expressed in this post are those of its author(s), not necessarily all Vote Climate One members.