Senate National Climate Change Assessment

Discussion in 'Community' started by Jabbadabbado, May 7, 2014.

  1. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    The White House loves the parallax scrolling.

    http://nca2014.globalchange.gov/

    but more to the point: we're hosed.

    Totally, utterly, completely hosed.

    It's wonderfully refreshing to read a major government publication with the atmosphere and tone of my daily visits to Desdemona Despair.

    The report mentions in passing that by 2050 we'll have 9 billion people on the planet. They could have stopped there and ended the report, which I nevertheless encourage everyone to read in its entirety; it's written at a 6th grade reading level to make it more accessible to the Tea Party denial types.

    If we have 28% more people on the planet by 2050, that means in 36 years, our greenhouse gas emissions problems will be 28% worse than they already are if the global distribution of per capita resource consumption remains roughly what it is now.

    But a billion Chinese and a billion Indians don't like the status quo and would like to create a middle class the size of Europe and North America combined with per capita resource consumption on par with Europe and North America.

    If we are going to successfully mitigate and adapt to climate change, we have to overcome that 28% population growth hurdle as well as address current levels of resource consumption and the desire of the developing world for middle class propserity. And we've already dug ourselves into a deep pit of despair. 36 years from now, the per capita cost of actually doing something meaningful about climate change will be too enormous for anyone to contemplate willingly. It's already too enormous. That's why we're hosed.

    To date, the most straightforward and obvious way to stop and, over the long term, reverse anthropogenic climate change would be to reduce the human population to 1 billion and keep it there indefinitely, until we evolve into something else or in the extremely unlikely event that we figure out interstellar space travel and begin colonizing other worlds.

    The population collapse is coming regardless. Ocean acidification alone is going to revolutionize the entirety of marine biomass in a way not seen since the K-Pg extinction event. Once that process is fully underway, the prospects for feeding 9 billion people will be bleak. Welcome to the Anthropocene.
    Last edited by Jabbadabbado, May 7, 2014
  2. Lord Vivec Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2006
    star 7
    The western world already screwed the atmosphere during their industrialization. Now that it's the East's time to catch up and become first world nations, they're suddenly bad for polluting the atmosphere.
  3. Rogue_Ten Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 18, 2002
    star 7
    our best hope now is literally a pandemic
  4. Lord Vivec Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2006
    star 7
    Unfortunately for us, biting rogue ten wit isn't a disease
  5. Souderwan Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jun 3, 2005
    star 6
    ...
    MrZAP likes this.
  6. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    Absent a bio-engineered pandemic, we'd need a globally enforceable limit of 1-2 children per family. Also, a soylent green/Futurama style suicide booth for the elderly and infirm could help re-balance the population pyramid more quickly. There would have to be some kind of significant incentive for "early retirement," such as a surviving spouse or children would get full Social security benefits for a certain time as if the retiree were still alive, forgiveness of the estate's outstanding debts up to a specific dollar amount, etc.

    Who's blaming them? No one's suggesting China and India are bad for wanting what they want. It doesn't have anything to do with being "bad." The only issue is what are the consequences of energy and resource consumption at their current levels, and what are the consequences if those levels continue to rise as the human population grows.
    Last edited by Jabbadabbado, May 7, 2014
  7. Rogue_Ten Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 18, 2002
    star 7
    those things are unrealistically horrific so i think the best we can do is try to preserve some biodiversity so that nature can take its course and spin out a nasty pandemic for us
  8. I Are The Internets Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 20, 2012
    star 7
    I say we develop wormhole technology and start forming colonies in past timelines.
  9. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 19, 2007
    star 6
    You make it sound like we'd give them a choice in the matter.
    Jabbadabbado likes this.
  10. Souderwan Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jun 3, 2005
    star 6
    You can all help out immensely by just voluntarily choosing not to ever have children. And if you already have some, just go ahead and make them patient zero with your bioengineered disease.
  11. I Are The Internets Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 20, 2012
    star 7
    Parent of the Year right there!
  12. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    That becomes more likely once larger and larger swaths of the human population begin suffering from malnutrition and outright famine over the next two decades. You'll have 3 billion people so weak from hunger that a good skin rash could kill them off.

    The report suggests that climate change is already compromising our ability to feed 7 billion. Add 2 billion more and things get super interesting.
    Last edited by Jabbadabbado, May 7, 2014
  13. Darth Guy Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 16, 2002
    star 10
    We're accidentally/incidentally wiping out most life. I say we go all out and just nuke everything. It's the only way to be sure (that most multicellular life will go down with us).

    And best of all, Malthusianism will finally go extinct too.
    MrZAP likes this.
  14. dp4m Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 8, 2001
    star 9
    I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest that Noundy was trying to Jonathan Swiftboat Jabba's Swiftian arguments...

    Also, I've been noting for years that skipping a generation or two is one of the greatest methods of eco-friendly possibilities. However, getting everyone in the world to do it -- not likely.
    Jedi Merkurian and Souderwan like this.
  15. I Are The Internets Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 20, 2012
    star 7
    I think I read somewhere that each 50 years or so, 10% of the wildlife population decreases more. Sad and scary thought.
  16. Rogue_Ten Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 18, 2002
    star 7
    @Darth Guy why do you oppose neo-malthusianism on principle? while its true that the immediate barrier to the elimination of hunger is a question of economics and not carrying capacity, i think a "long run" arguement about carrying capacity is very realistic, unless we're on the cusp or some sort of major scientific advancement im unaware of

    just because "technology will save us" has worked thus far, i see no reason to assume it will this time
    Last edited by Rogue_Ten, May 7, 2014
  17. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    It's true in the short term we could feed an extra 150 million people worldwide if Americans weren't such gigantic fatso gluttons. The typical American is eating for 1.5 Americans.
    Last edited by Jabbadabbado, May 7, 2014
  18. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    Craig Venter has funding from...I think Exxon...to R&D synthetic organisms that soak up carbon dioxide. He is currently involved in a life extension company and I have no idea how far he got with Exxon.
  19. Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 1999
    star 7
    I think the latest news on longevity is that if you inject yourself with the blood of newborn babies you'll live forever.
  20. Chancellor_Ewok Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 8, 2004
    star 6

    I could believe that. Some of the things I saw when I went to Michigan last summer were absolutely disgusting. You don't need twenty strips of bacon on your hamburger. [face_sick]
  21. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    It's an additional 10 years per baby. So really, if you want to add 40 years to your life, you live longer, but then the total population is reduced by 4.

    Think of it as a melding of Soylent Green meets Logan's Run.
    Jedi Merkurian and Jabbadabbado like this.
  22. SithSense Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2002
    star 4
    *raises hand*

    how about planting more trees?


    hey, now. japan does things even more over the top than we do.
    [IMG]
  23. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    I read that. Lady bathory was right!
  24. Darth Guy Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 16, 2002
    star 10
    I don't believe "technology will save us." I know that regardless of population we'd be ****ed as long as we burned fossil fuels and cut down forests. I know that the large world population has nothing to do with birthrates (which have been declining since they started being reliably measured in the 1950's and will fall below replacement levels on their own) but with vastly reduced "premature"-- especially infant-- mortality. We'll stop experiencing growth regardless of other factors well before the end of this century. I know that the developed world "naturally" fell below replacement level. I know that China's one-child policy has had and will have disastrous economic, social, and demographic consequences not faced by said developed countries. And I know Malthusianism has historically been from the start a "blame the poors" outlook; they have higher birthrates while the richer people consume more resources per capita.
    MrZAP, Jedi Merkurian and Rogue_Ten like this.
  25. Chancellor_Ewok Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 8, 2004
    star 6

    Excuse me while I go and barf again.[face_sick][face_sick]