The biggest news for me this last week is global heating will drive billions of people out of the “climate niche,” a range of temperatures where humanity has flourished for millennia. This heat will expose us to unprecedented temperatures and extreme weather, not to forget, according to the scientists, we are on track for 2.7C warming and ‘phenomenal’ human suffering. Terrific.
In the map, the purple colour is where it will become too hot to live, based on 2.7C warming — which is predicted later this century, not tomorrow. However, being on the path towards this warming (which we are) will see events escalate and become more extreme.
Once we get to this level, up to one billion climate migrants (which feels very conservative) will be seeking cooler places to live, however, the green spots on the map aren’t necessarily heaven on earth, as those areas will still experience more frequent heatwaves and droughts.
Alarming? Well, it should be a wakeup call, even though we’ve had plenty of them already. The message is very clear — if we take the urgent action required to lower carbon emissions and keep global temperature rise to 1.5C — which I believe is impossible at this point, but anything lower than 2.7C is worth attempting — the number of people pushed outside the “climate niche” reduces by 80%, which is 400 million people.
I’d suggest that sounds like a goal worth pursuing, you?
Here’s a couple of things to keep in mind when looking at the map.
- Data visualisations of one aspect of the climate emergency are always problematic. You might think, great, I’ll buy a house in the green part to secure my children’s future. However, by the time we hit 2.7C warming, we will also have much higher seas. I would like to see that reflected in this map, because then we’ll really know what we’re facing and maybe that will help us get the message?
- There are many other aspects to global heating of 2.7C. Methane release from permafrost melt and its implications, ecosystem collapse, famine and food shortages globally, nuclear meltdowns of existing infrastructure, etc…. Or here’s a simple one. We will have lost the coral reefs long before 2.7C, which will result in mass ecosystem collapse in the oceans, potentially meaning a dead ocean. Let’s just say, that won’t be good for us
- And industrial civilization will have long since fallen apart by 2.7C, because that is the path we’re on now — maintaining the system leading us towards this point, which guarantees we hit it, which will tear our societies apart, and we still refuse to see and act. Our leaders are also failing us, and we need to start taking action with or without them.
So have a read of the article: Global heating will push billions outside ‘human climate niche’
And another really interesting one: France is preparing for a 4C rise and I’m just thrilled to see serious adaptation plans being discussed France Prepares For 4 °C Rise: “We Can’t Escape The Global Reality”
James Hansen was busy this week +10C warming re-confirmed — Just Collapse
I know it’s not good news and I would rather share beauty and delight, but we must wake up to the situation we are in. Escalation really started in 2022 and it’s going to get worse every year, but we can pull things back.
It will never be perfect or the same — we waited too long for that — but it does not have to be as catastrophic as that map is reflecting. The outcome in now firmly in all our hands. Ready to get involved?
Six things you can get started on
- Learn about it — here’s my annual blog, going back four years, which is a curation of all I’m reading and watching on the climate and social issues. The Weekend Reads is also published to help you stay up to date
- Clean up your own life — top to bottom, go through your home, change your diet, how you clean, the chemicals you use, what you buy, get rid of your car if you can, consciously reduce the waste leaving your home, plant a garden, compost, get a Bokashi bin, holiday locally, check your investments, is your house safe, what about your pension — is it good for earth, etc… It’s not an overnight job, it takes time and even better if you do it together as a family. We need to shrink our lives and the impact we have on our beautiful earth
- Share on social media the changes you are making and show people what you’re doing and talk about why. In-person, especially with families, talk about it and normalize speaking about it. This needs to be front and centre now, especially adaptation plans. You do not want to be hit with extreme weather events and not be prepared. Please get prepared. That includes planting a garden, because part of the adaptation plans is to get ready for global famine, it’s coming.
- Get involved — join a climate action group that is aligned to your values or get involved in beach clean ups, or any other community action that appeals to you. Whatever you enjoy, do it and find like-minded people too. It’s a wonderful way to make new and meaningful friendships.
- Be a community leader — wherever you live, bring your community together and brainstorm ways you can create shared value in your community and get ready for the challenging years ahead. Examples are pooling together to invest in community solar as grid independence is a smart move. How about sharing cars, tools, and all the big-ticket items we never use enough to justify owning? Plant a community garden, take care of the elderly and disabled, etc… One great project you can do together in your community is to rewild it — look back 50 years and plant what has been chopped down, reintroduce species that have been lost! If we did that everywhere on earth, what a difference it would make
- Vote wisely — we need the right sort of leaders to take us through this era, and many of the world’s leaders are not fit for purpose. So, let’s vote wisely, and let’s vote for people who speak to the real problems (versus the ridiculous divisive rhetoric happening today) and they must be capable of bringing us together so we can prepare to face it together. We need to support these leaders too, because they cannot succeed if they are under constant attack and abuse. We need to build a new world, and the right leaders required for this work are critical.
Thoughts, ideas, feedback?
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Four environment resources to help you navigate this challenging territory.
- Knowledge, constantly updating
- Individual action and awareness, so we do our part
- Resources for those struggling with eco-anxiety. Please share with your community.
- Finally, more than 100 mini-videos on many topics regarding the multiple crisis’ we face. Feel free to download and use as your own. No credit necessary.