environment

U.N. warns Earth 'firmly on track toward an unlivable world'

26 Comments
By FRANK JORDANS and SETH BORENSTEIN

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Tragic that air in Delhi had risen to levels that it became "a gas chamber" back in 2016-2017. Looks lie it hasn't improved too much since: Air quality in New Delhi, Bangladesh worst on the planet https://www.laprensalatina.com/air-quality-in-new-delhi-bangladesh-worst-on-the-planet/

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Why hasn't any of these scientist & politicians asked or addressed the BIG question? 8 billion humans is too many and as the population grows, so does our inability to stop destroying planet earth.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Why hasn't any of these scientist & politicians asked or addressed the BIG question? 8 billion humans is too many and as the population grows, so does our inability to stop destroying planet earth.

What do you suggest we do?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Among the solutions recommended are a rapid shift away from fossil fuels toward renewable energy such as increasingly cheap solar and wind power, the electrification of transport, less meat consumption, more efficient use of resources and massive financial support for poor countries unable to pay for such measures without help.

"Increasingly cheap solar and wind"? With rapidly increasing inflation in general, including labor costs, but particularly with incredible increases in the commodities, this is an unsustainable argument.

"[M]ore efficient use of resources"? Diversion of resources, including natural resources, from less efficient uses?

"[M]assive financial support for poor countries."? Self explanatory.

Bad economic times afloat. How, exactly, to make this happen, without global economic chaos?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Socialist doom-mongering. The UN is a big part of the problem, with the people at the top flying around in carbon-spewing jets between their seaside mansions telling us to cut back while they live high on the hog. I'll take them seriously when they walk the talk.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

One move often described as “low-hanging fruit” by scientists is to plug methane leaks from mines, wells and landfills that release the potent but short-lived greenhouse gas into the atmosphere. A pact forged between the United States and China at last year’s U.N. climate conference in Glasgow aims to do just that.

Scope?

U.S. More than 3.2 million abandoned oil and gas wells together emitted 281 kilotons of methane in 2018.

Canada. 313,000 abandoned wells emitted 10.1 kt of methane in 2018.

The governments of the other top five world oil-and-gas producers did not provide abandoned wells data, and have not published reports on their wells’ methane leakage. A rough calculation, based on the US share of global crude oil and natural gas production, would place the number of abandoned wells around the world at more than 29 million, with emissions of 2.5 million tonnes of methane per year – the climate-damage equivalent of three weeks of US oil consumption.

Remediation costs?

In the U.S., in 2017 money, 19 abandoned oils were capped in Southern California for $11 MIllion USD. The US Government Accountability Office previous estimates that cleaning up and plugging an abandoned well runs from $20,000 to $145,000 USD, putting the price tag for cleaning up America’s abandoned wells somewhere between $60 billion to $435 billion USD.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It 17c in my aparto and I am debating weather to turn the heat up on the AC. I prefer warm weather compared to cold weather so I am happy that the weather is getting warmer. It seem that population in warm areas are not that worried but those from cold regions like the UK, EU and North America. How do we know that this cold period effecting earth over the last millennium is the norm or a unnormal cold millennium compared to other millenniums. Well you don’t. So this next millennium could be a correction from the unusual cold millennium we just being through to the more regular period.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Climate change report puts world on "fast track" to disaster - UN:

Report after report, similar warnings repeated multi-times, what use?

Leaders & people know that, but ignore the damaging consequences.

Leaders refuse to act wisely, people decline to safe energy, so face it..?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Still don’t have got enough? They already have strangled all economies near to death by their releasing of the virus and opening a new unexpected war in Europe leading all to much less business and transportation activities aka resources or energy usage as a consequence. What else do they want now for finishing us all and to finally only finding out that they cannot prevent normal climate changes or developments by producing intentionally an only socially icy cold world with disrupted and destroyed economies and societies?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Why hasn't any of these scientist & politicians asked or addressed the BIG question? 8 billion humans is too many and as the population grows, so does our inability to stop destroying planet earth.

It is difficult to ask a country to encourage a controlled decrease of population (which we desperately need almost globally) when the entire world economy is predicated on infinite growth.

Obviously it isn't sustainable, but I don't think many alternatives have been proposed. I don't have a good answer either, except that we can't keep doing what we have been.

I honestly don't know any government really actively pursuing it, even non-capitalist countries.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

But but but….. the politicians said some new wonderful tech will save us.in the future!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It is possible for us to do what is necessary to prevent disaster. It is also possible for us all to live together in peace. Neither possibility is on track to happen soon.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Well, on the bright side, the flooding will take out a lot of the CO2 production....

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Among the solutions recommended are a rapid shift away from fossil fuels toward renewable energy such as increasingly cheap solar and wind power.

Scope.

In today's technology, a typical onshore wind turbine contains five tons of copper, as well as significant amounts of manganese, chromium, zinc, and rare earths.

In today's technology, all electric vehicles takes more than twice the amount of copper and manganese than a conventional car.. It also requires significant amounts of lithium, nickel, cobalt, neodymium, and graphite.

A UK study found two years ago that, in order to replace all of the U.K.’s nearly 32 million cars with electric vehicles, manufacturers would require roughly twice the cobalt, nearly all the neodymium, 3/4 of the lithium, and half of the copper produced in the entire world in one year.

The World Bank estimates that, in order to meet estimated needs for renewable energy and electric vehicles over the next 25 years, the world must mine the same amount of copper that has been dug out of the earth over the past 5,000 years.

Again, in today's technology.

In today's reality, consider that increased mining and ore processing takes significant dedicated amounts of energy. As well as a will to progress new exploring, mining, and processing mineral resources over strict regulatory oversight.

Here's hoping that new technologies can make it to R&D to mass production and distribution, in a very short amount of time, without debilitating costs during an economic downturn.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Our injection of additional CO2 into the atmosphere and marine environments has destabilized the Stable State of the Climate, which is the resultant of interactions between complex systems. Conditions will start to change, to oscillate between extremes greater and greater until it finds a new Stable State, usually at one of the extremes, where it gets stuck. It may not be conducive to Human habitat.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Bad economic times afloat. How, exactly, to make this happen, without global economic chaos?

If humanity can not adequately control money, a human invention, and lets such a lack of ability to control its creation, to the point it kills our world and all of us on it, then how smart can we really be?

Cooperation in key. Money is secondary. A genuine recognition of the issue must come first and as long as business and politicians can argue it is not us doing this and we cant stop it, then we fail.

If we have the natural resources to build what is needed, and the people to build what we need, then it can be done.

The real problem is powerful people denying climate change and powerful business fighting at every turn for their own short term survival rather than the planets long term survival.

A new way of living that does not rely on money as the central factor, for all people an equal opportunity and equal level of living.

People in power do not want to change the status quo and will not give up their wealth even to save the world.

Basically our future is not a long one and the planet is screwed. Nature can repair itself and perhaps the best thing for the world is nuclear armageddon. Set humanity back a thousand years and let the planet recover.

Since cooperation is just to hard, that leaves few alternatives.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

A new way of living that does not rely on money as the central factor, for all people an equal opportunity and equal level of living.

With respect, a difficulty lies ahead with your thesis, insofar as much of the G-7 world has - intentionally, under welcome embrase and adoption of globalization - realized a structural shrinking of their worker -based/reliant manufacturing / industrial economies, in preference to growth of their financial sectors. Globalization's hope was that current account would be sufficiently large under finance to incorporate displaced workers into service and technology fields, with spot labor shortages filled in by affordable migrant workers. That did not happen, leaving the financial sector - and the global economy in general and each country in specific, vulnerable to complex financial volatility; resulting in the need to contain the lows (Inflation, stagnation, recession, etc) through the governmental exercise of perpetual monetary doping (large and perpetual liquidity injections). Made especially necessary and urgent by global disasters and emergencies (like this one) that require ever greater stimulus. With even more liquidity flow into big finance? Or with huge debt, including mutualized international debt - that will not be paid in your child's lifetime.

You have a "new way of living"? Maybe one that doesn't compromise valued democratic structures? That hasn't been tried before by communist and autocratic regimes to tremendous epic historic failure, with associated appalling loss of life, and the wholesale loss of the most basic individual freedoms and liberties? One that avoids a Weimar Republic - type economic disaster? Or would you social engineer / reverse engineer democracy as we know it? Be glad to hear more.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

"U.N. warns Earth 'firmly on track toward an unlivable world'"

Earth? Or just anything of any size currently on it?

Human rationality does not extend to 'profits' nor to the people for whom 'profit now' is the most important criterion of their existence. That these people also control the armies, and police, political structures, and communication and educational (social programming) structures of Humanity means that we will blindly run off of the cliff of our own pathology while still admiring our own 'superiority'. Despite what we are ever more convinced is fact regarding our poisoning our own small aquarium (Earth), NOTHING IS CHANGING except an actual increase in our production of environmental poisons and destruction of renewal mechanisms. So, do not complain when the (in YOUR lifetime) collapse arrives but just look in a mirror and ask yourself who was responsible for allowing our psychopaths to destroy us and this entire instance of ecosphere. A new instance will arise and, perhaps, will not produce the deranged thing that is us...

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Unlivable? For you. I hate the cold. I prefer 38c to 45 c every day all year. Remember your body temp is 38c if you can not handle warm weather of 38c than your soft and prefer the cold were you use energy to warm your body so how this dose not make sense. You are adding to the problem because you are soft.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

John-san

That...isn't exactly how that works. Global warming doesn't just mean that the area you live in gets a bit warmer. Areas that were hot become even hotter. Ice caps melt, water levels rise and weather becomes more extreme in both directions. As counter-intuitive as it might seem, that may mean you even get colder than usual weather sometimes.

"I don't like winter so global warming is a good thing" is not remotely a reasonable position.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Remember your body temp is 38c 

Only if you're ill.

'Global warming', while not at all inaccurate, was an unfortunate choice of words to describe what we face as a direct result of our actions.

What's happening is not merely that 'it's getting warmer' so that we can spend less on heating, grow tropical plants outdoors in northern areas and enjoy summer all year round. 'Climate change' is a much more appropriate term.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The climate is changing because its warming .

That's accurate !

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

The sun is getting larger and closer .

And the poles are shifting.

Having a doom and gloom outlook certainly isn't helping.

Time to embrace ingenuity as the mother of invention.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Thinking that climate change is an issue when world leaders and their entourages continue (extremely wastefully) to fly around the world multiple times a year is bunkum!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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