Wednesday, 25 July 2018

Dahr Jamail: Should we be focusing on surviving? Is it too late to save world?


Global Temperature Projections Could Double as the World Burns
Dahr Jamail



16 July, 2018

Two new studies investigating corn and vegetables have warned of an increasing risk of food shocks around the world, along with malnutrition, if ACD continues unchecked, which by all accounts it will, given the governmental refusal to even discuss the actions necessary for mitigation. Both studies were published in the prestigious Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and showed how ACD will increase the risk of simultaneous crop failures across the planet’s largest corn-growing regions, as well as sapping nutrients from critical vegetables. For example, an increase of 4 degrees Celsius (4°C) — which is essentially the current trajectory we are on to reach by 2100 — could cut US corn production nearly in half. Meanwhile, the likelihood of simultaneous crop failures for the four biggest corn exporters (US, China, Brazil, Argentina) suffering yield losses of 10 percent or greater increases from 7 percent at 2°C warming to 86 percent at 4°C.

Another study warns of how ACD already poses a serious threat to the nutritional value of crops, and a lack of action could well have major global implications for both food security and global health. The same study showed that global crop yields could be reduced by nearly one-third with a 4°C temperature increase.

But the food crisis is already current, because drying wells and sinking land at the heart of the most productive farmland in the US, the Central Valley of California, are an indication that we are watching the collapse of this once bountiful area. Large portions of the San Joaquin Valley have already sunk nearly 30 feet since the 1920s, with some areas having dropped a staggering three feet over just the last two years. All of this is the result of farmers’ relentless pumping of groundwater to offset the lack of snowpack and rainfall, both of which stem largely from ACD. It is important to note that the groundwater the farmers are using accounts for between 30 to 60 percent of the water that all Californians use each year, depending on how much rain and snow the state gets. The US Geological Survey stated that the pumping and resultant sinking of the San Joaquin Valley is “one of the single largest alterations of the [planet’s] land surface attributed to mankind.”

Another sign of the dramatic changes besetting the planet comes from the Arctic, where a cyclone became one of the most powerful on record. The fact that it occurred in June was also noteworthy, as historically these storms don’t normally begin to hit the Arctic until late summer. Its impacts on what is left of the ever-shrinking sea ice are, of course, deleterious.

Another recent report illustrates how what happens in the Arctic does not stay in the Arctic. The loss of Arctic sea ice could well cook the tropics by changing critical ocean currents and altering wind patterns, which will of course cause dramatic changes across the entire planet.

Look out your window. Better yet, go outside and feel what is happening. By early July, cities across the globe set all-time-high temperature records. While no single weather event can ever be attributed solely to ACD, it has been well known for decades now that all of these phenomena are being driven in part (and most are largely driven) by ACD.

To read the article GO HERE

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