I have been writing about the dangers of climate change since I published Nature’s End with Jim Kunetka in 1985. It was considered overstated. When Art and I published Superstorm, it was considered overstated. It turns out that neither book was overstated. In fact, both were understated. Climate change is happening much faster than we imagined possible. In addition, the Climate Watch section on this website has offered accurate predictions based on the knowledge of climate I have acquired over the years, and the theories that I apply.

We are at present in an exceedingly serious situation. It is far more serious than people realize and are being led to believe. The most significant problems, as far as I can see, are as follows:

1. The West Coast of the Americas from Alaska to Central America is likely to experience an indefinitely continuing drought. To save the cities, it will be necessary to curtail more and more farming in the region, but in the end, within five years if there is no intermittent drought relief, and longer if there are occasional winters that replenish the snow pack, even the cities will run out of water.

2. The Gulf Stream is slowing much more rapidly than expected, and this is causing serious disturbance in the jet stream. There is a profound synergy between ocean and air currents, with the result that the jet stream has become unstable and slowed down. One result was that Boston had a hundred inches of snow this winter while there was so little snow in Alaska that the Iditarod could be run only with difficulty. Additionally, Paris briefly became the most polluted city in the world due to a lack of air circulation. From now on, irregularities in air circulation will increase, especially in the northern hemisphere where the ocean currents are presently most damaged. Once again, this will not ‘regularize.’

3. Persistent drought across South America is likely to continue, although this is more uncertain at the present time because the southern hemisphere has not yet experienced the dramatic changes taking place in the north. The reason for this is that the Antarctic is a larger geologic feature, but as it is also melting, and change will unfold there as well. There is a popular fiction that ‘Antarctic ice is increasing.’ Sea ice coverage is increasing because increased winds caused by atmospheric warming are spreading it. It is, at the same time, thinning, and Antarctic glaciers are melting more and more rapidly.

4. As the upper atmosphere warms, there will be fewer localized storms, but at the same time, when they do take place they will increasingly develop into unusually violent events, such as the storm that probably caused AirAsia Flight 8501 to go out of control and crash and the powerful supertyphoons that appeared in the eastern Pacific this year.

5. Increasing amounts of methane will outgas across the arctic this year, with unknown consequences. As methane is flammable, there could be extremely unusual atmospheric events, such as methane ignition in the atmosphere caused by lighting discharges. This is most likely to take place over the Siberian land mass where most of the methane release is taking place during times when atmospheric circulation is low. The release of methane hydrates now frozen on the ocean floor is already beginning, and will continue to spread, vastly adding to the atmosphere’s methane load and dramatically increasing all warming trends, probably well beyond those predicted by global warming models.

For many years, China, India and the American Republican Party have ignored the problem. Last year, however, strenuous efforts on the part of China caused the country’s carbon dioxide emissions to remain stable, with the result that, for the first time, CO2 emission worldwide did not rise. At the same time, however, the prime minister of India pointedly refused to do anything about air pollution and initiated economic reforms designed to spur growth, which is likely to negate Chinese efforts over the next few years. These are years we do not have.

The Republican Party bears a grave moral responsibility for fomenting a fallacious debate in the United States that has stifled and prevented urgently needed reforms for the past half century. But now its position is being undermined not only by events but by the greater moral authority of the Catholic Pope. This summer, Pope Francis will promulgate an encyclical that will call global warming "a reality with dire moral implications–especially for the poor and vulnerable, who are at the heart of Catholic social teaching." He has said in the past "a Christian who does not protect creation is a Christian who does not care about the work of God."

His statements, combined with the fact that the science has been in place, and largely borne out by events, for many years, illustrate the moral bankruptcy of the anti-climate change position. They must change it, and fast, and accept that all human beings have got to do all they can on an individual, local, regional, national and international basis to save our planet and ourselves. There is no time left, and we are going to experience many horrible effects of climate change. But we can begin planning and acting right now to  make an effort to build the foundations of survival for future generations. If we don’t, many millions of us are going to die, and this is going to escalate continually. As it does, chaos will spread and what abilities we have to save the situation will be degraded further and further until we sink into an irrecoverable maelstrom of war, revolution and anarchy.

While I do not generally take political positions, at this juncture, I must say that the Republican Party and the wealthy interests who have been and are supporting politicians who make false claims that climate change is not happening and use scientific fallacy to support this absurd and immoral position have a great deal to answer for. They, and the government and people of India and the other countries who are ignoring the problem, must join the rest of the mankind in recognizing our peril at once and doing what we can to save what we can of our dying world.

14 Comments

  1. For man goeth to his long
    For man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about in the streets; Or, ere the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, the pitcher be broken at the fountain, the wheel be broken at the cistern, then shall the dust return to the earth as it was, and the Spirit shall return unto God who gave it.
    Vanity. All is vanity.

  2. For man goeth to his long
    For man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about in the streets; Or, ere the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, the pitcher be broken at the fountain, the wheel be broken at the cistern, then shall the dust return to the earth as it was, and the Spirit shall return unto God who gave it.
    Vanity. All is vanity.

  3. Perhaps Sen Inhofe will be
    Perhaps Sen Inhofe will be wishing he had his snowball back while standing in the record breaking sweltering Washington DC fever swamp heat on the floor of the Senate just prior to the August recess.

  4. Perhaps Sen Inhofe will be
    Perhaps Sen Inhofe will be wishing he had his snowball back while standing in the record breaking sweltering Washington DC fever swamp heat on the floor of the Senate just prior to the August recess.

  5. Sadly I think this will
    Sadly I think this will continue- let’s ignore the problem and make more $$$. I’m just glad I don’t live in California. They should have limited drilling for new wells for water with no oversite long ago. Now their water table is in really bad shape. We had an unusually mild/dry winter with little snow in the mtns. of Idaho. I fear for our “fire season” 🙁

  6. Sadly I think this will
    Sadly I think this will continue- let’s ignore the problem and make more $$$. I’m just glad I don’t live in California. They should have limited drilling for new wells for water with no oversite long ago. Now their water table is in really bad shape. We had an unusually mild/dry winter with little snow in the mtns. of Idaho. I fear for our “fire season” 🙁

  7. I guess my first comment came
    I guess my first comment came from a desire for all of us to recognize that we all ride the same boat. “All are responsible for all” says the MOTK. We do not avoid the “long home”. Not any of us. How can any human be so obstructive to other life? I understand that without darkness, we don’t see the stars. Without obstruction, there is no balance.
    How can ‘they’ be un-accountable?!
    How is it possible another human could be so intentionally destructive?
    Are they human?
    Maybe “they” are fliers. Archons.
    Our unassuming mental constructs sideswiped by the self consuming fears and stupid desires of a race of deceitful sneaks?!

    Whitley, you wrote a journal years ago. Here is the quote that has never left my mind.

    “I have also gained a mission: our world is going to go through a time of great agony. I can tell you this: many of the people who now hold sway over us are going to end up despised by a thousand future generations. Their names will echo in the ages as the names of the blackest demons of hell.”
    Read the original source: http://www.unknowncountry.com/journal/encounter-june-6-1998#ixzz3VpDvmUnT

    This mission still rides strong. In spite of your suffering love (we love her too), and turmoil and antagonistic disruption, we still listen and still try to live. In spite of the overt stupidity, greed, and ignorance that drives us speeding to a wall, we will not stop. We will not give up.

    We will survive and become what is expected of our evolution. We will realize ourselves in LIGHT, JOY, and ECSTASY.
    Ours is not the fate of the steer.

    Our fate is to be a companion of God.

  8. I guess my first comment came
    I guess my first comment came from a desire for all of us to recognize that we all ride the same boat. “All are responsible for all” says the MOTK. We do not avoid the “long home”. Not any of us. How can any human be so obstructive to other life? I understand that without darkness, we don’t see the stars. Without obstruction, there is no balance.
    How can ‘they’ be un-accountable?!
    How is it possible another human could be so intentionally destructive?
    Are they human?
    Maybe “they” are fliers. Archons.
    Our unassuming mental constructs sideswiped by the self consuming fears and stupid desires of a race of deceitful sneaks?!

    Whitley, you wrote a journal years ago. Here is the quote that has never left my mind.

    “I have also gained a mission: our world is going to go through a time of great agony. I can tell you this: many of the people who now hold sway over us are going to end up despised by a thousand future generations. Their names will echo in the ages as the names of the blackest demons of hell.”
    Read the original source: http://www.unknowncountry.com/journal/encounter-june-6-1998#ixzz3VpDvmUnT

    This mission still rides strong. In spite of your suffering love (we love her too), and turmoil and antagonistic disruption, we still listen and still try to live. In spite of the overt stupidity, greed, and ignorance that drives us speeding to a wall, we will not stop. We will not give up.

    We will survive and become what is expected of our evolution. We will realize ourselves in LIGHT, JOY, and ECSTASY.
    Ours is not the fate of the steer.

    Our fate is to be a companion of God.

  9. I am puzzled by the complete
    I am puzzled by the complete and utter omission of acknowledgement of geoengineering as one of the greatest influences on our current weather. This agenda is global, it is real, and it is deadly. See geoengineeringwatch.org.

  10. I am puzzled by the complete
    I am puzzled by the complete and utter omission of acknowledgement of geoengineering as one of the greatest influences on our current weather. This agenda is global, it is real, and it is deadly. See geoengineeringwatch.org.

  11. As long as big oil, gas are
    As long as big oil, gas are in bed with Republicans and Republicans are in bed with all of the other polluters this downward spiral with continue. And if the environment completely goes, nothing else will matter anymore.

  12. As long as big oil, gas are
    As long as big oil, gas are in bed with Republicans and Republicans are in bed with all of the other polluters this downward spiral with continue. And if the environment completely goes, nothing else will matter anymore.

  13. In 1989 David Suzuki aired a
    In 1989 David Suzuki aired a series on CBC radio (Canada’s version of NPR)
    titled “It’s a Matter of Survival”. He knew even then that we were fast approaching the point of no return. We have long since passed it. And in all the intervening years NOTHING has been done to prevent the demise of our beautiful blue pearl in this wondrous universe.

    I hope the “one percenters” have their escape plan ready, because all those trillions won’t be worth a flying f*** in a world where pea-brained cockroaches rule. Oh wait, they already do! ; )

  14. In 1989 David Suzuki aired a
    In 1989 David Suzuki aired a series on CBC radio (Canada’s version of NPR)
    titled “It’s a Matter of Survival”. He knew even then that we were fast approaching the point of no return. We have long since passed it. And in all the intervening years NOTHING has been done to prevent the demise of our beautiful blue pearl in this wondrous universe.

    I hope the “one percenters” have their escape plan ready, because all those trillions won’t be worth a flying f*** in a world where pea-brained cockroaches rule. Oh wait, they already do! ; )

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