Or are we? Beneath the lid, a pot of trends is coming to a boil. If Carl Jung was right about the existence of a collective unconscious, it must be seething with nightmares right about now.
So far, 2016 is the hottest year in history. And not by just a smidgen: every single month so far has set a record. This handy little animation has been making the rounds of environmental websites in the last couple of weeks; it shows a climate system that is shooting off the rails.
Slow, linear change is giving way to self-reinforcing feedbacks and non-linear lurches. Last December (just 6 months ago), delegates to climate talks in Paris agreed to try to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees centigrade. Extend the temperature trend shown in that animation for just another few months and we may well be beyond that threshold. How long until we get to two degrees? Three?
Arctic sea ice this month is by far at the lowest extent ever recorded and temperatures in Siberia are rising four times faster than in the rest of the world, releasing enormous amounts of methane and carbon stored in permafrost.
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