Thank God and not a moment too soon
It was bad before. Before we decided to exponentially increase the thermodynamic whoopee Kurt Vonnegut Jr. warned us about, but now, not only have we decided to add a whole nation to the funeral pyre we call the Global Industrial Economy but we are just burning shit unabated, and maybe are in for a nuke or two.
Before the slaughter of civilians and belligerents exploded in Eastern Europe, the global economy, according to SwissRe the giant reinsurer, was faced with an annual contraction of 14 % by mid-century, when global warming is set to breech 2–2.6 ˚Celsius. (No, 1.5˚ C was a dream that was never meant to be realized and is now out of our reach.)
Even the Pentagon was panicking in their 2021 report titled: “Climate Change and International Responses Increasing Challenges to US National Security Through 2040”.
The report, in the dry, matter-of-fact tone of uncharacteristically worried, military language, designed to convince politicians but not alarm them, states up-front:
“Risks to US national security through 2040 will increase as countries respond to physical effects of climate change. Global temperatures most likely will surpass the Paris agreement goal of 1.5 degrees Celsius by around 2030, and the physical effects are projected to continue intensifying.”(emphasis mine). Now we are being told there is a 50% chance of reaching 1.5˚ C by 2025! That’s three years from now.
Unfortunately warming to between 2.5 and 3 degrees by 2050 is probably about the best-case scenario we might reasonably expect at this stage. That means, relative to a world with no additional warming, it would cut per-capita economic output by the end of the century by between 15 and 25 percent. (Burke et al.) and will cost the lives of tens of millions.
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