Even aiming to stay within the global warming range of 1.5 to 2 degrees C, the earth systems are pushed on a path that takes us to the kind of climate of 3 million years ago, Pliocene or even 50 million years ago, the Miocene. The Holocene, which nutured our civilizations, is over forever.
Right now, to avoid the extreme, conditions of the Miocene, not compatible with human civilization at all, and insure that only Pliocene conditions are reached, a rapid, global exponential decarbonization is required
Climacide is the usual cause of termination of Apex Species
David Suzuki points out, that a recent climate science paper says there remains only a 5 percent chance of staying below 2 degrees this Century, and we have actually more chance of reaching 6 degrees of warming (10%), than staying below 2 C. So we'ed better get on with it, as a global apex species, because even 2 degrees is not favourable to the long term survival biosphere apex species such as ourselves. Australia is especially singled out for its rigged corporate games in government..
A Six Million Year Plan for Earth
Everything politicians think they know is most certainly wrong for the real world. Global governments fixation on mutual traded, competitive, exponential, fossil fueled growth. This is the worst possible, long term option ever. There is no wriggle out of contract consequences - Making a Hell of Earth. So what is the cause of this collective insanity? Rapid extinction is nature's unthinking plan for a species that collectively destroys its foundational environment.
Growth still the climate killer
The Global Carbon Project, which collects and analyses our global carbon behaviour, shows that nearly everybody is misbehaving.
Growth in global carbon emissions in 2018 looks to be around 2%, which is exactly tied to the rate of economic growth (by GDP) Growth in Gas was the worst at 3.0%, and almost certainly involves a growth in total methane leakage. It is not provable that the rise in global carbon emissions with GDP has produced a similar rise in global well-being.
Humanity are still trying to collectively have infinite growth on this finite planet. Here in Australia, our Prime Madman Scott Morrison, keeps defiantly shouting his "Strong Economy" slogan, in the tones of "Resistance is useless", while Australia burns hotter. After Albert Einstein, we could say that only one thing is infinite, and that is human collective stupidity.
Absent any serious form of global self-control, human global demolition will be future choked by several possible natural "Limits to Growth". Given our massed social and technical ingenuity, we might even manage to have several at once. We might escape the global decline in essential heavy fuel oil supply to power our global big machines, or spend all our energies against the inexorable rise in new climate disasters. This is probably already out of our control, as we struggle to keep creating new limits by growing our ongoing demolition of biodiversity and natural sustainability.
Climate Emergency Declaration
If enough people demand it, governments could declare a
climate emergency tomorrow, and we could all get on with the job of
NSW nature conservation has an important petition, against a new climate-stupid government idea, put up by wooden-headslogging industry.
Forest derived biomass (FDB) harms the climate, harms forests, harms people and harms the clean energy transition. Any engagement with burning trees for energy would be a gross misdirection of government subsidies and an assault on the climate. . . . The Australian community does not want to lose more to fire than we already have. There is no social licence for further destruction of our forests!
There is already little doubt, among climate activists around the world, that all the important decisions of Australian government are made under the strong influence of the fossil fools industry, head-quartered in Canberra as the (Foreign) Minerals Council of Australia. This has been true since the 1990s.
This has been proved again, to be more than ever before, with a release of a simple report that shows the make up of the National Corvid-19 Coordination Commission is heavily stacked by fossil fuel industry "king-makers". Several are well known Australian Fossil Fuel agents and middle men from the global corporate gas industry giants. Some of the others are "not known" yet. Some have big share holdings. Their main repeated demands of government politicians, have no direct relations to national management of this Corona virus epidemic.
Our governments more often than not go along with the demands. See their wish-list.This makes the Corvid Commission itself, evidence of a virulent and deadly infestation inside our government. Democracy in Australia appears now to be having difficulty breathing. It should be put under intensive care, and the outcome could be fatal.
This is the sort of headline never to be seen in the Daily Telegraph. A newly formed Commission for the Human Future, which is made up of Australian scientists, academics and leaders, have tabled the top 10 threats we face as a global community. The question as to if they can be "easily fixed", and the rest of the headline in the New Daily online, "and how we overcome them", could be glib press corporate media speak, which is so ubiquitous these days. Advertising Media speak is as old as humanity, Edward Bernays didn't invent it, but glamorised it as a professional art form. Reassurances so as not to scare off readership too early. If these threats are so easy to fix, why are they in the top ten? Pandemic disease outbreak, just one of them, seems to be very bad right now. Now all we need to fix the others is for our governments to absolutely heed and action the other nine.
In recent virtual meetings of local activist groups, I heard cautions against publishing anything that compares, or contrasts the new viral epidemic, and economic shutdown responses to it, with our ever present global heating emergency. We are not even supposed to mention the latter, but are asked to spend more time building our resilience and social support networks. We are supposed to wait until things are back to normal. I know I am going to be very bad at heeding both admonitions. This was very effective reverse psychology. I throw my caution to the wind.
There some dangers in continuing to harp on our dangers of our very real growing long emergency, during this initial time of immediate danger, shutdown and global panic. It must be really annoying for some, to be told, that this sort of gradual economic shutdown is a great and good start towards a big decline in global GDP and linked greenhouse gas emissions. Panic buying shouts belief. This is the only real possible and necessary response to our long emergency. And we have only a short number years left in which to accomplish this in a permanent way. The faster this gets done, the better off future climate conditions will be for all of us. Talk of getting back to where we were with economic growth as normal is crazy money talk. We see fossil fuel extraction industry desperadoes that are still trying to "go for broke" in expanding production as part of our genocidal madness.
I am a busy tech user, in writing, programming, and using the systems of devices that enable the internet and global communications. This article tells us that our global ITC - information technology and communications, has unsustainable and toxic costs, including long term contributions to global heating.
Why worry about global heating? The people and politicians of fossil fuel culture already think they live on planet B.
Most of us assume we will not live to regret it. We are living in our future's past, apparently without care, as our emotions and personality skills are most suited to stone-age survival. We are very easily hijacked, by as much as a little bit of sugar, that gives dopamine nuerochemical hits of pleasure in our brains.
Sugar production was an early driver for the first highly exploitive systems of capitalism. "Sugar daddies" or lobbyists, are the basis of social and political seduction, the selective reinforcement of our memory and desire. These are today provided by the petro-chemical and fossil-fuel industries. We are controlled by cultures of medieval religions and regulated by tribal national authority, to support our social sense of omniscience and belonging. We now employ god-like technologies powered by fossil fuels that wipe out every part of nature that doesn't return a capitalist profit.
Unlike the climate emergency, coronavirus left us with no time for politics, so that consideration of science evidence and practicality of public health management was allowed to temporarily take over our management policy. The sunshine of reality has been allowed to peak through our curtains of culture.
Most obviously there is no immense, and immensely powerful corporate cartel invested in denying the problem or delaying a response. No analogue of the fossil fuel lobby exists to pour billions of dollars into pseudo think tanks or captive political parties to maintain the value of their investment in a virus that may soon kill millions of people around the world.
The Morrison government's plan to use so-called Kyoto "carryover credits" towards Australia's Paris carbon emissions reduction pledge effectively halves the country's promised cut, the government's climate change agency said, in its Special Review of Australia's Climate Goals.
To even cut emissions, Australian government would need halt foreign corporate plans to increase Australian gas exports. Local emissions from this already ruin our emissions reduction target.
For our existential threats from global heating, a minimum of 50% reduction is needed over 10 years, requiring changes and planning far beyond, as if for a permanent viral pandemic. We need government that takes our global climate emergency seriously rather than just being a marketing department for cheat and bleat on behalf of the fossil fuel industry.
Please, do not say that global climate is always changing. We are heating our planet with greenhouse gases. Nature will not stop it until we do. Fossil fools civilisation is a terminal condition.
"Scheme" is the right word. The coal scheme for Indian billionaire Adani is another instance of Australian state and federal governments coal favouritism, letting Adani get away with dodging tricky legal hurdles. Adani gets the sorts of favours from government ministers that tend to be associated with corruption. In the larger scheme of favour exchange, Clive Palmer admits his $83 million dollar spend on advertising in Queensland and elsewhere, give enough preferences to get the LNP coalition into government. Now the Federal government LNP owes Clive a really big time favour, and Clive wants the Galilee coal projects to go ahead, because his own coal mining lease project is next in the Galilee Basin pipeline. This appears to be a clear case of rank corruption, stinky dead ten days cat on your front doorstep variety, obvious, of the highest magnitude and involving the highest levels of Australian government.
Also everyone on the deal is protected by a massive SEP of public media blindness field - It must be another Somebody Else's Problem, with no federal ICAC and apparently no charges or laws broken. Wait, there was a law broken. Why wasn't the environment water trigger legislation invoked? And so the ACF is taking the federal government to court, based on Australia law.
Adani's water scheme, labelled the North Galilee Water Scheme (NGWS), is a pipeline allowed to take water, 12.5 billion litres yearly, from the Suttor River for its coal mine to wash coal and suppress dust. This is supposed to be during periods of high flows. To store most of that for the rest of the year, it will fill a dam capacity up to 10 billion litres. The Suttor is part of the river system that feeds into the Lake Dalyrymple, behind the Burdekin Dam. The water flows down the Suttor are highly variable and seasonal. Some years will have a season of extreme rainful with floods. The rest of the time, and with years in drought its flows will be down to almost nothing.
Our "too many coal politicians" government of Australia can only carry on as if all is well on the climate front. They wear a black hole of wilful climate ignorance. They are walking voids of climate know-nothing, surrounded by a refractive blackness of coal. With such magical cloaks of climate invisibility, global heating cannot be seen when looking outside. Like Scott Morrison, they prefer to gaze in rapt worship of black lumps of coal, than look at any other part of the world around them. Nothing can be said to them about a climate emergency, without it disappearing down a memory hole.
The climate invisibility cloak isn't actually made of coal, but made from oodles of slush money going overseas, that comes from selling coal.
Greens MP Adam Bandt has introduced the Climate Emergency Declaration bill into federal parliament. Who in the ranks of the government dare to publicly acknowledge the extent of our climate systems emergency? Which of our government representatives, will take a peek out from underneath their blankets of fears, threats and silence, vote against their governments conformity to vested interests, and support this bill?
There are but a few Liberal MPs that have signed on to the Parliamentary Friends of Climate Action Group, and publicly said that our government needs to do more. Sadly there seems to be no more than about six of them.
The crusty old Australian constitution has Section 44, which is used to ensure that members of parliament do not have divided loyalty away from the good of Australia, towards a foreign power. At the time it was drawn up, international mining corporations with billion dollar budgets did not exist.
Corporate multinational budgets are bigger than the governments of many smaller nations. The purchase of Australia ministerial decisions by foreign corporations is an ongoing process that is allowed to proceed unchallenged and unchecked, and seems to be a major cause of failures and reversals of Australian climate policy for decades.
Politics, especially when our leaders utilise the media, is almost indistinguishable from marketing. Denial by marketing becomes all inclusive. Sticking to the marketing sales line, means denial of climate emergency, denial of technology change, and denial of total systems change.
World economic forum site article - "Zero by 2050: How the world's economy has planned to battle climate change" states the bare facts of what needs to be done to avoid a complete global climate systems collapse of civilisation. Several nations have already set their target sights. The costs of growth business as usual should now be unthinkable, and business as usual growth projections are now the unrealistic ones.
Transformation yes, growth no. Some nations and regions have set good plans in motion already. Some others are still lagging. It is question of change now or be destroyed in the future by climate crisis. The first reductions are the easiest and fastest. There are also direct benefits of transformation.
The summit was pre-sold out, and massively attended. All the main stage sessions were live streamed, so the total live audience, was much larger still.
For later reference, I hope that recordings of the sessions will be soon be available online. The parallel break out sessions will be made available as podcasts. I felt thoroughly brain smashed by 2 days of intense watching and listening, despite having a long interest in these issues. It is only 2 days later of sleep recovery and processing that I feel able to start writing about it. There were many interesting themes and threads to follow.
The worth of the conference includes being able to see together so many people that have a common view our climate emergency and urgency. The people who still need to publicly recognise our dire global and national climate emergency were not at the conference. What a wasted opportunity, as they could all have learned so much, since Australia urgently needs to set about reorganising our energy, economic, social and governance systems. We must cut global greenhouse gas emissions by 50% over the next 10 years. Forget about our economy, as it will be stuffed if we don't do it.