Nature is not natural and can never be naturalized — Graham Harman

Friday, August 31, 2012

Dave Griggs, Climate Scientist (ASLEC AUS-ANZ Liveblog)

(This guy did the slides for An Inconvenient Truth.)

What kinds of images speak to us most powerfully about climate change?

Most of my audiences are very different and there is a very different gender demographic. If I showed a page of equations as my first slide, my colleagues would get very excited, but I'm not sure you would. (Ahh...bless.)

So here is a diagram of Earth' heat trending upwards since 1880.  Not only is Earth's surface warming, but the temperature of the whole atmosphere is warming. The world has not cooled since 1998.

Now we have a 3D map developed from 1 million plus lines of code. The most complex computer program ever written on planet Earth. Shows warming since 1880. When the globe goes blue it's 2 degrees lower, red and black, 15 degrees higher. Met office, Hadley Centre. A1B scenario.

Up to 2100 the land areas warm way quickly. As we get further there's not a lot of blue around but an awful lot of red. That's a mid-range scenario.

Now same computer model, but looking down at the North Pole. We predicted the Arctic sea ice would disappear by 2100. No one believed us. Now, because of the reduction we've already seen, no one is disputing that. It's just a matter of when in the century the ice is going to go.

Species loss is trending towards 10 000 times the background rate.

Massive rise in food prices.

“It will just ruin the economy to fix climate change.” Then a series of slides: expenditures cosmetics, ice cream, pet food, cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, military...vs cost of eradicating poverty, reducing child mortality, ensuring environmental susainability: 50-60bn. The former list is in the trillions.

Cartoon: “But what if it's a big hoax and we create a better world for nothing?”

This is the critical decade. Governments have decided that 2 degrees max increase. But to do this we need to reduce emissions to almost nothing by 2100.

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