Special coverage in the Trump Era

Dark Money author Jane Mayer on The Dangers of President Pence, New Yorker, Oct. 23 issue on-line

"Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America" see: our site, and George Monbiot's essay on this key book by historian Nancy MacLean.

Full interview with The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer March 29, 2017, Democracy Now! about her article, "The Reclusive Hedge-Fund Tycoon Behind the Trump Presidency: How Robert Mercer Exploited America’s Populist Insurgency."

Democracy Now! Special Broadcast from the Women's March on Washington

The Economics of Happiness -- new version

Local Futures offers a free, shortened version of its award-winning documentary film The Economics of Happiness. This 19-minute abridged version "brings us voices of hope of in a time of crisis." www.localfutures.org.

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August 01, 2017

Scientists Warn of "Biological Annihilation" as Warming Reaches Levels Unseen for 115,000 Years

Dahr Jamail brings together latest information and links to research and writing in his "overview of some of the more stunning scientific reports and climate developments." Bad news we need to know.

 

"According to NOAA, June of 2017 was the third hottest such month in the global climate record since temperature tracking began in 1880." more

 

Scientists Warn of "Biological Annihilation" as Warming Reaches Levels Unseen for 115,000 Years

Monday, July 31, 2017 By Dahr Jamail, Truthout | Report

Excerpt:

Meanwhile, a study recently published in Nature revealed that ice-free areas in the Antarctic will surge by up to a quarter (17,000 square kilometers) by 2100 if CO2 emissions are left unchecked.

As if to underscore that point, in July one of the most massive icebergs ever recorded broke free of the Larsen C Ice Shelf. The iceberg itself measures 5,800 square kilometers and is estimated to weigh one trillion tons.

And there are no indications that things will slow down. Recent research from Harvard University published in the journal, Science Advances, revealed that temperature increases measured over recent decades fail to fully reflect the planetary warming that is already in the pipeline for our planet, and showed that the ultimate heating up of the Earth could be much worse than previously feared.

"The worrisome part is that all the models show there is an amplification of the amount of warming in the future," Cristian Proistosescu of Harvard University, who led the new research, told the Guardian. And the situation might be far worse, as his work shows climate sensitivity could be as high as a stunning 6C.

"Some have suggested that we might be lucky and avoid dangerous climate change without taking determined action if the climate is not very sensitive to CO2 emissions. This work provides new evidence that that chance is remote," Bill Collins of the University of Reading in the UK told the Guardian.

On that note, an in-depth article published in July in New York Magazine, titled "The Uninhabitable Earth," is certainly worth reading. The heavily researched piece, which has generated much controversy, notes: "The Earth has experienced five mass extinctions before the one we are living through now, each so complete a slate-wiping of the evolutionary record it functioned as a resetting of the planetary clock, and many climate scientists will tell you they are the best analog for the ecological future we are diving headlong into."

Similarly, recently published research generated at Cornell University revealed that by 2100, a staggering 2 billion people, or one-fifth of the total global human population, could become ACD refugees due to rising seas alone.

"We're going to have more people on less land and sooner than we think," lead author Charles Geisler, professor emeritus of development sociology at Cornell, said. "The future rise in global mean sea level probably won't be gradual. Yet, few policy makers are taking stock of the significant barriers to entry that coastal climate refugees, like other refugees, will encounter when they migrate to higher ground."

The New York Times published an important article highlighting global efforts by scientists to build and protect repositories for things like ice, seeds and mammals' milk in order to preserve them as evidence of a natural order that is rapidly disappearing. Last October, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault became flooded with rain; thankfully it was saved just in time, because otherwise we could have lost the seed backup plan for thousands upon thousands of species of plants. The San Diego Zoo maintains a frozen zoo of cryogenically preserved living cell cultures, sperm, eggs and embryos for 1,000 species, while the National Ice Core lab in Colorado holds approximately 62,000 feet of rods of ice from rapidly melting glaciers and ice fields in the Arctic, Greenland and Antarctica for future study.

Incredibly, a recently released report showed that only 100 companies are the source of more than 70 percent of the entire planet's greenhouse gas emissions since 1988.

Meanwhile, global warm temperature records continue to be set at a staggering pace. Global temperatures for June this year were surpassed only by June in 2015 and 2016. If temperatures continue as expected, 2015, 2016 and 2017 will be the three hottest years ever recorded. Estimates now show that warming has reached levels not seen for 115,000 years."
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