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Save Our Home: We Have 12 Years

| November 4, 2018

global warming

NASA’s rendition of Planet Earth four billion years ago.

By Olivia Alperstein

Pull on the seat-belt in your gas-guzzling car, folks, and strap in for the worst ride of our lives.

This fall, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a critical report warning that humans have about 12 years — until 2030 — before global warming reaches a catastrophic level.

The report concludes, frighteningly, that the world can’t allow global temperatures to warm past 1.5 degrees Celsius, or there will quite literally be hell to pay. And unless we take drastic action, we’re already all set to get there.

Consider this your all-hands-on-deck, siren-blaring warning that we need to act comprehensively to mitigate climate change now — or forever hold our peace.

The IPCC predicts an increased risk of devastating climate-related risks to health, livelihoods, food, water, security, and economic growth.

As sea levels and global temperatures rise, low-lying communities will disappear and heat-related deaths will increase, along with diseases like dengue fever and malaria. Areas that cease to be inhabitable by humans will fuel an accelerated refugee crisis, while resources like agriculture and crops will be decimated in key areas impacted by climate change.

That’s just a few of the highlights of the Ten Plagues-like punishment we’ll get for endangering our planet. We’re facing a pretty grim future — and that’s even if we manage to cap the rise at 1.5 degrees, which we’re not on track to do.

For those of us who are pretty young like me, our golden years may be anything but.

Before you slip quietly into your doomsday bunker or start praying that someone invents interstellar space travel, there’s an urgent message of hope: We’ve got a little bit of time to save the only home planet we’ve got. And it’s going to take all of us to do it.

While dire, the report also contains some critically useful recommendations.

commondreamsGovernments, companies, indigenous peoples, local communities, and individuals all have a critical role to play to solve this crisis. We can and must act quickly and collaboratively on a local and global scale before it’s too late. Acting alone or failing to cooperate, the IPCC report emphasizes, will fall short.

The Paris Climate Agreement isn’t going to be enough — we need massive, World War Two-level mobilization. The victory will be that we get a living, healthy planet.

The report also highlights the need to consider justice and equity as we consider solutions.

Some nations, like the United States, are leading contributors to greenhouse gas emissions and other accelerants of climate change. Others contribute less to emissions but are more vulnerable to catastrophic damage. A number of low-lying nations (on whose approval the Paris Agreement depended) will literally be underwater if temperatures rise beyond the IPCC’s limit.

The point being: The countries that have contributed the most to climate change need to contribute the most to fixing it — and to helping those who suffer most to adapt.

What can you do, right here, right now, besides giving up meat, your car, or plastic bags and straws?

Urge your local or state government to commit to 100 percent renewable energy in the next decade. Get your community and your state to ban the use of fracking and other fossil fuel production that will drive us to doomsday that much quicker, not to mention the other dangerous risks to people’s health.

Call on the federal government to implement the recommendations of the IPCC report, and commit to working with the rest of the world to act swiftly.

And if you vote, remember the planet when you do.

Olivia Alperstein is the Media Relations Manager for Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR).

13 Responses for “Save Our Home: We Have 12 Years”

  1. PC Citizen says:

    Over 1/2 of the world population will die before 2050. Are fresh water supplies will only be in a few countries who’s military guard it. Living in caverns and underground cities will happen very quickly due to surface heat. We either get off this planet, drop the population by 75% before 2040, or WE ALL DIE sooner the we would want to.

  2. Mark says:

    Someone needs to tell China to stop polluting the atmosphere!

  3. Mark says:

    Weren’t we already suppose to be under water by now? I thought the guy that invented the internet warned us about this many years ago.

  4. Lazaruis says:

    I think without our federal goverment working with other world powers we are doomed !
    Trump needs to wake up and see the obvious signs of global warming and encourage other countries to do the same .
    Some of the countries say they are working on it but they are obviously not doing what’s needed to save us and our planet . Realistic science is not political and the planet and it’s people are to precious to err on the side of not tackling this huge deadly problem.

  5. Agkistrodon says:

    In 12 years I’ll laugh at YOU. I remember the same hysteria over an ozone hole in the 70’s, guess what, that never ended the world.

  6. LMAO says:

    I would like to see the propaganda from the global cooling campaign in the mid 1600…and the mid 1400s also whe earth experienced mini ice ages due to low solar activity.

  7. Bill says:

    We have been told this for DECADES that we have only 10 years or so.

  8. Richard says:

    Well then I have 12 years to party-down and travel before the end of the world. Plus since I live only a few blocks from the ocean I will sell my house in 10 years and book it to the mountains of Colorado or Maine where my new home will have beach front property in two years. Or is this just another fear mongering attempt by the left to get people to vote Democrat? What else is in their playbook for the midterms besides the race card, sex card, rape card, homophobic card xenophobic card, etc. etc. etc. SMH

  9. oldtimer says:

    as soon as all the rich elites who live in mansions and fly private jets reduce their carbon footprint I’ll cut back on mine

  10. BOB says:

    Far left liberal agenda from the far left UNITED NATIONS.

  11. Pogo says:

    @Intelligent people are paying attention and facing the truth

    Mexico Beach: When flood maps miss mark

    By Jim Bruggers / InsideClimate News

    “The official map laid it out for more than 200 homes within the community of Mexico Beach: the federal government had characterized their flooding risks as minimal, despite their near-beachfront locations.

    That meant for them there were no requirements to buy flood insurance, and local residents say many did not.

    When Hurricane Michael and its 155 mile-an-hour winds slammed into the town on Oct. 10, with a storm surge of perhaps 19 feet, the result was devastation. An analysis by coastal geologists from Western Carolina University has found that 70 percent of the homes were demolished. Another 10 percent were severely damaged.

    Mexico Beach turns out to be a vivid example of how FEMA’s flood maps — part of the troubled National Flood Insurance Program — are failing millions of Americans who own property in low-lying areas along coastal zones, rivers or streams. The problems are made worse as more people build in risky areas and as FEMA fails to factor in how global warming is changing the climate…”

    Link to full article

  12. Bill,k says:

    Glbalnwarming, Biggest lie ever!!!

  13. Really says:

    Nothing to see here folks ignore the man behind the curtain and be good lil consumers and earn tax spend rinse repeat

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