Is Planet Earth coming of age? Any science fiction enthusiast will tell you that one mark of a sophisticated planetary civilization is the ability to moderate its climate to suit the best interests of its population. Nothing less than such planning is underway now in Paris with the COP 21 meeting of 195 national representatives. US President Obama has correctly declared that “this conference could be the climate turning point”. Let us hope so; the signs are encouraging with host nation, France setting a goal of 40% reduction of carbon emissions by 2030 and the Obama administration doing more for climate than any previous American government.
Human influence on climate change is now accepted as fact by everybody who counts on the international policy stage. It would be nice if they were proven wrong, but the IPCC scientists have been very forthright about the risks we face.
YOKOHAMA, Japan, 31 March 2014 – The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a report that says:
- the effects of climate change are already occurring on all continents and across the oceans
- the world, in many cases, is ill-prepared for risks from a changing climate.
- there are opportunities to respond to such risks,
- the risks will be difficult to manage with high levels of warming.
The report, titled Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability, from Working Group II of the IPCC, details the impacts of climate change to date, the future risks from a changing climate, and the opportunities for effective action to reduce risks.
See https://wildopeneye.wordpress.com/2014/03/31/latest-un-report-on-climate-change/ for more information on this
The issue now is how do we reduce global average temperatures to a 2ºC increase over pre-industrial levels by the turn of the century?
At this COP21 meeting the goal of a reduction in rise of global average temperatures to 2ºC has been set. Some nations are calling for a target of 1.5ºC in order to avoid very negative consequences for them.
The WWF have produced this video to explain why COP21 meeting is so important
Could wild birds be the equivalent of canaries in the coal mine? This Audubon Society article suggests that we can learn about climate change threats from what is already happening to some birds http://www.audubon.org/news/what-birds-tell-us-about-climate-changes-threats
Wildopeneye wishes the representatives all the best in their efforts to curb anthropogenic climate change. The stakes are simply huge and ramifications complex. The remedies will need to include a judicious mixture of:
- accelerated transition to sustainable energy generation
- adaptation of polluting energy forms with technologies that ameliorate their effects, scrubbers and filters
- enhanced efficiencies across the board
- protection of natural carbon sinks, forests, soils and seas.
- afforestation and reforestation, replanting and fresh planting of forest
Can we do it? Yes, I think humanity can adapt. Paris COP 21 could indeed be the turning point with developing and developed countries cooperating for mutual benefit.