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Author Topic: New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al  (Read 3065 times)

JimD

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New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al
« on: December 04, 2013, 08:01:30 PM »
 Assessing ‘‘Dangerous Climate Change’’: Required Reduction of Carbon Emissions to Protect Young People, Future Generations and Nature



http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0081648
We do not err because truth is difficult to see. It is visible at a glance. We err because this is more comfortable. Alexander Solzhenitsyn

How is it conceivable that all our technological progress - our very civilization - is like the axe in the hand of the pathological criminal? Albert Einstein

wili

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Re: New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2013, 08:33:31 PM »
Great article. For me, the takeaway is here:

Quote
Emissions reduction of 6%/year and 100 GtC storage in the biosphere and soils are needed to get CO2 back to 350 ppm, the approximate requirement for restoring the planet’s energy balance and stabilizing climate this century. Such a pathway is exceedingly difficult to achieve, given the current widespread absence of policies to drive rapid movement to carbon-free energies and the lifetime of energy infrastructure in place.

6% emissions reduction per year basically means a 6% reduction in global economic activity, year after year, till there are essentially no more carbon emissions. This a higher rate than most recessions and depressions and is closer to what is usually considered economic collapse or crisis.

(Even with this, I think these are optimistic numbers, since feedbacks seem to be kicking in sooner and more powerfully than nearly anyone expected, and 350 is certainly too high a number, since we haven't been above 300 for hundreds of thousands of years, at least.)

It looks as if more people are coming around to Kevin Anderson's positions:







ETA:
It strikes me that what is basically needed is a fundamental re-definition of the world economic system. Socialism sees the function of the economy to benefit human society; Capitalism, to benefit those with capital (or the flow of capital...part of whose ideology is that helping the rich/capital flow...will also help all of society).

What is needed now is an economy whose main goal is to benefit ecosystems and to struggle to restore some balance to the living communties and life support functions of the earth.

Call it Ecologism, Gaiaism, or perhaps It's-Not-Just-About-Us-ism.

The basic priorities of this economy/polity are not increasing GDP (especially as those measures increase as the viability of the planet decreases), increased Wall Street profits, or even increased general human welfare.

The priority is to avoid utter catastrophe for the planet and (nearly) all its inhabitants, human and non-.

Activities that go against this imperative must be severely punished economically and, in severe cases (like mining or burning fossil-death-fuels beyond rapidly constricting legal limits), outlawed.

I have no idea how one (or even many) would go about instituting such a system, but there are elements of in the current system that could be built on.

Of course, conservatives and even many 'liberals' would howl about eco-fascism and infringement of freedoms, blind to the horror the current system visits on the current poor and the near-future... everything, including massive infringement on the most basic freedom of all--the right to life itself. 

But clearly a narrow, short-term-focused economy 
« Last Edit: December 04, 2013, 09:06:09 PM by wili »
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."

JimD

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Re: New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al
« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2013, 07:19:49 PM »
Wili

You have been reading John Michael Geer again.  I do think that his focus on the changing religiosity of mankind and where we go from here directly addresses much of your post. 

But the timing of that will most likely fall in the picking up the pieces category rather than the fixing things in the nick of time one.
We do not err because truth is difficult to see. It is visible at a glance. We err because this is more comfortable. Alexander Solzhenitsyn

How is it conceivable that all our technological progress - our very civilization - is like the axe in the hand of the pathological criminal? Albert Einstein

Shared Humanity

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Re: New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2013, 09:25:36 PM »
Thanks  wili. Thought provoking as  always.

wili

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Re: New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2013, 01:56:34 AM »
"Wili

You have been reading John Michael Geer again. "

Guilty as charged.  ;D

Not that I agree with everything he says, of course. But the joy is reading someone who occasionally and usually quite articulately expresses analyses that have been rumbling around in my brain, often half formed, for some time.

SH, thanks, but I kind of trailed away at the end there--can a blame the delirium of recent illness?

Maybe I'll pick the thread up a bit later (after I bone up on a bit more Greer ;)).
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."

TeaPotty

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Re: New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2013, 06:29:52 AM »
Wili,

According to the paper, its more than 6%:

Quote
As discussed above, keeping global climate close to the Holocene range requires a long-term atmospheric CO2 level of about 350 ppm or less, with other climate forcings similar to today’s levels. If emissions reduction had begun in 2005, reduction at 3.5%/year would have achieved 350 ppm at 2100. Now the requirement is at least 6%/year. Delay of emissions reductions until 2020 requires a reduction rate of 15%/year to achieve 350 ppm in 2100. If we assume only 50 GtC reforestation, and begin emissions reduction in 2013, the required reduction rate becomes about 9%/year.

I seriously doubt we start cutting Carbon before 2020.

wili

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Re: New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al
« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2013, 09:31:15 PM »
Good point. And of course since we are not going to start now, the required amount will have to be much higher. It's like everyone is waiting around for some grownups (or God? or Godot??) to show up to do the mature and responsible thing that we spoiled brats can't bring ourselves to face, even though it's obvious that the required pain gets worse with every minute of delay.
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."

ritter

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Re: New Hansen paper - 2013 Hansen, Kharecha, Sato, el al
« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2013, 10:22:11 PM »
even though it's obvious that the required pain gets worse with every minute of delay.

Unfortunately, it's only obvious to those few paying attention.