The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued a report last week confirming the ominous trajectory of the alarming fires spreading through California, Greece, Siberia, and elsewhere throughout the world, along with floods in China and Germany never before seen, stating that these terrifying climate events are both “unprecedented and many are irreversible. United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres stated:
“If we combine forces now, we can avert climate catastrophe. But as today’s report makes clear, there is no time for delay and no room for excuses. I count on government leaders, and all stakeholders to ensure COP 26 (November’s Climate Summit in Glasgow) is a success.”
According to the report, “Human influence is ‘very likely” (90%) the main driver of the global retreat of glaciers since the 1990’s and the decrease in Arctic sea-ice. The warming has made irreversible changes to our planetary support systems. According to Professor Ed Hawkins, one of the authors of the report, “For many of these consequences, there’s no going back.”
Perhaps many of these human activity induced and deadly climate changes began with the industrial revolution, which escalated the lucrative and profitable activities that led to our global economic inequality, and grossly accelerated the concentration of profits generated by capitalism into the exclusive control of an obscenely tiny number of mega-billionaires, the 00001%.
And in the process of the expansion of Western Europe, the slaughter of the indigenous peoples (who inhabited the land pilfered by the Europeans) who had cherished the earth, and treated its abundance with reverence, destroyed the experience and wisdom of indigenous tribes which had existed for thousands of years in harmony with the planet. The “White Man’s Burden” may prove, ultimately, to be the White Man’s Armageddon, as the infantile cult of instant gratification, which led to the gluttonous practices of the uber-capitalists, now spending billions of dollars on failed space flight, while billions of fellow human beings starve, may lead to kharmic disaster in which all, including the innocent majority, perish, in a final cataclysm. This is no longer simply doomsday thinking.
Although UN Secretary-General Guterres optimistically allows for drastically altered human behavior by 2040 to avert the worst outcome, the refusal to reverse course, and eschew the use of fossil fuels and other substances and practices contributing to this deadly climate warming, it is almost categorically unlikely that the deadly dynamic of capitalism will permit the .00001% to accept the life-saving transformation of thinking and priorities which are imperative for the survival of the planet. The pathological narcissism of the .00001% will almost inevitably doom us all, and especially those in the developing world who bear no responsibility for this destruction of our planet.
One of the most criminal contributors to this drastic acceleration in global warming is Brazil’s President Bolsonaro, who authorized more destruction of the Amazon forest, which causing the formerly great Amazon, “the lungs of the planet” to lose its capacity to absorb CO2, and the stumps of its destroyed trees, cut down for “profit,” are transformed into emitters of CO2.
On July 13, 2021, The New York Times published a headline:
“As Frozen Land Burns, Siberia Trembles….For the third year in a row, residents of northeastern Siberia are reeling from the worst wildfires they can remember, and many are left feeling helpless, angry and alone…..Last year, wildfires scorched more than 60,000 square miles of forest and tundra, an area the size of Florida. That is more than four times the area that burned in the United States during its devastating 2020 fire season….Scientists say that the huge fires have been made possible by the extraordinary summer heat in recent years in northern Siberia .. Now Yakutia—a region four time the size of Texas, with its own culture and Turkic language—is burning again. On some days, thick smoke hung over the capital, Yakutsk, the coldest city in the world, making residents’ eyes water and scraping their throats. …”If we don’t have the forest, we don’t have life,” said Maria Nogovitsina, a retired kindergarten director…..”Nature is angry at us,” she said”….
In an effort to avert catastrophe, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin signed into law this month requiring businesses to report their greenhouse gas emissions, paving the way toward carbon regulation in Russia.
The NY Times article ends quoting Semyon Solomonov, one of the volunteer Siberian firefighters:
“Any victory over the ravages of the changing climate would be temporary. ‘This is not a phase, this is not a cycle—this is the approach of the end of the world,’ Mr. Solomonov said. “Mankind will die out, and the era of the dinosaurs will come.’”