“It is worse, much worse, than you think.” Welcome to Earth Day, 2020 edition. For future Friday, we are exploring the 2020s and beyond as it relates to the environmental movement.
Are we talking about coronavirus? No, we’re talking about climate change.
That quote comes from David Wallace-Wells, the author of The Uninhabitable Earth.
Emissions today and tomorrow
As of April 22nd, carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations stood at 415.60 parts per million. Given the tight correlation between atmospheric carbon concentrations and global temperatures, we can effectively use that magical number as a proxy for anthropogenic climate change.
Since the Industrial Revolution, CO2 concentrations have continued to rise, prompting notable climate change. But most of that increase has occurred over the last half century. We caused this problem in a matter of only a few decades, so why couldn’t we fix it in that time too?
In 2018, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a report indicating we only had 12 years to keep global temperature rise from surpassing the 1.5 degrees Celsius goal set out in the Paris Agreement. … Read the rest