To the Editor:
Unsurprisingly, many climate scientists admit to emotional responses of grief-anxiety-rage. They have knowledge that the rest of humanity will eventually comprehend — albeit too late for corrective action. What to do?
We know young children enjoy doing projects with a parent. Why not construct a scrap-book together. You could learn about Earth’s history beginning, say, 100,000 years ago? Together you could read-clip-paste pertinent information.
Our species evolved some 200,000 years ago when the planet was roiled by glaciations and volcanic eruptions. 75,000 years ago our ancestors consisted of less than 20,000 adults gathered in an area that is now Ethiopia. Their numbers grew slowly for thousands of years. Then, a 100,000 year “Interglacial” periodic-cycle kicked in nearly 12,000 years ago. Thus Earth entered the relatively moderate Holocene Epoch with its Goldilocks temperatures (not too cold, not too hot). Humans thrived and multiplied. Now the Holocene holiday has ended prematurely. We wrecked it. Planet Earth is warming at an ominous rate.
Human history’s greatest act of collective denial has propagandized us into believing that technology will somehow stop or reverse this trend. However, the Arctic and Greenland ice sheets are in a death spiral; the last 400 months have registered global temperatures increasingly above historic averages; warming oceans are generating more intense hurricanes and acidity; and, as arable land diminishes, the number of displaced people will continue to rise exponentially. Furthermore, climate tipping points are likely to kick in at any time to accelerate the concentration of heat-trapping carbon.
Scientists concede that life in reduced form can be extended for a few more centuries if-and-only-if the planet goes fossil-fuel-free within twenty-five years. The alternative is the demise of civilization. Therefore, do a project with your children. Research Earth planet’s history and make a scrapbook to better understand.
Dave L. Wegner