Saturday, March 29, 2014

Rowan Williams warns of climate catastrophe

Rowan Williams warns of climate catastrophe

Rowan Williams warns of climate catastrophe

The former Archbishop of Canterbury argues that Western lifestyles bear the responsibility for causing climate change in world's poorest regions

Dr Rowan Williams' plea to combat global warming by reducing consumption of fossil fuels comes on the eve of the publication of the most authoritative study yet into the impact of climate change
Dr. Rowan Williams' (pictured) plea to combat global warming by reducing consumption of fossil fuels comes on the eve of the publication of the most authoritative study yet into the impact of climate change Photo: Elliott Franks/ i-Images
Dr Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, has attacked Western lifestyles for causing climate change that is “pushing the environment towards crisis”.
Writing in The Telegraph, Dr Williams says that the “appalling” floods and storms that devastated parts of Britain this winter were a demonstration of “what we can expect” in the future.
He also takes a sideswipe at climate change sceptics.
The floods in Britain and weather-related “catastrophes” in the poorest countries on Earth, he insists, are the clearest indications yet that predictions of “accelerated warming of the Earth” caused by “the uncontrolled burning of fossil fuels … are coming true”.
His plea to combat global warming by reducing consumption of fossil fuels comes on the eve of the publication of the most authoritative study yet into the impact of climate change.
On Monday, the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will publish its latest study – running to thousands of pages – on the consequences of the predicted rise in global temperatures.
The report, according to the latest leaked draft, will claim the cost of combating the effects of a 4.5F (2.5C) rise in temperature by the end of the century will be £60 billion a year. It will warn that the impact of climate change will be felt most keenly in Africa, South America and Asia and predicts droughts, food shortages and a rise in diseases such as malaria.
Climate change sceptics argue that if the planet is warming up, it is not clear that it is because of the actions of man. They point out errors in previous IPCC reports and accuse the global warming industry of ratcheting up the risks of climate change, which have subsequently led to the cripplingly expensive introduction of green energy policies.
But Dr Williams, who quit as leader of the Anglican Church just over a year ago, writes: “We have heard for years the predictions that the uncontrolled burning of fossil fuels will lead to an accelerated warming of the Earth. What is now happening indicates that these predictions are coming true; our actions have had consequences that are deeply threatening for many of the poorest communities in the world.
“Rich, industrialised countries, including our own, have unquestionably contributed most to atmospheric pollution. Both our present lifestyle and the industrial history of how we created such possibilities for ourselves have to bear the responsibility for pushing the environment in which we live towards crisis.”
Dr Williams, writing in his capacity as chairman of Christian Aid, said that the winter storms that battered Britain had brought climate change to the fore in this country and that the IPCC report publishedat a specially convened meeting in Yokohama in Japan tomorrow puts “our local problems into a deeply disturbing global context”.
The IPCC, he says, will be “pointing out that … we [the UK] have in fact got off relatively lightly in comparison with others”.
While the “chaos [of the flood] came as a shock to many”, other countries in the developing world such as Bangladesh and Kenya among others had suffered far worse catastrophes caused by climate change over many years.
Dr Williams goes on to attack global warming sceptics and climate change deniers. “There are of course some who doubt the role of human agency in creating and responding to climate change, and who argue that we should direct our efforts solely to adapting to changes that are inevitable, rather than modifying our behaviour,” says Dr Williams.
“That approach might be “all very well” in the UK where flood defences and other measures can be adopted relatively cheaply but in the most vulnerable, poorest countries worst affected by global warming that is not an option.”
Dr Williams’s intervention in the climate change debate comes as officials and researchers meeting in Japan finalise the wording of the IPCC study. The report, effectively a collection of the scientific evidence gathered on climate change, will focus on the impacts of global warming. It is expected to say that Africa will be affected by longer droughts that threaten livestock and crop yields.
The IPCC expects to see worsening health as a result with an increase in malnutrition, malaria and other diseases.
Rising temperatures will also affect food production and security in parts of Asia with a fall in rice yields caused by a shorter growing period.
The IPCC report will say that northern parts of Asia will benefit from warmer temperatures, however, leading to increased production of wheat and other cereals. In South America, the IPCC will say that ice and glaciers in the Andes are “retreating at an alarming rate”, affecting water supplies while “unique ecosystems” are threatened both climate change and increasing industrialisation.
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Rowan Williams warns of climate catastrophe

I see the problem differently. After studying humans through sociology and Anthropology and as an intuitive I kind of see the problem as moving in spurts and jumps.

It is sort of like the Lobster Story (people are like this too) If you put a lobster in hot boiling water he will jump out and save himself if he can (so will humans) but if you put the lobster in cold water and then turn the burner on under the lobster there is no single point where he will jump out (same with humans) until they are dead.

So, if no single event shocks humans enough they won't do anything to save themselves like the lobster in cold water.

However, if big events kill all sorts of people around them then they might react to something like this if it is people they know for example. The problem is this goes by area so even if people in one area are convinced of what to do, people in another area won't be convinced to change their lives.

So, basically, the way I see it half or more of the human race will die off from weather calamities until people get down to small enough amount of people to actually do something serious about all this. And by then it might be too late to save the human race or the planet. So, we'll have to see how this all turns out during the next 500 to 1000 years or more.

This is just based upon how people tend to act in areas and groups worldwide. This doesn't depress me in the way it might some people. Because I think the worst outcome would actually be so many people alive on the planet at once that there is no place for anyone to stand. This I think would be the worst way of all for the human race to die off. However, weather is going to thin us out instead. So, at least we will be thinned out by an Act or acts of God instead of having any one person to blame it on realistically. We are all to blame equally since the beginning of farming and the industrial revolution. Everyone is to blame since farming began on earth 5000 or 10,000 years ago. Since everyone is equally to blame it will make it much easier for whatever happens next. There isn't any one person to blame for what is going to happen as a direct result.

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