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    Thursday, May 23, 2024

    Climate change timeline

    How did it start? In mid-17th century, some European scientists discovered that by burning stuff, they could extract useful work. What kind of stuff? Wood, coal and refined petroleum. What kind of work? Moving big items like ships and trains. What went wrong? By the mid-21st century, millions of cars, trucks, planes and power plants had been so deployed. The exhaust from all those fires had irreversibly altered the composition of the atmosphere. Alarms were activated, but the atmospheric poisoning persisted. Why did it continue? Humans ignored the alarms and pushed ahead into the abyss. Greed, ignorance, complacency and failure of leadership all contributed to delay, inaction and denial.

    For instance, on this very page (May 1, 2024), climate-change denier Chris Powell wrote that any counter measures or constitutionally protected environmental rights would be inconvenient, upsetting and no more than “pious posturing.”

    How did it end? The glaciers melted, forests and prairies burned. Hordes of helpless humans battled for food, water, clean air and livable space. Mass migrations, violent contention and warfare became endemic. The earth devolved into an uninhabitable hellscape, much of it inundated by elevated seas. All human life was exterminated, and there would be no restoration.

    Jim Nestor

    Niantic

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