Brazilian Protests, Capitalism, Climate Change, Climate Refugees, Collapse of Industrial Civilization, Corporate State, Eco-Apocalypse, Economic Collapse, Environmental Collapse, Extinction of Man, Financial Elite, Floating Ecopolis for Climate Refugees, Gross Inequality, Inverted Totalitarianism, Libertarianism, Methane Time Bomb, Neoliberal Capitalism, Poverty, Privatization, Seasteading Institute, Social Unrest, Techno-Optimists, Technophiliacs, The Elite 1%, unwashed public, Wall Street Fraud
More threatening than the recent milestone of reaching 400 parts per million CO2 (ppm) is that of a methane level reaching 1800 parts per billion (ppb) which occured on the morning of June 16, 2013. This is more than two and a half times the methane levels of pre-industrial times.
From a historic perspective, greenhouse gas levels have risen abruptly to unprecedented levels. While already at a historic peak, humans have caused emissions of additional greenhouse gases. There’s no doubt that such greenhouse gas levels will lead to huge rises in temperatures. The question is how long it will take for temperatures to catch up and rise. – source
Robert Scribbler also reports that a persistently stagnant(blocked) and bulging Jet Stream has delivered historic heat waves to that region of Alaska and the Arctic. Melt ponds can be seen from satellite images:
…Yesterday, temperatures in Prince William Sound hit upwards of 93 degrees. Communities there, including Valdez and Cordova, both set new record highs. Talkeetna hit 94 degrees, also an all-time record high for the date. Meanwhile, Seward hit a new record of 88 degrees Fahrenheit. Temperatures in the interior rose to between the mid 80s and lower 90s.
This pulse of heat was driven by a persistent bulge in the Jet Stream over the Pacific Ocean, the Western United States, and the Pacific Northwest that has been present since mid winter. The bulge has resulted in warmer than normal temperatures and drier conditions for much of the Western US while keeping temperatures warm for western Canada and Alaska. It is a blocking pattern implicated in the ongoing drought conditions in places from Colorado to Nevada and California. A pattern which sees 44% of the US still locked in drought.
Sunday and Monday, this blocking pattern enabled warm air to flood north into Alaska, setting off a record heatwave there. You may not think of 50 and 60 degree temperatures in Barrow, Alaska as a heatwave. But when average highs for June there are about 38 degrees, 50 and 60 degree weather is quite hot for this time of year…
Last month it was reported that America will ‘officially’ see its own first climate refugees within the next four years:
The 350 residents of Newtok, Alaska, will soon be the country’s first “climate refugees.” The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says the village is likely to be underwater in just four years…
…”The snow comes in a different time now. The snow disappears way late,” says villager Nathan Tom. “That’s making the geese come at the wrong time. Now they’re starting to lay eggs when there’s still snow and ice. We can’t even travel and go pick them. It’s getting harder. It’s changing a lot.”…
…The U.S. Government Accountability Office has estimated that the cost of moving Newtok — with 63 homes — might reach $130 million. The people of Newtok do not have that kind of money, Goldenberg says.
“These people are living well below the average income of other Americans. They’re able to live that way because they hunt and fish for what they eat,” she says. “So they can’t all of a sudden go and build and pay for new houses on the other side.”
The money has not been forthcoming from the government either, Goldenberg says. Neither the state nor federal government recognizes climate change as a disaster for the appropriation of relief funds…
Contrast this stark reality with the wildly unrealistic views of man’s technological infallibility. A concept which appeared back in 2008 is the utopia of floating cities, called “Floating Ecopolis for Climate Refugees”, which would hold 50,000 climate refugees as the coasts become inundated with rising sea water. I wonder how well these things, if they even were feasible and the money, materials, and energy were available, would hold up to the kinds of hurricanes that climate chaos would throw at it. No doubt it would fold up and sink to the bottom of the ocean like a tin pan:
Actually, there is another idea similar to the one above which was/is being planned by a billionaire libertarian. I can’t think of a more elitist view towards the Earth and fellow humans than this libertarian wet dream:
Picture from the Seasteading Institute…
Pay Pal founder and early Facebook investor Peter Thiel has given $1.25 million to an initiative to create floating libertarian countries in international waters, according to a profile of the billionaire in Details magazine.
Thiel has been a big backer of the Seasteading Institute, which seeks to build sovereign nations on oil rig-like platforms to occupy waters beyond the reach of law-of-the-sea treaties. The idea is for these countries to start from scratch–free from the laws, regulations, and moral codes of any existing place. Details says the experiment would be “a kind of floating petri dish for implementing policies that libertarians, stymied by indifference at the voting booths, have been unable to advance: no welfare, looser building codes, no minimum wage, and few restrictions on weapons.”
“There are quite a lot of people who think it’s not possible,” Thiel said at a Seasteading Institute Conference in 2009, according to Details. (His first donation was in 2008, for $500,000.) “That’s a good thing. We don’t need to really worry about those people very much, because since they don’t think it’s possible they won’t take us very seriously. And they will not actually try to stop us until it’s too late…
As I said in my previous post, the über wealthy will try to insulate themselves from climate chaos, leaving the masses in their countries as climate refugees and victims of industrial civilization’s climate disaster. And the shit rolls downhill; third world countries and the poor will bear the brunt of it all. As you can see from the first part of this post, Native Americans in Alaska, some of America’s most disenfranchised and poverty-stricken citizens, will be the first to be flushed down the toilet of neoliberal capitalism. Perhaps we should take note of current events in Brazil.