Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, Capitalism, Carrington Event, Climate Change, Collapse of Industrial Civilization, Consumerism, Corporate State, Democracy, Eco-Apocalypse, Ecocide, Ecological Overshoot, Economic Growth, Extinction of Man, Financial Elite, George Mobus, Greenpeace, Gross Inequality, Inverted Totalitarianism, Mass Die Off, Overpopulation, Planetary Tipping Points, Robert MacNeil, Robert Scribbler, Russian Arctic Drilling, Security and Surveillance State, Terence Mckenna, The Elite 1%, unwashed public
The question of whether the human species is smarter than yeast is answered daily as the ecocidal and homicidal activities of industrial civilization continue apace. I learned a few days ago that September 2013 was the warmest in recorded history, and this morning I read that 2012 was a record breaker for GHG emissions:
“The laws of physics and chemistry are not negotiable,” said Michel Jarraud.
“Greenhouse gases are what they are, the laws of physics show they can only contribute to warming the system, but parts of this heat may go in different places like the oceans for some periods of time,” he said.
This view was echoed by Prof Piers Forster from the University of Leeds.
“For the past decade or so the oceans have been sucking up this extra heat, meaning that surface temperatures have only increased slowly.
“Don’t expect this state of affairs to continue though, the extra heat will eventually come out and bite us, so expect strong warming over the coming decades.”
Speaking candidly about the prospects of the industrialized world being able to reduce its GHG emissions and avoid catastrophic warming, the only three living diplomats responsible for leading past and present UN global warming talks had this to say:
“‘There is nothing that can be agreed in 2015 that would be consistent with the 2 degrees,’ said Yvo de Boer, who was UNFCCC executive secretary in 2009, when attempts to reach a deal at a summit in Copenhagen crumbled with a rift between industrialized and developing nations. ‘The only way that a 2015 agreement can achieve a 2-degree goal is to shut down the whole global economy.’”
Another study explains that not even the supposed eco-friendly state of California is likely to meet its GHG reduction targets by 2050. So you see, the ‘radical ecoterrorists’ were right all along. Industrial civilization has to go, or we go. The improbable list of actions needed to preserve any semblance of humanity was recently laid out by George Mobus. But as you know, even if we stopped everything right now, there is still a lot of pent-up manmade global warming in the pipeline from past industrial activity that will wreak havoc for millennia to come, as Robert Scribbler points out:
“…we’ve already released enough greenhouse gasses to at least return Earth to climates not seen in 3.6 million years. In this respect, the Baffin Island study adds to research conducted at Lake El’gygytgyn showing that levels of CO2 comparable to those seen today resulted in Arctic temperatures 8 degrees Celsius hotter during the deep past…
…Most likely, we are headed to at least the temperatures last seen during the Pliocene, in which global averages ranged 2-3 degrees Celsius hotter than the present and during which oceans were 25-75 feet higher. Unfortunately, these are the long-term consequences we have probably already locked in. But without rapid reductions in carbon emissions to near zero over the coming decades, we can expect far, far worse outcomes.”
Russia recently answered the concerns of environmentalists over Gazprom’s drilling plans in the Arctic by summarily arresting numerous members of Greenpeace and charging them with piracy. This is a high-profile case illustrating that ecocide is embedded and enforced within the system of capitalist industrial civilization. A further example of the system’s omnicidal nature is the construction of nuclear-powered ice-breaker ships by Russia to plow through the waters of the Arctic:
“Russia has started building the world’s largest universal nuclear-powered icebreaker capable of navigating in the Arctic and in the shallow waters of Siberian rivers. The unique vessel will further increase Russia’s dominance in the region…
…Powered by two “RITM-200” pressurized water reactors the “Arctic” is being built to generate 175MWe. Its efficiency and power allows the new model to crack ice fields 3 meters thick…”
Then you have Canada racing towards eco-apocalypse with its tar sands, and America exporting its coal into the maws of China and elsewhere as well as fracking the countryside into toxic wastelands, but of course the disease has spread globally. As Michael T. Klare clearly stated after weighing the PR propaganda with observable reality:
“…The result is indisputable: humanity is not entering a period that will be dominated by renewables. Instead, it is pioneering the third great carbon era, the Age of Unconventional Oil and Gas….”
Delicate ecosystems are ground up into commercialized and commodified pulp and fed into the machine of capitalism, lost forever in the fumes of our consumptive madness. A rash of mass wildlife deaths is occurring this year to further evidence the fact that industrial man is pushing the planet to the brink. It appears we may be reaching more tipping points in ecological breakdown:
- Giant Oarfish Wash up in California
- Bees Turn Up in Parking Lot
- Manatees Threatened by Algae
- Pigs Dumped in Chinese River
- Dolphins Die of Virus on East Coast
- Moose Die-Off
Robert MacNeil once observed, “Television is the soma of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World.” Our global self-destruction is not visible to the Television-hypnotised masses when they look out their window, but for the few environmentally conscious beings amongst us, the destruction is as personal and painful as wartime torture. How depressive it is to see the natural world being chewed up and spit out at such an alarming rate. We are part of the environment and its death is humanity’s suicide. Some hope for a super-Carrington event that would leave the machine dead in its tracks, but then there is the problem of those hundreds of nuclear plants scattered around the world like the bomb-rigged vest of a terrorist.
A sociopathic economic system that crushes democracy, decency, and justice in the name of growth and profits has led to the catastrophe we now see unfolding. When the masses are dumbed-down to mere ‘consumers’ and powerless to make meaningful change, then those sociopaths at the helm of the ship are free to pull us all down into the black hole of war, famine, disease, and extinction.