Pete Sinclair does his usual fantastic job with a video.
I’ve made my feelings about this known in more detail and with more repetition than most of you care to experience, I suspect, but for the benefit of those entering through the side door of an Internet search, let me briefly say:
- Yes, this is a stunning development, and yes, it’s far worse than computer models have predicted. That latter point itself should not be a surprise, as it’s been widely known that models struggle with ice dynamics. Still, this year’s sea ice extent minimum, roughly 18% below the prior record from 2007, should be way outside anyone’s comfort zone.
- Dr. Francis says, at roughly the 5:40 mark in the video, that she hopes this ice melt serves as a wake up call. With all due and considerable respect, I think that’s a horribly naive reading of the situation. Over the last decade, the environment has been beating us over the head with reasons to wake up, pay attention, and take action to keep things from getting much worse than they will under a business as usual path, but the urgency of the situation is only surpassed by our ability to stick our fingers in our ears and sing a happy song to drown out that terrifying message.
- Somewhere, something (or, more likely, a combination of things) will wake us up and spur us into action. I have zero doubt about that. The only question is how much more of our future will we consign to food shortages and climate refugees and resource conflicts and failed states before we have that global epiphany. Based on the actions to date of our horribly myopic and inept and just plain broken political systems, I fear that the answer to that “how much” question is “a lot”.
- By our actions, our daily choices to cling to the business as usual path, we are committing global, multi-generational child abuse and locking millions of children already born and yet to be born into a nightmarish future.
- Who is to blame? All of us. Ineffective climate campaigners, deniers, fossil fuel companies, bought and paid for politicians, the disconnected voters and consumers that line up the the latest grotesquely overpriced iToy but couldn’t care less about the impact their precious lifestyles have on the only world we’ve ever called home both now and in the future, etc.