We’re facing massive changes and they may well happen suddenly and soon.
“Right now existing government policies have us hurtling toward 2.7 degrees of heating in the coming decades… 30-50% of species are likely to be wiped out. More than 1.5 billion people will be displaced from their home regions. Yields of staple crops will face major decline, triggering sustained global food supply disruptions. Much of the tropics will be rendered uninhabitable for humans. Such a world is not compatible with civilization as we know it.”Jason Hickel in 2021
Social tipping points may shift even faster
The big powers are wrangling over oil and other scarce resources. This is helping to drive inflation and high prices. Global trade in oil, fertiliser, wheat, etc may break down in a worldwide economic collapse.
Harsh and dangerous social division
Aotearoa has a wide and growing divide between the haves and have-nots. When people are systematically disadvantaged by the system, are hurting, angry and disengaged, they are often drawn to populist leaders offering solutions. Aotearoa’s Freedom camp shows how quickly the alt-right will offer a solution – unless we can offer an alternative, practical, collective pathway through these converging crises.
These scenarios look more likely now since the war in Ukraine, and since covid showed how vulnerable our supply chains are. Food and oil shortages, war, global economic collapse – any of these may now occur unpredictably and quickly.
“I know people everywhere are anxious and angry. I am too. Now is the time to turn rage into action. Every fraction of a degree matters. Every voice can make a difference. And every second counts.”António Guterres, UN Secretary General
In the following video, António Guterres, the UN head, sums up the devastating impact on human life if countries do not act swiftly to cease greenhouse gas emissions.
Note: This speech was given at the recent release of a report by Working Group II – which focusses on the impacts of climate change on people and other life – of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
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