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Transcript
GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE,
STABILIZATION THROUGH
SUPPLY AND DEMAND
MEASURES
United Nations Commission on
Sustainable Development
May 9 2006
The last time global temperature
was 1 degree C higher than
now
• 125,000 years ago
• Sea level was 7-8 meters higher
• Crocodiles and hippopotamuses
lived in London, England
• Atmospheric CO2 was 30% lower
than it is today
The Framework Convention on
Climate Change is a treaty to
stabilize greenhouse gases,
temperature, and sea level, but
a treaty to stabilize their rate of
increase
• If no more coal, oil, and natural gas is
•
burned,starting today, climate change
will eventually greatly exceed that of
125,000 years ago
If continued use of fossil fuels causes
runaway global warming, sea level
rise could exceed 150 meters
• Business as usual is a death warrant
•
for coral reefs and fisheries, but many
more ecosystems will follow
Climate change models greatly
underestimate long term changes
because they miss most of the
positive feedback mechanisms in the
climate system, and have too short a
time horizon
• To stabilize the climate system
requires reducing CO2 sources
(supply) and increasing sinks
(demand)
• Tidal, solar, and biofuel energy
can reduce sources
• Large scale reforestation and
addition of charcoal to soils can
increase sinks and increase soil
fertility and water holding capacity
Harvard Environment
Group’s best case
scenario assumes coal
is the only possible
future energy option:
RED = COAL, THE DIRTIEST FOSSIL FUEL!
SOURCE HARVARD MAGAZINE MAY-JUNE 2006
THIS IS ONLY BECAUSE THEY
CAN NOT IMAGINE THAT
RENEWABLE ENERGY HAS
THE CAPACITY TO REPLACE
FOSSIL FUELS AT
COMPETITIVE COST, AND
BECAUSE THEY IGNORE
INCREASED SINKS. SOIL
CARBON SINKS ARE NOT
RECOGNIZED BY THE CDM.
WE MUST DO BETTER!
THIS SCENARIO IS A RECIPE
FOR ENVIRONMENTAL
DISASTER, A DEATH
SENTENCE FOR CORAL REEF
COUNTRIES, LOW LYING
ISLAND STATES, AND MANY
OTHER ECOSYSTEMS.