Normally I'm a bright, sunshiny person, and even though I'm well aware of the potential dangers our race faces if we keep ruining our planet, I don't usually buy into the doomsayers who predict the end of the world as we know it. I like to think positively and work proactively, but sometimes it's hard to look away when somebody is holding up the big cardboard sign stating The End Is Nigh. And this article, in particular, struck me because I'll admit to having kind of a dark sense of humour at times, and this guy was kind of funny even as he was sounding the death knell of our culture.

Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, the director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany, predicts that if climate change continues undeterred, we could see massive worldwide disaster on a scale heretofore unseen in human history. Even a nine-degree (Fahrenheit) raise in global temperature, a conservative estimate based on studies, would result in disruption of the monsoon, collapse of the Amazon rain forest and the meltdown of the Greenland ice sheet, not to mention deoxygenation of huge tracts of the world's oceans (which would prove devastating to marine life and the ecosystem in general). Based on these apocalyptic findings, Dr. Schellnhuber predicts the death of over 75% of the human population, bringing our total numbers down to a more ecologically supportable 1 billion inhabitants.

On the bright side, he told the Danish hosts of the recent climate meeting in Copenhagen, the melting of the Greenland ice sheet would "increase your usable land by, I don't know, 10,000 percent." Funny guy.

This is scary stuff. Remember, I said conservative estimates, which means Dr. Schellnhuber's calculations are a better-case scenario. It could be much, much worse. How many signs to we have to wave around before governments, institutions and individuals start taking this issue seriously? This isn't a John Wyndham novel, folks, this is real life. Wake up.

Here's the full article.

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