Worst-case scenarios mislead far more than they enlighten.
RONALD BAILEY | 6.5.2019 Reason
Man-made climate change (now dubbed “climate crisis” by The Guardian‘s editors) poses potentially serious risks for humanity in this century. But acknowledging the hazard is not enough for a growing claque of meteorological apocalypse porn peddlers who insist that if their prescriptions for solving the problem are not followed then civilization will momentarily come to an end.
Recent hawkers of fast approaching climate doom include David Wallace-Wells in his book The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming, Cumbria University professor Jem Bendell’s “Deep Adaptation” paper, and environmental activist Bill McKibben’s Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out? (my review is forthcoming).
Now comes a policy paper, Existential climate-related security risk: A scenario approach, from an Australian climate action advocacy group the Breakthrough National Centre for Climate Restoration. The headline over at Vice says it all: “New Report Suggests ‘High Likelihood of Human Civilization Coming to an End’ in 2050.”
In his foreword to the 8-page sketch of purported climate calamity, retired Australian admiral Chris Barrie asserts that it lays “bare the unvarnished truth about the desperate situation humans, and our planet, are in, painting a disturbing picture of the real possibility that human life on earth may be on the way to extinction, in the most horrible way.”