I just listened to journalist and historian Gwynne Dyer discus what's to come in the not so distant future due to accelerated climate change.
The quick summary? The rate of climate change is very fast, the development of technology (good and bad) may be even faster, but the rate of cultural change needed to accommodate these developments is slow and the political will to enact needed reforms may be the slowest of all (although not as slow as evolution, the gradual change that rewires the genomes of most of the organic beings that must cope with our ever more rapidly changing world). What might result from all these forces? Conflict. Here's an example, all of Pakistan's fresh water flows from glacial melt that travels across 5 rivers that first run through India before entering Pakistan. India and Pakistan have an existing treaty as to how this water is distributed, basically India has the exclusive rights to three of the rivers and a fixed amount from the remaining two. Pakistan is 100 million people living in a desert with that one river flowing through it. What would happen if the glaciers disappeared? Would India and Pakistan fight over this crucial resource with nuclear weapons?
Click here to listen to Climate Wars.
Click here for info on CBC's Ideas Podcast.
Click here to listen to Gwynne Dyer being interviewed by Dan Carlin, host of the excellent podcast Hardcore History.
Alex Palazzo: the political will to enact needed reforms may be the slowest of all (although not as slow as evolution, the gradual change that rewires the genomes of most of the organic beings that must cope with our ever more rapidly changing world)
It's still subject to evolution. Those political systems unable to muster the will to adapt are more likely to result in the death of their own population. The serious downside is that evolution does not preclude complete extinction.
Unfortunately yes--probably. But there's a chance that human beings will make another choice. We have to try by speaking out for change.
If I may make a tangential point:
Last week a prof from stanford who was talking abt nuclear power in a dept seminar i attented said something like this: "there are indirect costs for nuclear power... it could lead to weapons proliferation...if a city in india or pak got nuked, the air pollution due to the burning of an entire city needs to be taken into account". (he was focussing on air pollution costs of diff energy sources)
Even in other instances, its assumed the developing countries would more easily use nukes. But in my opinion, Israel or even the US (post-Obama) would more likely use a nuke than India or Pak. (But I do agree that Pak may engage in proliferation more than any other.)
Unfortunately, still not available for downloading.
Yes unfortunately it seems that the will of the general public to change is completely non-existent.
And then of course you have the 'skeptics' still trying to convince the general public that the climate change debate is still on the table.