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Thread: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

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    GR8NESS WMR's Avatar
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    Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth
    Climate Report Warns of Global Warming Effects

    By SETH BORENSTEIN
    AP

    WASHINGTON (March 10) - The harmful effects of global warming on daily life are already showing up, and within a couple of decades hundreds of millions of people won't have enough water, top scientists will say next month at a meeting in Belgium.

    At the same time, tens of millions of others will be flooded out of their homes each year as the Earth reels from rising temperatures and sea levels, according to portions of a draft of an international scientific report obtained by The Associated Press.

    Tropical diseases like malaria will spread. By 2050, polar bears will mostly be found in zoos, their habitats gone. Pests like fire ants will thrive.

    For a time, food will be plentiful because of the longer growing season in northern regions. But by 2080, hundreds of millions of people could face starvation, according to the report, which is still being revised.

    The draft document by the authoritative Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change focuses on global warming's effects and is the second in a series of four being issued this year. Written and reviewed by more than 1,000 scientists from dozens of countries, it still must be edited by government officials.

    But some scientists said the overall message is not likely to change when it's issued in early April in Brussels, the same city where European Union leaders agreed this past week to drastically cut greenhouse gas emissions by 2020. Their plan will be presented to President Bush and other world leaders at a summit in June.

    The report offers some hope if nations slow and then reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, but it notes that what's happening now isn't encouraging.

    "Changes in climate are now affecting physical and biological systems on every continent," the report says, in marked contrast to a 2001 report by the same international group that said the effects of global warming were coming. But that report only mentioned scattered regional effects.

    "Things are happening and happening faster than we expected," said Patricia Romero Lankao of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo., one of the many co-authors of the new report.

    The draft document says scientists are highly confident that many current problems -- change in species' habits and habitats, more acidified oceans, loss of wetlands, bleaching of coral reefs, and increases in allergy-inducing pollen -- can be blamed on global warming.

    For example, the report says North America "has already experienced substantial ecosystem, social and cultural disruption from recent climate extremes," such as hurricanes and wildfires.

    But the present is nothing compared to the future.

    Global warming soon will "affect everyone's life ... it's the poor sectors that will be most affected," Romero Lankao said.

    And co-author Terry Root of Stanford University said: "We truly are standing at the edge of mass extinction" of species.

    The report included these likely results of global warming:

    Hundreds of millions of Africans and tens of millions of Latin Americans who now have water will be short of it in less than 20 years. By 2050, more than 1 billion people in Asia could face water shortages. By 2080, water shortages could threaten 1.1 billion to 3.2 billion people, depending on the level of greenhouse gases that cars and industry spew into the air.

    Death rates for the world's poor from global warming-related illnesses, such as malnutrition and diarrhea, will rise by 2030. Malaria and dengue fever, as well as illnesses from eating contaminated shellfish, are likely to grow.

    Europe's small glaciers will disappear with many of the continent's large glaciers shrinking dramatically by 2050. And half of Europe's plant species could be vulnerable, endangered or extinct by 2100.

    By 2080, between 200 million and 600 million people could be hungry because of global warming's effects.

    About 100 million people each year could be flooded by 2080 by rising seas.

    Smog in U.S. cities will worsen and "ozone-related deaths from climate (will) increase by approximately 4.5 percent for the mid-2050s, compared with 1990s levels," turning a small health risk into a substantial one.

    Polar bears in the wild and other animals will be pushed to extinction.

    At first, more food will be grown. For example, soybean and rice yields in Latin America will increase starting in a couple of years. Areas outside the tropics, especially the northern latitudes, will see longer growing seasons and healthier forests.

    Looking at different impacts on ecosystems, industry and regions, the report sees the most positive benefits in forestry and some improved agriculture and transportation in polar regions. The biggest damage is likely to come in ocean and coastal ecosystems, water resources and coastal settlements.

    The hardest-hit continents are likely to be Africa and Asia, with major harm also coming to small islands and some aspects of ecosystems near the poles. North America, Europe and Australia are predicted to suffer the fewest of the harmful effects.

    "In most parts of the world and most segments of populations, lifestyles are likely to change as a result of climate change," the draft report said. "Net valuations of benefits vs. costs will vary, but they are more likely to be negative if climate change is substantial and rapid, rather than if it is moderate and gradual."

    This report - considered by some scientists the "emotional heart" of climate change research - focuses on how global warming alters the planet and life here, as opposed to the more science-focused report by the same group last month.

    "This is the story. This is the whole play. This is how it's going to affect people. The science is one thing. This is how it affects me, you and the person next door," said University of Victoria climate scientist Andrew Weaver.

    Many - not all - of those effects can be prevented, the report says, if within a generation the world slows down its emissions of carbon dioxide and if the level of greenhouse gases sticking around in the atmosphere stabilizes. If that's the case, the report says "most major impacts on human welfare would be avoided; but some major impacts on ecosystems are likely to occur."

    The United Nations-organized network of 2,000 scientists was established in 1988 to give regular assessments of the Earth's environment. The document issued last month in Paris concluded that scientists are 90 percent certain that people are the cause of global warming and that warming will continue for centuries.
    Last edited by WMR; 03-12-2007 at 05:39 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrap Irony View Post
    Calipari is not, nor has he ever been accused or "caught", cheating. He himself turned in one of his players (Camby) for dealing with an agent to get one Final Four overturned. The other is all on the NCAA and Rose. (IF Rose cheated.)
    "Cheering for Kentucky is like watching Star Wars and hoping Darth Vader chokes an ewok"


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    GR8NESS WMR's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    What does everybody think about this article? The fact that over a thousand scientists are pretty much in agreement over some statements/hypotheses that are pretty damn frightening/harrowing really stuck with me after reading this warning.

    Hundreds of millions of Africans and tens of millions of Latin Americans who now have water will be short of it in less than 20 years. By 2050, more than 1 billion people in Asia could face water shortages. By 2080, water shortages could threaten 1.1 billion to 3.2 billion people, depending on the level of greenhouse gases that cars and industry spew into the air.
    The global instability from such a scenario kindles within me possible apocalyptic futures such as were depicted in the Terminator film series. It sounds crazy until you think about the world-wide implications of HUNDREDS of millions of people growing more and more desperate as they and their children slowly starve. Nuclear proliferation much?

    Last edited by WMR; 03-12-2007 at 08:34 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrap Irony View Post
    Calipari is not, nor has he ever been accused or "caught", cheating. He himself turned in one of his players (Camby) for dealing with an agent to get one Final Four overturned. The other is all on the NCAA and Rose. (IF Rose cheated.)
    "Cheering for Kentucky is like watching Star Wars and hoping Darth Vader chokes an ewok"


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    Member hebroncougar's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    While I tend to agree with some of the sentiments, at the same time ,when are the scientists going to start telling people what in the heck to do? I think it's happening, whether we could stop it or not, or are the only cause of it I think is debatable.

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    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Eh who cares? not like any of us will be around when this bad stuff might happen

    Oh wait..a lot of us will be
    Go Gators!

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    THAT'S A FACT JACK!! GAC's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    So why do I have a 401K?
    "panic" only comes from having real expectations

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    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Quote Originally Posted by GAC View Post
    So why do I have a 401K?
    So when the ice caps melt you can afford the boat you'll need
    Go Gators!

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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Check out the movie Children of Men for a good look at that future.
    I think we in the US are able to put a lot of that out of our minds since we will always have water running from our taps and, comparatively, food for our tables.
    Things will really come to roost if/when everyone else realizes we're the only ones that have those luxuries.
    It's really not too late to turn it around. As Al Gore points out it an Incovenient Truth, we once were directly responsible for destroying the ozone layer with CFCs. People and governments woke up, banned CFCs, and found other technologies and now things are hopefully going to continue to improve.
    Problem is, the world wasn't addicted to CFC's. We are addicted to fossil fuels. Solving problems rooted in an addiction is extremely difficult.

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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Quote Originally Posted by GAC View Post
    So why do I have a 401K?
    I ask myself that all the time.
    I know you were making a joke, but on a serious front, I often ask, "Why should I have child?" "Who would force their kid to deal with those kinds of problems?"
    It's a toughy.
    Sorry if that is a downer, but it really is the essential question that needs to be asked.

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    1st pick 2022 B.B. draft George Foster's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    How do these guys make their living? By getting grants from the government right? Follow the money. They will say anything to get the next grant. Not much grant money in saying that nothing is wrong, just "gloom and doom."

    A perfect example of this is when alcoholism was ruled a disease by the American Pshchological Society and the AMA. If it a "disease" you can bill your health insurance to treate it..... Big business!!
    Not this year...maybe a Wild Card

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    CELEBRATION TIME RBA's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Quote Originally Posted by GAC View Post
    So why do I have a 401K?

    Air Conditioning will become expensive?

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    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Quote Originally Posted by RBA View Post
    Air Conditioning will become expensive?
    Who has air conditioning?

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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Quote Originally Posted by George Foster View Post
    How do these guys make their living? By getting grants from the government right? Follow the money. They will say anything to get the next grant. Not much grant money in saying that nothing is wrong, just "gloom and doom."
    A couple of holes in that thinking that I see.
    1. The current executive government and the last few congressional governments haven't exactly been a the fore-front of global warming doom and gloom.
    2. There is that pesky stuff called evidence and research. I doubt 1000's of scientists are all corrupt grant stealers.
    3. Again, it's very easy to ignore what's happening here in the US. Try heading over to central Africa or Northern China and ask them if they have seen some real and lasting changes in their envrionment.

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    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Quote Originally Posted by George Foster View Post
    How do these guys make their living? By getting grants from the government right? Follow the money. They will say anything to get the next grant. Not much grant money in saying that nothing is wrong, just "gloom and doom."

    A perfect example of this is when alcoholism was ruled a disease by the American Pshchological Society and the AMA. If it a "disease" you can bill your health insurance to treate it..... Big business!!



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    Please come again pedro's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Global warming is a "grant scam"?

    All I can say is WOW.
    Get your nunchucks and the keys to your dad's car. I know where we can get a gun

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    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: Scientists Offer Dire Forecast for Earth

    Quote Originally Posted by pedro View Post
    Global warming is a "grant scam"?

    All I can say is WOW.
    Sounds like Fox News has covered it.


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