2016 Hottest Year

This article provides well-graphed evidence that, even with discounting the El Nino spike in global average temperatures, the upward trend of human induced global warming continues to breadk records. The article Factcheck: Newspaper claim about Global Temperature is ‘Deeply Misleading’” from the Resilience website is in response to yet another distortion of the facts by the mainstream corporate-backed press, in the case, the UK’s Mail on Sunday newspaper. It is a classic case of misrepresentation by cherry-picking journalists of what rigorous scientists are concluding.

These distortions presumably are motivated by the broader commitment to economic growth and wealth accumulation for those who control the content of such newspapers. This commitment to wealth accumulation is made, irrespective of the long-term  human impact on the support systems of Spaceship Earth (current levels of GDP increase at 3% per annum globally is a geometric progresion, doubling every 23.3 years).

As a society are we trying to maximise (a) economic activity or (b) health and wellbeing of our species and the planet? What happens if two fundamental objectives are incompatible, and if the benefits and costs are borne by different people? The rich will also be victims of global warming and the many other exponentially accelerating threats to well-being. Their wealth may help them delay the impact of system collapse on their own welfare for a while, but blindness, denial and wilful distortion of evidence is profoundly wicked. Sadly we appear to inhabit a ‘post-fact, post truth’ world of public debate. As a friend put it, lamenting the democratic process after the Brexit vote and the election of Donald Trump: “People don’t know that they don’t know – and more to the point, don’t even care about it.”

For the impact of global warming on the melting of the global cryosphere and related rises in sea level, see this new video.

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