“Until a century or so ago, concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere had been steady at around 260 to 280 parts per million for thousands of years. By last spring we raced past 410 parts per million and CO2 concentrations continue to steadily increase.” http://ow.ly/8JvY30f5YUb
And , for me, I wonder just how long down this road we , as a species, will get, before things really begin to fall apart in an undeniable and unavoidable way. These thoughts are banging at the door of my future sense, and I am starting to wonder just HOW IMMINENT that FUTURE is. When I read of the great melting underway, and the amount of methane being released, and on the verge of having an entirely unprecedented amount about to escape, I find myself catching that in my “net” that filters out “going there” in my mind. Wow, Just how do we Christians deal “realistically” with this? To use the term “realistic” almost seems like an act of denial.
This article frequently makes reference to the kind of livable environment we may be facing in “2200 or 2300”, and I have to ask if this is not far too optimistic to be pondering how humans will fare in those environments. I have to ask if we will reach that far, given that the conditions already in the pipeline will continue to build, interact, and gather still more, greatly accelerated, explosively interactive ingredients and properties for decades and even centuries to come. The methane bit is one of those things (of which I am aware) that gives me my greatest concern presently. Add to this the almost certainty of the knowledge that as more unprecedented things happen and build, we will be met with yet more “unintended and unexpected” consequences.
I feel like Josh Fox must have been feeling as he laid in the snow and the camera zoomed back to high above him as he said, over and over, “Overwhelmed, Overwhelmed” (in the film, “How to Let Go of the World and love the Things That Climate Can’t Change”)
Another level of unprecedented to ponder:
“Given current and projected greenhouse gas emissions, we are looking at nothing less than creating a “forever legacy,” imposing monumental changes on the planet that can’t be readily unwound in a timeframe meaningful to our species. ”
Yes, and in this article, the “measures” were focused on sea levels. Far sooner than it get as far as it may well get by “2300”, we will have already been looking at multiple Climate “inhospitable” factors such as heat, drought, fires, weather events of increasingly unprecedented size, Climate refugees, wars for resources, and on and on. “Overwhelmed”.
Footnote: The closing paragraph of this article from which I quote gives me the sense that this author isn’t really pondering the effects of everything else that will be happening as the temperatures rise:
It’s not easy for humans to look far into the future; we are accustomed to thinking that every mistake can be undone and that the earth is unchanging. But the stakes with climate change are uniquely so high, and the damages to the planet and society so enormous, that scientists, the press, politicians, and the public need to peer a few centuries down the road and imagine what kind of world we will be leaving to our descendants.
“A few centuries”? Just how many “descendants” will there be in just ONE century, at this rate? “A few” centuries? Descendants may well be long since a part of the fossilized past. This is the stuff of dystopia. What is to become of Christian Apocalypse in this context? First , we have to be willing to ponder it, and stop using the theological trick to deny it (aka “God’s up there”. Or “We got this; stop worrying”. I think we need to worry. That’s the only chance we have to recognize the enormity of the response that is our only option, come what may.