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(Slate)   Neil deGrasse Tyson assures us that the earth will survive global climate change. People won't, but the earth will be just fine. (Video)   (slate.com) divider line 136
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1514 clicks; posted to Geek » on 05 May 2014 at 1:27 PM (17 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-05-05 12:32:02 PM
Meh. We figured out ways to live in the Arctic and the Sahara. Humanity isn't that easy to get rid of.
 
2014-05-05 12:36:23 PM
There are too many of to get rid of completely. Things will probably get less comfortable, however. Even if 99% of us go that's still 71 million left.
 
2014-05-05 12:42:07 PM

Confabulat: Meh. We figured out ways to live in the Arctic and the Sahara. Humanity isn't that easy to get rid of.


Hell, we've figured out ways to live (at least temporarily), in the cold hard vacuum of space.

We'll manage.
 
2014-05-05 12:45:14 PM
Carlin said it first.
 
2014-05-05 01:24:11 PM
i1214.photobucket.com

"You don't f*cking say."
 
2014-05-05 01:39:20 PM
Been saying that for years.

We have survived; but we have never asked are we worthy of survival.
 
2014-05-05 01:39:51 PM

Confabulat: Meh. We figured out ways to live in the Arctic and the Sahara. Humanity isn't that easy to get rid of.


And what wonderful standards of living that would make for. You can't go ten feet in the arctic without tripping over some Inuit's climate controlled yurt, and oh, what I wouldn't give to be a woman in the Sahara!
 
2014-05-05 01:42:01 PM

EvilEgg: There are too many of to get rid of completely. Things will probably get less comfortable, however. Even if 99% of us go that's still 71 million left.


An interesting thing I saw once, not sure when, don't remember where; but it is believed that, at one point, the human race was down to about 1000 breeding pairs. (Or, I guess, 1 if you're thinking Adam and Eve.)

Amazing really. We almost didn't make the cut.

Ding, ding. Round two. Nature tries to "fix the glitch."
 
2014-05-05 01:45:07 PM

Best Princess Celestia: Been saying that for years.

We have survived; but we have never asked are we worthy of survival.


Only a self-aware idiot would ask that question.

The rest of us just continue with our existence.  Because we *CAN*.
 
2014-05-05 01:45:52 PM

EvilEgg: Even if 99% of us go that's still 71 million left.

The thing is, our decline will be so painful and tragic that the living will envy the dead.  And it will be 100% preventable if we merely applied the knowledge we have today.  Not only are people refusing to learn, they're openly fighting it.
 
2014-05-05 01:45:53 PM

Confabulat: Humanity isn't that easy to get rid of.


Neither is a six septillion kilogram nickel-iron ball bearing.
 
2014-05-05 01:48:56 PM

abb3w: Confabulat: Humanity isn't that easy to get rid of.

Neither is a six septillion kilogram nickel-iron ball bearing.


Earth would make a shiatty ball bearing. Maybe just a ball.
 
2014-05-05 01:51:16 PM
"The planet is fine, the people are farked" - George Carlin
 
2014-05-05 01:53:49 PM

zamboni: EvilEgg: There are too many of to get rid of completely. Things will probably get less comfortable, however. Even if 99% of us go that's still 71 million left.

An interesting thing I saw once, not sure when, don't remember where; but it is believed that, at one point, the human race was down to about 1000 breeding pairs. (Or, I guess, 1 if you're thinking Adam and Eve.)

Amazing really. We almost didn't make the cut.

Ding, ding. Round two. Nature tries to "fix the glitch."


Don't know where/Don't know when/But we will meet again/Some sunny day
 
2014-05-05 01:56:42 PM

Best Princess Celestia: Been saying that for years.

We have survived; but we have never asked are we worthy of survival.


If we weren't, we wouldn't have. That is the core of evolution, yes?
 
2014-05-05 01:56:59 PM
2.bp.blogspot.com
 
2014-05-05 01:57:53 PM
I think he is wrong.  Yes the earth survived a collision with a planetoid the size of mars and yes over the years we have gone through at least one complete snowball phase let alone heavy glaciation and periods of heavy warming, but this time it is different because of the fungability of carbon atoms.... readuponit.
 
2014-05-05 02:01:09 PM

dragonchild: EvilEgg: Even if 99% of us go that's still 71 million left.
The thing is, our decline will be so painful and tragic that the living will envy the dead.  And it will be 100% preventable if we merely applied the knowledge we have today.  Not only are people refusing to learn, they're openly fighting it.


We are in an era of hyperpartisanship. Until we figure that out we cant do shiat about climate change. There is no way in hell any sort of deal can be made.
 
2014-05-05 02:02:01 PM

zamboni: An interesting thing I saw once, not sure when, don't remember where; but it is believed that, at one point, the human race was down to about 1000 breeding pairs.


Try (doi:10.1038/nature10231); the Toba eruption usually gets the blame.
 
2014-05-05 02:05:04 PM
We will muddle through, just like the people of Rapanui did after their ecological collapse.
There were ~2000 of them still on the 164 sq km island when westerners showed up, or 12.2 per sq km.

That was about the population density of the United States during WW1.
 
2014-05-05 02:08:41 PM
maybe the Earth will be better off after we're gone
 
2014-05-05 02:10:32 PM
Of course the Earth will survive us.  Did anyone think otherwise?

We couldn't destroy the Earth even if we tried  Not if we polluted far more than we do not.  Not if we detonated all of our nukes at once.  No matter what we do.

We could easily cause our own extinction, and take a lot of other species down with us.  But we can't destroy the Earth itself.  Nor could we destroy all life on Earth.  We could do our worst, and then when we're gone, whatever life remains will adapt to the new environment and eventually fill all available ecological niches.
 
2014-05-05 02:14:10 PM

Saiga410: I think he is wrong.  Yes the earth survived a collision with a planetoid the size of mars and yes over the years we have gone through at least one complete snowball phase let alone heavy glaciation and periods of heavy warming, but this time it is different because of the fungability of carbon atoms.... readuponit.


That collision was before life started and would be whats known as a sterilization event.  Life would most likely survive as long as the crust stays relatively intact, but a collision of that size would have enough energy to melt everything to mantel.

As for CO2, there were periods much worse than what we're doing.  Our ancestors were also basically proto mice and miraculously lived through it in some ecological niche.

If we keep this up, humanity will be around.  But I hope you like the Dark Ages: Part II.  Assuming we don't nuke each other over water resources and farmable land first.
 
2014-05-05 02:14:16 PM

ModernPrimitive01: maybe the Earth will be better off after we're gone


Earth with neither be worse nor better off, it will be the same as it always has been. It will just be.
 
2014-05-05 02:14:20 PM

Confabulat: Meh. We figured out ways to live in the Arctic and the Sahara. Humanity isn't that easy to get rid of.


What are a couple hundred million dead? What would be unbearable would be to use a different kind of energy.
 
2014-05-05 02:15:11 PM

Best Princess Celestia: Been saying that for years.

We have survived; but we have never asked are we worthy of survival.


It depends on what you mean by "worthy".

Those who survive do so because they are physically and mentally able to do so. They are, in that respect, worthy of survival by definition. If you're venturing into the realm of "moral worthiness," then that's a much more subjective area which can be debated endlessly without ever reaching a resolution.
 
2014-05-05 02:17:03 PM

dittybopper: Hell, we've figured out ways to live (at least temporarily), in the cold hard vacuum of space.

We'll manage.


A few million of us, maybe. It won't be us little people who survive the dieback.
 
2014-05-05 02:17:12 PM

zamboni: EvilEgg: There are too many of to get rid of completely. Things will probably get less comfortable, however. Even if 99% of us go that's still 71 million left.

An interesting thing I saw once, not sure when, don't remember where; but it is believed that, at one point, the human race was down to about 1000 breeding pairs. (Or, I guess, 1 if you're thinking Adam and Eve.)

Amazing really. We almost didn't make the cut.

Ding, ding. Round two. Nature tries to "fix the glitch."


Nature had its chance and blew it. At our currently level of technology, nature isn't going to get rid of us without destroying pretty much all multi-cellular life along with us. Basically it would take a luna sized asteroid to even have a shot at it. Yeah, it could get pretty nasty, nature/humanity could "destroy civilization as we know it", but we will go on, rebuild, maybe repeat, but it would be almost impossible to really get rid of us. All the methane trapped undersea could release tomorrow, the death toll would be enormous, governments might collapse, but we would go on.
 
2014-05-05 02:19:42 PM

Doc Daneeka: Of course the Earth will survive us.  Did anyone think otherwise?

We couldn't destroy the Earth even if we tried  Not if we polluted far more than we do not.  Not if we detonated all of our nukes at once.  No matter what we do.

We could easily cause our own extinction, and take a lot of other species down with us.  But we can't destroy the Earth itself.  Nor could we destroy all life on Earth.  We could do our worst, and then when we're gone, whatever life remains will adapt to the new environment and eventually fill all available ecological niches.


I've been saying this for years: the earth was floating serenely through space for millions of years before we sprang up, and it will continue to float serenely through space for millions of years after we and all of our descendants are dead and gone. People who exhort others to "Save the Planet" have always irritated me because the planet doesn't need saving. It never has, and it never will. Humans (and other living things) may very well need saving. But the planet will be here regardless.
 
2014-05-05 02:20:15 PM

ModernPrimitive01: maybe the Earth will be better off after we're gone


The Earth is a big chunk of rock.  There is no better or worse for rock.  It just is.

Maybe you mean that things will be better off for other species after we we're gone.  For many probably.  Others will be a worse off (all our domesticated species as well as the pests and scavengers that depend on human civilization).  In any case, they'll all be extinct in the end.
 
2014-05-05 02:24:41 PM

Cybernetic: People who exhort others to "Save the Planet" have always irritated me because the planet doesn't need saving. It never has, and it never will.

That's not entirely true.
 
2014-05-05 02:25:49 PM

Uncle Tractor: dittybopper: Hell, we've figured out ways to live (at least temporarily), in the cold hard vacuum of space.

We'll manage.

A few million of us, maybe. It won't be us little people who survive the dieback.


Actually, it'll be the people who can conform best to the new environment.  That doesn't necessarily mean those in charge.
 
2014-05-05 02:27:23 PM

Doc Daneeka: We could do our worst, and then when we're gone, whatever life remains will adapt to the new environment and eventually fill all available ecological niches.


And that new life will evolve, become intelligent, develop language, and eventually form religion. They will gaze skyward and say, "There has to be a god! How else can you explain where this perfect planet came from? It has the exact amount of arsenic in the water that we need, and the atmosphere holds in the heat to keep us at a constant 150F. It was DESIGNED, I tell you!"
 
2014-05-05 02:28:55 PM

Best Princess Celestia: Been saying that for years.

We have survived; but we have never asked are we worthy of survival.


What a trite, foolish thing to say.
 
2014-05-05 02:29:41 PM

zamboni: EvilEgg: There are too many of to get rid of completely. Things will probably get less comfortable, however. Even if 99% of us go that's still 71 million left.

An interesting thing I saw once, not sure when, don't remember where; but it is believed that, at one point, the human race was down to about 1000 breeding pairs. (Or, I guess, 1 if you're thinking Adam and Eve.)

Amazing really. We almost didn't make the cut.

Ding, ding. Round two. Nature tries to "fix the glitch."


Actually, no.

Just because all of humanity is descended from about 1,000 breeding pairs doesn't mean that there were just that many humans on the Earth at that time (or close to it).  It just means that the descendants of those pairs were more successful than the descendants of the others, and they replaced them.

Just because there is a genetic bottleneck that is detectable today doesn't mean that the actual population of humans living at that time was that low.
 
2014-05-05 02:30:05 PM

Confabulat: Meh. We figured out ways to live in the Arctic and the Sahara. Humanity isn't that easy to get rid of.


Sure. Some humans will survive, but not 7 billion. Probably not even 1 billion. And "civilization" probably won't do too well either.
 
2014-05-05 02:31:08 PM

Monty845: Nature had its chance and blew it.


WE ARE NATURE.
I think it did quite well.
 
2014-05-05 02:31:13 PM

cman: dragonchild: EvilEgg: Even if 99% of us go that's still 71 million left.
The thing is, our decline will be so painful and tragic that the living will envy the dead.  And it will be 100% preventable if we merely applied the knowledge we have today.  Not only are people refusing to learn, they're openly fighting it.

We are in an era of hyperpartisanship. Until we figure that out we cant do shiat about climate change. There is no way in hell any sort of deal can be made.


By mid century we'll have accumulated more than 1C of warming since AGW began. By 2100 warming will speed up and we'll have a total of 2C of warming. At that point, the carbons that are frozen in the tundra and taiga of the Northern Hemisphere will outgas at the same rate we're producing them via industrial processes now.  So, we could shut down all industrial production of carbon gases and we would still warm. Surely sometime in the next 85 years people will realize that protecting carbon plutocrat fortunes really isn't in their best interests. It won't come because of rising oceans. That's 500 years down the line. It will come from successive years of a heat wave that does in the American/Canadian grain belt. At 114F corn dies. It did that a couple of years ago in western Kansas. One afternoon, temps went to 114. The next morning the fields involved were grey. They weren't withered. They weren't stunted. They were dead. The hotter temps become, the more likely a widespread event like that becomes. That isn't spin. That isn't faith. Russia and Australia have already lost seasons to heat. IIRC, they're agricultural producers #3 and #5. (I think Brazil is #4)  When the heat/drought whammy hits the US and Canada, then the US will suddenly find the will  to do the right thing. (That's my prediction at least.)
 
2014-05-05 02:38:46 PM

zamboni: "fix the glitch."



readersrecommend.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-05-05 02:46:45 PM
No Drama Tyson's lack of faith in Man's indomitable will to survive what life throws at us, evolve to conditions, adapt to changing situations, exploit available resources and conquer whatever challenges face us is...disappoint.
 
2014-05-05 02:49:33 PM
are you stupid?  we'll be shooting and eating each other within 50 years if the present course continues.

eat the rich is a fine slogan, but let's face it there are lots more poor.
 
2014-05-05 02:57:32 PM

davynelson: are you stupid?  we'll be shooting and eating each other within 50 years if the present course continues.

eat the rich is a fine slogan, but let's face it there are lots more poor.


That's true.

And for most of human history, you had to eat a couple of poors to get the same caloric intake as eating a single rich, but recently, that's flipped:  Now the rich are thin and the poors are fat.
 
2014-05-05 02:59:59 PM
40+ posts in and nobody's posted this yet? Farkers be slippin'... ;^)

g-ecx.images-amazon.com
 
2014-05-05 03:00:27 PM
People say you can't really destroy the earth, but I've given some thought to breaking planets. Relativistic impactors, helium flash bombs, artificial black holes. I doubt we could make enough antimatter to do the job, you'd need to park the fabricator in the coronasphere.
 
2014-05-05 03:04:36 PM

yakmans_dad: It will come from successive years of a heat wave that does in the American/Canadian grain belt. At 114F corn dies. It did that a couple of years ago in western Kansas. One afternoon, temps went to 114. The next morning the fields involved were grey. They weren't withered. They weren't stunted. They were dead.


Yup.  It doesn't take much of a shift in the mean to turn a "thousand year heat wave" outlier day into an event that occurs every couple of summers.

Agriculture/water is where we'll notice the hit first.  Modern farming is incredibly adapted to a narrow climate range, and we reap great dividends from it in terms of tons/acre.  But if the temperature and/or precipitation patterns jiggle around and stay jiggled, it's not like you just move the cornfield 100 miles north.  The soil's different, the terrain is different, the water table is different, etc.

Can we adapt to that?  Sure.  But it's going to be very expensive and the interim won't be fun, especially if you're poor.  All the major economic studies on climate change points towards one warning: Mitigation of emissions is much cheaper than dealing with the consequences of inaction.
 
2014-05-05 03:07:14 PM

dittybopper: And for most of human history, you had to eat a couple of poors to get the same caloric intake as eating a single rich, but recently, that's flipped: Now the rich are thin and the poors are fat.


In wealthy nations, at least.  It's apparently one of the most confusing things for people that emigrate to the US from a poor area.  Of course, "Americans don't walk or bike anywhere" is one of the others, and helps explain the first.
 
2014-05-05 03:08:11 PM
Yeah, it turns out big balls of mostly molten rock are kinda hard to destroy.

//Humanity is not doomed, Doctor Tyson. 3C is expensive as hell, 5C is a continuing disaster, 7C is a catastrophe, but none are extinction events.
 
2014-05-05 03:10:13 PM

ModernPrimitive01: maybe the Earth will be better off after we're gone


It will definitely be better off after we're gone.

Cybernetic: People who exhort others to "Save the Planet" have always irritated me because the planet doesn't need saving. It never has, and it never will. Humans (and other living things) may very well need saving. But the planet will be here regardless.


Because you're not smart enough to understand when they say, "save the planet" that's shorthand for saying, "save the ecosystem that supports human life?"

The planet will not be here regardless. Our sun is going to destroy it.
 
2014-05-05 03:18:05 PM
img.fark.net
 
2014-05-05 03:18:32 PM

Lando Lincoln: Because you're not smart enough to understand when they say, "save the planet" that's shorthand for saying, "save the ecosystem that supports human life?"


F*cking scientists and their pathological insistence on precise language to describe shiat.  Bunch of f*cking overachievers.
 
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