389 - Summer Snippets 22 | Scoins.net | DJS

389 - Summer Snippets 22

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Summer snippets runs from August onwards. I have formed a subsection each time any single topic passed a two-screen measure (on my own set-up). No doubt some pieces ought to be uploaded separately, but I cannot as yet decide the basis for this.


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The End is Nigh

Well, no it isn't, but we may be beginning to recognise the significance of the need to change. I noticed a  number of more extreme articles on climate change, prognostications of dire consequences, the beginnings of estimates of just how much we're going to miss the 1.5ºC target.

Just as an experiment, here's a list of what I think we should be reading about, which I'l then rewrite as I finbd how how wrong I am.

Methane is worse than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas. How much, I don't know offhand; 10x? 80x?. We generate a lot of methane from cows and, presumably other ruminants. The UK herd is around ten million (check) so this argues for a reduction in dairy and beef. Essay written already about milk sustainability (and a slow move to oat is occurring in our household). But since that essay I've learned that we haven't changed the area of land under cultivation for a generation or more, and that the volume/tonnage of food has been pretty constant for a similar length of time. Question, then, over whether Brexit should be a cause or excuse to change that position. Where is methane stored currently? Peat bog perhaps? That 9% of UK land that's bog? In Europe, would that include a lot of land that has been under ice in someweher like Greenland? So since incrreasing temperature implies a lot less ice, does that have consequences for methane production that are indirect actions by us?

Still thinking of Greenland (Essay written way back in ...), I've written before about that melting ice screwing up the Gulf Stream (look up AMOC). Loss of that, which moves a load of heat from the tropics to northern Europe, would change UK weather hugely and suggests to me very cold winters, since we're north of Korea and Japan (known for cold winters).

 If that weight of ice disappears, does that suggest that we'd get more vulcanism? I have no idea.

As the planet warms, so an awful lot of people are going to want to move to better climate. while they'll bring with them some appropriate skills, that need to move also strongly suggests a significant loss of usable arable land and in turn that implies we're going to have even more demands on land to produce enough food. So, at a time when even Britain might see a need to increse land under crops, there is, at the same time, a need for more land as housing. If the non-jungle tropics are largely emptied, southern Europe is going to be overwhelmed. This suggests to me that more wars are likely – and war is already kniown to be not exactly good for crops. So a shortage of food is expected and famine across large swathes of land is likely.  The four horsemen of the apocalypse are stalking the land. 


1  The four horsemen of the apocalypse were Death, Famine, War and Pestilence. Wrong: Death, Famine, War and Conquest; pale, black, red and white respectively. Revelations says the order is conquest, war, famnne and death and I find it odd that conquest comes before war. Then I learn that Conquest is also Pestilence. Suitable for a lengthy foot note. Ref to Ezekiel and Zechariah, whose list—of four predicted disasters—was sword, famine, wild beasts and pestilence (also translated as plague). I found a version of the Revelations set as: capture or the threat of conquest; slaughter or violence people do to each other; economic hardship and insecurity; and death.

I found several pointers to articles that say the fifth horseman would be us. Pick a colour for the horse, then, or make it some other sort of horse, such as zebra, donkey ass - or mule.


2  George Monbiot, Guardian writer.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/jul/18/heatwave-extreme-weather-uk-climate-crisis

https://muckrack.com/george-monbiot/articles

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/oct/30/capitalism-is-killing-the-planet-its-time-to-stop-buying-into-our-own-destruction

MCB; micro-consumerist bollocks; obsessing, or being persuaded to, over plastic straws, bags and coffee cups rather than the huge structural forces driving us towards catastrophe. (source). George, in the same article, suggests we should aim for private sufficiency, public luxury”, by which latter term he means high quality infrastrcture, shared spaces and facilities.


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