ARCHIVED: Presentation in New York City

Pauline Schneider worked behind the camera as I delivered the presentation embedded below. It’s from 27 February 2015 in New York, New York, and was titled, Abrupt Climate Change: How Will You Show Up During Humanity’s Final Chapter?

Comments 28

  • .
    .Whaling Community Gets What’s Coming To Them
    The very existence of Kivalina, a town with about 400 residents on a tiny barrier island off Alaska’s northwest coast, is under threat as Arctic sea ice continues to melt into the surrounding Chukchi Sea.

    Now the whaling community needs to figure out where to move the town and how to pay for it, after several previous attempts failed. It’s a dilemma that could become more common as global warming continues, scientists warn.

    Colleen Swan, who was born and raised in Kivalina, says residents realized they were in serious trouble during 2004’s fall storm surges, when the ice that had typically protected the island had not formed yet — leaving them vulnerable.
    Just sittin’ on this runaway train, staring out the window, with a cat on my lap.

    The Voluntary Extinction Movement
    Thou shalt not procreate.

    The Church of Euthanasia
    Save the planet, kill yourself.

  • Non-linear methane release! The atmosphere holds ~5Gt of methane and we now see methane not only from shallow arctic sea beds, but now blowing massive holds in the Siberian tundra.

    1000ppm CO2e here we come, like it or not…


    Dozens of new craters suspected in northern Russia

    ‘We know now of seven craters in the Arctic area,’ he said. ‘Five are directly on the Yamal peninsula, one in Yamal Autonomous district, and one is on the north of the Krasnoyarsk region, near the Taimyr peninsula. ‘I would compare this with mushrooms: when you find one mushroom, be sure there are few more around. I suppose there could be 20 to 30 craters more.’

    Examination using satellite images has helped Russian experts understand that the craters are more widespread than was first realised, with one large hole surrounded by as many as 20 mini-craters, The Siberian Times can reveal.

    See article for images…

  • Also on the Circus Front: this just in today!

    U may all now enjoy a new reality program called “S*x In A Box” on WETV, I think it is, where participants discuss their se*ual problems with this therapist and then they disappear into a box, on stage, sort of like a POD. After a while (?), they reappear all satisfied and smiley (of course) to discuss the caper with the fans who are watching. The Masters are back thank goodness.

    The couple in the ad had a husband (I assume) who wanted to have bon*age s*x. The partner said, “It was great but first you need to do it in a safe environment”. Like a pod on t-v I assume?

  • @Jeff S.

    “I’d bet many of these young people work in hi tech, they think everything’s great, that the future is so bright you’ll need sunshades, shale revolution, alternative energy, blah, blah, blah,… Last Sunday CNN’s GPS host Fareed Zakaria (editor of Time, high ranking member of the Council on Foreign Relations) had on the chair of Cisco, who basically said the future is all about digitalizing everything, and then the author of “The Accidental Superpower,” who saw la future of limitless energy. There appears to be some sort of a consensus trance, a collective hallucination, in that world.”

    Exactly! It seems I’m surrounded by people who think everything is going just great. Some of the most optimistic human beings on the planet are these young techno-optimists who believe Science and Technology will solve all our problems. If you’ve seen the movie Elysium, you have a picture of what their lives are like. The latest fad is life-hacking – measuring and analyzing every detailed aspect of your life (frequently with the aid of smartphone apps) to squeeze out every last drop of productivity and efficiency and optimize the hell out of your existence. This mentality goes hand in hand with treating the world like a machine that can be fine-tuned endlessly.

    Zakaria is proving to be a very capable servitor of empire.

  • Why no mention, even, of Fukushima Daiichi and three 100% meltdowns?
    STILL ONGOING! But because of news blackouts by TEPCO/Japan government and disinformation put out by PAID Nuke apologists!

    Radiation plumes emanating from Fukushima Daiichi have been crashing into the Alaska-Canadian tidal zones, ongoing, for 4 years, now! And no world-wide outcry! Because NO ONE KNOWS!

    No mussels from Prince Rupert, BC to Vancouver, BC! No insects! 1000’s of species of tidal zone filter-feeders missing. Bird populations crashing and decimated! This is NOT to be excused-away by theories of ocean “acidification”, solely!

    RIGHT NOW! This is all being documented with Video/Audio/Stills and presented online at [] by Dana Durnford for the past 6 months and currently!

    Timeline for Mr. Durnford’s “Exploration For Life Expedition” is here: []

    Disturbed, sincere and alarmed,
    Bob Zavoda, Geologist

  • We want to believe that we think and behave rationally. Indeed, our society has trained us deeply to take it for granted that we think and behave rationally. But much compelling psychological research now demonstrates clearly that reason serves mainly as the after the fact way we rationalize what our emotions already want to believe. Consider the profound implications of this. It dooms from the start most of the “telling is teaching” education efforts that most of us use many times every day, including at places like Nature Bats Last. It largely accounts for why others so often don’t “get it” when we explain something, and the resulting frustration for all. If we really want to help ourselves and others change in more adaptive ways, certainly regarding something as powerfully anxiety and fear provoking as the high probability of human extinction within about then next 20 to 30 years, we must learn how to recognize and use emotions effectively within ourselves and with each other because, like it or not, our emotions, which we now know occur universally, most fundamentally drive most of what we think and do.

  • Technology serves to manipulate matter to control energy flows, which in turn bay be used to manipulate more matter to control further energy flows … including the making of computer screens and controlling the flows of electrons aroud the Internet.

    Sure, technology can harness new sources of energy and through effeciency improve their ERoEI, but exploitable sources of energy of sufficient ERoEI have to be out there in the first place.

    Zero point energy seeks to harness one set of the random fluctuations at the ultimately small level, beyond which everything is chaotic. For each unit of extracted energy a corresponding deficit is left behind, and sooner or later the piper has to be paid. It is a loan from that bank, unlike fossilised sunshine, which is like drawing from a deposit.

    Explaining no-mind through two metaphors from the Vedic tradition, the first is the bucket metaphor.

    The bucket (body) has water (brain) which has a surface (mind) and when perfectly still in the sunshine (consciousness) it reflects an image (conscious being) of the sun. There is a separate bucket for each conscious being. The image is none other than sunlight. In the absence of water, the sun still shines, but there is no image. An alternate liquid (computer hardware) in the bucket could also yield a reflection. A surface with ripples on it yields a distorted image. Quelling the ripples provides a better image, but does not shift attention to the sun.

    A sailboat is rowed away from the dock and the sails are unfurled to catch the wind. The wind will blow of its own accord. The effort to get the sailboat into open water is like calming the ripples in the bucket to see the reflection of the sun. The wind is the force that shifts attention from the reflection to the sunshine.

    Once there is awareness of the sunshine, there is no need for the bucket, the water, or the surface of the water. Those things can go about their activities with no diminution of the awareness of the sunshine. This is a sunshine without a sun: it casts no shadow.

    The bucket metaphor is from the Taitteriya Upanishad and the sailboat is from the teachings of Ramakrishna.

  • @Robin Datta

    I like the bucket metaphor. These days, it would seem there are not only ripples on the surface, but the buckets are sitting on top of a fire and as the water boils, the bubbles floating to the top make for an even more blurry image of the Sun.

  • This on our nation radio station last night, only 4 min
    The only problem I have with this report is the academic said CH4/methane only hangs around for a short period of time, ignoring the fact CH4 has gone from .7 ppm to 2. ppm, CH4 in human time frames is immortal.
    When will they get it?

  • Another of my illusions scattered to the four winds today:

    Negative Feedbacks

    “You might say, hey, we can stop global warming with these negtive feedbacks. But if you look at feedback effects, especially those that occur in proportion to the effect that it originally driving them, you can show mathematically that the best a negative feedback can do is to reduce the initial warming but it can never turn it into a cooling.”

    Richard Wolfson, Ph.D.
    Professor of Physics and Environmental Studies, Middlebury College
    Teaching Co. Course Earth’s Changing Climate

  • Excursion to the Outer World

    I more or less knew what I’d find
    With non-doomer humankind:
    Folks were feeling secure,
    And were all pretty sure
    I was out of my fucking mind.

  • The matter of emotion vs. intellect is an ancient one, understood by all leaders from time immemorial, beyond the mists of earliest history. The reptilian brain, a non-rational, non-verbal part of the brain, associated with emotions (short term) and values (long term), is the boss in the back seat; the mammalian, primate and hominid brain associated with speech and rationality is in the driver’s seat, at the steering wheel, but takes its orders from the reptilian boss. To control where the car goes, one has to address the reptilian boss, not through rationality, but through appeals to emotion and values.

    The handbook for the proper application of this understanding was Propaganda, by Edward L. Bernays, used by Joseph Goebbels, and still used by advertising agencies and political propagandists. And even journalists:

    Jay Rosen: How the News is Made Now

    And every great leader knows this, even without wading through the muck of psychology books:
    Simon Sinek:
    How great leaders inspire action
    TEDxPuget Sound · 18:04 minutes · Filmed Sep 2009

  • Spock of Startrek echoes Guy’s sentiments:

    ” Life is like a Garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. ” Leonard Nimoy recently passed on into the great universe.

    The Mechanism

    “What is the mechanism behind accelerated warming of the Arctic Ocean, huge abrupt methane eruptions from the seafloor of the Arctic Ocean and skyrocketing temperatures?”

    With forty f(at/eedback) l(adies/oops) now singing, how many are listening?

  • HAAAA-HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA Ben GREAT limerick – sums up my life completely!

    Robin: those were interesting (your metaphors and links).

    Bob Z.: i’ve mentioned Fukushima many times, but the effect is the same – “so what else is new?” It’s only going to continue to get worse in our lifetimes and probably kill all the life in the sea and on land too before it’s all over. At this point there’s no doubt that the effect is not good for sea life, but few are paying attention to what it’s doing to people, animals, birds, reptiles, other species and plants across the globe. Little monitoring is being done that is presented to the public so that they can take precautions, except for a few sites which one has to look for and listen to by choice – this stuff isn’t on the news (they don’t want to spook the herd). Before long it will all be OBVIOUS.

    M^3: good link. That JJFH blog is all about the gases CH4 and H2S, just day after day presenting news articles that illustrate how authorities can’t explain (or won’t) otherwise (formerly) aberrant explosions and fires, people dropping dead, animal attacks, etc. for YEARS now. His hypothesis is corroborated (not proved) by these stories, which are steadily increasing.

    pat: good to hear from you!

    kevin moore: i believe you’re mentioned at the end of this article over at seemorerocks.

    Robert Atack challenges Radio NZ


    I am trying to find out the forcing factor of CH4 over C02 in time frames that matter, like what is the forcing factor when the CH4 is only a week old?

    This is the question my friend Kevin posed to someone the other day, his explanation is way better than I could manage [and goes on to your words].

  • oh, and on the methane holes and researching them (from JJFH):

    2015-02-26 – Researchers scared to study emerging methane explosion craters in Siberia

    [links to multiple sources of story]

    Quote: “One potential disaster relates to the explosions themselves. No one has been hurt in any of the blasts, but given the size of some of the craters, it’s fair to say the methane bursts are huge. Researchers are nervous about even studying them. Who knows when a methane geyser will shoot off again? ‘These objects need to be studied, but it is rather dangerous for the researchers,’ Bogoyavlensky told the Siberian Times.”

    Ha-haah YEAH! It’s a lot like looking at climate change in general and connecting all the dots, like a certain Guy i read, and not coming to the same conclusion, eh?

    Appreciate your remaining time.

  • @ Shep
    Thought you were joking-looked it up on the web
    we are indeed fucked

  • Spock

    The final frontier’s now in store,
    With a strange new world to explore:
    It’s a fascinating show,
    So let’s all boldly go
    Where no one has gone before.

  • Tom, the initial forcing for methane is 100 times CO2.
    Pat, being a live member of the Church of Euthanasia is hypocritical.

    Ethicky Morals and Stuff
    Kevin Anderson says if you make $30k/.year, then YOU have to reduce YOUR emissions 40% in a mere 3 years, just to have a 50/50 chance of keeping the earth from going over 2°C. In 15 years, you will have to reduce them 90%. This means you! Of course, even if you think you’re a mean green fighting machine, can you reduce your emissions by 90%? Already the planet’s poles are falling to pieces, and the deserts are spreading, and we haven’t even raised the earth 1°C yet. Now, remember, this will do absolutely nothing to fight catastrophic cascading ecosystem extinction collapse which in 30 years will become irreversible and unstoppable. We are also at peak water and food. In 30 years we will be past peaks in energy, fertilizers and minerals. Naturally, you will have to replace your solar-wind systems in 30 years, and no Virginia, these items are not made by little elves in a gingerbread house where the North Pole used to be. ANSWER:

  • TOM,

    I used to mock TED talks – not any more. The following video is explaining about the amount of moisture that a single river in the world, The Amazon, produces a day and how much power would be needed to duplicate this phenomenal fact. This is revealed in CounterPunch this weekend.

    Revenge of the Rainforest

    The best part is a reference to the above video.

    “…there are 6 billion trees in the amazon that are really [6 billion] geysers that transfer ground water to the atmosphere, a large tree transfers 1,000 liters to the atmosphere per DAY…through transpiration, which is the sweat of the forest…20 billion metric tons of water, greater than the amazon itself dumps into the Ocean per day,,,how much energy would it take to do the work of 6 billion geysers – 50,000 of the largest energy plants in the world!!!!!!!

  • Satish: a frequent theme i hear coming from these young optimists is that the “grown-ups” are just jealous of what a great world the next generation will get to live in, and are hanging on to the familiar, hung up on their pessimism.

  • Here is a nice story. BUT. It took place in 1994. Things have sure changed: and some people are nice and some people are not. Obviously.

    Twenty-one years ago Sunday, in the early morning hours of March 1, 1994, my wife Leslie woke me up and told me she was in labor.

    We’d gone through an episode of false contractions a week or so before, but it was pretty obvious this time it was for real.

    So we took our son Bill over to the next door neighbors and then got in the car to begin what should have been about a 20-minute trip to Atlanta’s Piedmont Hospital.

    But, as we turned onto North Druid Hills Road, the route we normally used get to I-85, which would take us to near the hospital, a police roadblock stopped us.

    A DeKalb County officer informed us we couldn’t go that way. I told him my wife was in labor and asked him with some urgency what was the quickest way we could get to Piedmont Hospital.

    He just shrugged.

    We turned around and instead headed down Scott Boulevard, which turns into Ponce de Leon Avenue and eventually leads to Atlanta’s famed Peachtree Street.

    As the frequency of the contractions increased, so did the pressure of my right foot on the gas pedal. By the time we were inside the Atlanta city limits, the car was hurtling along at about 90 mph on the thankfully mostly deserted street.

    Suddenly, an Atlanta police car pulled up alongside me. This time, though, the result was much different from our previous encounter with the cops.

    I rolled down the window while not taking my foot off the gas one bit.

    “Woman in labor!” I shouted.

    The police officer nodded and gestured for me to keep going.

    Once we turned onto Peachtree and he figured out where we were headed, he then increased his speed, pulled out in front of us, switched on the flashing blue lights and escorted us all the way to the hospital.

    He went in and told the hospital folks what was up and they rushed out a wheelchair for Leslie. I took a brief moment to shake the police officer’s hand and thank him before I followed her in. “God bless you,” he replied.

    Truly, one of Atlanta’s finest … and yet I never even noticed his name.

    About four hours later, at 8:12 a.m. — around the time we’d been due to show up at Piedmont anyway for the doctor to begin inducing labor — Olivia James Parry King was born.

    A birth story that involves a police escort is something special, but that’s pretty much been the story of the ensuing 21 years as our daughter — now a junior anthropology-classics major at UGA who plays on the Ultimate Frisbee team and plans to go to nursing school — has grown into a remarkable young woman who makes her parents endlessly proud.

    Happy birthday, Livvy!

    Oh, and the Atlanta cop was right. God indeed blessed us with you.

  • Robin Datta,

    February 27th, 2015 at 7:52 pm you wrote “The matter of emotion vs. intellect is an ancient one, understood by all leaders from time immemorial, beyond the mists of earliest history….”

    I agree with this, AND I find that neither I nor anyone I know seems to understand it in any deep, emotionally compelling, practical way. For the most part, to date, I and everyone I know live our lives and communicate with others based on the false assumption very strongly taught by our society that we humans usually think and behave rationally, and also that teaching pretty much involves telling others how the world works. Indeed, largely the entire new field of physics education research works to get physics and chemistry teachers to unlearn this misconception. I spent eight years working intensely to unlearn it and to learn much more effective ways to teach, and I had only moderate success in doing that extremely difficult unlearning. I now find myself focused on learning how to use emotions more effectively related to NTHE issues because, as most people reading this know very well, telling others probably a good bit more often than not has little or no meaningful effect. Besides that, those who do “get it” need emotional support, not more facts about our self-annihilation trap. Unfortunately, (1) only an extremely small percentage of people seem to have the knowledge and skills needed to provide that emotional support. (I certainly do not presume to!) And (2) we live in an incredibly interpersonally and emotionally alienated, disconnected society, all of the highly touted electronic communications hoopla notwithstanding.

    Thanks for the three references! (Propaganda, by Edward L. Bernays, the Jay Rosen: How the News is Made Now talk, and the Simon Sinek: How great leaders inspire action TEDx Puget Sound talk.) All of these seem excellent, in my opinion. If anyone has an interest, more directly related to learning how to help people using emotions—especially with respect to relationships—I strongly suggest The Practice of Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy, 2nd Ed. By Susan M. Johnson (2004), and Becoming an Emotionally Focused Couple Therapist, The Workbook by Johnson, Bradley, Furrow, Lee, Palmer, Tilley and Woolley (2005).

  • Shep: that was a great story. That TED link was good too! Thanks man.

  • “Sort of like Pacman, only with sunsets”*

    The instincts, appetites and emotions are so absurd when you think about it- obviously a last-minute bolt-on contrivance without which the whole ridiculous rigmarole of little corporeal entities stumbling around on a big rock in space would have (more) swiftly revealed itself to be a hopeless failure. Picture all the critters standing around like befuddled method-actors, asking themselves: “umm… what exactly is my motivation for this ludicrous activity I am about to undertake? I chase down this other critter, smash it to pieces and pass it through my digestive apparatus, not necessarily in that order? Why the hell would I do that?…. I am supposed to make a beast with two backs out of me and this other critter, and the result is that one of us gets to grow a replacement critter inside, which comes out between their legs in nine moons time? And you expect me to look out for this new critter and keep it safe until it’s big enough to replace me? and then what?………?….Are you shitting me? …What idiot wrote this godawful screenplay?”
    Yes, one can’t help but fondly remember the termination of that first creation, which became unavoidable when all the remaining critters that hadn’t already voluntarily smashed themselves to oblivion on the rocks unanimously voted to down claw, fang, and reproductive appendage, stating unequivocally that they would have nothing further to do with such a nonsensical scenario. Every critter had to be recalled and retrofitted with instincts, appetites, emotions, nervous systems, most of the work being botched badly, done as it was in sweatshops on zero-hours contracts at less than the minimum wage.
    …And.. here we are. Of course now that they have instincts and emotions, many of the critters are justfiably either embarrassed or furious (or both) at being the helpless puppet of all kinds of weird compulsions, which run the gamut from ambushing and eating your neighbours to travelling huge distances in barely hospitable conditions to fulfil breeding cycles. Worst of all perhaps is the compulsion to survive to witness another day of this bizarre pageant of pointlessness.
    You reading this are in the unique position of being able to hasten the end of all this. Indeed you cannot help yourselves…. or can you?

    *The original design brief for life on Earth.

  • I’ve posted anew, including a livestream link. Catch it, and me, here.