Invitation Interrupted: My Latest Peer-Reviewed Paper

Most things break, including hearts. The lessons of life amount not to wisdom, but to scar tissue and callus.

~ Wallace Stegner


On 19 December 2019, I was invited by the guest editor to submit a paper for a special issue of the peer-reviewed journal Learning Sustainability. As is customary for thematic issues, I was asked to submit a short proposal for my intended paper. This added step in the process of peer review insures that all papers focus tightly on the intended topic. It also spares the trouble of writing a full paper that is not a “good fit” for the special issue. On 21 December 2019, I submitted the invited proposal.

On 30 December 2019, I received useful feedback from the editor. I submitted a revised proposal the same day.

Also on 30 December 2019, the editor sent my proposal to two colleagues for their feedback. I received information, based on their comments in January, 2020 and responded with a complete manuscript.

On 26 June 2020, I received copies of two reviews, both of which recommended minor revisions. Not surprisingly, both reviewers were confused about the existence and importance of the aerosol masking effect and self-reinforcing feedback loops.

Also on 26 June 2020, I was asked to submit a revised manuscript and also suggest at least three potential reviewers. I had suggested four potential reviewers as part of the initial review process. Frustrated with the delays in the process of review and also with the repeated requests to supply the names of reviewers, I withdrew the paper later that day and submitted it to a journal with which I had enjoyed recent professional interactions.

“The Myth of Sustainability” was accepted for publication by the peer-reviewed journal Earth Environmental Science Research & Reviews on 8 July 2020 based on glowing reviews from two anonymous peers. The full text of my paper in this open-access journal can be accessed here. The abstract is pasted below.

Humans are able to sustain neither industrial civilization nor our species, Homo sapiens. Whereas many pre-civilized groups practiced sustainability, contemporary industrial civilization is not sustainable. Indeed, global industrial civilization underlies abrupt, irreversible climate change and also the ongoing Mass Extinction Event. We continue to overheat Earth, which is already at the highest global-average temperature with our species present. The rapidity of environmental change is increasing and will continue to accelerate with either increased industrial activity or, paradoxically, diminished industrial activity. This paper offers a path forward for all of us, and especially those who wish to educate others, in light of these daunting facts. If our species is destined for extinction, as all species are, then how shall we proceed? If our species is destined for extinction in the near term, as seems apparent, then how shall we proceed? What is the role of educators in the face of an existential threat?

I have earned no money, nor will I earn money, for this article. Indeed, there were significant page charges attendant to having the paper published. I explained the process of peer review in this space more than two years ago.




Special Notification:

The 57-acre homestead I occupied in western Belize has been re-listed for sale (click here for listing). My partner, who owns the property, must spend time with her family in Florida. She is selling the homestead at a monetary loss to be closer to her family.


Latest peer-reviewed journal articles:

McPherson, Guy R. 2020. The Myth of Sustainability (pdf). Earth & Environmental Science Research & Reviews 3(3):117-122.

McPherson, Guy R. 2020. Trees Cannot Sequester Enough Carbon to Slow Abrupt Climate Change. Modern Concepts & Developments in Agronomy (pdf) 6(4). DOI: 10.31031/MCDA.2020.06.000641

McPherson, Guy R. 2020. Earth is in the Midst of Abrupt, Irreversible Climate Change. Journal of Earth and Environmental Sciences Research 2(2).

McPherson, Guy R. 2020. Will COVID-19 Trigger Extinction of All Life on Earth? (pdf). Earth & Environmental Science Research & Reviews 3(2)2:73-74.

McPherson, Guy R. 2019. Going Halfway: Climate Reports Ignore the Full Evidence, and Therapists Ignore Grief Recovery. Clinical Psychology Forum 321:28-31.

McPherson, Guy R. 2019. Becoming Hope-Free: Parallels Between Death of Individuals and Extinction of Homo sapiens. Clinical Psychology Forum 317:8-11. The full paper is linked here.


Published February, 2019: McPherson, Guy R. 2019. Only Love Remains: Dancing at the Edge of Extinction. Woodthrush Productions, New York.


McPherson, Guy R. 2019. Revised Second edition of Walking Away from Empire: A Personal Journey. Woodthrush Productions, New York.


McPherson, Guy R. 2019. Revised Second edition of Going Dark. Woodthrush Productions, New York.


Pauline Panagiotou Schneider and Guy R. McPherson. 2018. Revised Second Edition of Ms. Ladybug and Mr. Honeybee: A Love Story at the End of Time. Woodthrush Productions, New York.


Mugs, tote bags, iPhone cases, tee shirts, and other pragmatic goods affiliated with the latter book are available on Redbubble). I do not earn money from these items. Indeed, they have returned far less money than it cost to create and distribute them. I list them at the bottom of posts in this space in support of my artistically inclined partner, who created them.