Climageddon Scenario Phase 4

Climageddon Scenario Phase 4 beginning as soon as 2044-2060:

(To see the Climageddon Scenario Phase 3, click here.)

The cascading tipping point meltdown continues; new crossed tipping points collide into global warming, climate, human, and biological systems. Temperatures rise more and faster. Carbon hits 550-600 ppm

Phase 4 is associated with a measurement of carbon parts per million in the atmosphere in the range of 550-600 ppm. The eventual average global temperature range increase associated with irreversible climate destabilization is 4°-4.5° Celsius or 7.2°-8° Fahrenheit.

In Phase 4, the average global temperature continues to rise even faster. In this phase, the global warming consequences continue to increase in scope, frequency, and magnitude, and at a steeper, near exponential rate.

Phase 4 of the Climageddon Scenario expands the perfect storm of perfect storms. Crossed global warming tipping points collide into each other at such a fever pitch that they initiate a cascading global warming system and subsystem tipping point meltdown. This intensifying meltdown of colliding global warming, climate, human and biological tipping points acts to amplify, accelerate, and multiply all other non-global-warming related global challenges.

This tipping point cascading meltdown process across numerous global warming, climate, human and biological systems at one time creates ever more deadly positive feedback loops. This makes almost everything much harder, if not impossible, to resolve in such a chaotic environment as the world deteriorates simultaneously on many system and subsystem fronts.

Phase 4 is an even deeper phase of out of control climate destabilization. This deeper level occurs when we have moved farther away from the relatively stable dynamic equilibrium of temperature and other key weather conditions we were experiencing in our normal cyclical Ice Ages. Once we reach this stage, we will face crossing from out of control climate destabilization into extinction-level climate destabilization.

This phase of the Climageddon Scenario defines a new average global temperature range and a set of climate destabilization consequences we might never recover from, or that could take hundreds or even many thousands of years to correct. In Phase 4, if we also hit a keystone tipping point or have a full-on cascading meltdown of the most critical tipping points, we will cross over into the entrance point to Phase 5. In Phase 4, the cost of a single significant global warming-related disaster may average in the $500-billion to $900-billion range.

We could reach Phase 4 in less than 58 years (about 2074) if the rate at which we are polluting the atmosphere with carbon dioxide and methane does not go up any higher than it is already (about carbon 3 ppm per year) and we do not cross many more additional tipping points in Phase 2 or Phase 3 of the Climageddon Scenario. Unfortunately, once again it is far more likely that we will hit the predicted higher average global temperatures much sooner (2045-2060) due to many more cascading crossed points of no return, tipping points, and the higher carbon levels in the atmosphere from burning even more fossil fuels. 

In late-stage Phase 4, we will be lucky if there are a few billion survivors left of our current almost eight billion in the northernmost countries. 

Unfortunately, there is more bad news when we enter phase four. The moment we passed carbon 450 at the end of phase 2, we entered upon a very slippery slope that with high probability will take us rapidly through phase 3 and into and through phase 4.

The new carbon 600 ppm level that will be reached in late phase 4 will eventually raise the average global temperature to very near to 5°C (9 degrees Fahrenheit. ) This will begin the process of releasing amounts of massive methane from ocean coastal shelves.

Because methane is 86 times more potent than carbon as a greenhouse gas, this will again rapidly spike average global temperatures and bring about the extinction of most of humanity and the end of civilization as we know it. Several past mass extinction events possibly linked in this way to ocean coastal shelves suddenly releasing massive methane clathrate amounts are the Permian-Triassic extinction event and the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum. (Please click here to watch a short video that brilliantly explains the extinction process once we start releasing methane clathrate from our coastal shelves. New research shows we actually begin this release process once we reach 5°C and by 6°C, it is in full bloom.) 

Following is a methane graph found at in which you can see how total atmospheric methane levels from all sources have exponentially skyrocketed particularly during the last 50 years. 

When we reach carbon 600 ppm as soon as about 2074 or earlier, we will greatly accelerate the process of crossing more global warming tipping points. This will again spike the average global temperature to new record highs.

At about 5°C and above, a large portion of humanity (about 7 billion,) will die of starvation, conflicts (or of increased heat's other related consequences), and even the strongest governments and societies will collapse between the 45th parallel north and the 45th parallel south. As we reach the carbon 500 ppm and carbon 600 ppm levels, we will also cross into the later and most dangerous phases of the Climageddon Scenario end-of-humanity climate model with all of its related unconscionable consequences.

Take a moment and think about the reality that at carbon 600 ppm as soon as about 2074, we trigger the final processes that will bring about the extinction of 70 to 90% of humanity if not more! At this carbon level, civilization will collapse and the unlucky survivors will enter into an ecological and climate hell and social dark age that will make any survivors wish they were dead.

As if the above was not bad enough, there are several additional factors that need to be considered in the nightmare of global warming we are all facing in the later phases of the Climageddon Scenario:

  1. At the minimum, the relative time frame for removing (sequestering) the carbon particles we are currently adding to our atmosphere is centuries to thousands of years. This means that long, long after we stop polluting our atmosphere with fossil fuels, the two carbon 500 and 600 ppm consequence levels discussed above and many of the other 20 most deadly consequences of those actions and global warming will last for many, many generations, and both we and future generations will suffer dearly for our failures to address and resolve this emergency now.
  2. Because of the laws of physics concerning adding additional atmospheric greenhouse gases like carbon, global temperature will continue to rise as we continue adding more carbon and other greenhouses gas particles into the atmosphere from our fossil fuel use. Adding the additional three or more carbon ppm per year as we are doing now is based only on the current population. It does not include any additional amounts for the added carbon ppm amounts to compensate for the additional fossil fuel energy use of the human population soaring from 7 billion today to 14 billion people by around 2050 or, that many more people from the developing world will by 2050 move into the middle class demanding the same high carbon fossil fuel use comforts of the developed world! When you add all of the additional carbon that will be burned from these two factors to our current average annual increase of three carbon ppm per year at our current population level, the future looks considerably worse, and predicted consequences will arrive even sooner.
  3. The steady rise of methane in the atmosphere from new releases of methane from increased fracking, melting permafrost, and leaking natural gas lines. Methane is about 86 times more powerful as a greenhouse gas than carbon to increase global warming. There is also a concerted effort by the fracking industry to keep the ominous growing total methane release amounts hidden from the public. When you add in the effects of methane for raising our temperature along with the effects of carbon, we are probably already well above our current carbon 411 ppm.

The probability of crossing from Phase 4 into Phase 5 after being in Phase 4 for a considerable length of time (10-30 or more years) is near-inevitable because of the 13 factors described at the top of the following linked page, Is global warming uncontrollable for at least the next 30-50+ years. In general, this is because with each new Climageddon phase entered, society has less and less meaningful control over the collapsing climate, human, and biological systems as more and more tipping points are crossed. These systems also will collapse faster and faster with critically fewer resources available to deal with all of their unpredictable new problems.

(Please note: There are numerous climate scientists who believe that crossing carbon 500 ppm is inevitable because of the 13 system failure points covered on the top of this page. They now believe that no matter what we do, we have already missed our window of opportunity and once we have crossed the carbon 500 ppm level, we will not be able to keep from reaching carbon 800 ppm (the final phases of the Climageddon Scenario. Our organization does not hold this to be settled scientific truth.

If we did, there would be nothing that we could do to avoid mass extinction. Our reading of the current science indicates that there is still a very small chance [considerably less than 10%,] that we can prevent crossing the carbon 600 ppm extinction tipping point (using the actions described in part three of the Job One Plan,) or at least, we can slow the consequences until we do cross the carbon 600 ppm level so more of us and survive and enjoy life a bit longer. While the probability of us preventing crossing the carbon 600 ppm extinction tipping point is very low, the probability that we can at least temporarily slow the many unavoidable coming consequences is quite good, about 60% or better.)

In Phase 4 we reach the top of the risk, threat, and hazard scales as seen here. These same levels will apply to Phases 5 and 6 as well (though they are essentially inadequate to describe what will happen next).

The warning signs of phase 4 from 2044-2060

The following listing of positive feedback loops, points of no return, tipping points, consequences, and interactions with our other current global challenges should be considered as good warning signs we are both in phase 4 or moving rapidly through phase 4 into phase 5. Watch for information about these consequences and events occurring in the news.

Particularly watch to see if they're being described as worse than before or as breaking all previous records. Look carefully at what the consequence pattern and trend is moving toward. These are the best objective accelerating warning signs that individuals can see for themselves and that will motivate thoughtful individuals to act appropriately.

Phase 4: The following general global warming consequences will continue to increase in severity, frequency, and scale from 2044-2060.

The global warming-related consequences that will occur and continue to increase in this phase from continuing to burn fossil fuels at anything close to the rates we are now are similar to the consequences of phase 3 with one exception in blue below:

1. atmospheric heating which increases average global temperature,

2. new disease outbreaks, epidemics, and more COVID-19 like pandemics in areas where they have never been before. (This is due to loss of natural animal habitat, eating more wild animals, additional melting of the permafrost, overcrowding, less resilient health systems, and mass migrations. Because of accelerating global warming consequences, we could be experiencing COVID-19 type pandemics every decade.)

3. shrinking sea ice and ice shelves, glaciers and snowpack,

4. extreme storms of all kinds, (hurricanes, tornadoes, rain bombs, bomb cyclones, etc,)

5. crop failures increasing mass starvation, and soaring food prices,

6. droughts,

7. clean drinking water scarcity,

8. desertification,

9. fires and wildfires,

10. flooding,

11. toxic air pollution,

12. ocean acidification, (Ocean heating and ocean acidification from carbon from global warming will eventually kill off much of the oceans' oxygen-producing plankton. These plankton are responsible for as much as 50% of all oxygen produced on the planet.) 

13. loss of biodiversity,

14. jet stream disruption, (disruption of seasonal weather patterns,)

15. mass human migrations,

16 animal and insect migrations, 

17. Tsunamis and earthquakes,  

18. economic losses. (In this phase, most nations will spend 3-7 percent of their total gross domestic product (GDP) directly or indirectly paying for the consequences of the global warming emergency.)

19. forests that were a major stabilizing force absorbing carbon become neutral in their carbon absorption and stop taking carbon from the atmosphere. (Soon in later phases the forests will begin to release their vast stores of carbon pushing temperatures higher even faster.)

20. accelerating reef collapses around the world, (which negatively affects fish spawning and feeding areas, which causes more collapse of global fish populations, which causes more human starvation around the world. This is because fish protein is a major source of food for the world's poorer populations.)  

21. decreased albedo from reduced snow cover increasing earth's heat,

22. soils overheating and instead of absorbing atmospheric carbon, releasing carbon back into the atmosphere increasing heat,

23. oceans overheating and instead of absorbing atmospheric carbon, releasing it (which also further increases heat, all of which results in more heat speeding up the whole process of more positive feedback loops, crossing more points of no return and tipping points.)

24. an increased amount of methane is released from methane clathrate crystals on coastal shelves because of warmer oceans (this further increases heat, possible ocean current change resulting in extreme weather changes, all of which once again results in more heat speeding up the whole process of more positive feedback loops, crossing more points of no return and tipping points. For more about this mass extinction methane tipping point and time bomb, see the third extinction-evoking global warming tipping point on this page.) 

In one way or another, directly or indirectly as the above list of heat-driven global warming consequences increase in severity, frequency, and scale the following things occur:

1. the human capacity to work or produce as before goes down,

2. repair costs and losses go up,

3. less food is available from crops and fish stocks,

4. food prices rise,

5. more people starve,

6. there are more migrations of starving people,

7. there are more conflicts and wars, and

8. more economies and nations collapse.

(Click here to learn more of the technical details about how each of the previous global warming consequences will increase in severity, frequency, and scale with each progressive Climageddon phase.) 

Phase 4: From 2044-2060, there will be continual critical reactions of global warming consequences with our other global challenges, which will cross-intensify and worsen many of the global warming consequences of this phase as well as our other global challenges themselves.

The other 12 non-global warming challenges to our global society that will both interact with each other and likely continue to worsen in this 4th phase of the Climageddon Scenario are the same as the 12 you read in phase 1 on this page. (See this page if you need to refresh yourself for what is on this long future nightmare list.)

What happens when you mix everything above together in Phase 4?

When you are thinking about all of the interacting and synergizing collective and individual impacts of the above phase 4, you must also consider their expanding direct and indirect impacts upon human social, economic and political systems and the tipping points within those unique human systems. As we continue to experience more of the multiplying, amplifying and magnifying consequences mentioned above that will also increase in frequency, severity, and scale, we will also begin to experience the most serious and random human system crashes and collapses within our social, economic and political human systems. This will then eventually push many more of these human systems ever closer toward or over their own internal tipping points.

Eventually, most all weaker and most strong countries will collapse under the ever-increasing weight of these rising internal economic political and social climate-related catastrophes and resource conflicts.

As we leave phase 4 and enter Phase 5 the nuclear reactors, toxic chemical manufacturing plants and any chemical or biological weapons stockpiles within collapsed or collapsing nations will become overrun and continue the process of nuclear meltdown, toxic chemical releases or theft of such weapons as governments have collapsed completely and local gangs and warlords seize or destroy whatever they can or fail to maintain nuclear reactors to prevent Chernobyl or Fukushima type meltdowns. Social chaos and instability will be common. At the end of Phase 4, most of today's strongest nations will begin collapsing.

In the later part of Phase 4, billions of people will become climagees and migrate toward the safest remaining areas. Billions of people worldwide will die of starvation, related conflicts in wars, and from the ongoing social chaos.

Risk and threat ratings

Phase 4 Torino impact rating:

Torino rating 10: The threat is highly certain for unprecedented localized regional, national, and international destruction. The threat is capable of causing global climatic catastrophes that may threaten the future of civilization as we know it. Attention by the public and both national and international governments to contingency planning is mandatory if the event is less than 3 decades away. Click here and go to the section of the page called Action Plan Section 2 near the bottom of the page to learn what the governments must start doing immediately.

Phase 4 US military DEFCON rating:

DEFCON 1: Maximum readiness; all forces ready for combat; nuclear war imminent or likely.

Phase 4 US Homeland Security risk rating:

Severe risk.

If you get discouraged reading the many consequences of the Climageddon Scenario, please go to this Surprise Benefits of Global Warming page, which is the most-read page on our website.

Congratulations! You have finished Phase 4 of the Climageddon Scenario. There are 2 more well-illustrated and soon-arriving Climageddon Scenario phases to review where, unfortunately, things get even worse as global warming worsens.

Because the Climageddon Scenario is already unfolding, please do not forget that if we do reach the last chance 2025 global fossil fuel reduction targets by plus or minus 5 percent, we will avoid the worst consequences of the Climageddon Scenario and mass extinction! Life over the millennia always seems to find a way to solve its previous mass extinction challenges!

To help prevent the 6 phases of the Climageddon Scenario from unfolding there exists a deadline-prioritized, effective action plan to ensure we do not trigger the later mass extinction phases. Click here for a brief overview of this plan. Once we get the greatest disruptor and threat multiplier of the 21st-century (global warming,) under control by building truly sustainable lifestyles and livelihoods, we can then move on to some of the deeper social and economic causes of global warming by focusing more on the other non-global warming global challenges mentioned on this page.    

To see the Climageddon Scenario Phase 5, click here.

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