Estimated risk level for going over a global warming tipping point and solution

Last updated 7.6.23

Let’s first consider that a 40% risk for a series of global warming superstorms costing $1 trillion each to respond to actually presents a comparatively smaller threat of overall destructive impacts than a 1/100th of 1 percent risk of irreversible global warming leading to extinction or near extinction of the whole human race. Do not fail to see the proportional difference in these risks: A 40% risk of superstorms poses less threat of dire consequences than a 1/100th of 1 percent risk of irreversible global warming.

Irreversible climate change means that we will not be able to get the dangerous levels of excess greenhouse gases (like carbon) out of our atmosphere and back down to a normal and human-safe pre-industrial level for hundreds to thousands of years. (As of July 2023, We are currently at the insane atmospheric carbon level of 420 ppm. We will soon enter the generally considered irreversible and second phase of runaway global heating sometime between 2025-2031. This is when we enter into the carbon 425-450 ppm range.)

We’ve already experienced global warming related superstorms and know the damage and havoc they wreak. This pales in comparison to irreversible global warming’s potential for destruction and chaos. So that puts the enormity of risk and consequences in perspective, indicating how utterly serious and urgent the global warming emergency is. Realize that   

if we do go over any one or more of the global warming tipping points, we will quickly find ourselves in an irreversible global warming self-reinforcing cycle (a positive feedback loop), rapidly descending into near extinction or extinction-level climate destabilization.

To help quantify this tipping point risk—remember that crossing past tipping points has already lead to irreversible global warming—one of our most respected climate scientists Michael Mann has estimated the current risk level for going over more global warming tipping points at not 1/100th of 1%, not 1%, but at approximately a full 10%! (In his article, professor Mann uses the commonly used terminology fat tail to describe global warming tipping point events.) If one of our best climate scientists has set a 10% risk level for us crossing a global warming tipping point, how should you begin to think about this level risk for crossing a global warming tipping point?

How should we be handing this risk if the nations of the world would not allow even a fraction of one percent risk level for global thermonuclear war to go less than 100% managed and controlled? How in any rational way can we continue to allow a 10% risk level of crossing any global warming tipping point to still go unmanaged when it can directly lead to the eventual extinction of humanity?

To put a 10% risk level in the perspective of your own daily decisions, would you get on an airplane where there was a 10% risk of crashing, a 5% crash risk, a 1% risk, or even a one-half of 1% risk? If you wouldn't do these things and our most powerful nuclear armed governments won't leave the smallest nuclear war risk less than 100% managed, why after 30 years of warnings are we still leaving a 10% risk of going over any global warming tipping point so poorly managed --- particularly while global warming is still rising exponentially?

In order to help you better visualize the global warming tipping point risk as well as why we are not effectively acting to end the extreme risks of the escalating global warming emergency, we strongly recommend you view the video The Most Terrifying Video You'll Ever See 2. It has been watched almost 7 million times. It is all about how we should act to wisely manage the global warming tipping point risk. Click here to watch that video now.

Please note: At Job One because of the difficulty of fully quantifying the known and unknown momentum factors involved in the current development processes of various tipping points, we believe the risk of going over any important global warming tipping point to be significantly higher than 10%. But even a 1% risk level is completely unacceptable.

Another perspective on the global warming risk level: the bet that no one has the right to place

By our not resolving escalating global warming in time to avert the ever increasing probability of crossing more global warming tipping points it has already lead us into irreversible global warming (which also eventually leads to extinction-level climate destabilization), we are in fact placing a "bet" that no one should ever place on the gambling table! Gambling with the known and unknown tipping points of irreversible global warming and losing the bet comes with a "gambling debt" of suffering, death and financial loss that is so large and devastating, for such an extended length of time, for so much (if not all) of humanity, that no individual, corporation or nation (or even all nations together) will ever be able to pay it off or recover from even a fraction of its damage during their life cycles.

This unbearable truth also demands that we immediately stop gambling with the future of humanity and remove the escalating global warming bet that we are currently and unknowingly putting on the gambling table. By not making the effective, radical and immediate changes needed to remove our current global warming inaction bet, we are acting exactly like a nation leaving nuclear weapons unguarded or not securing every step of their manufacturing, distribution and deployment.

No government official in their right mind would ever let this happen. Yet, like an ostrich with his head In the sand, we continue to gamble, foolishly betting that we will be safe from the known and unknown tipping points of global warming no matter how long we delay effective global warming remedial actions.

The solution

The solution for preventing extinction-level climate destabilization depends upon radical and immediate global changes in how we produce energy and how we behave and cooperate collectively as humanity. These changes are far larger, are needed faster, and are at a scale that has never been achieved before.

Now is the time to realize and accept we are facing the greatest and most important adaptive challenge and transformational evolutionary adventure in human history. Now is the time to work together effectively, using strategies like those found in The Job One For Humanity Plan, to end global warming. If we fail to get to carbon neutral, or to get most of the world’s energy being generated in green ways, we will have delayed too long on neutralizing what is almost certainly the most urgent existential threat of our times.

We cannot ethically, morally or legally allow ourselves to remain in this untenable extreme risk level for one second longer than is necessary. The scale and severity of the probable long-term harm at a global level is so unthinkable that every emergency global warming solution we enact must do everything possible to get us out of this unconscionable risk level at the greatest possible speed.

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For more detailed information on why we are already in a global warming state of emergency be sure to also see


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