What a climate researcher working at a climate change think tank is telling loved ones, and close friends can be helpful and revealing.
I have been a full time climate change researcher and analyst for the last 12 years. I have an extensive background in data analysis tools. I have read about 25,000 pages of climate science and research papers.
What I tell my children and my closest friends is not the same as everything I publish or co-publish on the climate emergency. I know in painful detail what our climate future looks like.
I keep my climate advice very simple. (My children and friends know that almost everything that I am working on is also published on the Job One for Humanity website if they want more.)
I hope what I say to my children and best friends about the climate change extinction emergency might also help you. Here is what I tell them:
1. Do everything within your power to get our governments to enforce the real and radical global fossil fuel reductions needed to save humanity from runaway global heating. Individual actions alone at this point do not have any realistic hope of making the colossal global changes that are needed immediately!
Only immediate government action can save us from global climate catastrophe one minute before the stroke of midnight.
Unfortunately, our governments have utterly failed for sixty years to get climate change under control. It is no longer probable or rational to blindly believe that our governments will finally act effectively and in time! So...
2. Enjoy your life as sustainably as possible right now! Do not hold off on doing any essential things you want to do. For example, do not postpone the travel you want because many of the most beautiful natural areas of the world are deteriorating quickly.
The reason for this contrarian "enjoy your life now" advice is simple. Climate stability is worsening very quickly. Climate change's many primary and secondary consequences are accelerating so fast that it will not be long before it will be far more difficult to live a normal life, travel, etc. And finally,
3. If you want to minimize your future suffering as climate change rapidly accelerates, begin proven emergency preparation and adaptation strategies right now!
While I give this advice to my 30-year-old children, I know they probably won't do number 3 three above. Instead, they will continue to focus their attention and resources on the typical life passage actions appropriate to their age group, i.e., mate finding and career and family building. This is natural and is as it should be.
Accordingly, my wife and I will soon be moving and building a climate change-resistant new home in a global heating-safer area about 1,000 miles north of where we currently live. It is our hope that our children will eventually move up with us and inherit this climate emergency-prepared home and property as the climate conditions where they are become unbearable.
I do not know of many other parents planning for this type of climate relocation assistance and support for their children. But, I believe this is mainly because a few parents truly understand just how bad the soon-arriving severe next wave of climate consequences will be.
For a deeper understanding and the documentation for the climate information in items 1-3 above, click the links within those items.
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