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Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Game Over for Climate Change
May 31, 2012
NYT Op-Ed: "Game Over for the Climate"
Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies and author of
“Storms of My Grandchildren,” recently wrote a compelling New York Times op-ed piece
on his worry about Canada's plan to exploit its vast tar sands. As he
puts it, "If Canada proceeds, and we do nothing, it will be game over
for the climate."
Canada's tar sands,
Hansen points out, contain twice the amount of CO2 emitted by global oil
use in our entire history. Exploiting the tar sands, while
simultaneously burning conventional fossil fuels at current rates, would
raise the carbon dioxide level in the atmosphere to levels that would
create global climate catastrophe.
"If we turn to
these dirtiest of fuels, instead of finding ways to phase out our
addiction to fossil fuels, there is no hope of keeping carbon
concentrations below 500 p.p.m. — a level that would, as earth’s history
shows, leave our children a climate system that is out of their