‘Earth Overshoot Day’ — A Climate Change/Humanity Indicator

July 29, 2021

Some more climate-related items for this Thursday afternoon as the weekend looms just ahead — another wrecked week of weird.

A special day today, sort of hand-in-hand with climate change and the environment — Earth Overshoot Day:

Greed pretty-much is the origin story for CO2-fed climate change, and a real, up-close view of the self-centered materialism of mankind is over-living — background/details via IFLScience:

Today, July 29, is Earth Overshoot Day, the annual reminder that marks the date our demand for ecological resources largely outweighs what our planet can regenerate in a single year. For many decades humanity has been in debt with nature, a debt that we will eventually have to pay.

This year’s calculation shows a 6.6 percent increase in Global Ecological Footprint compared to 2020, a year in which Earth Overshoot Day moved forward a month to August 22 due to reduced emissions from the pandemic lockdowns. Unfortunately, the brief reprieve made little difference long term as earlier this year humanity smashed another record for highest levels of carbon dioxide detected in the atmosphere.

Earth Overshoot Day is calculated by the Global Footprint Network. It’s a balance of supply and demand. On one hand, there’s the biocapacity of a country (or a state or a city) e.g. how much forests, grazing, lands, cropland, fishing, etc it has. On the other, there are population demands for food, materials, housing, and carbon emissions.

From today until the end of the year we are operating in an “ecological deficit.” We’re basically using 74-percent more resources than Earth’s ecosystems can regenerate.

Today also marks the 100 days until the UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow.
COP26 has been seen by many as a make-or-break threshold for serious climate action.
The worse consequences of the climate crisis can be avoided as long as politicians take bold steps at the conference.
But as many climate activists and scientists are saying, the best day to make those changes is today.

“There is no benefit in waiting to take action, regardless of what transpires at the COP,” Global Footprint Network CEO Laurel Hanscom said in a statement.
“The pandemic has demonstrated that societies can shift rapidly in the face of disaster. But being caught unprepared brought great economic and human cost. When it comes to our predictable future of climate change and resource constraints, individuals, institutions, and governments who prepare themselves will fare better. Global consensus is not a prerequisite to recognizing one’s own risk exposure, so let’s take decisive action now, wherever we are.”

Yet the kicker:

It is important to stress that while today marks the global Earth Overshoot Day, not every nation is equally voracious in using Earth’s resources.
The United States and Canada had their tipping point day on March 14 of this year.
The United Kingdom’s was on May 19.
In contrast, Chad’s is not due until December 16, Indonesia, December 18, and the island nation of São Tomé and Príncipes’ Overshoot Day is on December 27.

We cooking!
In more ways than overshooting, the scariest is from spaces where it’s supposed to be cold, there’s shit happening — this afternoon via CNN:

Greenland is experiencing its most significant melting event of the year as temperatures in the Arctic surge. The amount of ice that melted on Tuesday alone would be enough to cover the entire state of Florida in two inches of water.

It’s the third instance of extreme melting on the continent in the past decade, during which time the melting has stretched farther inland than the entire satellite era, which began in the 1970s.
Greenland lost more than 8.5 billion tons of surface mass on Tuesday, and 18.4 billion tons since Sunday, according to the Denmark Meteorological Institute.
While this week’s total ice loss is not as extreme as a similar event in 2019 — a record melt year — the area of the ice sheet that’s melting is larger.
“It’s a significant melt,” Ted Scambos, a senior research scientist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado, told CNN.
“July 27th saw most of the eastern half of Greenland from the northern tip all the way to the southern tip mostly melted, which is unusual.”

Thomas Slater, a glaciologist at the University of Leeds: ‘“While such events are concerning, the science is clear … Meaningful climate targets and action can still limit how much the global sea level will rise this century, reducing the damage done by severe flooding to people and infrastructure around the world.”

Problem there is zilch cooperation.
And shit is really happening due to climate change, and that’s a fact — and it’s tuned in together:

Climate experts argue that extreme weather like the recent deadly floods in Germany and heat waves in Canada and the western United States are likely to become more frequent as rising global temperatures create greater instability.

“If we think more globally, we’ve had some very, very severe weather events recently, 49.6 Celsius (121.28 F), an all-time temperature record in Canada, ” Mike Kendon, senior climate scientist at the U.N. Meteorological Office said.
“When you see observations like that, they are taking us outside our own envelope of experience of what we have seen before. An event like that is simply not possible to explain without the human influence on the climate system.”

According to the U.N. World Meteorological Organization, 2020 was one of the three warmest years on record globally.
It was the warmest year on record for Europe.

Beyond the actual disasters, we have to contend with shit-turd-assholes:

We’re in this predicament due to Republicans/MAGA hatters/conservatives, whatever-the-fuck you want to call them, and they shit on us from many levels. One aspect is a pisser  — ignorant arrogance, as with ‘Little Marco.’
They’re creating havoc on society — a new study reports it’s the information source.
From the Abstract: ‘Political conservatism in the United States was strongly associated with engaging in weaker mitigation behaviors, lower COVID-19 risk perceptions, greater misperceptions, and stronger vaccination hesitancy … Furthermore, COVID-19 skepticism in the United States was strongly correlated with distrust in liberal-leaning mainstream news outlets and trust in conservative-leaning news outlets, suggesting that polarization may be driven by differences in information environments

And not only with COVID, but about every fucking thing, especially with the development of reasoning, judgment and decision-making:

Given the salience of politically divisive topics like climate change, it is perhaps unsurprising that research on why people believe what they believe about science has focused on the role of political ideology.
There are a variety of theories that make somewhat different claims in this space, but a common feature is that anti-science beliefs are largely cultural.
For example, historical evidence shows that conservative think-tanks actively politicized global warming (undermining scientists and relevant experts); this polluted information environment is then transmitted to the general public and interacts with the ideology of individuals such that political conservatives are motivated to accept anti-science attitudes (e.g., to protect their political identities).

Ending in maybe fire and rain with Sweet Baby James:

“Lord knows when the cold wind blows it’ll turn your head around…”

(Illustration out front: Salvador Dalí’s 1958 painting, “Meditative Rose,” found here)

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