"It’s all a game of odds. We’ve never been here before. We just know two things: one, the CO2 we put into the atmosphere stays there for many years, so it is “irreversible” in real-time (barring some feat of geo-engineering); and two, that CO2 build-up has the potential to unleash “catastrophic” warming.
When I see a problem that has even a 1 percent probability of occurring and is 'irreversible' and potentially 'catastrophic,' I buy insurance. That is what taking climate change seriously is all about." —Thomas L. Friedman
"Over Earth’s history, ocean life has recovered from numerous sudden extinction episodes by adaptation and evolution of new species, but the time scales for extinction and re-population are millions of years, not a few hundred years. Human-driven ocean acidification is affecting the ocean far faster than the Earth’s natural recovery pace can accommodate. Today’s rate of acidification is 10 times faster than anything experienced since the demise of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago."
Think of CO2 in the atmosphere as water in a bathtub. If you partly open the drain and run the tap at the same rate, the water level stays level. If you open the tap a bit more, the water level rises until it overflows.As long as we keeping pouring CO2 into the air faster than nature drains it out, the CO2 level rises and the planet warms. Even a small imbalance, over time, makes a big difference.
"You don't have to believe in climate change to solve it. Everything we do to raise energy efficiency, will make money, improve security & health, and stabilize climate." - physicist Amory Lovins, chairman of the Rocky Mountain Institute.
What do a banana and a piece of coal have in common? Both are made of carbon and both provide us with energy. Coal stores carbon that was in the atmosphere millions of years ago. A banana stores carbon that was in the atmosphere just a few months ago.
We are not the radicals. Oil companies are the radicals. They are willing to alter the chemical composition of the atmosphere to make more money. - inspired by Bill McKibben, environmental author and founder of 350.org
“It’s a bit like asking us to believe in Santa Claus after we have seen our parents putting the presents under the tree.” – Naomi Oreskes, Professor of Science History at the University of Califormia (San Diego)
“In science, 95 percent certainty is often considered the gold standard for certainty.” - Seth Borenstein Associate Press science writer
"To do nothing when the situation is changing rapidly is not a conservative thing to do." — Spencer R. Weart from his book, The Discovery of Global Warming.
‘The science behind the greenhouse effect was simple enough to have been widely understood by the mid 19th century, when the light bulb and the telephone and the automobile where being invented – and not the atomic bomb or the iPhone or the space shuttle. The greenhouse effect isn’t rock science.’ – Nate Silver, author of The Signal and the Noise, page 376.