This must be a pretty depressing thing to hear, for any young person who thought they had a future, or for older people who have built their lives around the futures of their children. But I think there's something freeing about knowing that it's all coming to an end, and I like his advice to do something you love.
What Does Near-Term Extinction Mean?
By now, more people are at least beginning to understand that we have a serious problem with climate change. Scientists used to tell us that we need to stop carbon dioxide going over 350 ppm in the atmosphere. That was considered to be the tipping point – the point of no return. Last year, it topped 400 ppm.
So, where are we at now?
Not many people are prepared to tell us that we're now on a collision course with the destiny we've created for ourselves and all the other living beings on the planet.
But one scientist who does talk about it is Guy McPherson – Professor Emeritus of Natural Resources and Ecology & Evolutionary Biology at the University of Arizona. Not that he teaches there these days. Dr. McPherson is not welcome at the U. of A. as long as he keeps saying that economic growth is killing the planet and that our industrial civilization is driving most living creatures, including ourselves, to extinction.
His message, very simply, is that we're now way past the point of no return, and that it's time to consider how to live our lives in light of the fact that we're over the tipping point and heading ever more rapidly toward mass extinction.
Guy McPherson talks to groups large and small around the country, including school groups. So our conversation begins with climate change and then moves on to what he tells people, especially young people, about what’s happening to our planet and how they can relate to that.
The video runs about 25 minutes. You may want to watch it more than once to digest everything Dr. McPherson is saying.
And you can visit his site at Nature Bats Last to follow his blog and see some of his talks.