Planet Hothouse: Questioning the Habitability of Earth

The doomsday cautionary comes from a team of international university researchers, who believed that preventing global temperature from rising by 2°C is not resilient enough to stop the forthcoming disaster.

A temperature rise of 4°C- 5°C higher than normal temperature is expected in the climatic change “posing dangerous risks for political stability, economies, health, and finally questioning the habitability of the planet for humans.”

Publishing in the Journal of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, scientists speculated increased carbon-di-oxide and methane, rising sea levels and liquescing permafrost as the result of Hothouse Earth.

Leading member of the investigation team from the University of Stockholm, Sweden, Professor Johan Rockstrom said, “Places on Earth will become uninhabitable if Hothouse Earth becomes the reality. Several “tipping points” will act as like a “row of dominoes”, occurring one after the other and posing catastrophic risk to climate change.”
Sea levels are expected to rise by approximately 60 meters, putting coastal residents at risk. Not to forget the reason behind all these drastic changes— “Catastrophic climate change.”

With every passing year, the Earth’s oceans and forests have absorbed over 4.5 billion tonnes of carbon, which would have otherwise ended up in the atmosphere and increased global temperatures. Conversely, a Hothouse Earth will potentially turn the world’s natural carbon “sinks” or carbon storage systems into effective greenhouse gas emitters, radically increasing temperature.

The “tipping point” threats are ascertained as:

  • Increased carbon dioxide production by ocean bacteria
  • Thawing permafrost
  • Coniferous forest die-back
  • The release of methane trapped on the ocean floor, weakening land and ocean carbon sinks
  • Loss of Arctic summer sea ice
  • Melting polar ice sheets
  • Reduced northern hemisphere snow cover
  • Reduced Antarctic sea ice
  • Amazon rainforest die-back

The panel of scientists further wrote: “Our analysis suggests that the Earth system may be approaching a planetary threshold that could lock in a continuing rapid pathway toward much hotter conditions – Hothouse Earth.

“This pathway would be propelled by strong, intrinsic, biogeophysical feedbacks difficult to influence by human actions, a pathway that could not be reversed, steered or substantially slowed.

“Where such a threshold might be being uncertain, but it could be only decades ahead at a temperature rise of (around) 2° C above pre-industrial.”

The only way out of this crisis is the active approach taken by the environmentalists and scientists by taking “deep cuts” in eliminating carbon-di-oxide from the air by the means of technological advancements, and by also reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Dr. Phil Williamson, a climate researcher from the University of East Anglia stated, “In the context of the summer of 2018, this is definitely not a case of crying wolf, raising a false alarm since the wolves are now in sight.”

Discussing the impact of climatic change, the Professor of Climate Science at University College, London, Chris Rapley reported, “Previous research has shown that an increase in the mean global temperature of 11°C -12°C would make more than half of the land area currently occupied by humans uninhabitable.

So, a ‘runaway’ warming to a new and uncontrollable hot state would represent an existential threat to humanity and the majority of existing.