Why 2 degree is not enough

Recently half of the peak of the Fluchthorn, a massive rock mountain in Switzerland, collapsed and nearly destroyed a complete village in a sudden surge of rocks. With the permafrost melting, many permafrost reinforced mountain rock formations are at risk of collapsing. Hard to imagine the consequences if all those rocks come tumbling down ...

But that is only one of the many atrocities of climate change. And for those who still believe that it won’t be so bad and we still have much room to manage this minor problem: Be aware that what we experience already today will remain with us for the next several thousands of years even if we should stop all GHG emissions today: Floods, droughts, land devastation, drinking water scarcety, rock collapsing, migration ...

These effects correspond to the greenhouse gas content in the atmosphere which we have generated by today – and even if we stop emitting from today onwards: this is what we get and it will not recover to what we know from former times! Just imagine how bad it will get if we don’t manage to achieve the 2 degree target. Does everybody understand the phenomenon of irreversibility and what tipping points mean in terms of climate change? Is all that understood whenever we discuss climate change in terms of “degrees of increased temperature”? I would highly appreciate it if scientists and journalists put more emphasis on what really comes to us if we talk about “2 degrees increase”.

Sincerely yours

Matthias Mersmann


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