Climate change: More studies needed on possibility of human extinction

Climate change: More studies needed on possibility of human extinction

From BBC

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Catastrophic climate change outcomes, including human extinction, are not being taken seriously enough by scientists, a new study says.

The authors say that the consequences of more extreme warming – still on the cards if no action is taken – are “dangerously underexplored”.

They argue that the world needs to start preparing for the possibility of what they term the “climate endgame”.

They want UN scientists to investigate the risk of catastrophic change.

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According to this new paper, the closest attempts to directly understand or address how climate change could lead to global catastrophe have come from popular science books such as The Uninhabitable Earth and not from mainstream science research.

In recent years climate scientists have more often studied the impacts of warming of around 1.5C or 2C above the temperatures seen in 1850, before the onset of global industrialisation.

These studies show that keeping temperatures close to these levels this century will place heavy burdens on global economies, but they do not envisage the end of humanity.

Researchers have focussed on these lower temperature scenarios for good reasons.

The Paris climate agreement saw almost every nation on Earth sign up to a deal that aims to keep the rise in global temperatures “well below” 2C this century, and make efforts to keep it under 1.5C.

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