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The melting Arctic, and revolutions to come
The Ecologist - Setting the Environmental Agenda Since 1970 ^ | April 26, 2014 | Robert and Jack Hunziker

Posted on 04/27/2014 9:59:06 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

The world is facing the imminent threat of severe climate disruption from the warming Arctic, write Robert & Jack Hunziker, leading to a global crisis. But the response of the powerful is only to increase fossil fuel exploitation - and damn the consequences.

"Imagine the backlash in the country if food shortages hit America because of the failure of the government to set policies to convert fossil fuels to renewable energy sources."

The 'warming of the Arctic' could become one of the greatest catastrophes in human history, even exceeding the notoriety of Adolf Hitler and Genghis Khan.

Likely, it will impact more people than the combined effect of those brutal leaders. In fact, global warming may eventually be categorized as the greatest threat of all time, even greater than the Black Death's 75-to-200 million dead, circa 1350.

The integrity of Arctic sea ice is essential to prevent the risks of (1) methane outbreak and / or (2) fierce, damaging weather throughout the Northern Hemisphere.

Arctic sea ice continues its decline

According to the NSIDC (National Snow and Ice Data Center, Boulder, CO), "Average ice extent for March 2014 was the fifth lowest for the month in the satellite record. Through 2014, the linear rate of decline for March ice extent is 2.6% per decade relative to the 1981 to 2010 average."

Extreme weather events, as a consequence of the warming Arctic, will likely wreak havoc over the entire Northern Hemisphere, causing severe droughts, freezing cold spells, and widespread flooding. Some early evidence of this is already at hand.

These combinations of extreme weather events have the potential to rival the damage of the great mythical floods. Already, Eastern Europe had a taste of extreme climate change in 2013 when a once-in-500-year flood hit hard, wiping out vast swathes of cropland.

In the future, when shortages of food and water become more commonplace because of extreme climactic change, it is probable that desperate groups of roughnecks will battle for food and water, similar to the dystopia depicted in Mad Max (Warner Bros. 1979) the story of a breakdown of society where bandit tribes battle over the last remaining droplets of petroleum.

Over time, climate change is setting the stage for worldwide wars over food and water.

Origin of food & water wars

Research conducted by Jennifer Francis, PhD, Rutgers University - Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, shows that Arctic sea ice loss, with its consequent warming, impacts upper-level atmospheric circulation, radically distorting jet streams above 30,000 feet, which adversely affects weather patterns throughout the Northern Hemisphere

(Source: Jennifer A. Francis and Stephen J. Vavrus, Evidence Linking Arctic Amplification to Extreme Weather in Mid-Latitudes, Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 39, L06801, 17 March 2012.)

"Gradual warming of the globe may not be noticed by most, but everyone - either directly or indirectly - will be affected to some degree by changes in the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events as green-house gases continue to accumulate in the atmosphere." (Ibid.)

Scientists are already cognizant of how badly a warming Arctic impacts subsistence, for example, according to the Arctic Methane Emergency Group:

"The weather extremes ... are causing real problems for farmers ... World food production can be expected to decline, with mass starvation inevitable. The price of food will rise inexorably, producing global unrest and making food security even more of an issue." (Source: Arctic Methane Emergency Group).

The Syrian connection

"The nexus between climate change, human migration, and instability constitutes ... a transcendent challenge", wrote Michael Werz and Max Hofman in 'Climate Change, Migration, and Conflict, The Arab Spring and Climate Change' (Climate and Security Correlations Series, Feb. 2013).

"The conjunction of these undercurrents was most recently visible during the Arab Spring, where food availability, increasing food prices, drought, and poor access to water, as well as urbanization and international migration contributed to the pressures that underpinned the political upheaval."

As for example, Syria suffered from devastating droughts in the decade leading up to its rebellion as the country's total water resources cut in half between 2002 and 2008. As a result, the drier winters hit Syria, which, at the time, was the top wheat-growing region of the eastern Mediterranean, thereby exacerbating its crisis.

In 2009 the UN and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies reported that more than 800,000 Syrians lost their entire means of livelihood because of drought. (Robert F. Worth, Earth is Parched Where Syrian Farms Thrived, New York Times, Oct. 13, 2010.)

The phenomenon is global

In the recent past, ferocious weather conditions have struck all across the planet, for example: •a once every 500-year flood in Eastern Europe, •a once in 50-year drought in the US Midwest, •the worst drought in 200 years in China, affecting more people than the entire population of North America; •the worst flooding in Pakistan in 100 years (a continuous deluge lasting for over a month); •the most costly flash flood damage in Canada's modern history; •Syria's drought has been classified as the worst in the history of the Fertile Crescent; •Brazil is experiencing it's worst drought in decades.

The list goes on, and on, and on. Merciless weather is lashing out with torrential storms and embedded droughts like never before. No other period of time in modern history comes close.

The reason behind the weather dilemma has everything to do with global warming in the Arctic, which is warming 2-3 times faster than elsewhere on the planet.

In turn, the Arctic, which serves as the thermostat for the entire Northern Hemisphere, is disrupting the jet streams, which, as a result, influences weather patterns throughout the hemisphere.

This is causing droughts and torrential storms to become "embedded or stalled" for long duration, e.g., Colorado's torrential downpour and massive flooding in 2013, which was as fierce as superabundant coastal tropical storms but not at all like mid-latitude, middle America storms.

History repeats

Once food and water shortages become widespread as a result of a more extreme and unpredictable climate behavior, it is highly probable that people all across the planet will become so disgusted and distraught that they'll be looking for blood.

In that regard, history shows that, during such times, desperation overrides prudence. Therefore, hiding behind security gates and armed troops won't make a difference, similar to the late 18th century French Revolution when masses of citizens used pitchforks, stones, and sticks to overwhelm the king's formidable armed forces.

At the time, France was one of the mightiest forces in the world, but like toy soldiers, its army fell at the hands of its own citizens. In the end, civilizations cannot, and have not, survived the forces of desperation born of starvation.

In the case of Paris, two years of poor grain harvests because of bad weather conditions set the stage for revolution. On June 21, 1791 the king, queen, and their attendants fled their Paris residences, whisked away in carriages, as masses of enraged, starving protestors swarmed the city streets.

The forewarnings had been there years beforehand. On August 20, 1986 Finance Minister Calonne informed King Louis XVI that the royal finances were insolvent (because of costly foreign wars - like the US today).

Hard times hit - also similar to US today. Six months later the First Assembly of Notables met, resisting imposition of taxes and fiscal reforms - similar to the US right wing today.

It was nearly three years later April 27th, 1789 when the Reveillon Riot in Paris, caused by low wages (like US wages today, Wal-Mart, McDonalds) and food shortages (not in US yet), led to 25 deaths by troops.

A week without food, and civilization is over

Thereafter, the public's anger grew to a fever pitch. On July the 14th rioters stormed the most notorious jail for political prisoners in all of France, the Bastille. By July 17th the 'Great Fear' had begun to taken command of the streets as the peasantry revolted against their socio-economic system.

One of their prime targets was Queen Marie Antoinette, the Dauphin of the world's most powerful monarchy, whose last spoken words were delivered to Henri Sanson, her executioner, as she accidentally stepped on his foot upon climbing the steps of the scaffold: "Monsieur, I ask your pardon. I did not do it on purpose", before losing her head in front of tens of thousands of cheering Parisians, screaming "Vive la Nation!"

Flash forward in time into the future, and imagine the backlash in the country if food shortages hit America because of the failure of the government to set policies to convert fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.

As such, the US could have led the entire world to conversion to renewable sources of energy. As things stand, it is a 'missed opportunity'.

In stark contrast to America's reluctance, Scotland's energy sources are already 40% renewables and will be 100% by 2020.

Food prices and revolution

According to a landmark study, "Food insecurity is both cause and a consequence of political violence." (Henk-Jan Brinkman and Cullen S. Hendrix, Food Insecurity and Conflict, The World Development Report 2011.)

The link between high grain prices and riots is well established. For example, according to The Economist magazine (December 2007), when high grain prices sparked riots in 48 countries, the magazine's food-price index was at its highest point since originating in 1845.

As for a more current situation, the Arab Spring uprisings of 2011 brought political and economic issues to the forefront, but behind the scenes, climate stress played a big role.

According to Marco Lagif of the New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI) in Technology Review, MIT, August 2011, the single factor that triggers riots around the world is the price of food.

The evidence comes from data gathered by the United Nations that plots the price of food against time, the so-called Food Price Index of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN.

On December 13, 2011, four days before Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire in Tunisia, sparking the Arab Spring riots, NECSI contacted the US government, warning that global food prices were about to cross the tipping point when almost anything can trigger riots.

Accordingly, the NECSI study was presented, by invitation, at the World Economic Forum in Davos and was featured as one of the top ten discoveries in science in 2011 by Wired magazine.

The Arab Spring - an artefact of hunger

"Definitely, it is one of the causes of the Arab Spring", says Shenggen Fan, director-general of the International Food Policy Research Institute. As well, it is increasingly clear that the climate models that predicted the countries surrounding the Mediterranean would start to dry out are correct.

(Source: "Human-Caused Climate Change Already a Major Factor in more Frequent Mediterranean Droughts," National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NOAA, October 27, 2011.)

As for Syria, it is a prime example of the drama of changing climatic conditions and the consequences. The country's farmlands north and east of the Euphrates River constitute the breadbasket of the Middle East. Unfortunately, up to 60% of Syria's land experienced one of the worst droughts on record from 2006-11.

In Syria's northeast and the south, nearly 75% suffered total crop failure. Herders in the northeast lost 85% of their livestock. According to the UN, 800,000 Syrians had their livelihoods totally wiped out, moving to the cities to find work or to refugee camps, similar to what happened in Paris in the late 18th century.

Furthermore, the drought pushed three million Syrians into extreme poverty. According to Abeer Etefa of the World Food Program, "Food inflation in Syria remains the main issue for citizens" - eerily similar to what occurred in France in the late 18th century just prior to it's revolution.

The French Revolution redux, in America?

As countries like the United States hastily continue their pursuit of policies dedicated to 'energy independence' by fracking, using extreme pressure to force toxic chemicals underground to suck up every last remnant of oil and gas, the warming of the Arctic is elevated, and the jet streams become more distorted, resulting in extremely harsh, deadly and unpredictable weather systems, pummeling the entire Northern Hemisphere.

Eventually, the outcome leads to shortages of food, and like a flashback of 18th century France, people starve or fight.

Post Script: "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." George Santayana (1863-1952), Spanish / American philosopher, essayist, poet, and novelist.


Robert and Jack Hunziker live in Los Angeles and can be reached at

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: arctic; climatechange; economy; globalwarming
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Eye-opener, isn't it? They are BEYOND radical.
1 posted on 04/27/2014 9:59:06 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

GAG! A$$holes, F them.

2 posted on 04/27/2014 10:01:05 AM PDT by mongo141 (Revolution ver. 2.0, just a matter of when, not a matter of if!)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The Arctic is not melting

3 posted on 04/27/2014 10:03:29 AM PDT by Nachum (Obamacare: It's. The. Flaw.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
The Ecologist - Setting the Environmental Agenda Since 1970

When the agenda was stopping global cooling.

4 posted on 04/27/2014 10:03:52 AM PDT by AU72
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

There is a problem here....with a environmental guy who has no knowledge of cause and effect.

Once you get a fairly substantial amount of the ice to flows down off the side of Canada (east and west), and gets into the Atlantic and Pacific streams. This radically changes weather. The reason we know? It’s done it before. All of this will eventually bring about cooler temps which mean an eventual heavy snowfall in the north circles, and more creation of ice.

The thing about climate’s eternal. You can’t stop it. To pretend that it’s all the fallacy of this whole mess.

5 posted on 04/27/2014 10:07:13 AM PDT by pepsionice
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

They state lots of “facts” without support, and when they do, its as reported by the Super Duper Sky Is Falling Radical Environmentalist Foundation.

6 posted on 04/27/2014 10:07:17 AM PDT by Avid Coug
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To: AU72

lololololololololololol! Koolaid alert. See, higher education can have different meanings. Sounds like these clowns are not just educated, but high as well.

7 posted on 04/27/2014 10:07:21 AM PDT by rktman (Ethnicity: Nascarian. Race: Daytonianfivehundrian)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
The article explains why it is critical for the cause of government control to divert water from the incredibly productive central valley of California so as to save some obscure little fish. It will hasten the day when food shortages become a reality and the return of the central valley to it's original near-desert condition will be touted as proof of "extreme climate change".

Note how "global warming" has morphed into "climate change" and now, "extreme climate change". Next, no doubt, will be "catastrophic extreme climate change" or some other enhancement to try to convince people of something they would otherwise reject.

8 posted on 04/27/2014 10:10:35 AM PDT by William Tell
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I thought AlGore saved us from all of that global warming stuff?!?!?!

What with his preaching, and selling of ‘carbon credits’ etc..

Snowed a bit last night here in my town, a mere two hour drive from the border to ‘Old Mehico’

Third time this month. It’s April for crying out loud, not February. Used to be that the plants were sprouting, and the fruit trees were leafing well by this time.

9 posted on 04/27/2014 10:13:30 AM PDT by LegendHasIt
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Joe Bastardi said yesterday that based on evidence that it ‘tain’t so.

10 posted on 04/27/2014 10:23:04 AM PDT by Paladin2
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

should have more food if we can use the land after the ice melts. They don’t call it Greenland for nothing.

11 posted on 04/27/2014 10:26:07 AM PDT by morphing libertarian
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To: rktman

“On August 20, 1986 Finance Minister Calonne informed King Louis XVI that the royal finances were insolvent.” I vividly remember that day. It was like when President Roosevelt got on TV to announce the 1929 stock market crash. The author mentions “the notoriety of Adolf Hitler and Genghis Khan.” Perhaps he forgot to mention Stalin and Mao. Stop buying Chinese products like Apples built built with slave labor. The Chinese are now the major polluters. Are Robert and Jack a couple? That may explain some of this flapdoodle.

12 posted on 04/27/2014 10:27:28 AM PDT by Vehmgericht
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Captured from Earth View 10 minutes ago.
13 posted on 04/27/2014 10:30:27 AM PDT by PeaceBeWithYou (De Oppresso Liber! (50 million and counting in Afghanistan and Iraq))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
14 posted on 04/27/2014 10:34:32 AM PDT by Technocrat (Romney-Ryan 2012 No I'm not changing my Sig)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
So why wouldn't a warmer climate extend the agricultural zones and lead to LESS food shortages?

Vulcans would hate environmentalists.

15 posted on 04/27/2014 10:38:30 AM PDT by Bratch
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To: Vehmgericht

I coulda swore it was Teddy Ruse-evelt that went on TV in like 1906 or something. :>}

16 posted on 04/27/2014 10:40:45 AM PDT by rktman (Ethnicity: Nascarian. Race: Daytonianfivehundrian)
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To: Avid Coug has reams of charts on this subject:

Interesting, as you get to the Antarctic charts it looks as though ice cover there exceeds the norm at about the same level as Arctic ice cover recedes.

The Earth is in majestic balance.

17 posted on 04/27/2014 10:48:15 AM PDT by plangent
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
According to the NSIDC (National Snow and Ice Data Center, Boulder, CO), "Average ice extent for March 2014 was the fifth lowest for the month in the satellite record. Through 2014, the linear rate of decline for March ice extent is 2.6% per decade relative to the 1981 to 2010 average."

As the saying goes: if you torture data enough, it'll tell you anything you want.

If you put the brakes on the spin cycle, here's what you're left with:

Ice extent for March 2014 is greater than it was for at least 4 other recent years. It's too early to tell whether this is the beginning of an upward trend; but, it is safe to say that an apparent downward trend has been put in serious doubt. We can't determine a trend from the annual data; but, if we were to take the average over an arbitrarily chosen time period and fudge the data by mixing decades with years, we could force the data to confess to a decline.

18 posted on 04/27/2014 10:50:25 AM PDT by USFRIENDINVICTORIA
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
I recently read an article on "the dust bowl" of the 1930's where they called it the worst man made ecological disaster of all time.........They blamed it on the farmers and their poor farming techniques........

It's hard to deal with stupid.....

19 posted on 04/27/2014 10:52:58 AM PDT by Hot Tabasco (Under Reagan spring always arrived on time.....)
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Some one throw some water on these warming fools...I’m melting, I’m melting!

20 posted on 04/27/2014 10:53:19 AM PDT by PoloSec ( Believe the Gospel: how that Christ died for our sins, was buried and rose again)
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