SOURCE: AM 980 Radio Canada

DATE: November 18, 2016

SNIP: If humans continue on living as they do now, Earth’s temperature will warm by a devastating 5 C by 2100, new research has found, resulting in a world of drought, flooding, ravaged food supply, and disappearing species.

Scientists examined the Earth’s history, going back 800,000 years, to project what’s in its future.

“So it is very likely that Earth’s larger sensitivity to this interference will lead to a stronger warming than previously thought.”

That means climate change could accelerate at a faster pace than expected and would be at risk of pushing past the “temperature envelope” (the comfortable, livable environment suitable for Earth’s inhabitants) that has prevailed for 800,000 years.

“For our warming projection, we used a business-as-usual scenario for future greenhouse gas concentrations,” said Friedrich. “Our study projects a warming of about 5.9 C above pre-industrial levels, or in other words another 5 C above present-day temperatures.”

A 5 C warmer global average would result in Canada warming up between 8 – 10 C, predicts Edward A. Parson, faculty co-director at UCLA’s Emmett Center on Climate Change and the Environment.

While that might sound like a welcome reprieve from Canada’s often-frosty temperatures, Parson predicts the rise has potential to lead to catastrophe.