Using “Pre-Industrial” as a Measure of Anthropogenic Warming was an Omnicidal, Irreversible Mistake

A recurring theme, as we chronicle the unravelling of the biosphere, is the term “Sooner than Previously Thought”. Every prediction of cause and effect in the climate system is happening much sooner than expected or predicted.
Clearly, we have grossly underestimated “Climate Sensitivity.” I covered that catastrophic failing previously, Full Earth System Sensitivity to CO2 has been Grossly Underestimated
We shouldn’t be surprised that a violent patriarchy underestimated “Climate Sensitivity”.

Because the narrative has been controlled by the dominant culture of Industrial Civilisation and its proponents, the corporations who control all the mainstream media, we have been corralled into ‘believing’ that we could destabilise the atmosphere ‘safely’ by increasing global mean temperatures by 1.5 or 2C. Neither of these guardrails or what has now become missed targets, were either safe or achievable. The Myth of 2C Being Safe and Achievable

William Nordhaus won a Nobel Peace Prize for sealing the planets destruction with his unscientific hypothesis that 2C was safe. What he really meant was he thought Capitalism could survive a 2C temperature increase. The ecosystem’s slow but accelerating and torturous demise proves him catastrophically wrong. Moving the ‘Goal Posts’ or the baseline date to calculate anthropogenic warming has become an art form that even many climate scientists turn a blind eye to.
Baseline Temperature dishonesty at the Edge of Extinction

The following data and analysis courtesy of @SamCarana from the Arctic News Blog:
What is pre-industrial?
“The Paris Agreement called for a special report by the IPCC on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways. In the report, the IPCC first defines pre-industrial as “the multi-century period prior to the onset of large-scale industrial activity around 1750”. Yet, the IPCC then proceeds to use the period 1850-1900 to “approximate” pre-industrial. This raises the questions, has the IPCC been downplaying the temperature rise and is this continuing?

The entire debate around what level of destabilisation of the atmosphere we can ‘get away with’ is in itself omnicidal and in no small way clinically insane but having said that the whole culture is insane.
Complex systems are vulnerable to minor perturbations and there is nothing minor about the larceny we are conducting.
Tristan Sykes one of the co-founders of “Just Collapse” points out that we add the equivalent of 4 Hiroshima nuclear bombs of energy per second to our atmosphere, this is war.

When did the temperature start rising?

“Orbital changes are responsible for Milankovitch cycles that make Earth move in and out of periods of glaciation, or Ice Ages. Summer insolation on the Northern Hemisphere reached a peak some 10,500 years ago, in line with the Milankovitch cycles, and insolation has since gradually decreased.”

Oceans and the snow & ice cover have been acting as a buffer

“While temperatures rose rapidly in the past, especially during the period leading up to the insolation peak, the speed at which temperatures did rise was moderated by oceans and by the snow and ice cover, in a number of ways:”

Emissions by people

“While emission by people did accelerate since the start of the Industrial Revolution and even more recently, the rise in emission by people had already started thousands of years ago with the rise in modern agriculture and associated deforestation”
“The temperature has risen accordingly since those times. In the year 1520, temperatures had risen by 0.29°C, compared to some 5000 years earlier. When also taking into account that the temperature would have fallen naturally (i.e. in the absence of these emissions), the early temperature rise caused by people may well be twice as much.”

“For thousands of years, people have been causing emissions that made the temperature rise. From 3480 BC, the forcing of these emissions became even stronger than the natural trend for temperatures to come down, in line with decreasing Summer insolation on the Northern Hemisphere. The term “natural” can be ambiguous, as forest fires and albedo changes are often regarded as “natural forcing”, but of course the deliberate acts of peat burning and cutting down trees can hardly be regarded as ‘natural’.”

“Anyway, the net effect was that the temperature started to rise from 3480 BC, so it makes sense to calculate temperature anomalies versus that year as pre-industrial base. The rise from pre-industrial to 2020 could thus be as much as 2.29°C, which would mean that the thresholds set at the Paris Agreement have already been crossed and the rise from pre-industrial may well exceed 3°C soon, in turn effectively making 3°C the (new) threshold that should not be crossed.”

As a footnote don’t forget the Aerosol Masking Effect or Global Dimming. Dr James E Hansen described the AME as our Faustian Bargain, more on that sleeping giant here; Global Dimming Keeping the Planet Habitable

I'm an anti-imperialist, environmental activist and blue ocean sailor, who is passionate about the earth and all it's inhabitants without favour. Brace for imminent impact as we bare witness to the non-linear unraveling of the biosphere and habitability disappearing for most if not all complex life on the only habitable planet we know of. To quote President Niinistö in North Russia: ‘If We Lose the Arctic, We Lose the World’. Folks we have lost the Arctic.

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Posted in Abrupt Climate Change, John Doyle, Nature Bats Last, Professor Guy McPherson, Sam Carana, Tristan Sykes
4 comments on “Using “Pre-Industrial” as a Measure of Anthropogenic Warming was an Omnicidal, Irreversible Mistake
  1. Alain says:

    Bravo ! I think the human specie is insane.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Anthony says:

    I’m calling yourself and McPherson out for a debate. Do you accept the challenge?


  3. Kevin Hester says:

    “Still, with some assumptions about population size throughout human history, we can get a rough idea of this number: About 117 billion members of our species have ever been born on Earth.”
    Almost every one of these ancestors of ours have had hot food at some stage of their lives, assuming that to be correct, calculate the number of fires they must have lit!
    Calculating anthropogenic warming without including all those fires guarantees we underestimate the level of warming we have triggered.


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Kevin Hester

Kevin Hester is currently living on Rakino Island, a small island in the Hauraki Gulf near Auckland, New Zealand, monitoring the unravelling of the biosphere and volunteering at the Rakino Island Nursery is currently developing a proposal to create a marine reserve near by. The Island has no grid tied electricity or reticulated water.  I catch my own water from the roof and generate my electricity from the ample solar radiation on the island.

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