Local News

11 seriously smart people on the terrifying realities of climate change

Because Donald Trump may well have just set the wheels in motion for the destruction of our planet.

By Kate Wagner
By now you've heard that Donald Trump has withdrawn from the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, which is good because it's not like the Great Barrier Reef is dying, we've passed the point of no return with carbon dioxide levels, or ice caps are rapidly melting.
3o6UBpHgaXFDNAuttm.gifPowered by GIPHY
Obama has led the pack of condemnation and accused Trump of "rejecting the future" in a blistering statement.
"The Paris Agreement opened the floodgates for businesses, scientists, and engineers to unleash high-tech, low-carbon investment and innovation on an unprecedented scale," explained the former president, who played a key part in negotiating the deal.
"The nations that remain in the Paris Agreement will be the nations that reap the benefits in jobs and industries created."
France's new President, Emmanuel Macron also stated his horror over Trump's move in a video posted to Facebook, inviting climate change researchers to live and work in France if/when their funding is cut in the US. It has had over 25 million views and has been shared 317,000 times.
Unsurprisingly, there are many other highly-qualified people out there who echo their justified sense of panic and disappointment. And wholeheartedly confirm the existence of climate change...

David Attenborough, Veteran Broadcaster and Naturalist

"I think climate change is the major challenge facing the world. I have waited until the proof was conclusive that it was humanity changing the climate."
"Climate change will displace 250 million people."

Brian Cox, Physicist and Professor

"You're allowed to say, well I think we should do nothing. That's a policy choice. But what you're not allowed to do is to claim there's a better estimate of the way that the climate will change, other than the one that comes out of the computer models. It's nonsensical to say 'we know better', you can't know better."
"Don't undermine the science just because you don't like the economics."

Steven Chu, Nobel Laureate and Obama's Energy Secretary

"I don't think the American public has gripped in its gut what could happen. We're looking at a scenario where there's no more agriculture in California.
"I don't actually see how they can keep their cities going."
"I'm hoping that the American people will wake up."

Neil deGrasse Tyson, Astrophysicist and Author

"We are dumping Co2 into the atmosphere at a rate the Earth hasn't seen since the great climate catastrophes of the past.
"The dinosaurs never saw the asteroid coming. What's our excuse?"

Stephen Hawking, Theoretical Physicist and Cosmologist

"Climate change is one of the great dangers we face, and it's one we can prevent."
"Professor Stephen Hawking thinks the human species will have to populate a new planet within 100 years if it is to survive," a statement about his upcoming documentary said. "With climate change, overdue asteroid strikes, epidemics and population growth, our own planet is increasingly precarious."

James Hansen, Veteran Climate Scientist

"I have been described as the grandfather of climate change. In fact, I am just a grandfather and I do not want my grandchildren to say that grandpa understood what was happening but didn't make it clear."

Jeff Goodell, Author

"One of the big questions in the climate change debate: Are humans any smarter than frogs in a pot? If you put a frog in a pot and slowly turn up the heat, it won't jump out. Instead, it will enjoy the nice warm bath until it is cooked to death. We humans seem to be doing pretty much the same thing."

Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General United Nations

"We are the first generation to be able to end poverty, and the last generation that can take steps to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. Future generations will judge us harshly if we fail to uphold our moral and historical responsibilities."

Bill Nye, Science Communicator

"Climate change is happening, humans are causing it, and I think this is perhaps the most serious environmental issue facing us."
3o7btM9HACubmBtfuo.gifPowered by GIPHY

Meanwhile...

Good luck, world.