A Farewell to my Friend: Climate Warrior Stuart Scott

A Farewell to my Friend: Climate Warrior Stuart Scott // Jul 19, 2021

A Farewell to my Friend:
Climate Warrior Stuart Scott
Died: Thursday July 15th, 2021

My friend Stuart Scott will be sorely missed. Although his physical manifestation is gone, there are many many things that remain with us. His indomitable spirit, work ethic, caring heart, hope for humanity, fight, and resilience remain.

In the summer of 2014, I got an email out of the blue from Stuart. He had seen some of my work, and he invited me to attend the fall 2014 climate conference COP20 (20th version of the Climate of the Parties) in Lima, Peru. He offered to cover my travel expenses with Air Miles. After doing my due diligence and determining that Stuart was not a serial killer, I gladly accepted his gracious offer. Off I went to Peru, to a most memorable UN climate conference where I presented with Stuart on the perils of abrupt climate change in many press conference side events. I remembering Stuart telling me to run a comb through my dishevelled mop, wear a nice suit, and straighten my tie.

I’ll never forgive Stuart for convincing me to wander around the conference each day for an hour or two wearing a polar bear suit. It was extremely hot and humid in Lima, and needless to say it was torture inside the bear. Our lodgings was a Nun’s Convent, enclosed in a compound with very high walls, in a sketchy part of town. On more than a few evenings, after a night of refreshments in the local watering holes, I would return late and have to convince the guard to let me cross the gate, sometimes necessitating the waking up of Stuart; annoying him to no end.

Next conference for me and Stuart’s team was COP21 in Paris in 2015. Somehow Stuart had convinced James Hansen to attend, and we all had some great presentations on abrupt climate change risks and consequences.

I skipped a few COPs, but not Stuart. He went almost every year, and many UN people organizing the conferences knew Stuart on a first name, friendship level.

Then came the 2019 COP in Madrid Spain, hastily assembled in one month since Santiago, Chile was cancelled as a venue due to civil unrest. I got an email, out of the blue, offering me lodging, so again, after my detailed due diligence to ensure it wasn’t a Dexter 2.0 situation, I gladly accepted Alfonso’s gracious offer.

Once again, I had the pleasure of working with Stuart and his teams at the COP to inform the world in almost daily press conferences on the perils of climate mayhem.

I was extremely sick the weekend before the conference (early Covid?), and missed the first day. I remember getting to the conference early the second day, sitting at a sofa just inside the entrance, and hearing a loud commotion. A woman with a camera ran by me, and then a man with a camera literally leaped over me on the sofa, to get close to a group of teens sitting in a circle. I looked around, and there was Greta Thunberg joining the circle. This was the first rock star that I have ever met; hordes of reporters and paparazzi followed her every movement and word she spoke at the conference.

It was Stuart who first got Greta and her dad to a COP climate conference years earlier in Katowice, Poland; the world can thank him for that.

Stuart could never understand how my blog and video channel could get so successful; using raw unedited videos done invariably with one take, and having no polishing. I told him it was the cat, which annoyed him even more.

Stuart always had to balance many of his projects on the go, but when I introduced him to the group Scientist’s Warning, he took it to heart to greatly expand their breadth and depth of social media outreach. Never one to rest on his laurels, Stuart then went on to start Facing Future. I remember on one group Zoom call when I was walking outside, he got annoyed with me saying it was very unprofessional. A few months later, being inside for the Zoom call, my coworker Shackleton the Explorer (black cat) jumped into the call, again annoying Stuart:)

From one fellow Climate Warrior to another, thank you Stuart. Your rich and deep climate fight legacy and work will continue to be a long term inspiration to us all.

Paul Beckwith
Monday July 19, 2021
Ottawa


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A Community of People Most Likely to Survive Abrupt Climate Change: The Amish and Mennonites

A Community of People Most Likely to Survive Abrupt Climate Change: The Amish and Mennonites // Jul 14, 2021

In Northern Ontario, while on the road towards home in Ottawa, I passed a horse pulled carriage. I pulled off the road a few miles later, and decided to film a video.

Many many years ago, Amish people came from Europe to Canada and built up settlements in various locations, including in northern Ontario.

Some of the Amish , known as progressives, built community structures and became known as Mennonites, while others avoided doing this, and stayed as older school Amish. This is likely a gross oversimplification on my part; here is more information:

There is actually a University of Waterloo course you can take titled “Who are Mennonites”.

In any case, I think the Amish and Mennonites have a lot in common. In general, they live very close to the land, in tune with nature. They live without electricity and plumbing in their houses, and shun “modern lifestyles” and consumerism. Thus, I think that they are a very resilient people, who as a group would likely fare very well in a world where society essentially collapsed due to abrupt climate system change.
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Another video:

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Calgary’s Saddledome Stadium: Ground Zero for Epic Flooding from Climate Driven Extreme Weather

Calgary’s Saddledome Stadium: Ground Zero for Epic Flooding from Climate Driven Extreme Weather // Jul 7, 2021

I am in downtown Calgary, Alberta next to the famous Saddledome stadium. I’m glad my visit was not a week later, since the Calgary Stampede was due to start the following week at the stadium.

The Bow River meanders through the region, and during the 2013 rain on snow deluge in the Rocky Mountains the water overflowed all the rivers, and the water in Canmore made its way downhill to Calgary and flooded the downtown region.

The original bridge over the Bow River was wiped out by the flood, and the replacement bridge has been designed to withstand any water level in the river; this design claim will likely be tested in the near future.

The entire region around the Saddledome was flooded, and water filled the stadium up to about row ten or so.

Or, you can specifically support my trip here: Cross Canada Climate Reports with Paul

Two week road trip to Canada’s tornado alley, to document extreme storms, old disaster spots: Calgary flooding, Wildfires, Grassy Narrows mercury, Elliot Lake uranium, clear cut forests… etc.

Ref: Tornado Alley, here: ‘Tornado Alley is a loosely defined area of the central United States where tornadoes are most frequent. The term was first used in 1952 as the title of a research project to study severe weather in areas of Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, South Dakota, Iowa and Nebraska. Tornado climatologists distinguish peaks in activity in certain areas and storm chasers have long recognized the Great Plains tornado belt.
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Downtown Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan Tunnels Built by Chinese Workers Reveal Dark Tales of Canada’s Past

Downtown Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan Tunnels Built by Chinese Workers Reveal Dark Tales of Canada’s Past // Jul 2, 2021

In Moose Jaw Saskatchewan there is an underground maze of tunnels under the city in the downtown core. For longer than 75 years, city officials denied their existence, in one of the most bizarre stories in this wild frontier town in Canada’s west. Part of the tunnel network has been restored, and is open to visitors, but not during COVID.

Work on these so-called “Tunnels of Little Chicago” started in 1908 after several Chinese rail workers were savagely beaten at the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) rail yards by whites who thought the Chinese were taking their jobs. Western Canada was in hysteria over the so-called “yellow peril”, and Ottawa feds imposed the infamous “head tax” on Chinese would be immigrants. The Chinese, terrified, and unable to pay the head tax literally went underground, digging secrete tunnels under the downtown city core to hide, live with their woman, and raise kids in the rat infested darkness. Access to the secret tunnels was via basements of buildings owned by legal Chinese immigrants. The underground residents worked in above ground laundries and restaurants and were paid in food and supplies.

In the 1920s, during prohibition, Moose Jaw became a bootlegging hub, and a gangsters resort, with regular visits from the Chicago mob including Al Capone. The entire police force was in cahoots with the mob and the Chinese, using the tunnels for gambling, prostitution, and for storing illegal booze. One tunnel under the CPR station allowed for loading and unloading of contraband.

In the late 1970s part of Main St. collapsed into a tunnel from the weight of a car, which ended up down the hole. The jig was up; the City could no longer deny the existence of the tunnels!!

Bizarre story; you cannot make this stuff up!!!
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GoFundMe Campaign: Cross Canada Climate Reports with Paul

Paul will be travelling with Lazar, a doctoral student in the Department of Geography at the University of Ottawa. Lazar is studying urban geography and gentrification and, like Paul, is an avid chess player. I’m sure they’ll be bringing a chess board with them! They’ll be travelling from Eastern Ontario to Alberta in Western Canada.

Based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Paul is a respected creator of entertaining and comprehensible videos, usually pertaining to climate system science, abrupt climate change, meteorology, oceanography and Earth Sciences. He occasionally teaches at the University of Ottawa in the Laboratory for Paleoclimatology, and has also taught at Carleton University. He is often asked by concerned citizens and government officials to speak at conferences and events. In addition to participating in numerous panel discussions, Paul has often been interviewed on various radio and podcast programs, and has participated as a guest and panelist at three United Nations Conference of the Parties Climate Conferences, including COP25 in Madrid, Spain, in December 2019′.



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Cross Country Climate Reports with Paul: Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta

Cross Country Climate Reports with Paul: Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta // Jun 25, 2021

Two week road trip to Canada’s tornado alley, to document extreme storms, old disaster spots: Calgary flooding, Fort Mac Wildfires and crap, Grassy Narrows mercury, Elliot Lake uranium, clear cut forests… please support my efforts…

If you have been following my videos on a fairly regular basis, you will likely recall my interesting venues in a northern Ontario clear cut forest, a uranium mining town (Elliot Lake) and next to the super-stack in nickel mining town Sudbury Ontario. That trip was to take my son Neil and his friend Olivier to tree plant near Kenora on the Ontario-Manitoba border.

Neil has decided he doesn’t want to walk home, so being the good dad that I am I will pick him up July 6th, on the way home. First, I will drive from Ottawa to Winnipeg, then Regina, and then Calgary.

I will document my trip via videos each day, and a biweekly blog, as I visit sites like Grassy Narrows, ON (huge mercury spill), Winnipeg (flooding water diversion project), and Residential School sites (like the one just E of Regina where the unmarked graves of 751 First Nations children were just identified by ground penetrating radar). In Calgary, I will examine the Saddledome part of downtown which was flooded out a few years ago from a rain on snow event near Banff in the Rocky Mountains.

I hope to track extreme weather events such as mesocyclone complex thunderstorms on the Great Plains (Canada’s Tornado Alley). Radar apps on my iPhone show me the best places to be at any given time; one just follows the red dots on the map showing where storm chaser zealots are in real-time:)

If there is a lack of storms, I will head northward to the Athabaska Tar Sand sites near Fort McMurray and see the tailings ponds and see rebuilding efforts from the wildfire damaged part of time. I expect to also see some wildfires out west, since the region has been extremely dry lately.

Just last week I acquired a portable CO2 detector (range 0-5000ppm) which also detects radon gas, and on my trip I will take a variety of measurements over time inside the car (windows up and then down), in cities, deep in forests, in the tar sands, etc. just for laughs.

I am also hoping to visit some friends in Winnipeg and Regina, and maybe even get in a poker game if any of the casinos are open. After all, we are living in the climate casino ourselves.
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Or, you can specifically support my cross Canada road trip via Go Fund Me, here: Cross Canada Climate Reports with Paul

Deep Connections: From Building Collapse in Florida to Arctic Coastal Erosion: Sea Level Rise // Jun 28, 2021

Two week road trip to Canada’s tornado alley, to document extreme storms, old disaster spots: Calgary flooding, Fort Mac Wildfires and crap, Grassy Narrows mercury, Elliot Lake uranium, clear cut forests… please support my travel…

You are probably already well aware of the catastrophic collapse of an apartment block in Miami Florida. Rising sea level has exacerbated coastal erosion and weakening of the limestone base in Florida. King tides flood the coastal streets and undermine the building foundations in Miami on a regular basis. Salt water has percolated through the limestone, dissolving the rock and creating a Swiss-cheese like morphology. The building that collapsed was found to be subsiding at a rate of 2 mm per year between the years 1993 and 1999 as reported on by an engineering assessment, and there is little chance that that sinking was not ongoing at the same rate or even faster in the last two decades. It is probable that the ocean facing side of the building subsided the fastest, since that face of the building appeared to shear away and crumple, causing the loss of many lives.

Coastal erosion is also accelerating in the Arctic, with rising sea levels, oceans devoid of coastal sea ice resulting in much larger waves, and thawing coastal permafrost causing shoreline collapses of material into the sea.

It is all connected. Florida, especially coastal cities and buildings, are all in grave danger of further catastrophes.
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On the Deployment of Ocean Spraying Vessels to Brighten Marine Clouds to Cool the Planet

On the Deployment of Ocean Spraying Vessels to Brighten Marine Clouds to Cool the Planet // June 23, 2021

I was recently in a great video discussion with Peter Wadhams and Stephen Salter, hosted by Metta Spencer, to hash out the cloud brightening technique as conceptualized by Emeritus Professor Stephen Salter in the Engineering and Design Department at the University of Edinburgh over the last couple of decades.

Marine Cloud Brightening (MCB) has the potential to cool the planet in a highly controllable fashion. Essentially, sea water is pumped to high pressure through nozzles where it generates water jets that then break apart (via Rayleigh instability) to form tiny water droplets. The nozzle size, number of nozzles, water pressure, etc… are engineered to produce water droplets of 800 nm size (0.8 micron) so that when the water evaporates we are left with 200 nm salt crystals. These salt crystals are then transported within the turbulent boundary layer above the surface of the ocean up to heights about 1 km to 1.5 km where they act as cloud condensation nuclei, ensuring that the clouds that do form are of extremely high albedo (reflectivity) and thus can reflect enough incoming sunlight to cool the surface of the Earth.

The spray nozzles are transported around the oceans of the planet by hydrofoil ships powered by the wind using so-called Flettner Rotors. The ships are sailed to specific areas of the ocean at specific times of the year to brighten the clouds in specific regions to get the desired regional cooling, for example to reduce Atlantic Basin hurricane strength, protect coral reefs, cool the Arctic enough to restore Arctic Sea Ice, and!or modify monsoons or redistribute rainfall to reduce droughts or torrential rainfalls.

This technology has enormous potential to cool the planet enough to buy us time to slash fossil fuel emissions and deploy carbon removal technologies.

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Autonomous Spray Ship Deployment to Cool Planet via Marine Cloud Brightening

Autonomous Spray Ship Deployment to Cool Planet via Marine Cloud Brightening: Part 1 of 4 // Jun 19, 2021

I was recently in a great video discussion with Peter Wadhams and Stephen Salter, hosted by Metta Spencer, to hash out the cloud brightening technique as conceptualized by Emeritus Professor Stephen Salter in the Engineering and Design Department at the University of Edinburgh over the last couple of decades.

Marine Cloud Brightening (MCB) has the potential to cool the planet in a highly controllable fashion. Essentially, sea water is pumped to high pressure through nozzles where it generates water jets that then break apart (via Rayleigh instability) to form tiny water droplets. The nozzle size, number of nozzles, water pressure, etc… are engineered to produce water droplets of 800 nm size (0.8 micron) so that when the water evaporates we are left with 200 nm salt crystals. These salt crystals are then transported within the turbulent boundary layer above the surface of the ocean up to heights about 1 km to 1.5 km where they act as cloud condensation nuclei, ensuring that the clouds that do form are of extremely high albedo (reflectivity) and thus can reflect enough incoming sunlight to cool the surface of the Earth.

The spray nozzles are transported around the oceans of the planet by hydrofoil ships powered by the wind using so-called Flettner Rotors. The ships are sailed to specific areas of the ocean at specific times of the year to brighten the clouds in specific regions to get the desired regional cooling, for example to reduce Atlantic Basin hurricane strength, protect coral reefs, cool the Arctic enough to restore Arctic Sea Ice, and!or modify monsoons or redistribute rainfall to reduce droughts or torrential rainfalls.

This technology has enormous potential to cool the planet enough to buy us time to slash fossil fuel emissions and deploy carbon removal technologies.
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On the Enormous Potential of Sea-Water Spraying to Brighten Clouds to Cool the Planet: Part 2 of 4 // Jun 20, 2021


Second video, Part 2 of 4.

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Cascading Climate System Domino Feedback Effects, NOT Good

Cascading Climate System Domino Feedback Effects, NOT Good // Jun 4, 2021

A new peer-reviewed scientific paper published June 3rd discusses the risks of climate domino effects from cascading feedbacks. Essentially, the risk is rapidly increasing to cross critical thresholds for one or more tipping elements in the climate system.

Although there are numerous tipping points in the climate system, this paper used Monte Carlo computer simulations to examine the physical interactions between only 4 tipping elements: namely 1) Greenland Ice Sheet (GIS) collapse, 2) West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) collapse, 3) Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) shutdown, and 4) Amazon Rainforest collapse.

This paper is a great start to examining cascading tipping points, but in my opinion it needs to incorporate many other tipping points to be really useful, most notably the paper egregiously ignores Arctic Sea Ice collapse to the dreaded Blue Ocean Event (BOE), and Methane Outbursts from both the Arctic terrestrial permafrost (riskiest being the Siberian Yedoma regions) and the subsea permafrost (riskiest being the Eastern Siberian Arctic Shelf (ESAS) regions and the methane bound in hydrates (methane clathrates)).

For each of the tipping elements examined, the paper considers the essential factors of critical temperature thresholds, tipping element interaction mechanisms and strengths, and tipping timescales.

The most significant and worrying result of this new paper is the following:

For global warming up to 2.0C above pre-industrial, tipping occurs in 61% of all the simulations. This 61% is further broken down to: one individual element tips in 22% of all of the simulations; cascading effects cause tipping in two elements in 21% of the cases; cascading tips three elements in 15% of the simulations; and all four elements tip via cascading in 3% of all the simulations.

For global warming of 1.0C (already passed) the GIS has already likely tipped.

Meanwhile, for global warming of 3.0C cascades are less frequent since the four elements all tip independently with temperature thresholds already exceeded.

Overall, a fascinating paper, but it is imperative that future work examine the entire gamut of tipping elements, including the four examined thus far.

Ref: Interacting tipping elements increase risk of climate domino effects under global warming, Wunderling, Donges, Kurths, Winkelmann. Published 03 June, 2021. Link to PDF here.

Abstract. With progressing global warming, there is an increased risk that one or several tipping elements in the climate system might cross a critical threshold, resulting in severe consequences for the global climate, ecosystems and human societies. While the underlying processes are fairly well-understood, it is unclear how their interactions might impact the overall stability of the Earth’s climate system. As of yet, this cannot be fully analyzed with state-of-the-art Earth system models due to computational constraints as well as some missing and uncertain process representations of certain tipping elements.

Here, we explicitly study the effects of known physical interactions among the Greenland and West Antarctic ice sheets, the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) and the Amazon rainforest using a conceptual network approach. We analyze the risk of domino effects being triggered by each of the individual tipping elements under global warming in equilibrium experiments. In these experiments, we propagate the uncertainties in critical temperature thresholds, interaction strengths and interaction structure via large ensembles of simulations in a Monte Carlo approach.

Overall, we find that the interactions tend to destabilize the network of tipping elements. Furthermore, our analysis reveals the qualitative role of each of the four tipping elements within the network, showing that the polar ice sheets on Greenland and West Antarctica are oftentimes the initiators of tipping cascades, while the AMOC acts as a mediator transmitting cascades. This indicates that the ice sheets, which are already at risk of transgressing their temperature thresholds within the Paris range of 1.5 to 2 ◦C, are of particular importance for the stability of the climate system as a whole.

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Please consider donating to support my work. I put a lot of time and effort into researching, studying and producing my videos so that you can learn how quickly our world is changing. Donating does not need a PayPal account, but simply a credit card. Please click here.
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A Smorgasbord of Abrupt Climate System Disruption Science and Dire Consequences to Humanity

My New Bunker

A Smorgasbord of Abrupt Climate System Disruption Science and Dire Consequences to Humanity // May 22, 2021

In this sequence of new videos I chat about what I consider to be the most significant recent peer reviewed scientific studies on abrupt climate system change and the consequences to humanity.

The Arctic Sea Ice exists on borrowed time. As well as being obliterated in summer melt it’s winter formation is being significantly retarded increasingly by ocean heat from both the Atlantic Ocean (coined Atlantification) and from the Pacific Ocean (coined Ocean Heat “Bombs” but I think it should be called Pacification).

Of course, the Arctic permafrost carbon feedback is an enormous tipping point that we risk crossing very soon. As the permafrost on both land and on shallow continental shelves thaws it undergoes microbial decomposition releasing CO2 (aerobically) and/or methane (anaerobically). Years ago, it was estimated that 1,700 Gtons (Pg) of carbon were in the Arctic. The latest science shows that in the 0 to 3 meter deep (10 feet) surface layer of the Arctic and sub-Arctic there is 1,035 Pg; the rest of the Earth has 2,050 Pg in this surface layer. Deeper than 3 m, the Yedoma permafrost holds between 210 and 456 Pg, and non-Yedoma permafrost holds between 350 to 465 Pg. The Eastern Siberian Arctic Shelf, which is the largest and shallowest continental shelf on Earth holds vast amounts of frozen permafrost in the sediments on the sea floor, being thickest where the water is shallowest, and also containing methane hydrates and deep methane reservoirs.

Recently, it has been shown scientifically that climate change has melted enough ice in polar regions to change the mass distribution on the Earth to cause a measurable shift in the Earth axis of rotation, and rotation rate. Also, climate change has expanded the lower atmosphere (troposphere), pushing up the tropopause (border with stratosphere), and the cooling of the stratosphere has contracted it, so it does not extend up as high.
These are profound large-scale planetary changes to our Earth.

Please watch and share these videos, as I chat about the very latest science of abrupt climate system disruption, and the profound consequences and extreme risks to humanity.
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Abrupt Climate System Disruption MISHMASH on Cutting Edge Science and Consequences to Us // May 22, 2021

Second of two videos.
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Your generosity is very much appreciated. It will be put to good use to ensure the continuation of my work producing videos and blogs that educate people about the enormous risks that we all face from abrupt climate change. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
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