There is a very real possibility The planet will warm an average of 3 degrees Celsius (5.4 degrees Fahrenheit) this century – and that could be disastrous.
In such a brutally hot world, scientists agree, deadly heat waves, massive wildfires and damaging downpours would come more often and hit harder than they do today. The sea will become too hot and too acidic, leading to the decline of fish and the end of coral reefs. In fact, a quarter or more of Earth’s species may become extinct under such conditions or go that way. Our coastlines are being reshaped, as sea levels rise foot after foot, century after century, sinking places like Market Street in Charleston, South Carolina, downtown Providence, Rhode Island, and the Space Center in Houston.
All this according to climate scientist Daniel Swain of the University of California, Los Angeles bad: “Bad for humans. Bad for ecosystems. Bad for the stability of the Earth systems we humans depend on for everything.
Experts cannot say exactly how likely this future is because it depends on what mankind does to mitigate the worsening climate crisis, especially in the coming decade. But for world leaders gathering for the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow this weekend, this future may be inevitable unless they agree on more aggressive and immediate measures to limit greenhouse gas emissions.