[Coral-List] Global risk of deadly heat
vzlatarski at gmail.com
Fri Jun 23 05:34:44 EDT 2017
You commented that "If we do all we can to slow warming, the danger to
people will be minimized, the paper predicts, but it will not be zero". To
precise, the paper predicts considerably far from zero. According the
"Around 30% of the world’s population is currently exposed to climatic
conditions exceeding this deadly threshold for at least 20 days a year. By
2100, this percentage is projected to increase to 48% under a scenario with
drastic reductions of greenhouse gas emissions and 74% under a scenario of
Let's remind: "Evolution ... is opportunistic, hence unpredictable" (Ernst
On Fri, Jun 23, 2017 at 3:31 AM, Douglas Fenner <
douglasfennertassi at gmail.com> wrote:
> Good question. Anybody's guess.
> My guess is that if anything like this happens, it is going to be a
> ghastly catastrophe for people. We won't be worrying about corals. Even
> if we tried to move people, it is too many people, Indonesia alone has 230
> million people.
> That is the worst case scenario, with "business as usual." But we now
> have the Paris accords, and while they may not be perfect many countries
> have pledged to make real progress. So now it seems quite likely we won't
> end up in the worst scenario. With less warming, there will be fewer
> lethal days each year in these countries, the paper predicts. But it is
> still very alarming, people can still die even with just a month or less
> above lethal temperatures/humidity. There is a LOT of time between now and
> 2100 to try to figure out solutions, though the later we wait, the hotter
> it will be.
> Other papers have made predictions on what may happen with corals.
> Surely many will die, reefs will not be what we are used to, but hopefully
> not all corals will die. The lethal conditions for humans vary greatly
> with humidity. At high humidity, humans can't cool themselves with sweat..
> Any temperature over body temperature that happens along with over 90%
> humidity, we can't keep ourselves cool enough, and we are in danger. Most
> of the countries predicted to have the most dangerous conditions have high
> humidity, it looks like in the paper.
> Long ago on coral-list, when people made the point that the root
> problem for coral reefs was human overpopulation, I argued that human
> populations cannot be reduced fast enough to save reefs, without mass human
> deaths. This paper implies that is a possibility in some areas, though
> presumably anyone who could leave those areas would do so. Moving that
> many people would be a logistical nightmare, and no country or combination
> of countries would be likely willing to accept that many people, not even a
> small fraction.
> Yes, reducing the number of people near reefs could in theory help
> reefs (assuming that there are much of any corals left alive by then, which
> is a very shaky assumption). That's not the way to save reefs in my
> opinion, it is morally unthinkable to say the least (unless the people
> simply move, which seems near impossible). And good point, there won't be
> people in those countries to benefit from the reefs. But what other
> options do we have????
> I will agree with anyone who says all I wrote above is just
> guesswork (though this new paper is not guesswork). But then, the world is
> being challenged with some very stark choices, it would appear. If we do
> all we can to slow warming, the danger to people will be minimized, the
> paper predicts, but it will not be zero. Same true with reefs, surely.
> Cheers, Doug
> On Fri, Jun 23, 2017 at 4:14 PM, Vassil Zlatarski <vzlatarski at gmail.com>
>> Hi Doug,
>> So, it is possible bad news for humans (mortality and largely
>> countries) to be good news for coral reefs. Unfortunately, in such
>> our species will not have good chance to profit and enjoy the benefits for
>> coral reefs.
>> Do you think present coral reefs will survive lethal conditions for
>> Vassil Zlatarski
>> D.Sc. (Biology), Ph.D. (Geology)
>> On Thu, Jun 22, 2017 at 4:51 PM, Douglas Fenner <
>> douglasfennertassi at gmail.com> wrote:
>> > Thank you, Vassil!
>> > A short, general interest article on this topic:
>> > Heatwaves to soar above the hot air of climate politics.
>> > http://www.nature.com/news/heatwaves-to-soar-above-the-hot-a
>> > ir-of-climate-politics-1.22164?WT.ec_id=NATURE-20170622&spMa
>> > ilingID=54331883&spUserID=MjA1NTA3MjA0OQS2&spJobID=118364258
>> > 9&spReportId=MTE4MzY0MjU4OQS2
>> > Open-access.
>> > This article and the one Vassil pointed to are about the effects of
>> > warming on human mortality. They don't mention coral reefs. But the
>> > original article does predict that tropical countries like Indonesia,
>> > Philippines, Malaysia, and Sri Lanka will have temperatures and humidity
>> > above a level lethal to humans 365 days a year in most of their area by
>> > 2100 if we were to continue business as usual. That could be
>> > as meaning those countries might be largely uninhabitable by humans (or
>> > not, depending on technology like air conditioning, electricity supply,
>> > costs vs limited funds, etc.). Not having people or having fewer people
>> > would seem likely to reduce local human impacts on coral reefs. Using
>> > resources to produce electricity to keep people cool might increase
>> > on reefs. So maybe these articles are indeed very relevant to coral
>> > Cheers, Doug
>> > On Wed, Jun 21, 2017 at 7:50 AM, Vassil Zlatarski <vzlatarski at gmail.com
>> > wrote:
>> >> Dear Coral-Listers,
>> >> Hope of colleguial interest:
>> >> Mora, Camilo et 17 al. 2017. Global risk of deadly heat. Nature Climate
>> >> Change.
>> >> http://www.soc.hawaii.edu/mora/Publications/Mora%20059.pdf
>> >> Cheers,
>> >> Vassil
>> >> Vassil Zlatarski
>> >> D.Sc. (Biology), Ph.D. (Geology)
>> >> _______________________________________________
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>> > --
>> > Douglas Fenner
>> > Contractor for NOAA NMFS Protected Species, and consultant
>> > "have regulator, will travel"
>> > PO Box 7390
>> > Pago Pago, American Samoa 96799 USA
>> > phone 1 684 622-7084 <(684)%20622-7084>
>> > New online open-access field guide to 300 coral species in Chagos,
>> > Ocean
>> > http://chagosinformationportal.org/corals
>> > Join the International Society for Reef Studies. Membership includes a
>> > subscription to the journal Coral Reefs, and there are discounts for pdf
>> > subscriptions and developing countries. Coral Reefs is the only journal
>> > that is ALL coral reef articles, and it has amazingly LOW prices
>> > to other journals. Check it out! www.fit.edu/isrs/
>> > "Belief in climate change is optional, participation is not."- Jim
>> > "Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not to their own
>> > Daniel Patrick Moynihan.
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