The Permafrost Melt

by Mayuri on February 22, 2011

Money and the Unsustainability Confluence

Stephen Leahy is an international environmental journalist who covers international environmental issues in the public interest. In his website he says his work focuses exclusively on important stories that go unnoticed by mainstream media, often which are about climate change.

On February 17, he posted an article “Permafrost Melt Soon Irreversible Without Major Fossil Fuel Cuts”. In his article he says that global warming could cause up to 60% of the world’spermafrost to thaw by 2200 thereby releasing huge amounts of carbon into the atmosphere that would further speed up climate change. Without major reductions in the use of fossil fuels, as much as 2/3 of the world’s huge storage of frozen carbon will be released pushing temperatures several degrees higher thus making large parts of the world uninhabitable. And we are only about 20 years away from the tipping point. The study he refers to in his article does not include methane release from the sea nor something called thermokarst erosion of the permafrost from warmer water. Politicians nor policy makers have taken any of this into account when looking at the amount  carbon emissions need to be reduced. So we are at the top edge of a dangerous precipice. Clearly we our out of balance.

It is not hopeless however according to the study Leahy is quoting. If we were able to phase out fossil fuels by 2050 by using renewable energy sources, we could find a safer path. But that would require utilizing technologies that are being ignored.

“What does this have to do with money?” you might ask. For our money system to work, the economy has to grow.  And there are risks associated with continued growth that has relied on fossil fuels, mostly oil. Regardless of the risks, the economic system that is still being supported is still betting  on continued growth.

There are some, such as scientist Chris Martinson who I recently heard on The Solari Report, that believe peak oil is already here, which means we have run into the limitations of energy and thus the limits of growth. If this is true, we are already in a nonexpansionary phase, and where before expansion would allow skimming off the top by Wall Street and others without too much complaint by the rest of us, nonexpansion means a zero sum game with winners and losers. And those who are not insiders will be losers. That includes you and me.

In the US, we are not recognizing the dwindling resources publicly (oil companies are using the mask of the disruption in Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya to disguise the real reasons for rising oil prices). As I heard Chris say, the status quo would rather do anything to stay in power and stumble into the next crisis.

Our institutions including the banks, government, churches, and corporations cannot be objective because they live in a distorted mindset, whether consciously or unconsciously. They are not interested in becoming whole as long as their own interests are being served.

These people have not reflected on their inner lives, and the values that would flow from such a reflection. Instead, they act through layers of rationalization, greed, and hidden agendas which are being slowly revealed.

Solutions will not come from solving our world problems simply externally. We must address the spirit and matter within each of us, on our own  personal journey. When we do that, our outer will start to become a reflection of our inner and true forms that have their basis not only in matter but in spirit  will be formed. The less there is an individual ego self present, the more reality will be seen without delusions and  fragmentation which characterize our world,  and become a an expression of spiritual realization. And our institutions and our economic system will reflect those values. Spirit includes community, emotion, relationship and self-reflection. Americans have stopped thinking for themselves and have thereby contributed to the world’s imbalance. Imbalance  has resulted in tyranny, control, oppression, war, logic divorced from the heart, and science divorced from consciousness.

But what if it is too late to allow us to wake up and take responsibility and affect the precipitous human journey before it is too late? What if we cannot reverse the tide and we are witnessing the end of humanity on planet earth? The answer is still consciousness. Only when we don’t take ourselves to be a separate self, living in a world of objects, driven by our distorted material instinctual needs, at the effect of our emotions, will we be able to stand  in the center of chaos and know our eternal Beingness that never dies and know that we will be fine. The earth may not be meant to last. Planets and stars come and go……..who you truly are is unaffected by this. If you look for that, you have changed everything. Do not look for permanence- it is a program of the mind.

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