Climate Change: How bad is the current situation really?

by | 18 August 2023 | Environment, Sherwood

What we are not being told is that global warming is currently out of control and experts estimate that lack of control will continue for at least the next 30 to 50 years. We believe that it is now necessary to urgently talk about the worst consequences that will most likely occur during this window.

Carbon is the current key greenhouse gas in raising the average global temperature, and most of this atmospheric carbon has been caused by fossil fuel burning. The average global temperature goes up by 0.25˚c for every additional 25 parts per million (ppm) of carbon that goes into the atmosphere.

From the latest charts you can clearly see that global warming from increased atmospheric carbon is not only continuing to get worse, but it is also getting worse at an even faster rate.

At the current carbon levels, the stability of the West Antarctic ice sheet has already been breached and this ice loss is now irreversible. This is an excellent example of another critical global warming tipping point the world has hurtled past far faster than anyone had predicted or foreseen.

In May 2022 the carbon levels in the atmosphere reached 421.13ppm. This is the highest in recorded history and up from 418.34ppm one year ago and 397.38ppm one decade ago.

As the current carbon level rises, we will continue crossing more of the 11 critical global warming tipping points, but now at an even faster rate. Once we cross the carbon 500ppm level, which is estimated at present to be as soon as 2042 or even earlier, ALL ice and ALL glaciers on Earth will go into complete meltdown.

To prevent the likelihood of going extinct within the next few decades it is imperative that we radically reduce fossil fuel use.

About 20 countries, the industrially developed nations, produce 70% or more of the world’s carbon emissions. These countries must reduce their total fossil fuel use by 75% by 2025, and get to net-zero carbon by 2035. That means total fossil fuel emission levels must be maintained as they were at the beginning of 2019. They must not be allowed go any higher.

To achieve this every person, every business, and every government in the developed world must reduce their total fossil fuel use by about 25% or more per year over the next six years. Then by at least another 10% per year over the next 10 years by 2035.

Crossing the carbon 500ppm threshold has, in fact, happened repeatedly in Earth’s geological history. When this has occurred, the sea level inevitably rose to the 70 metres (230 feet) range.

If we cross the carbon level of 500ppm, our average global temperature will soar to the critical 4°c (7.2 degrees Fahrenheit increase). At 4°c, a large portion of humanity will die of starvation, or other related consequences of increased heat, and governments and society will collapse in many areas of the world.

To overcome this global warming emergency we will be forced to grow in maturity as one human global society. We will have to develop new innovations, cooperate with each other, and build new communities, in order to overcome these unfolding disasters. When this is achieved, it will directly expand our evolutionary maturity as a global society.

For more information about Sherwood Forest Friends of the Earth, visit Sherwood Forest FoE on Facebook or email

Pauline Meechan, Sherwood Forest Friends of the Earth