The world is heading for a “tough” tipping point, according to a top ecology professor, whose career trajectory could determine how far we will go in addressing climate change.
Dr. Daniel Dennett, dean of the University of California at Berkeley’s School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, made the comments in a paper titled “The Global Climate Scenario.”
The paper, titled “Tipping points for a Climate Change-Induced Rise in Heat Stress and the World Economy,” is the latest in a series by Dennett in which he argues the world has reached the tipping point and climate change will be the next “tipping point.”
“The world is moving from a world where we can reasonably expect some warming to occur, to a world in which we can expect some cooling to occur,” Dennett wrote.
“As we approach that tipping point … we are going to have to make a tough call as to how far to go in order to avoid a dangerous temperature increase, but the science is not so far out that we are in a position to make any kind of sweeping conclusion about what that tipping-point temperature should be.”
Dr. Dennett is the dean of Berkeley’s College of Forestry, where he leads a faculty group called the Berkeley Earth Project.
The group focuses on environmental issues and is chaired by Dr. Michael E. Mann, who was named the U.S. president of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change last month.
“We are at the beginning of a global temperature increase,” Mann told The Associated Press in an interview on Tuesday.
“This is a very challenging time to be a scientist.”
Climate change is expected to increase the frequency of extreme weather events, increase extreme heat and increase flooding.
Dennett says the pace of climate change is accelerating.
He argues it’s time to rethink what constitutes a tipping point.
“There are two kinds of tipping points in the world, and I would say we are heading toward a third,” Denton said.
Denton also argues the Earth has reached a “critical tipping point,” and that “the global climate system is not operating in a sustainable way.”
“We can’t continue to grow our economies and we can’t grow our civilization on a planet that is changing so rapidly,” Denna said.
Dennett was born in Canada and earned his Ph.”
I would argue that this is the world we are living in right now.”
Dennett was born in Canada and earned his Ph.
D. from Harvard University in 1992.
He has worked in a variety of fields including biology, ecology, economics and public health.
He served as director of the Berkeley Center for Ecology and Evolution and was the director of Berkeley Earth for the past three years.
The Berkeley Earth team focuses on the study of the effects of global climate change on the Earth and the natural world.
Denna says the research will help inform our understanding of how the climate affects the human body, including our health.