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Global Warming and Climate Change is REAL: The 4th National Climate Assessment

ME has spent most of his retirement from service to the United States studying, thinking, and writing about the country he served.

Columbia Glacier - Before (2009) and After (2015)

It Is Worse Than We Thought!

The bottom line of the 4th National Climate Assessment, a report mandated by law, is that we can no longer prevent significant erosion of our way of life and spending many billions of dollars 1) repairing the damage and 2) preventing further damage. It, my readers, a done deal. While you, if you are my age, may not suffer the consequences, your children will. The challenge now is stopping if from getting even worse. But with idiots like Donald Trump in charge, it will get even worse.

In other hubs (which I need to update with this latest information) I provide proof of and an explanation for why global temperatures are increasing at an increasing rate. In this hub I will present the probable impact on America because of climate change based on the results of 4th National Climate Assessment.


To paraphrase a couple of sentences in the initial summaries: "The impacts of climate change are already being felt across the country and the world. More frequent and intense extreme weather and climate-related events, as well as changes in average climate conditions, are expected to continue to damage infrastructure, ecosystems, and social systems that provide essential benefits to communities." In other words, damage has already been done and more is going to happen regardless of what the world does in trying to mitigate it.

Economically speaking, the Assessment states that:

"Without substantial and sustained global mitigation and regional adaptation efforts, climate change is expected to cause growing losses to American infrastructure and property and impede the rate of economic growth over this century." (of which we are already 19 years into)

It is an interconnected world (regardless of Donald Trump's efforts to isolate America) which makes it more vulnerable to climate change. The report says:

"Climate change affects the natural, built, and social systems we rely on individually and through their connections to one another. These interconnected systems are increasingly vulnerable to cascading impacts that are often difficult to predict, threatening essential services within and beyond the Nation’s borders."

The world, save America, if trying hard to fix things, but, according to the latest report, it isn't near enough. In America, our carbon footprint is actually growing for most of 2018 according to the DOE/EIA Monthly Energy Report. The U.S. Carbon Footprint HAD been falling dramatically for the previous 11 years. Again, from the Climate Assessment:

"While mitigation and adaptation efforts have expanded substantially in the last four years, they do not yet approach the scale considered necessary to avoid substantial damages to the economy, environment, and human health over the coming decades."

What is going to happen to our water under climate change? The 4th National Climate assessment suggests is will happen:

"The quality and quantity of :

available for use by people and ecosystems across the country are being affected by climate change, increasing risks and costs to agriculture, energy production, industry, recreation, and the environment."

Next to consider is health. Not a great story here, either:

"Impacts from climate change on extreme weather and climate-related events, air quality, and the transmission of disease through insects and pests, food, and water increasingly threaten the health and well-being of the American people, particularly populations that are already vulnerable."

Then there are the America's and the world's ecosystems. The report says:

"Impacts from climate change on extreme weather and climate-related events, air quality, and the transmission of disease through insects and pests, food, and water increasingly threaten the health and well-being of the American people, particularly populations that are already vulnerable."

Agriculture will be the first major area to feel the impact of higher temperatures. In fact it already is as damage is mounting from the wild fires, extreme temperatures which already are reducing yields, violent weather, etc.

"Rising temperatures, extreme heat, drought, wildfire on range lands, and heavy downpours are expected to increasingly disrupt agricultural productivity in the United States. Expected increases in challenges to livestock health, declines in crop yields and quality, and changes in extreme events in the United States and abroad threaten rural livelihoods, sustainable food security, and price stability."

Note, food security is already a major problem in the United States before climate change.

After agriculture, our infrastructure is the next most vulnerable feature in America. And it is already crumbling. And, it is not going to stop, not for decades or more, even IF Congress finally decides to funds rebuilding it; that is already a given. From the report:

"Our Nation’s aging and deteriorating infrastructure is further stressed by increases in heavy precipitation events, coastal flooding, heat, wildfires, and other extreme events, as well as changes to average precipitation and temperature. Without adaptation, climate change will continue to degrade infrastructure performance over the rest of the century, with the potential for cascading impacts that threaten our economy, national security, essential services, and health and well-being."

Specifically, our oceans are going to rise and they are not going to stop rising, that is what the informed opinion of hundreds of scientists after having been vetted by Trump appointed bureaucrats.

"Coastal communities and the ecosystems that support them are increasingly threatened by the impacts of climate change. Without significant reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions and regional adaptation measures, many coastal regions will be transformed by the latter part of this century, with impacts affecting other regions and sectors. Even in a future with lower greenhouse gas emissions, many communities are expected to suffer financial impacts as chronic high-tide flooding leads to higher costs and lower property values."

Finally, consider Recreation and Tourism. Kaput, for the most part!

"Outdoor recreation, tourist economies, and quality of life are reliant on benefits provided by our natural environment that will be degraded by the impacts of climate change in many ways."

So goes the the 4th National Climate Assessment's summary.

The Case for Human-Caused Global Warming

The science regarding whether humans are the cause of the current rapid rise in average global temperatures is settled - and the verdict is We Are!! So what is the problem, why isn't the world moving forward to try to prevent the undeniably devastating outcome if the world does nothing? Because those in power in the United States, from President Trump on down, don't believe in science, especially climate science.

Worse, they have actively reversed almost every measure Presidents Obama and Bush took to help reduce America's carbon footprint; an effort that was show much success.

The following charts clearly show what is driving the rise in global temperatures.

It should be clear to anyone that the annual increase in average global temperature anomaly (as measured by changes from the 1880 - 1910 baseline). In addition to simply increasing each year, it is obviously increasing at an increasing rate.1 Using the formula on the chart, in 1881, the temperature anomaly was increasing at rate of .00014 °C per year. Today, 139 years later, it is increasing at a rate of .01964 °C. That means temperature anomalies are accelerating at a rate of .00014 °C per year2. That is extremely alarming.

If this rate continues for another 80 years, to the end of the century, that means the global anomaly will be approximately +2.9 °C, well above the 2 °C threshold where scientists say irreversible damage to the earth's ecology and the human social structure.

I don't think anyone but the most die-hard global warming deniers does not think the world's temperature is rising at an alarming rate. But many deniers who admit, grudgingly, that the heat is increasing, deny vehemently that it is caused by humans, otherwise known as AGW, Anthropogenic Global Warming. So what proof that humans are causing the current rise in temperatures?

Well, our study looked at just that question. The deniers claim that there are "other" causes for the changes we see - and they are right, sort of. The next two charts breaks down the changes in temperature anomalies into to groups; natural and human. The further broke those down into their constituent parts:

Natural Causes

  • Orbital Cycles
  • Volcanic
  • Solar

Human Causes

  • Greenhouse Gases (GHG)
  • Aerosols (from burning or similar activity)
  • Deforestation
  • Ozone

In there report, the authors offer an interactive graphic so that one can look at the results of their analysis in detail. I present just three of those charts 2. The first one looks at natural causes and the second at human causes.

The natural causes chart clearly shows that these variables do indeed contribute to global warming, but not by much. In fact, it is the combination of volcanic and solar that gives the slight upward tilt in the trend line. Orbital factors appear to be lowering the temperature a tiny amount. Clearly, Natural Causes cannot be why we see such a dramatic rise in global temperatures.

The elephant in the room then must be Human Causes, that is all that is left. And indeed it is, specifically GHGs. In addition, changes in ozone is also adding a little to an increase in temperature. On the other hand, the net effective of land use changes and aerosols are decreasing temperatures.

Land use is complicated. For instance, cities increase local temperatures as does deforestation. Irrigation, however, lowers local temperatures. Right now, the balance, the net effect, is to lower global temperatures overall. That won't last, unfortunately, as deforestation continues to grow (which has the added effect of not cleaning CO2 out of the air). Ironically, the burning of the forests like what has been happening in the Amazon effectively lowers local temperatures for the reason to follow. As it turns out, changes in ozone and land use roughly cancel one another out.

Aerosols naturally lower temperatures because they block the sun's energy and reflects it back up to space. Of course aerosols are no answer to global warming either because of how harmful they are to humans (think LA or Beijing smog). In year 2000, aerosols accounted for about -.42 °C, lowering global temperatures.

At the same time, in 2000, GHGs contribute about .89 °C, which makes them the elephant in the room.

The estimated net increase from all human drivers, in 2000, is .47 °C. Add the contribution from natural drivers, then the estimated anomaly in 2000 is roughly .83 °C. The observed is .61 °C3 (while in 2000, the observed is lower than the estimate, move over a couple of years and they become equal).

I hope there is now no doubt left in anybody's mind that 1) global temperatures are increasing and 2) humans are the primary driver.

1 The formula you see is for the curved trend line superimposed on the temperature anomaly curve. While you may not be able to read it, the formula for the trend line is a "power function"; in this case to the square. This means that the global average temperature is increasing as the square of the number of years from 1880 increases.

2 The charts are my approximation of what they have since I don't have access to the actual data. So, while the exact numbers are probably incorrect, the shape is pretty close; close enough to make my point.

3 Keep in mind the charts are in °F, not centigrade.

The Changing Climate

Global climate is changing rapidly. Global average temperature has increased by about 1.0°C from 1901 to 2016 (1.07°C by 2019, 1.5°C by 2034, 2°C by 2052). As you just learned, there is no credible natural explanations for this amount of warming except emissions of greenhouse gases. Natural solar (such as sunspots) and the orbital Milankovitch cycles have little impact. Most of that 1.0°C increase has occurred in the last 40 years. And as we also saw, this increase is accelerating.

A one degree increase may not sound like much until you consider the following:

  • In the last 10,000 years, where humanity has flourished, the temperature varied within a range of -0.35 °C and .03 °C
  • For the last 200,000 years, which encompasses the whole of human history, it has always been colder than it is today.
  • The last time the earth was more than 2 degrees above the 1880 - 1901 baseline AND where CO2 was 400 ppm or higher, human life could not have evolved.

Further, CO2 levels varied from 180 ppm to 300 ppm; it now stands at over 400 ppm, higher than it has been in millions of years. Even more scary, there is no end in sight!

1.07 Degrees Celsius

I stated that the increase in global temperatures is accelerating. As proof, consider:

  • From 1880 to 1960, the average global temperature increase at a rate of 0.0039 degrees C per year for 70 years.
  • From 1960 to 2000, the average increase was 0.009 degrees C per year, 2.25 fold increase in 40 years.
  • From 2000 to 2018, the average is now 0.022 degrees C per year, another 2.4 times increase in 18 years
  • The current rate of acceleration of temperature anomalies is approximately .0007 degrees C per year per year and it has taken on an exponential shape

Increased heat waves around the world have been predicted to increase as the earth heats up, and they are. Consider:

  • Between 1900 and 1980, the number of heat waves was flat at about 0.24 heat waves per year (meaning there were many years, and sometimes decades, where there were no recorded heat waves).
  • Between 1980 and 2000, the average jumped to 0.5 heat waves per year.
  • And now, between 2000 and 2020, it has skyrocketed to 2.9 heat waves per year!!!
  • The number of heat waves, like global temperature increases, is rising exponentially.

Consider the following table as well built from a graphic made by the Visual Capitalist.

Excerpts from the Visual Capitalist at,000-years/

YearDegrees Different from 1961 - 1990 Average °CApproximate Temperature °F (for our American readers)Comments

20,000 BCE



- Boston under 1 mile of ice; glaciers stopped at NY City

19,500 - 18,000 BCE

-4.3 to -4.1

49.8 - 50.1

Earth slowly warms

19,500 BCE



Humans begin to spread from Africa to Australia

18,500 BCE



Earth's orbit changes allowing more sunlight at the poles

18,000 BCE



Ice sheets start to melt and temperatures stop increasing

17,250 BCE



CO2 levels start increasing

16,500 BCE



Rate of temperature begins to increase

16,500 - 13,750 BCE

-4.0 to -3.0

50.3 - 52.1

Glaciers finally start retreating from NYC

13,500 BCE



It took 4,000 to increase .3°C but only 2,500 years to increase 1°C

12,500 BCE



Only 1,000 years pass for the next 1°C increase

12,200 BCE



Ice sheets start withdrawing from Chicago

11,500 BCE



Humans settle in Abe Hureyra (modern day Syria)

11,500 BCE

-1.6 to -2.0

54.6 - 53.9

Glacier melt cools the ocean which cools the air

9000 BCE



Global temperatures increase another degree and farming develops for the first time

8800 BCE

0 (14.61°C)


Global temperatures reach the 1961-1990 baseline

8500 - 8300 BCE



Cattle domesticated and ice sheets withdraw to Canadian border

6250 BCE



Seas rise to modern levels

3100 BCE



Temperatures begin to decrease

1200 BCE



Temperatures level off

900 CE



Temperatures start decreasing again

1650 CE



Little Ice Age then temperature begin to increase slightly

1750 - 1880 CE



Industrial Revolution begins

1910 CE



and CO2 level start to increase rapidly

1961 - 1990 CE



Baseline for this table

2000 CE



Northwest Passage opens for first time in history

2016 CE



Present day for the table

2019 CE



Today - a 0.83°C rise in less than 43 years!! (it use to take 1000s of years to increase that much)

2100 CE Low



Massive action now

2100 CE Medium



Optimistic Scenario

2100 CE Do Nothing



Status Quo

Deceptive Numbers

Now 65 °F (the status quo estimate by 2100) doesn't seem very hot, does it? Not until you compare it to this. The average temperature for the United States is just 58.7 °F1, which is roughly equal to today's global average.

Consider if you live in Miami and assuming you could find a dry spot (most of it will be under water), your summers might average 93°F for the highs, instead of the current 87°F. The lows might average 84°F, instead of the current 78°F. Those are heat wave temperatures and the difference is crucial.

The reason so many people die in heat waves (in the tens of thousands in the last big heat wave in Europe and Middle East) is it doesn't get cool enough at night for the body to lower its core temperature. At those temperatures, all outdoor work must stop and everybody will have to find air conditioned environments, especially at night, to survive. Under the status quo scenario, Miami will be experiencing a "permanent" heat wave during the Summer and periodic heat waves during the Spring and Fall.

1 If you average the average temperatures for Omaha, NE (51.7), Los Angeles, CA (66.2), Seattle, WA (52.6), and Portland, ME (46.3)

Emission Scenarios

The above scenario assumes governments react NOW with massive measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, not just stop its growth. Nobody thinks that will happen, especially in the age of Trump. But what are the possible outcomes?

The IPCC's 4th Assessment Report supposes four different responses (with a few variations) to AGW and then proposes likely outcomes. The table below outlines the four scenarios.

IPCC Emission Scenarios

IPCC AR4 (2007)

 Economic EmphasisEnvironmental Emphasis

Global Response

A1 (rapid economic growth; variants A1T, A1B, A1FI: possible outcomes 1.4°C - 6.4°C)

B1 (global environmental sustainability; possible outcomes 1.1°C - 2.9°C)

Regional Response

A2 (regional economic development; possible outcomes 2.0°C - 5.4°C)

B2 (regional environmental sustainability; possible outcomes 1.4°C - 3.8°C)





These scenarios are of a more integrated world. The A1 family of scenarios are characterized by:

  • Rapid economic growth.
  • A global population that reaches 9 billion in 2050 and then gradually declines.
  • The quick spread of new and efficient technologies.
  • A convergent world - income and way of life converge between regions. Extensive social and cultural interactions worldwide.

There are subsets to the A1 family based on their technological emphasis:

  • A1FI - An emphasis on fossil-fuels (Fossil Intensive - the Trump plan).
  • A1B - A balanced emphasis on all energy sources.
  • A1T - Emphasis on non-fossil energy sources.


This scenario are of a more divided world and are characterized by:

  • A world of independently operating, self-reliant nations.
  • Continuously increasing population.
  • Regionally oriented economic development.
  • Low emissions


The B1 scenario is about more integrated world more integrated, and more ecologically friendly and is characterized by:

  • Rapid economic growth as in A1, but with rapid changes towards a service and information economy.
  • Population rising to 9 billion in 2050 and then declining as in A1.
  • Reductions in material intensity and the introduction of clean and resource efficient technologies.
  • An emphasis on global solutions to economic, social and environmental stability.


This scenario is of a world more divided, but more ecologically friendly and is characterized by:

  • Continuously increasing population, but at a slower rate than in A2.
  • Emphasis on local rather than global solutions to economic, social and environmental stability.
  • Intermediate levels of economic development.
  • Less rapid and more fragmented technological change than in A1 and B1.

One Great Place to Find it All

Climate Impact In the Best Case Scenario - B1 (1.1°C - 2.9°C)

In 2014, it was predicted that in the best case scenario, B1, where the world makes a determined effort to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions while maintaining rapid economic growth, that temperature increases will be limited to 1.1°C - 2.9°C above preindustrial levels. That is quite a range with catastrophic consequences at the upper end. But even at the lower end, damage is occurring. Worse, we are already passing by the 1 degree mark making breaking the 1.5°C threshold a certainty in 15 years (2034), if not sooner. Passing the mid-point of 1.8°C is only a decade later and the current projection for surpassing 2.0°C, where permanent, irreversible damage begins to occur, is in 32 years (2051). What are the chances of that? Over 95% (that was a 2017 estimate).

So what does it mean to live in a 1.1°C world? Well, you are living in it now. What we are seeing are (say, compared to 100 years ago):

  • Hurricanes have become stronger and develop more rapidly; Cat 5 Hurricane Dorian is the most recent example. In 1918, of the named storms, 65% are Tropical Storms, 23% were Cat 1 & 2, and 13% were Cat 3, 4, and 5. While in 2018, those percentages change to 66%, 18%, and 16%, respectively (based on 7 year moving average)
  • As warmer oceans lead to more higher volumes of atmospheric water vapor, violent weather has become more frequent. The frequency of tornadoes has increased from 492 tornadoes per year from 1950 - 1959 to 1184 tornadoes per year from 2010 to 2018 - a 241% increase!1
  • Covered earlier is the increased frequency of deadly heat waves. From 1900 to 1980, the number of heat waves was flat at about 0.24 heat waves per year. Boy, what a difference a couple of decades make! Between 2000 and 2020, the rate of heat waves has skyrocketed to 2.9 heat waves per year!!! AND, it is growing exponentially.
  • There are two things driving sea level rise today, 1) melting ice over Greenland and Antarctica and 2) a warmer ocean which makes it expand. The sea level rise from the mid-1800s on has been faster than the last 2,000 years. Between 1901 and 2010, it rose 0.19 meters or roughly 1.7 mm/yr. But, over the last decade or so, the rate of increase has doubled to around 3.4 mm per year; reflecting the rapid rise in temperatures and melting of sheet ice. Already, impacted towns have started to move to higher ground or, in a couple of cases, have already moved to get away from the encroaching sea.
  • Temperatures are increasing at least twice as fast at the poles than in the rest of the world. Because of this, the Greenland ice sheet, most of which is above the arctic circle, has just about reached the tipping point. It is now melting four-times faster than it had been just a few years ago. In the past, a phenomenon such as the North Atlantic Oscillation helped keep things stable by periodically reversing course. During positive cycles it cooled Greenland and ice could accumulate, in negative cycles it warms Greenland and melts the ice. The last reversal, the melting only "paused", there was no accumulation. Currently, the Greenland ice melt is contributing about 0.03 inches (0.8 mm) per year to sea level rise!

Then the worst case of the best case scenario is 2.9°C.

  • Atmospheric CO2 will pass 500 parts per million (ppm), which last happened 16 million years ago, and the temperature was between 5 and 8°C higher (13)2

1 This is a decrease from the periods 1990 - 1999 and 2000 - 2009 which were 1221 and 1288, respectively.

2 Numbers in parentheses are page numbers from The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming by David Wallace-Wells.

The Next Best Case Scenario - B2 (1.4°C - 3.8°C)

The difference between this case and the B1 scenario is that most nations go all in on trying to reduce CO2 in a hurry, i.e., regionalization. The world is not on this, or the previous path yet. Even if the rest of the world was, the United States, under Donald Trump, would force a B2 type of situation. Because Trump is actually reversing America's contribution to helping the environment, the temperature range should probably be shifted up.

As we saw in the discussion above, trying to keep temperatures below 1.4°C is essentially impossible. Likewise, the chances of keeping the increase to 2.0°C is almost impossible. So, what will happen when the earth scoots past 2.9°C and approaches 4.0°C?

  • Whole regions of America, Africa, Australia, and parts of South America (north of Patagonia) and Asia (south of Siberia) would be rendered uninhabitable by direct heat, desertification, and flooding. (6)
  • A green Sahara and tropical forests transformed into fire-dominated savannas (12)
  • 400 million people will suffer water scarcity (12)
  • Major cities in the equatorial band will become unlivable (12)
  • In the northern latitudes thousands will die each summer from heat waves; 32-times as many heat waves in India, each lasting 5-times as long, exposing 93-times as many people as today. (12)
  • There will be eight million more cases of dengue fever each year in Latin America and face an annual food crisis (13)
  • Damage from floods will grow 30-fold in Bangladesh, 20-fold in India, and 60-fold in the UK (13)
  • Deaths from heat will increase 9% (13)
  • Certain places will see six, simultaneous climate-driven natural disasters; globally the cost will exceed $600 trillion annually
  • Conflict and warfare might double
  • There will be permanent food shortages over much of the globe (15)
  • The Alps will be arid (15)

The Most Likely Scenario (If Trump Remains in Charge) - A2 (2.0°C - 5.4°C)

This conclusion is reached for two reasons. One is that Donald Trump is firmly opposed to doing anything that reeks of environmentalism; going so far as to reverse policies to help the environment. This automatically makes any solution a "regional" solution.

The other is that if America focuses on economics over lowering CO2, much of the world will have to follow, regardless of the evidence that the point-of-no-return is right around the corner. By the time others realize they will have to bite-the-bullet - it will be too late.

So, around 5.4°C we get:

  • Sea levels may rise 50 - 75 feet above today’s levels (13)
  • Whole regions of the earth will be uninhabitable (39)
  • The earth will be wrapped in “two globe-girdling belts of perennial drought” (55)

The Worst Case Scenario - A1 (1.4°C - 6.4°C)

This case probably will not happen because, regardless of the self-destructive tack that Donald Trump takes (especially if he is reelected) some parts of the world will do the right thing and do what is necessary to reduce their contribution to the on-coming catastrophe. Europe seems to be quickly coming to this realization - fortunately.

Besides all of the things that will happen in the scenarios above, this is in store for you as we pass 6°C.

  • Summer work in the lower Mississippi valley will be impossible (40)
  • People in the United States, east of the Rockies would suffer more from heat than anywhere else in the world. (40)
  • New York would be hotter than present day Bahrain (40)

After 7°C:

  • In earth’s equatorial band, it will be impossible to for humans, or any other animal for that matter, to live because the body cannot get rid of its own heat. Humans, after a few hours outside, “would simply be cooked to death from both inside and out.” (39)
  • Sea levels may rise 100 - 130 feet above today’s levels (13)


Much of the above IS going to pass, how much is up to the world leadership and, in those countries who can elect their leaders, the people. Much is baked in. As you saw, a whole host of bad things are happening NOW. In a decade, more reversible damage WILL happen, we simply can't stop it.

Most experts think we can, with a lot of sacrifice and hard work, prevent temperatures rising more than 4.0°C by 2100. BUT, keep in mind much damage that occurs after 3.2°C becomes irreversible, e.g. the ice packs will melt completely and oceans will rise a lot. That is because after this point, positive feedback loops kick in and with each cycle, things get worse.

What is frustrating and sad is human's ability to stop this from happening is small - we aren't built to anticipate a future that we can't really see well. Two things might go a long way to helping, One is technological (and may be expensive) and the other biological (and relatively inexpensive).

The latter is two-fold: 1) stop deforestation and 2) plant lots and lots, billions, of fast growing trees. The former is figuring out away to take carbon and methane out of the air and put it back into the earth. This last thing is critical, in my view, because I just don't think humans have it in them to get to net-zero carbon emissions without it.

It is up to us.

© 2019 Scott Belford


Arthur Russ from England on October 02, 2019:

Thanks for the tip Scott; I shall wrap it up here (for now), with one last point to Jack.

Jack, yep, if you’ve been following events since Global Warming was first highlighted as a serious issue 11 years ago (2008) the predictions have consistently fallen short of reality because the current Global Warming trends is not a linear line, it’s a curve e.g. the effects are getting worse exponentially (quickening up); as the latest startling reports show.

Yes, China is currently heavily dependent on coal, because it’s transitioning from an Agricultural based economy to an industrial based economy while trying to simultaneously switch from dependency on fossil fuels to Renewable energy. But the fact remains that the USA burns double the amount of fossil fuel per head of population than China.

Also, if you’d bother to view the videos I gave links to in my last response, you will know that because China is rapidly moving away from fossil fuels (a lot quicker that the USA) that the Use of coal in China will be half of what it is today within 20 years and continue to decline at an increasing rate until they reach or exceed their Paris Agreement target of 80% reduction by 2050.

In other words, unless the USA starts to take Climate Change serious, within a few short years (as China reduces its dependency on coal, with the continued rollout of Renewable Energy) the USA will once again produce more CO2 than any other country in the world.

As regards the rural areas of China, if you’d been keeping up with recent developments, China’s National Grid (Super Grid, Smart Grid), based on the technologies developed in Europe, is fast reaching out to connect the rural areas to Renewable Power; not that the rural areas (which tends to still be more agricultural) uses much coal compared to the industrialised areas of China anyway.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on October 02, 2019:

As Doc Snow and I found out previously, you are now experiencing Jack's well known aversion to accepting facts.

He will play this "Why Mommy?" game forever.

Jack Lee from Yorktown NY on October 02, 2019:

Appreciate the extensive data. Guess you kissed my point about not everyone is on board with the extreme climate change you well know, it has missed the mark in the past.

In the case of China, they are very much dependent on coal for their energy source. Some of the rural areas, cannot survive without coal. It is life and death for those peasants.

Arthur Russ from England on October 02, 2019:

Jack Lee, if the world continues to burn fossil fuels unabated like it did in the past, then there isn’t going to be a long future for humans in which to burn fossil fuels; that is the whole thrust of this article by Scott, if you read it e.g. we are heading towards a mass extinction within the lifetime of our children.

So it’s not just an academic argument, it’s a stark reality which most of the world (except America) is aware of, and which most of the world (except America) is trying to advert.

Besides, it’s not just the UK, it’s the UK, Europe, India, China, and most of the world (except America) who are trying to make ‘best efforts’ to move away from fossil fuels, and switch to Renewable Energy.

China is the biggest country in the world, and therefore currently produces more CO2 emissions than any other country, 29.34% of the world’s total emissions, but the USA is the 2nd worst offender, at 13.77% of the world’s total emissions. In comparison, India only accounts for 6.62% of the world’s emission.

The reason the USA fares so badly is that it is one of the worst countries for burning fossil fuels per capita (per person) in 2017:-

• USA (population 0.327 billion) emits into the atmosphere, 15.7 metric tons of CO2 per person per year.

• China (population 1.386 billion) emits into the atmosphere, 7.7 metric tons of CO2 per person per year.

• UK (population 66 million) emits into the atmosphere, 5.7 metric tons of CO2 per person per year.

• India (population 1.339 billion) emits into the atmosphere, burns 1.8 metric tons of CO2 per person per year.

In spite of the fact that the USA population (0.327 billion) is a quarter of the size of China’s (1.386 billion), the USA emits almost half as CO2 emissions into the atmosphere each year than China.

In spite of the current status, China is the world leader in wind power, with the largest installed capacity of any country in the world.

China is installing new wind turbines at a rate of about 2 an hour; compared to the UK’s effort of just 1 new turbine per day. So while China has to still rely heavily of fossil fuels while its switching to Renewable Energy (a process that does take time), every day that passes China (like Europe) is becoming less and less dependent on fossil fuels as it increases its capacity of Renewable Energy:

In 2017 (latest full data), Renewable Energy accounted for 28.2% of China’s electricity as follows:-

• Hydro power = 18.6% (mainly due to the Three Gorges Dam, which is the world’s largest dam).

• Wind power = 4.7%

• Thermal = 1.9%

• Solar power = 1.8%

• Biomass = 1.2%

Also, like the UK and other countries around the world, China is committed to ban fossil fuel cars by 2040.

Likewise, India is committed to the Paris Agreement, and is making best efforts. Their progress isn’t as impressive as China’s, but they are making progress, and they are far more committed to making that Progress than the USA is.

Getting back to your original point; taking a negative attitude e.g. doing nothing because you think it’s pointless, or because you’re in denial of Global Warming (like Trump and many Americans) only dooms the world to an impending disaster; while making best efforts to do something (like most of the world), then we still stand a chance of mitigating against the worst effects of Global Warming.

So it’s not that ‘the world’ is intent on burning fossil fuels for a long time, because most countries in the world are committed to weaning themselves off of fossil fuels at the earliest opportunity; it’s only America (in accordance with Trump’s policies) that is intent on increasing its use of fossil fuels.

China's Renewable Energy Push:

A tour of the Three Gorges Dam in China:

2017: China Banning Non-Electric Cars (significant, as a third of all cars in the world are sold in China)

Jack Lee from Yorktown NY on October 02, 2019:

Good for the UK. What about India and China?

They combined are 35% of the World’s population.

You are pursuing something that is an illusion.

The world will be burning fossil fuel for a long long time.

Arthur Russ from England on October 01, 2019:

Jack Lee, in the UK:-

• 20 years ago less than 2% of the UK’s electricity was from Renewable Energy.

• In 2013, 14.9% of electricity was from Renewable Energy.

• In 2015, 25% of electricity was from Renewable Energy.

• In 2017, 27.9% of electricity was from Renewable Energy.

• In 1st Quarter (Jan-March) of 2019, 35% was from Renewable Energy.

Currently only 4.6% of road transport uses Renewable Sources; but that figure is growing exponentially each year.

40% of all UK rails are now electrified, covering 60% of all rail journeys by electric trains. With the remaining 40% of (diesel) trains likely to be predominantly replaced with hydrogen trains rather than electric because rolling out hydrogen trains (new technology) is an easier, cheaper and quicker green option to electrifying the remaining 40% of rail track.

Britain is currently the fourth greenest power generation country in Europe and the seventh worldwide.

World's Largest Offshore Wind Farm (in the UK):

Europe is Planning to Build an Artificial Island in the North Sea that will Provide Renewable Energy to 80 million people by 2027:-

Scotland is doing even better than England:-

• In 2015, 59% of Scottish electricity was from Renewable Energy, of which they exported 28.9% (as surplus energy).

• In 2018, 74% of Scottish electricity was from Renewable Energy.

Scotland's Hydrogen Strategy:

Jack Lee from Yorktown NY on October 01, 2019:

Arthur, after all that, what percent of total electrical energy is produced by renewable sources? What percent of auto and trucks and trains run on renewable sources?

I will be shocked if it is 20% or higher.

The only exception being nuclear. France is the leader here with over 70% of electric generation from nuclear power.

Arthur Russ from England on October 01, 2019:

Jack Lee: that is where your knowledge is lacking, of progress being made in Europe and China.

The strategy being deployed across Europe, which is also being replicated in China, is as follows:-

• Renewable Energy mix, including Wind, Solar, Hydro, Thermal, Wave Power, Tidal Power, Green Renewable Gases, Biomass etc.

• Smart National Grids.

• Pan European Super Grid.

• Energy Storage e.g. batteries, hydro and hydrogen etc.

#1: Each country within Europe has its own National Grid, and in the past few years these National Grids have been upgraded to ‘Smart Grids’.

A ‘Smart Grid’ can take electricity from all sources of where it’s being generated and seamlessly distribute it to wherever it’s needed, when its needed e.g. surplus solar power from the solar panels on the roofs of private homes being fed into the National Grid. Very much like how the ‘cloud’ works on the Internet.

#2: Over the past few years all the National Grids across Europe have been interconnected with each other to form one ‘Super’ National Grid e.g. so that surplus electricity from Spain can be fed to England as and when needed, and vice versa.

#3: Yes, you can’t predict when the wind will blow or when the sun shines. But one certainty is that it is always windy in the coasts around Britain, and it is almost always sunny in Spain during daylight hours. Therefore, northern countries like Britain and southern European countries like Spain sharing their energy resources ‘mitigates’ against some of the uncertainty.

Also, wind and solar are NOT the only Renewable Energy in the mix, more reliable Renewable Energy includes Hydro, Thermal, Green Renewable Gases, Biomass, Wave and Tidal etc.

• Norway has an abundance of Hydro Power.

• Britain has several Hydro Power Stations on standby for peak demand.

• Sewage and food waste are being increasingly used in the UK to produce Renewable Energy (as a reliable energy source).

• Scotland is at an advanced stage of Research and Development in using Wave and Tidal power as reliable Renewable green energy sources of the future.

#4: Although banks of batteries are being installed on the National Grids as storage of surplus ‘Green’ electricity, they are not the only means of storing surplus energy. In Britain, Electric Mountain in Wales (a hydroelectric power station) plays a vital role in the UK’s energy mix. And more recently, Scotland is at an advanced stage in Research and Development for using hydrogen to store surplus electricity as the battery of the future.

You mention the gas power station in Palm Springs that can fire up in 10 minutes from standby when needed. In the UK, the Electric Mountain (hydro plant) used as backup on the British National Grid is from nil power to ‘FULL’ power (when needed) in 10 seconds, and can provide full power for 5.5 hours in any 24 hour period; producing as much electricity as any LARGE Power Station.

The Electric Mountain, Wales (backup system, hydroelectric power station):-

The European Super Grid (This video is 10 years old, so everything mentioned in the video has now been done):

Jack Lee from Yorktown NY on October 01, 2019:

Arthur, what you are missing is that solar, wind are not reliable for mission critical energy needs. When I visited Palm Springs Ca where they have wind farms since the 1990s, I was told and shown a gas power plant that was built as a backup. This plant will fire up in 10 minutes in case the wind is too slow or too fast for the windmills to work. In order for solar to work, it would need a huge bank of batteries to store the energy during the day and dispense the power at night or on clouding days..,in the Northeast region where I live, we may get cloudy days for a week...what do you do with solar?

Arthur Russ from England on October 01, 2019:

Looking at your first article, I can only speak authoritatively for the UK (because that is where I live). But the UK is not unique, many European countries and China are on a similar path towards phasing out fossil fuels; with different countries doing better in different areas, for example:-

• The UK is the world leader on offshore windfarms.

• Scotland in the world leader on Research and Development in wave and tidal energy.

• China is the world leader on solar panels.

In the UK the average life span of petrol cars is 8 years.

Currently, production of new petrol and diesel cars will be illegal in the following counties by date:-

• 2050 = Costa Rica

• 2040 = France, UK and Sri Lanka

• 2032 = Scotland

• 2030 = China, Denmark, Iceland, Ireland, Netherlands and Sweden

• 2025 = Norway

In the UK, China and across most of Europe, almost all car manufacturers have already, or are in the process of switching production from fossil fuel cars to electric cars.

I understand from other sites that Tesla is the main electric car manufacturer in the USA; however, across Europe that is not the case. In Europe the vast majority of electric cars being manufactured and sold are by other car manufacturers.

From your list of existing machinery that uses fossil fuels:-

• Automobiles: Over a dozen countries are already committed to phase out fossil fuel cars in preference to electric cars by between 2025 & 2050 (see above list). Europe and China are at an advanced stage of doing this; including building the infrastructure e.g. network of recharging stations (SHELL OIL being one such Company in the UK who started switching to electric charging points at their refuelling stations over a year ago).

• Motorcycles: Likewise, in many countries, fossil fuel motorcycles will be replaced with electric motorcycles.

• Airplanes: Research and Development into electric planes is at an early stage, but good progress is being made.

• Trucks: As with cars, Electric trucks are already becoming more common across Europe.

• Buses and Coaches (which were not on your list): Also, in the UK diesel buses and coaches are rapidly being replaced by predominantly hydrogen buses e.g. over 200 buses in Bristol (where I live) now run on hydrogen created from Bristol sewage.

• Trains: China, UK and across the rest of Europe diesel trains are rapidly being replace by electric trains. In the UK almost half of the UK rail network has already been electrified. Also, in June 2019, the UK became the 3rd country in the world to run hydrogen trains; Germany being the 2nd, and China (where the technology was developed) the first.

• Ships: Scotland is at an advanced stage of developing technology to run the worlds first commercial seafaring Ferries on electricity generated from hydrogen, with ships being the next target.

• Ferries: Scotland are already run a small fleet of seafaring ferries using hydrogen as part of its trials in the Research and Development of using stored surplus Renewable electricity in the form of hydrogen (like a battery) for generating clean energy.

• Power plants: Coal and Gas are the Main source for fossil fuel Power Stations. Britain turned its back on coal a long time ago (for political reasons), the UK dependency on coal for electricity has dropped from 67% in the 1980s to less than 2% now; with the last coal powered fire station closing in the UK in 2025. Currently, the UK is still currently heavily dependent on Natural Gas Power Stations, but Natural Gas is a lot cleaner than coal; and besides the UKs dependence on Natural Gas is diminishing by the day as more and more wind turbines (and other Renewable Energy Sources) come on line e.g. Britain is installing new wind turbines at a rate of about one per day.

• Rockets: Rockets don’t use fossil fuel, they use hydrogen.

• Portable Generators: I haven’t researched this one, but I don’t think it’s significant!

• Building Furnaces: I can’t speak for the USA, but in Europe, furnaces don’t use fossil fuels, furnaces generate clean ‘Renewable Energy’ from burning non-recyclable waste.

World's First Hydrogen-Powered Seagoing Ferries:

These 4 countries are pioneering hydrogen power: Scotland, England, Germany and Japan:

As regards the recent heatwaves, you obviously don’t live in Europe where climate change (and Global Warming) has become blatantly obvious since the 1980s, and most particularly in the past 10 to 20 years; and neither have you done your research that thoroughly. The Old Farmer’s Almanac, that you use for your referenced source isn’t very scientific.

FYI, the 10 hottest years globally since records began have all been in the past 21 years:-

The 10 hottest years on Record (globally), in descending order from the hottest:-

1. 2016

2. 2015

3. 2017

4. 2018

5. 2014

6. 2010

7. 2013

8. 2005

9. 2009

10. 1998

Jack Lee from Yorktown NY on October 01, 2019:


Read my article here -

That explains why fossil fuel is going to be around a long long time.

As for recent heat waves, this is not new. The same goes with extreme weather events. If you get a copy of the Old Farmers Almanac, you will see how weather for the last 200 years has gone through many extremes.

Here is another article -

Arthur Russ from England on September 30, 2019:

Jack Lee, the 4th assessment is only reflecting reality; if you lived in countries outside of America adversely affected by Climate Change (including Europe) then you’ll know it’s not an exaggeration.

In recent years the heatwaves (which has become a normal annual event in recent years) is killing an estimated 30,000 Europeans a year e.g. annual deaths of 1,500 in France and about 650 in the UK due to the heatwaves becoming the norm.

Record temperature heatwave in Europe: The new normal:

One of the other of many big problems in Europe due to Global Warming is the unprecedented increase in forest fires across Europe in recent years; including in Britain where such fires had previously been unheard of because of our wet climate.

UK Homes Evacuated as Fires Spreads Due to Heatwave:

Yes we can eliminate fossil fuels in our lifetime (if the political will is there); I’ve seen it in Britain with coal, and we are seeing it in Britain now with oil.

In the 1980s the Conservative Government closed virtually all of our coalmines within a few short years for ‘political reasons’; at that time 67% of Britain’s electricity came from coal. Therefore, today, we have over 200 years supply of coal left in the ground, and less than 2% of our electricity now comes from coal; the last coal powered fire station in Britain is due to close in 2025.

As regards oil; not only is the UK Government committed to ban all fossil fuel cars by 2030 (the main use of oil in the UK) but in July of this year the British Government made it LAW that the UK will be ‘net zero’ carbon neutral by 2050. On the back of that SHELL (the Largest Oil Company in the UK) are themselves rapidly switching from investing in oil to investing in Renewable Energy.

Britain Becoming First Major Economy to turn it Back of Fossil Fuels:

Shell Oil Renewable Energy Advert:

Jack Lee from Yorktown NY on September 30, 2019:

Any comment on the latest court case regarding Dr. Mann and his hockey stick graph...?

Jack Lee from Yorktown NY on September 30, 2019:

If the 4th assessment is as bad as the last three, why would anyone listen? You article is biased because you don’t mention in the best case scenario how a little warming will improve food production...and help regions in the northern hemisphere like Russian...

The worst case scenario is the exxageration to scare little kids.

If anything, after 30 years of the IPCC, the majority of the people have a coomon sense approach to climate change. We cannot elliminate fossil fuel in our lifetime...

Arthur Russ from England on September 27, 2019:

Thanks Scot. The only main area of concern in the UK was Uber Drivers, but Uber lost in the High Court last December; so although Uber has been granted permission to appeal to the Supreme Court, for the time being at least, Uber Drivers in the UK are employees which means that under UK Employment Laws they are entitled to the minimum wage, paid maternity and paternity leave, and the 6 weeks paid holiday (vacation) leave that all British employees get, etc.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 27, 2019:

"Is that why tipping in the ‘service sector’ is a way of life in the USA?" - For the most part. The gov't is tightening the rules so that fewer service workers are unprotected. I think agriculture is another sector that is somewhat exempt.

Arthur Russ from England on September 27, 2019:

Thanks Scot for clarifying.

Absolutely: Controlling Businesses through ‘Tough Regulations’ and ‘Rigorous Enforcement’ would be far more effective. My analogy would be thinking of ‘illegal immigrants’ as storm water swelling a river and ‘Regulated Industry’ like a dam: If Industry is poorly regulated and enforcement of those Regulations weak; then the dam (Industry) is going to leak like a sieve e.g. Industry ignore the Regulations and employ illegal immigrants as ‘slave labour’, but if the dam is strong then it becomes much harder for illegal immigrants to find work.

With reference to your comment:-

“Most employers are required to pay minimum wage regardless of who they employ. That said, there are some industries (such as small restaurants) who are exempt from that requirement.”

Is that why tipping in the ‘service sector’ is a way of life in the USA?

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 27, 2019:

"It’s a simple but effective requirement. But more importantly, funding for election campaigns in the UK is highly regulated," - This is the goal of the Democrats. The Republicans want to keep dark money in the game.

"For example, in Britain, even though the present Government doesn’t acknowledge it (for political reasons) we are heavily dependent on immigration for economic growth because of our ageing population." - ABSOLUTELY correct. The anti-immigration crowd, even though they don't know it, are actually anti-growth. (Mainly because conservatives do not have a good grasp on both micro and macro economics.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 27, 2019:

"Am I right in understanding that in America, if you are an American worker, your work is documented and you pay tax and insurance on it, and get paid the minimum wage; while if you are not American then nothing is recorded and you get paid ‘slave’ wages!!!!"

For the most part NO.

Most employers are required to pay minimum wage regardless of who they employ. That said, there are some industries (such as small restaurants) who are exempt from that requirement.

All employers are "supposed" to get I-9s on anybody who they hire which requires various forms of ID to prove the employee is allowed to work in the U.S.

In order to work, many undocumented get fake Social Security cards and other fake ID. They end up paying federal and state taxes as a result including payroll taxes. The latter means they pay into our Social Security and Medicare systems but never receive the benefit - (lots of free money for the U.S. Treasury)

There are those employers who ignore the rules and take advantage of undocumented workers. Those employers should be caught and prosecuted but the Trump administration doesn't want to do that.

Bottom line - if the government went after employers and enforced their I-9 requirement, then your illegal immigrant problem would be solved. The Right-wing is going after the wrong target, in my opinion. They should forget entirely about illegal immigration and crack down hard on American businesses.

Arthur Russ from England on September 27, 2019:

Thanks for the feedback Ken. Yes the strong impression we get in Britain is that American Politicians are in the pockets of Industry; predominantly because in America it’s Industry that funds their election campaigns.

In contrast, in Britain, not only are their strict ‘rules’ in Parliament to divorce a politician’s political interest from their commercial interest’s e.g. all MPs have to sign the Register of Members' Financial Interests, which then makes it transparent to all where an MP may have an interest that might reasonably influence their actions or words as an MP.

It’s a simple but effective requirement. But more importantly, funding for election campaigns in the UK is highly regulated, strictly limited and closely monitored by the ‘Electoral Commission’; which not only makes it easier for smaller political parties to compete on a more level playing field, but also helps to ensure politicians are not under the control of Industry.

For example, the Conservatives total spend (for campaigning in 650 seats), set by the Electoral Commission, in the 2017 General Election was just £18.5 ($25 million). The Electoral Commission closely scrutinises the expenditure from all political parties, following an election, and will prosecute where they find fraud and deceit (the maximum sentence to an MP for electoral fraud is six months prison). In 2017 the Conservative Party was fined £70,000 ($100,000) for trying to hide £275,813 ($340,000) of expenditure (missing rescripts) for elections in 2015 from their financial submissions to the Electoral Commission.

What does the Electoral Commission do?

In fact, in many ways we have the reverse in Britain to the situation in the USA in that the Labour Party (which was formed by the Trade Unions in 1900) is to this day heavily controlled by the Trade Unions e.g. the Trade Unions have a significant say in the election of the Labour Leader, and (at their Annual Conference) a major influence over setting Labour Policy.

As regards your comment “But no matter what country we may be discussing, the more people in the labor force, the lower wages and benefits can be……”. In economics it’s not quite as black and white as that. Yes, labour shortages can push up wages, and vice versa, but the relationship between ‘supply and demand’, economic growth and other factors (including employment laws) etc., can have an influence. For example, while restricting immigration may force up wages in the short term, due to labour shortages, in the medium to long term it can also lead to less economic growth and or higher inflation etc., dependent on the various scenarios. For example, in Britain, even though the present Government doesn’t acknowledge it (for political reasons) we are heavily dependent on immigration for economic growth because of our ageing population.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 27, 2019:

"The penalties for hiring illegal or undocumented workers are no deterrent, just about every business from Toll Bros to Tyson to Wall Mart has been caught doing so." - And the Trump administration, who is ballistic over illegals working in America, has not prosecuted a SINGLE employer while they round up people to deport. Why is that??

I am not sure which Act you are referring to, but it was certainly now Glass-Stegal when you wrote "The repeal of Glass Steagall, allowing China to continue for decades in its tariff free state, "

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 27, 2019:


The majority of states in America have made it quasi-legal to hire illegal and undocumented workers, though some, such as CA, have made it so they can get identification (license) cards.

The penalties for hiring illegal or undocumented workers are no deterrent, just about every business from Toll Bros to Tyson to Wall Mart has been caught doing so.

There was a crack down on this issue two decades ago, which resulted in those large&powerful businesses' lobbyists and lawyers working to ensure that laws were changed or de-emphasized.

Congress has been in the back pocket of big business, big banking, and even under heavy influence from certain foreign nations (IE - China, Saudi Arabia) for decades now.

The repeal of Glass Steagall, allowing China to continue for decades in its tariff free state, these are examples of things no governing body would have allowed if they were looking out for the best interests of the nation and its people.

It sounds like in the UK punishment for violations of labor laws is much more severe, and not so well tolerated.

But no matter what country we may be discussing, the more people in the labor force, the lower wages and benefits can be, this is a basic truth, like water running downhill. And this is magnified substantially if millions of those workers are illegal or undocumented.

Arthur Russ from England on September 26, 2019:

Thanks Ken,

What you describe in your 2nd paragraph sounds like what Scot called “Earned Income Tax Credit”, which is very similar to the “Working Tax Credits” in the UK.

With reference to your description of an ‘undocumented worker’ being a foreign-born person who doesn’t have the legal permits needed to work in the USA (which violates USA laws); and then in the next paragraph stating 6 million of them file taxes, because although they don’t pay any taxes they still financially benefit from the ‘tax credit’ they get refunded from the IRS.

As a Brit that is very paradoxical:-

The key in the British system is your personal NI (National Insurance) Number. In the UK you need your NI number every time you fill in an Official Form (for any purpose). So without your NI number you can’t get a passport, driving licence, credit cards, bank accounts, welfare, tax credits or work etc.

Legal immigrants automatically get their NI number when they come to the UK to work.

Unlike the USA where (if I understand correctly) individuals fill out their own tax returns annually, in the UK it’s your employer who pays your taxes for you (not you), so British employees never fill in a tax form e.g. I’ve never filled one in.

Therefore as the onus is on the employer to do all the Admin for the employee’s taxes the employer needs the employees NI number so that they can do all the paperwork for the employee. Therefore, without your NI number, an employer can’t employ you.

You might be wondering about unscrupulous employers who might just try to pay cash. Reputable employers will not, the risks are too high, the penalties too high (5 years prison); it’s not worth the risk. Obviously some unscrupulous small scale operator might occasionally try to operate that way (outside of the law), but the authorities are very hot on tracking down that sort of activity, and most who try it are exposed quickly, and then they face a Criminal Offence that carries a 5 year prison sentence for the employer.

So in the UK illegal workers isn’t an issue.

The NI system was first introduce by the Liberal Government in 1911, and enhanced by Labour in 1948.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 26, 2019:

You say "All those jobs you think would go unfilled, would be filled, " yet there are 404,000 construction job openings across the country, why aren't they all filled by these worker you say are available?

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 26, 2019:


Undocumented is a complex term to define officially. The official government view is that SOME do file taxes. But trust me, those that do are doing so because it benefits them.

Many people who file taxes below a certain earning amount get MORE back from the IRS than they put into it, meaning they get more money refunded than withheld from their pay. In fact, they can get money back even if they didn't have any income tax withheld. The earned income credit can be substantial, several thousands worth.

An undocumented worker is a foreign-born person who doesn't have the legal permits needed to work in the country. In the US, an undocumented worker is considered in violation of U.S. migration and naturalization law as well as not having permission to work in the United States, and can be deported.

The IRS says 6 million of them file taxes, what it doesn't say is that almost all 6 million of them receive more in refunds than they pay in taxes.

There are plenty more that don't file taxes, and that the government isn't officially aware of.

Our government is beholden to corporate interests first and foremost, and what the corporations want is cheap labor. They use H1-B visas to displace 'white collar' Americans from their jobs, and they use undocumented workers to displace 'blue collar' Americans.

Its pretty much common knowledge that this is going on everywhere, but the people don't really have control of the government, efforts like the Tea Party after the ACA was rammed through, and currently the election of Trump, are efforts of the working class to regain control of the government... you see how that is working out.

Arthur Russ from England on September 26, 2019:

Am I right in understanding that in America, if you are an American worker, your work is documented and you pay tax and insurance on it, and get paid the minimum wage; while if you are not American then nothing is recorded and you get paid ‘slave’ wages!!!!

If I’ve understood correctly, then as a Brit, the American employment laws sound rather strange (alien) to me e.g. treating foreign workers as 2nd class citizens?

In the UK, wages are taxed at source e.g. employees don’t do annual tax returns; the employer deducts the taxes before they pay you. Plus, of course, the employer has a legal obligation to pay at minimum, the ‘minimum legal wage’ to all their employees regardless.

Arthur Russ from England on September 26, 2019:

It’s a good question Scot. The simple answer is ‘yes’; but the politics is complex.

It’s complex and unpredictable at this stage. The current best predictions at this time for the forthcoming General Election later this year, are that:-

• It will most likely to be a hung parliament e.g. no single party with a majority,

• With possibly the Conservatives having most seats, and

• Labour being the 2nd largest party.

All that could change over the coming months, especially in the last six weeks during the election campaign e.g. Theresa May called a snap General Election in 2017 because the Conservatives had a 20% lead over Labour (which would have meant a landslide Victory for the Conservatives); but over the six weeks of the election campaign that lead evaporated and we ended up with a hung Parliament. Therefore Theresa May had to form an Alliance with the 10 DUP MPs (Democratic Unionist Party) in order to form a Government with a slim majority.

This General Election will be more complex to predict this time round because how well or badly the Conservative and Labour does depends on how well or badly the Brexit Party and the Liberal Democrats do; and that largely depends on by how much Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn pleases or displeases their respective support base.

About 70% of Conservative voters support Brexit, while about 70% of Labour voters support Remain; and the problem for the two main parties is that for many voters the Brexit issue is more important than party loyalty.

If the Conservatives are soft on Brexit, they will lose a lot of votes to the Brexit Party, which will split the vote and potentially let in Labour or Liberal MPs; if the Conservatives are hard on Brexit (as Boris is at the movement) then they will lose some support (and some seats) to the Liberals in England (who are very pro EU), and up to 10 or 12 seats to the SNP (Scottish National Party) in Scotland, a Socialist Party who already have 35 MPs and who are also very pro EU.

If Labour is seen to be too supportive of ‘Brexit with a Deal’ they will lose a lot of seats to the Liberals, if on the other hand they fully commit to campaigning for Remain then while they may consolidate their support in southern England and will be competing with the Liberals to win a few seats from the Conservatives, they are likely to lose up to 10 seats in northern England to either the Brexit Party and or the Conservatives. Consequently, while Labour are now FULLY committed to a 2nd Referendum, Jeremy Corbyn is still sitting on the Fence as to whether he would campaign for Remain or Leave (with a Deal) in that Referendum.

To get back to your question:-

The Conservatives and DUP want Brexit, while all the other Parties support Remain.

Hypothetically, the most complex scenario following the General Election would be that:-

• The Conservatives win most seats, but not enough to form a majority, not even with DUP’s support.

• That the division is very much as it is now e.g. so evenly split that the only way Labour could form a workable majority is by working with all the other parties except the Conservatives and DUP.

In such a situation, under the British unwritten Constitution, the Conservatives will have the first bite at the cherry e.g. be given the first chance to form a Government, but as they, even with DUP’s support wouldn’t be able to form a majority, it would fall on Labour (as the second largest party) to try to form a Government.

This is when the ‘Horse Trading’ starts. The Liberal Democrats Policy is to Revoke Article 50 e.g. to cancel Brexit altogether and Remain within the EU, although as a compromise they would accept a 2nd Referendum. All the other minor parties SNP, Plaid Cymru and the Green Party etc. are ‘Remain’ Parties.

Therefore, for Labour to form an Alliance with any or all the opposition parties in order to form a minority Government with a workable majority, Labour (who are already committed to a 2nd Referendum) would have to accept certain terms demanded of them by the smaller parties in relation to how and when they conduct the 2nd Referendum e.g. the smaller parties expecting Labour to campaign for Remain in return for their support!

The ability of the smaller (pro-remain) parties and Labour working together for a common cause (under pressure) has already been proven when jointly, they seized power from Boris Johnson and his Government at the beginning of September to push through Legislation in the House of Commons within 24 hours (The Benn Act) which is now law, and which forces Boris to ask for an Extension to Article 50 on the 19th October if he fails to get a Deal from the EU that’s acceptable to Parliament; a law that Boris said twice yesterday in Parliament that he will ignore!!!

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 26, 2019:


I find it interesting that the arguments you make would thrill the CEOs of most corporations, especially the ones who only care about the bottom line and maximizing profit, even at the expense of the wellbeing of the people in this country.

I have confidence in what I speak, because I have overseen multi-million dollar budgets where I have seen the very things I am talking about at work.

I have hired construction laborers that are experts at what they do, but they won't be hired onto crews for multi-million dollar projects because they are American, and that would require their pay be documented and reported, their insurance be provided, etc. it is much easier for the sub-contracting companies to hire undocumented workers, and pay them far less.

All those jobs you think would go unfilled, would be filled, the companies would just have to hire a licensed or experienced contractor and pay the going rate for their work, rather than hire an unqualified undocumented worker to do it for a third of the cost.

This is the difference between overseeing projects and programs, and hiring and contracting in the real world... and being buried in your books and theories that have no basis in reality.

Your theories, ideas and beliefs only support the very corruption and corporate elitism you probably despise. You help them get richer at the expense of the working class, driving down wages, benefits, and a sustainable society.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 26, 2019:

Arthur, will the Liberal's join with Labour to form a viable gov't?

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 26, 2019:

"Or you can go back and read the links I provided where it talks about companies that happily replace the American workers they have with H1-B or H2-B visa holders who will do the job for half the pay."

Go back and read my links to see that those same companies have to PROVE they WON'T replace American workers. It makes no difference if they are happy or not.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 26, 2019:

I'll make it simpler - If those 100,000 undocumented (you use to be talking JUST about immigrants) all quit today you would have a month from now:

1. Companies looking for workers to fill the jobs they quit and not finding any because 1) unemployment is so low, 2) many Americans don't have the proper skill set, 3) many American's don't live where the construction jobs are, and 4) many American's simply won't work in the construction environment. THIS IS where your argument fails you assume there are people who will take the higher paying jobs; there aren't.

2. $800,000/hr or $1,664,000,000 a year NOT going into the economy (because construction couldn't find replacement workers)

3. Reduced demand from the loss of $1.7 billion which will lead to reduced production for some commodities which means more fired workers

4. Many construction jobs where those immigrants worked will stop throwing many other Americans out of work.

Arthur Russ from England on September 26, 2019:

Scott, further to the latest opinion polls I quoted the other day, where the Conservatives had a 6% lead and Labour and Liberals were neck and neck.

The latest UK opinion polls since the Supreme Court Ruling against Boris on Tuesday, put the Conservatives and Labour at 27% each and the Liberals at 20%. It's the lowest the Conservatives have been in the opinion polls since Boris became Prime Minister; so it might be a sign that his honeymoon period with the voters is over.

But opinion polls are never static, and they are going to shift a lot over the next few months, before the forthcoming General Election. So it's anyone's guess as to how well, or badly, the different political parties do come Election day. But I am still hopeful that the Liberals will do quite well.

Arthur Russ from England on September 25, 2019:

To get back on track:-

U.N. report warns on the impacts of climate change:

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 25, 2019:

OK Scott, I'll simplify.

100,000 undocumented workers willing to do a job for $8 dollars an hour, means they have displaced 100,000 Americans that require $15 or more to do that job.

Or you can go back and read the links I provided where it talks about companies that happily replace the American workers they have with H1-B or H2-B visa holders who will do the job for half the pay.

America has all the people it needs, plenty for every job, if the companies are willing to pay them a decent wage.

Corporations want cheap labor, they don't care where it comes from.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 25, 2019:

Ken, you have yet to show how American workers are being displaced from jobs they want. What you present below doesn't do that, it just tells be that immigrants like to work and aren't lazy. It says nothing that these productive immigrants are preventing native born Americans from working if they want.

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 25, 2019:

Scott: "Undocumented workers do nothing to improve wages or the lives of Americans, nor does allowing in millions of those unable or unwilling to work." - Do you have any statistics to back that up?

Ken: Over seven in 10 of the 11 million illegal immigrants in the United States have jobs, many good-paying positions in construction, according to a new analysis of immigrants in the workforce.

The Pew Research Center said that 8 million illegal immigrants have jobs, some 72 percent of all illegals, from construction to masons, maids to field workers.

I have been to some of these developments under construction, where hundreds of workers are busy building multiple homes at once, and finding one that can speak english is a hardship.

I'm not talking small projects either, I'm talking about Toll Bros, construction where they are selling million dollar homes.

Sadly these corporations are so greedy, they would rather hire undocumented workers rather than employ Americans because it means a few more dollars profit.

In America today we have an out of control corporate atmosphere that is interested in maximizing profit while doing nothing for the community, or the future interests of the nation. And unfortunately our politicians who are supposed to pass laws to hold them accountable, instead work to help corporations find loopholes or get over on laws already on the books.

America is very different from the UK, I am not overly familiar with the UK but from what Arthur has said there is a MAJOR difference from who they allow into the country and what benefits they can get, and how we do things here in America... vastly different.

Whether its undocumented workers, or whether its H1-B visas, it all contributes to American workers being displaced from jobs, and lower wages across the board.

Arthur Russ from England on September 25, 2019:

Yep Scott, ref your comment “the liberals sure know how to piss people off sometimes. Glad to see they are neck-and-neck with Labour.”

I might be a staunch Socialist (Corbynite) but I do like to see the Liberal Democrats doing well in General Elections because they do give a third voice in Parliament and can have a moderating effect on politics, and their policies are amenable to Socialism and Capitalism so they can work with any reasonable political party quite easily.

Although I’m a Corbynite, there are a couple of major policies issue of Corbyn I don’t agree with, but he is far closer to my politics than the Blairites in the Labour Party.

Bristol (where I live is a staunch Labour area) all 4 Bristol MPs are Labour; but Bath (just 11 miles from Bristol) is a battle ground between Conservatives and the Liberals during General Elections:-

Bath - General Election Declaration 2017 (Liberal win)

Since before the 2nd world war Bath had always been a Conservative safe seat until the Liberals won it in 1992 (Conservative voters at the time defecting to the Liberals because of Margaret Thatcher’s failed attempts to reintroduce the unpopular Poll Tax, which led to countrywide riots and the abolition of the poll tax, just as it happened in 1381 when the Government previously tried to introduce a poll tax).

Since 1992, Bath became a safe seat for the Liberals, until 2015 when voters punished the Liberals for keeping the Minority Conservative Government in power from 2010-2015.

But in 2017 the Liberals won it back, and most likely they’ll retain it come the next General Election later this year.

Arthur Russ from England on September 24, 2019:

Ken, I can only confidently speak for the UK and the EU; the USA is outside my sphere of intimate knowledge.

From what you say, there are some profound differences in Government Policies and Laws between the UK and USA; which I shall address below:-

#1: Firstly, with reference to your comment “You don't address the point of those immigrating who can't or won't work, and how they are a burden, not a benefit, to the system.”

In the UK, and across most of the EU (contrary to the propaganda, and there’s a lot of propaganda on the subject) immigrants are not entitled to any benefits until they have lived and worked in the UK (paying taxes) for at least six months.

#2: Secondly, in the UK the ‘Legal Minimum Wage’ applies to ALL e.g. it doesn’t matter whether you are an immigrant or British, the employer has to pay you at least £8.21 (about $12) an hour.

Illegal immigrants, is not a big issue in the UK, trying to live outside the system in the UK is extremely difficult. The UK is very much ‘1984’ (the film).

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 24, 2019:

"First, the H1-B (which is non-immigrant, btw) and H2-B (non-immigrant, btw) visa programs DISPLACE American workers." - Ken, give me some statistics to back that up. Those programs are there because employers can't find enough American workers to fill them.

Do a few American companies abuse the system, yes they do - but to bring it up is simply a deflection.

"Second, undocumented workers that take up hundreds of thousands of jobs across the nation in construction and other physical labor positions WOULD be done by Americans, just not for the $8 an hour they are willing to do them for." - this is actually BS today.. Unemployment in construction is 3.6% so how can what you say be true?? Construction workers earn, on average, between $9.40 and $32/hr, so how can what you say be true?

"Undocumented workers do nothing to improve wages or the lives of Americans, nor does allowing in millions of those unable or unwilling to work." - Do you have any statistics to back that up?

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 24, 2019:

Boy, the liberals sure know how to piss people off sometimes. Glad to see they are neck-and-neck with Labour.

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 24, 2019:

"I don't know about the UK, but in America what you describe is provably not true. Studies continuously show that immigrant populations (including the illegal ones) work harder (as a group) than native born Americans"


This is garbage. I'm being blunt I know.

First, the H1-B and H2-B visa programs DISPLACE American workers.

Second, undocumented workers that take up hundreds of thousands of jobs across the nation in construction and other physical labor positions WOULD be done by Americans, just not for the $8 an hour they are willing to do them for.

Your studies are so much garbage meant to support the corporate interests of bringing in cheap labor from outside the country.

Undocumented workers do nothing to improve wages or the lives of Americans, nor does allowing in millions of those unable or unwilling to work.

Arthur Russ from England on September 24, 2019:

Good Question Scott. The Liberals (Liberal Democrats) are actually quite popular, but the main problem is our voting system for General Elections is still ‘first past the post’, which makes it harder for the Liberals to convert votes into seats.

There was a referendum back in 2011 for Proportional Representation, but the stupid public voted against it: 67.9% NO & 32.1% YES.

The ‘two party system’ in the UK started in 1679 when a breakaway group of MPs formed the Whigs Party; who in the early 19th century became the Liberals. The rest of Parliament became the Tories; who in the early 19th century rebranded themselves as ‘Conservatives’.

From that time, until the 2nd world war, it was always between the Liberals and Conservatives as the two main parties. Labour was formed in 1900, but it wasn’t until after the war in 1945 that they won their first General Election.

Winston Churchill (Conservative) was a National Hero for winning the 2nd world war. Therefore quite naturally everyone had expected him (the Conservatives) to win the General Election in 1945. So it came as a complete surprise and shock when Labour won a landslide victory, ousting the Liberals as a main party:-

1945 General Election (640 seats):-

• Labour won 393 seats on 47.7% of the vote

• Conservatives won 197 seats on 36.2% of the vote, and

• Liberals won 12 seats on 9% of the vote.

Since 1945 the Liberals election fortunes in General Elections have waxed and waned e.g. the Liberals held the balance of power in the late 1970s when Labour had a Minority Government (LIB/LAB Pact); and again from 2010-2015 when they formed a coalition with the Conservatives.

However, since 2010, until now, the voters have ‘punished’ the Liberals heavily for forming a coalition government with the Conservatives e.g. in 2010 the Liberals won 57 seats on 23% of the votes; whereas in the 2015 and 2017 General Elections the Liberal support from the public slumped. In 2017 the Liberals only won 12 seats on 7.4% of the votes.

2010 General Election (650 seats):-

• Conservatives won 306 seats on 36.1% of the votes

• Labour won 258 seats on 29% of the votes, and

• Liberals won 57 seats on 23% of the votes.

However, in Local Government Elections the smaller parties, including the Liberals & Greens etc. do rather well, and either control or hold the balance of power in quite a number of Local Governments across the UK.

Currently, popularity for the Liberals is on the increase because the Liberals are fully committed to Remaining in the EU; and therefore, come the next General Election towards the end of the year the Liberals are expected to increase their share of seats in Parliament quite significantly.

Currently (the latest opinion polls):

• Conservative 30%

• Labour 23%

• Liberals 22%

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 24, 2019:

"But your answer is also a semi-deflection. You don't address the point of those immigrating who can't or won't work, and how they are a burden, not a benefit, to the system." -

I don't know about the UK, but in America what you describe is provably not true. Studies continuously show that immigrant populations (including the illegal ones) work harder (as a group) than native born Americans; they are, as a group (and excluding the misdemeanor for crossing the border illegally), including the illegals, are more law abiding than native born Americans; that as a group, and especially the illegals, use much less welfare assistance than native born Americans (why? because, as a rule, they are not eligible until they have been here more than 5 years)

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 24, 2019:

Well noted Arthur, your detailed reply is appreciated.

So, I could believe the UK's situation of need of outside labor/population entering into the nation, with only 10 million (roughly) out of the 42 million not working.

But your answer is also a semi-deflection. You don't address the point of those immigrating who can't or won't work, and how they are a burden, not a benefit, to the system.

To give an example of this, I will again veer from the UK and pick another country which I know more of.

In 2013 Sweden had forty-eight per cent of immigrants of working age unemployed. A study showed that even after 15 years in Sweden, their employment rates reach only about 60 percent.

This was before the large wave of immigration which began back in 2015. Of the hundreds of thousands they have taken in the past few years, unemployment of those remains around 90%.

As of today, more than half of Sweden's foreign-born residents remain unemployed (10 years and under). At the same time, the general level of unemployment remains comparatively low (7 percent) with only 4 percent of ethnic Swedes being unemployed.

The difference in employment figures among Swedes and immigrants bodes ill, the National Institute of Economic Research has warned.

Unless more immigrants enter the Swedish labor market, they will have to raise taxes, in Sweden's rights-based welfare system, people have the right to healthcare and education. However, it is also required for people to contribute, otherwise those who work will have an even greater tax burden to cope with.

Sweden's fantasy is that if you socialize the children of immigrants and refugees correctly, they'll grow up to be just like native Swedes.

But it hasn't worked out that way. Much of the second generation lives in nice Swedish welfare neighborhoods. And the problem only seems to be growing worse

As for America, while it would not surprise me that of the 75 million unemployed, 90% of them can't or don't want to enter the workforce for one reason or another... that still leaves 7.5 unemployed who would. If those jobs weren't being given to illegal immigrants who will work under the table in construction, grounds keeping, and many other jobs that COULD hire Americans, but since they can hire non documented workers at half the cost and get away with it, do so.

And then there is the H1-B and H2-B visa programs, where American workers who are doing a fine job, and have a family to care for, are told they have to train their replacement employee who is coming from India (or wherever) and putting them out of work.

IE -

America has no need for foreign workers, in anything but the most menial and back-breaking labor, if at all. America's problem is with corporations that want CHEAPER labor, UNDOCUMENTED labor that they don't have to insure or care for, or can send back home.

This is the reality that your economic model is not in tune with.

I will speak for the U.S. and I will even do so for Sweden as I have researched its situation over the last few years. I can't speak of the UK or EU.

While indeed your economic outlook may fit for the UK, it doesn't fit for the U.S. … America doesn't have a manpower problem for labor, it has a corruption problem, the politicians are in the back pockets of the corporations (among others).

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 24, 2019:

Arthur - why aren't the liberals (liberal Democrats) more popular? It would seem to me many conservative Labor and moderate/liberal Conservatives would flock there and rule outright.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 24, 2019:

Arthur's well reasoned essay applies to the US as well, the exact same dynamics are at play, just larger. The important take away is that today, almost all who can work, but don't, have a very good reason (many of which Arthur noted) not to. So the pool, at today's very low unemployment of native born American's available to work is quite small.

We also have the same skill imbalance problem the UK has. We have another that the UK doesn't, even as spread out as it may seem, location. In many instances people can't get to where jobs are and can't afford to move. In America you are talking about thousands of miles while in the UK you are talking about several hundred..

The sliding scale you mention, Arthur, is called Earned Income Tax Credit here. In my opinion, it should be made much more robust and replace the minimum wage.

Arthur Russ from England on September 24, 2019:

Ken, I can’t comment about America because I haven’t studied the data and I don’t know the American system well enough e.g. Welfare State etc.

However recent comparable figures for the UK are:-

42 million people of working age, of which

• 32 million people in work.

• 1.5 million unemployed, and

• 8.6 million people were ‘economically inactive’.

There’s an estimated 854,000 unfilled vacancies, and of the 32 million people in work in the UK:-

• 28.44 million are British Workers

• 2.27 million of the workers are EU Nationals, and

• 1.29 are non-EU Immigrants.

It would be easy to say that the 1.5 million unemployed and the 8.6 million ‘economically inactive’ are more than enough to fill the 0.85 million vacancies; but it doesn’t work like that.

#1. The 1.5 million unemployed don’t have the skill set, qualifications, or aptitude etc. to fill the vacancies.

#2. In the UK the 8.6 million ‘economically inactive’ are people of working age who for various reasons are not seeking employment e.g. housewife’s, househusbands, mothers with young children, carers; students (full time education); long term sick and disabled etc.

Therefore, the majority of the 8.6 million people of working age, are not lazy, they have a valid reason for not seeking employment e.g. people looking after family and home; at University; or long term illness or disability etc.

So although it may appear in the first instance that there’s easy answers, and that ageing populations like the UK, USA and most other Developed Countries, don’t need to rely heavily on immigration. Once you analysis the data, the picture becomes clear that immigrants are essential in filling vacancies.

However, I do appreciate that in the USA you still have the ‘poverty trap’ that dogged Britain in the 1980s and 1990s e.g. a low paid job pays less than unemployment benefits; which can make it difficult for people to get back to work. But to counter this problem the Labour (Socialist) Government introduced the ‘Legal Minimum Wage’ in 1998, and to further enhance the ‘safety net’ in 2003 the Labour (Socialist) Government introduced a modified Welfare State whereby people in low paid jobs gets paid Government Benefits (on a sliding scale) to lift them out of the ‘poverty trap’; making it much easier for unskilled workers to make the transition from unemployment back to fulltime employment.

As regards to your references to comments we made about population growth, and economic growth etc. macro-economic isn’t a simple subject, so I’ll keep this very brief; but for example stability and economic growth are important factors e.g. a shrinking world population is a contracting market.

As regards to your other comment “increasing population is only of value if those people contribute to the workforce, if they do not, they are just a burden on the social welfare system.” Well that is (to some extent) the situation the Develop Counties ‘with an Ageing Population’ currently faces e.g. in the UK, with the number of people in retirement growing year on year, coupled with a falling birth-rate. The people in retirement in the UK don’t contribute to the workforce, and as they need increasing healthcare and social care as they get increasingly older, it does put an increasing strain on the National Health Service (NHS). And those in retirements who didn’t have adequate pension plans are an extra burden on the welfare state; until they get their State Pension. Even then the Triple Lock of the State Pension (introduced by the Conservative Government in 2110, adds an extra burden on taxpayers. The Triple Lock is whereby the State Pension is annually increased in line with either the ‘inflation rate’, ‘average pay rises’ or 2.5%, whichever is the HIGHER of the THREE.

Conversely, the rapidly increasing number of pensioners in the UK does make a major contribution to the economy because of their ‘disposable income’ e.g. money to spend in the High Streets (Shops), which helps to boost the local economy. Pensioners in the UK (like any Developed Country), even though they don’t earn money, they are nevertheless a large consumer market that has value to the economy.

The increase in world population over the past 70 years isn’t from 3 billion to 9 billion; it’s actually from 3 billion to 7.7 billion.

And FYI the current trend is a slowing down of population growth e.g. it’s predicted to be 10 billion by 2050 and 11 billion by 2100; at which time it’s then predicted to level-off, and possibly even start to fall.

And, as I detailed in an earlier discussion below, for various reasons e.g. Research and Development in Environmentally friendly farming techniques, transition from fossil fuels and ICE to Renewable Energy and EV vehicles etc. the earth is well capable of sustaining an 11 billion worldwide population. And in supporting 11 billion, with Renewable Energy and EV cars replacing fossil fuels we don’t need resources like coal, oil and gas; and (with the political will) we can protect the Amazon forest and the seas etc.

Just as one final example, the EU and UK have strict laws governing the use of wood; it has to be from a ‘Renewable’ Source e.g. for every tree that’s felled, three trees are planted.

Sustainable timber production in the UK: -

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 24, 2019:

Arthur & Scott,

I always find the argument that workers are not available interesting.

In America there is about 210 million people of working age.

There are 135 million fulltime employed people in America.

The difference is 75 million people.

Over 50 million receive foodstamps, and about 31% of the population receives some form of assistance.

Based on those numbers, we already have more than enough people to fill all the jobs available.

So, the issue must be that the people not working have no incentive to do those jobs. Perhaps because they are incapable due to a handicap, this accounts for a good percentage perhaps, for an equally large portion its likely because it is not worth it to lose their social welfare benefits and take the job which offers less.

I actually comprehend economics fairly well, and I believe it is a benefit not to have 'over specialized' in it, as I often found with many professors, their disconnect to the real world often made their theories and beliefs far worse than those less educated that had some common sense.

I would say the arguments made here by the two of you regarding the necessity of increasing population is just one such example.

First, increasing population is only of value if those people contribute to the workforce, if they do not, they are just a burden on the social welfare system.

Second, we have increased from 3 Billion people to 9 Billion people in the last 70 years. If this trend continues, planet earth's resources and ability to sustain our lives will be exhausted long before the next century arrives... so you economists better come up with a new model quick, before the oceans are drained of life and the Amazon forest is one big parking lot.

The model is antiquated and out of date... your thinking is as out of touch with reality as those that want to maintain using ICE vehicles and rely on coal for power.

Arthur Russ from England on September 24, 2019:

Wow, professional cost and economic analyst, certainly explains your grasp of economics.

Good Question Scott; “is Boris going to survive?”

The short answer is ‘NO, not for long’ but the question is “how long”.

At the time of writing this, the ruling from the ‘Supreme Court’ will be within the hour; but by the time most people read this, the Courts will have decided.

Regardless to what the Courts ‘rule’ today, Boris has sealed his own fate. He has boxed himself into a ‘corner’ with his promise of “Brexit by 31st October Do or Die”; and in spite of being a minority Government in the first place (with little power), sacking 21 of his own Conservative MPs from the Party for not supporting him has left him and his Government completely powerless.

As things stand at the moment; the chances of him getting a ‘new’ Deal from the EU that’s acceptable to both the EU Parliament and UK Parliament is next to zero. Besides (in spite of his lip service in the past week) his ulterior motives is to crash the UK out of the EU with No Deal to appease the ERG (the hard right wing Conservative Nationalists MPs) who put him in power as Prime Minister (his lifelong goal) and who have been rewarded by being given Ministerial Posts within the Government.

Parliament now has the power to bring down Boris Johnson’s Government at any time of their choosing, so there will be a General Election before the end of the year.

Therefore, regardless to whether Boris gets his ‘Do or Die’ Brexit by 31st October, or not, he is doomed.

If Boris gets his ‘No Deal’ Brexit on time, the country will be in such a mess that the Electorate will kick the Government out of power in the General Election by the end of the year.

If Boris fails in keeping his ‘Do or Die’ promise, his own supporters will turn on him in the forthcoming General Election, and most likely his own Party shortly afterwards.

As things stand at the moment the forthcoming General Election later this year will almost certainly return another ‘hung Parliament’. And although Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party might win more seats than any other Party, and therefore have the first bite of the cherry in trying to form a Government, the Conservatives don’t have any allies in Parliament except for the 10 DUP MPs; and therefore they may not have enough support in Parliament to form a Government.

Therefore, it may well end up with Labour (with fewer seats than the Conservatives) forming an Alliance with all the other Political Parties (who are all Pro EU) in order to form a workable minority Government. If that happens then the smaller parties will be expecting Jeremy Corbyn to come off the fence over Brexit and support their campaigns for Remain, in exchange for them putting Corbyn into power.

But over the coming weeks and months no doubt there will be lots more twists and turns in British Politics: A week is a long time in Politics.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 23, 2019:

"Statistically (data from the UK’s ONS (Office of National Statistics) between 2000 & 2015, due to the 4th Industrial Revolution, 800,000 UK jobs were lost to Robots. However, this was offset by the creation of 3.5 million New Jobs (mostly higher paid), as a direct result of the 4th Industrial Revolution in the UK." - IS A KEY statement Arthur.

The liberal Democrats and Trump (and his supporters) take the view that the ONLY thing that matters is the loss of the 800,000 jobs; they simply ignore the 3.5 million that were created (it's bad for the narrative). That is the rationale they use to wrongly trash NAFTA and TPP. (In addition, Trump only knows how to do bilateral talks, he is incapable of holding multilateral ones - since it won't just be about him).

That is what is so frustrating about it all, the extremes never use common sense. On trade, the non-Trump supporting Republicans and moderate Democrats have it right. Trump and his gang as well as the liberal Democrats have it all wrong.

BTW - is Boris going to survive?

Most of my Air Force civil service career was as a professional cost and economic analyst. (I keep refreshed by using Khan Academy.)

AND, I read every word of Thomas Piketty's Capitalism in the 21st Century.

Arthur Russ from England on September 23, 2019:

Scott, you certainly know your economics. When I was at college, the exams I studied for (which I passed with a respectable grade, after two years of study) included economics (micro economics in the 1st year, and macro-economics in the 2nd year), and economic history.

Arthur Russ from England on September 23, 2019:

Hi Scott, yes you are spot on, and Britain is suffering chronically for its short-sightedness over Brexit. Britain, like most developed countries, is heavily dependent on migrants because of our ageing population.

Since the Brexit Referendum a high percentage of EU citizens have left Britain, consequently leaving many industries, such as the NHS, Agriculture, catering, and the tourist industry etc. chronically short of a workforce.

The NHS now has over a 100,000 staff shortages, and this summer a third of summer fruits rotted in the fields because the farmers were unable to recruit their usual seasonal workers. And unemployment figures are low in Britain, so there are just not enough Brits to fill the vacancies anyway.

Ken, for the past year I’ve had many long and intensive arguments with an American about this (4th Industrial Revolution), who’s read the same kind of articles and reports which you’ve undoubtedly been reading on the topic.

The problem with all these articles is that few are written by ‘economists’ (the experts in this field) and they always invariably focus on the ‘micro-economics’, with no regard to the macro-economics.

But even if you ignore the macro-economics, which is a complex subject in itself, just purely on an economic history, the 4th Industrial Revolution is following the same pattern as the previous three Industrial Revolutions; of which the 3rd Industrial Revolution I personally lived through myself, so I know that these upheavals are like first hand.

When you look at it at a micro-economic level then yes a whole factory can be replaced by just a handful of people; it’s the level that most Articles focus on.

However, when you take a step back, and look at it from a macro-economic aspect, you get a completely different picture e.g. instead of mass unemployment, you get job displacement, and job creation; including new jobs in new industries to support the new technologies, plus all the additional ‘supply chains’.

Notwithstanding the fact that the term 4th Industrial Revolution wasn’t coined until 2015, it had actually started much earlier (around 2000 in the UK). One factor to bear in mind is that Europe (like many developed countries) has largely gone through the 4th Industrial Revolution process and is beginning to emerge on the other side, while the developing countries like China are in a catch-up phase e.g. only just beginning to go through that process.

Statistically (data from the UK’s ONS (Office of National Statistics) between 2000 & 2015, due to the 4th Industrial Revolution, 800,000 UK jobs were lost to Robots. However, this was offset by the creation of 3.5 million New Jobs (mostly higher paid), as a direct result of the 4th Industrial Revolution in the UK.

Another interesting economic forecasts (by economists) in September 2018, based on historic trends following the first three industrial revolutions, was that by 2022, Robots will displace 75 million jobs globally, but create 133 million new ones. A "net positive" increase in world employment of 58 million jobs.

Obviously these are only forecast projections and subject to modification overtime, and other economists are likely to produce different (but similar) figures.

However, when you put it into context of Global Employment and unemployment it does help to put the likely impact of the 4th Industrial Revolution into perspective.

Statistics published by the UN in 2018 showed that Global employment stood at 3.3 billion while Global unemployment was 192 million people.

[Food for Thought] Fourth Industrial Revolution creating new job opportunities:-

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 23, 2019:

Ken, why would that be?

In non-empirical terms, for GDP to continue to grow demand must continue to grow, correct? Does it work any other way?

For demand to grow in the long-run, there must be more people around to demand more things in the long-run. (Supply does not drive Demand as the Right wants to believe)

If population declines in the long-run, then it stands to reason overall demand should decline as well (less people to buy fewer things) in the long-run. Of course, any given person might want to have more things. If society is in a position to want more things per capita, then demand can grow, but that is self-limiting.

So in the end, lower population must translate into lower demand and lower GDP.

Also, productivity is output per unit time. It doesn't make any difference if the producer is man or machine. That is why a multifactor productivity measure is used.

Finally, if "Big populations will simply mean a lot of people with no work to do" and with no money to buy things.

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 23, 2019:


That model will soon be obsolete, and I believe that is becoming obvious to many 'global leaders'.

AI, automation, robotics, soon will make the population to productivity formulas obsolete, if they aren't already.

Soon it will be the small nations with small populations that are far better off than the overcrowded nations and states. Big populations will simply mean a lot of people with no work to do.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 23, 2019:

Turns out, I think, Trump did slip in for 15 minutes; I understand Russia and China weren't there either (probably having very private chats with Trump).

Forgotten in all of the population conversation is a simple formula that ties population to GDP:

% GDP growth = % population growth + % productivity growth. It is simple but is true in the long term. So what must happen in a nation or the world when population growth flattens or declines?

This is why Trump's immigration policy is so devastating to the American economy in the long-term. Right now our native population is not reproducing fast enough to replace those who die. To keep population, and therefore the economy, growing is immigration.

Failing that, the only way to keep economic growth happening is to greatly increase productivity - something that has been on the decline as well.

Houston, we have a problem.

Arthur Russ from England on September 23, 2019:

Ken, for clarity, I assume you are just purely complaining about American News Media, because generally the rest of the world isn’t that interested in internal political affairs of America, so American Politics don’t get a great deal of coverage in European News (except for when Trump anger the British Public, which is all too often). Whereas Environmental issues like the Amazon forest fires, and the UN Climate Change Summit in New York (which Trump is boycotting) are well covered on News Channels outside of the USA.

Of all the 24/7 News Channels available in the UK, on cable TV (Virgin Media), Satellite TV (SKY) and Freeview (Free TV), the ones I frequently watch are:-



• Euronews (Broadcasted in English from France across the whole of the EU)

• Aljazeera (Broadcasted in English from the Middle East), and

• CNN (USA) (The Only American News Channel we get in the UK)

Normally I would periodically flip through the news channels when there’s not much ‘news’ going on in the world, and then settle for just one of the channels to catch up on the headlines; usually either SKY News and or Euronews.

However, when there’s major events, such as the UN Climate Change Summit in New York, or the Amazon forest fires, then I’ll record all 5 channels simultaneously for an hour, and then an hour later just spend 10 minutes quickly fast-forwarding through each channel (2 minutes per channel) to see what coverage each channel gives on the topic; only stopping to listen where the channel actually covers the topic e.g. the other news channels tend to give Environmental issues far greater airing than CNN (American TV).

Our Cable Company (Virgin Media) commissioned TiVo a few years ago to make an upgraded TiVo box which (as well as other advanced features) includes 6 tuners, which enables the viewer to record up to six TV Channels simultaneously, while watching a 7th pre-recorded TV programme. It might sound a bit OTT, but for comparing the different political spins on the different News Channels during a major world event, it’s a useful tool (for nerds like me).

So as I indicated before, if you’re dissatisfied with the lack of coverage by American News Media and lack of interest by American Politicians, then the best way to change things in America is to get your voice heard by joining in and supporting the various ‘Campaigns’ in America against Climate Change; just as people have done across the rest of the world to good effect.

Arthur Russ from England on September 23, 2019:

Jay, sustainable population (a sustainable number of people) is relative. If we live liked we lived in the 1960s (when world population was 3 billion) e.g. a throwaway society, with the technology and agricultural practices we had then, and where oil and coal was burned as if there was ‘no tomorrow’; then even today’s world population of 7.5 billion (more than double of what it was then) would be unsustainable.

The world population has more than doubled since the 1960 (60 years), but projections is that it will only increase by a further 50% over the next 80 years; when it is then likely to level-off, and potentially even start to decrease!

The current problem isn’t birth rates, it’s an aging population e.g. in the developed countries birth-rates are declining, while people are living longer. Even in the developing countries birth rates are beginning to slow, so it’s likely they will follow a similar pattern to the develop countries.

So we don’t need to educate children (any more than we currently are) because that isn’t where the problem is; the main problem is currently an aging population; something which will naturally work its way out of the system by the end of the century.

The main problem with an aging population, as we are already experiencing in the UK and other European countries, is that there are fewer young people of working age to support an ever increasing population living in retirement; hence why British Governments have increased the retirement age over the last 20 years in the UK from 60 to 67.

Once the world population naturally reaches its peak and levels-off at about 10 billion if birth rates don’t rise again, or if they continue on their current trend of falling, then the world population will go into decline; which in itself has its own risks and problems.

Extinction of other species, animals, insect and plants etc., is another complex and emotive issue that has to be tackled. Yes modern humans in recent times have caused, and are causing, mass worldwide extinction of other species. Though mass extinctions of other species is not solely due to a large human population, but also in part due to our reckless nature e.g. deforestation, mass use of chemicals for agriculture and clearing land for development etc.

In hindsight, with our current knowledge, and level of technological advances, we can now mitigate against much of this destruction of wildlife habitat; and in many cases in Europe and across other parts of the world we are.

Just for a couple of examples, increasingly, European farmers are switching to organic farming, and even where farmers aren’t the EU has very strict Regulations to help ensure that farming techniques are environmentally friendly (all of which helps wildlife). And, in the UK the ‘Green Belt’ Policy introduced by the Labour (Socialist) Government in 1948 prohibits ‘Urban Sprawl’ and thus protects the Environment and wildlife (countryside).

Also, an issue close to Ken’s heart is that we must continue to fight to protect the rain forests, and plant more trees. With regard to the latter point, 100 years ago only 5% of the UK was forested and by the 1980’s even less. But from the 1990s due to change in Government Policies, reforestation of Britain has become a main priority, so that today 13% of the UK is now forested, and rising.

Hedges & Hedgerow ecosystem conservation in Wales UK "The Long Forest Project":

Jay C OBrien from Houston, TX USA on September 23, 2019:

Arthur Rus, Yes, what you say is true. We probably could support 10 billion people, but is it advisable? No, it is not! Why puch the limit? Don't. I am also referring to the extinction of animal species. What about them? Why not just have a sustainable number of people? Get wise and educate children. Let us look at the Lower limit: 1 billion? 100 million? How low can we go?

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 23, 2019:

Ken, you are simply blind. The media has talked more about climate than Kavanaugh or any other story other than, as you point out, Trump.

In case you forgot (or simply ignore), it is their job to report on the news day-in, day-out 27/7 and they do that. Why does Trump get reported on so often? Because he keeps doing bad to very bad things, day-in, day-out, 27/7.

(of course you don't think pressuring a foreign leader to investigate your political opponent as bad, do you.)

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 23, 2019:

Very Nice Scott, you found some mention by the media on the Amazon, which has been burning for a month now.

My point is that the time they wasted (hours/days) this month whining about how Kavanaugh needed to be impeached or what latest thing Trump did that should have him impeached... could have been put to informing the people about this global catastrophe.

Unlike the easily brainwashed and duped, I recognize that Trump is just a temporary issue, he will be gone soon enough, just like Obama before him, and Bush before that.

However, the Amazon is a FOREVER issue, once destroyed it doesn't come back. Its gone for good, and the millions of unique lifeforms there will be gone as well.

The Amazon is a REAL crisis of global significance that needs 24x7 coverage... especially by the supposed "Climate Change is Real", "Go Green" news channels like CNN.

Not a small mention about it, not an article or two... I'm talking full blown, never let it rest coverage until enough pressure is put on the Brazil government to stop it.

They don't make it the top story, day in and day out, without stop. Because they don't really give a crap, they aren't interested. Its all Trump 24x7 ... a total waste of time and energy.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 22, 2019:

Ken, here is the latest story mainstream media (not Fox) is publishing about Brazil (which you falsely claim is not covering):

Here are more:

Not quite MSM, but I'll include it anyway -

And there are 1,000s more I could list which you say MSM isn't covering.

Arthur Russ from England on September 21, 2019:

HI Jay, ‘Population Growth’ and ‘Sustainability’ is a subject that I researched in some depth earlier in the year; so I can put my ‘two-pennies worth’ in here:-

Firstly, with advancements in new technology e.g. Renewable Energy, new farming technologies (high tech and low tech), water conservation etc., it is theoretically possible for the Earth to accommodate a world population more than double its current level. I stress it is just theoretical because it is all dependent on all the relevant new technologies being fully and properly applied; something which in the real world often tends to be ‘too little, too late’.

Secondly, there are some good, and theoretically sound, ‘models’ that predict world population may level off at about 11 billion by the end of the century; all still speculative at this point but there are a growing number of factors that are supportive of the models e.g. the falling birth rates in the ‘Developed countries’, such as in Europe and America were we are facing an aging population, as this video below briefly explains:-

Is world population growth slowing down? (The Economist)

As regards farming technologies to feed a growing population, I don’t mean the intensified farming that is heavily reliant on artificial chemicals and artificial fertilisers; as is so common in America. Europe has very strict Regulations on limiting the use of chemical in agriculture, and European farms are increasingly moving towards Organic (Environmentally Friendly) farming anyway. Albeit Europe is also heavily investing in Research and Development in more productive and efficient farming practices that are environmentally friendly e.g. the UK are running some useful ‘low tech’ innovative farming techniques in Africa, with some great success. But Israel and China are world leaders in Research and Development in this area.

Israel Agriculture Technology - Agriculture in the Desert:

New technology in China turns desert into land rich with crops:

Arthur Russ from England on September 21, 2019:

Yep Ken, I think we are in full agreement that the American News Media and American Politicians are not taking the issues seriously. CNN is the only American News Channel we get on British Cable TV, so I know what you mean about CNN.

But if you and Scott, and other Americans (who can see the problems) don’t make your voices heard then the American News Media and American Politicians are not going to listen and not take any meaningful action.

Yes you are right; it’s not enough just to tackle parts of the issues by just replacing fossil fuels with Renewable Energy and 100% electric cars; an holistic approach has to be taken to tackle all aspects of ‘Climate Change’, including combating waste (especially plastics) and deforestation (especially in Amazon rain forests etc.).

Most of the rest of the world do (to varying degrees) take a holistic approach to tackling climate change e.g. the UK rapidly moving towards a ‘zero waste to landfill’ policy, with paying particular attention to plastic recycling, and the reduction of use of plastics in the first place. Plus; just a few weeks ago the EU did put political pressure (with good effect) on Brazil to tackle the forest fires e.g. by threatening to withhold final approval of the recent Trade Deal with Brazil, which Brazil was desperate for.

Amazon fires: EU threaten to block Brazil trade:

In Britain, across Europe, and in many countries around the world, ‘Public Pressure Groups’ play an important role in campaigning on issues of importance e.g. organising public demonstrations and marches, lobbying politicians etc. Not all are successful, but many ‘Pubic Pressure Groups’ do have a profound effect on Politics e.g. in 2014, the Conservative Government in the UK finally granted Cornwall ‘National Minority Status’ (as an Official Protected Celtic Group) after 15 years of concerted campaigning by the Cornish People.

Cornwall granted national minority status by Government:

So the bottom line is if you don’t campaign, you don’t get.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 21, 2019:

Maybe you didn't Ken, but I saw plenty of coverage about burning the Amazon as well as the climate protests and a multitude of other climate related issues.

Since they are able to chew gum and walk at the same time, they also cover the very real and very serious threat to our democracy that Donald Trump represents.

I understand you don't see his actions as doing that and that it is OK to pressure Ukraine into helping him gather dirt on a political opponent or that he actively obstructed justice regarding the Mueller investigation or is actively obstructing justice/Congress today or is a pathological liar or that he has subverted DOJ to do his bidding or and the list goes on and on and on.

For some reason, to you that is normal behavior and good for America. But for the rest of us, the great majority of us, that makes him an obscenity.

Jay C OBrien from Houston, TX USA on September 21, 2019:

All you write is true and I have a suggestion, Pollution is caused by the number of people and the amount of technology used (I know, too simple, but this is brief). If we reduce the amount of people and maintain high technology it should reduce the drain on the ecosystem. Thus, I reccomend reducing the human population. Use Family Planning. Teach this to the wold leaders. What is a sustainable human population?

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 21, 2019:


That is the point I am trying to make... the issue I am trying to put a spotlight on. How F-d up American media and politics are.

For instance, if Climate Change was something CNN or MSNBC (the leading news channels for "liberal" interests) cared about... wouldn't you expect them to be covering the destruction being done to the Amazon daily?

Shouldn't they be trying to vanguard people into pressuring the Brazilian government into stopping it?

Why aren't they?

Why instead are they spending 24/7 on stories about "whistle Blowers" and "Russian collusion" and a proven false "sexual assault" accusation on Kavanaugh?

Why isn't the media and the politicians railing against letting tax subsidies expire for EV vehicles and Solar Power installation?

If these things REALLY mattered to the "left" to the "liberal agenda" their media and politicians, these issues would get constant attention.

Small steps, or in the case of Brazil, immediate pressure. Not some behemoth Green New Deal that no one will get behind, not some idiotic issue being drummed up such as sex-neutral bathrooms.

Scott has written a nice article about CO, Global Warming, Climate Change, essentially the same as the other 1,000 on HubPages.

Out of the 1,000 articles on this issue... about 3 actually point out things like the Meat Industry, the difference between Methane and CO, how the meat industry impacts deforestation, etc. … one of them I wrote. That leaves two others that are actually looking at more specifics other than "man is bad, oil industry bad, CO bad".

I guess I'll have to get around to doing that myself, breaking down what politicians and agencies really do try to make a difference, and separate them from the 90% that are full of lies and rhetoric only.

Arthur Russ from England on September 21, 2019:

Hi Ken, yes we know that the American Government is doing squat to tackle any of the points you raise; which is disappointing to say the least.

But as Scott states, nothing is going to change unless people stand up and voice their concerns.

One point of interest is Vegetarianism:-

The worldwide average for vegetarianism is about 11%. In the UK in 2018 it was about 14% (a fourfold increase since 2014) and still rising. Also, meat eaters in the UK are now eating 31% less meat and 19% less dairy products than they did four years ago. And 29% of all evening meals eaten in the UK are now vegetarian meals e.g. even meat eaters in the UK no longer eat meat everyday.

In contrast, in the USA in 2015 3.4% of Americans were vegetarians, and in 2018 the figure was around 5%, with no sign of any significant trend upwards.

In the UK in recent years the British Government has run a series of ‘Public Information’ Campaigns to highlight the bad health effects of eating too much meat and dairy products, and more recently a concerted campaign (following UN Advice) to stress the importance of eating less meat because of its adverse effects on climate change.

The British Government isn’t dictating to the British Public that they should cut out meat altogether, but they are strongly advising the public to significantly reduce the amount of meat they eat.

UK’s first ‘meat-free’ butchers shop (June 2019):

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 20, 2019:

So Ken, it sounds like you are ready to do nothing and let it happen; let the world suffer from a foregone conclusion; let your progeny die because of your inaction - inaction because you perceive nobody else is acting.

Me? I donate to appropriate causes; I vote for candidates who aren't so stupid as to deny what is happening and are willing to pass legislation that helps (unlike the current so-called president who is REVERSING what others have done). I write things like this to try to convince others to vote out those who oppose saving the earth.

Ken Burgess from Florida on September 20, 2019:

OK so we have global warming, climate change, etc.

What do you support, who do you support, to make changes?

They are burning down the Amazon Rain Forest ... Deforestation there is occurring faster than any forest has ever been cleared, the destruction is irreversible, and something needs to be don YESTERDAY to stop it... what is being done?

The worldwide deforestation and damage being done on behalf of the meat industry is more harmful than all the world's automobiles, on top of the destruction to the land, cows produce vast amounts of methane that is a far more damaging greenhouse gas than CO... what is being done?

The issue I have, is lack of faith in the government. When they propose a Carbon Tax, its just another way for them to take money from the people... they haven't proposed a real fix, they won't create a real effort to change... they just want more control and more $$$.

If they wanted to make real change... our government's fleet of 300,000 vehicles would all be EV or alternative energy... not ICE vehicles.

If they wanted to make real change... the politicians and the media would be putting the spotlight on what is going on in Brazil, and bringing economic sanctions on that nation to stop destroying the Amazon... but we aren't hearing much about it, are we?

I am all for attacking the problems of pollution and deforestation head on... but I don't believe our corrupt/criminal politicians will do so... they won't take on the meat industry, they won't take on the auto industry, they won't take on any corporate or international power because they are bought and paid for by them.

Our system, our nation, has passed the tipping point, where it is not just failing the people, it is allowing corporations to destroy our planet for a quick buck... while at the same time trying to claim 'we the people' are responsible for it, and need to pay a carbon tax for our sins.

Scott Belford (author) from Keystone Heights, FL on September 19, 2019:

Thanks Arthur. I am happy to see the UK do what Trump stops America from doing.

Arthur Russ from England on September 19, 2019:

Thanks, a most enjoyable read.

Very comprehensive; and very refreshing to see American’s voice such concerns. Most of the rest of the world does take the issue seriously and is making a concerted effort to limit the damage; but without America it has been an uphill struggle.

America is such a big country, and such major energy user, that to have America on-board in fighting climate change would make a significant difference.

In your Epilogue, on the two avenues to pursue to help limit the damage, technological and biological; on the technological front many countries are rapidly switching from fossil fuels to Renewable Energy; although Britain isn’t doing as well as some countries like Scotland and Demark, we are nevertheless ahead of schedule.

As you may have heard on the News in May the UK Parliament Declared a ‘State of Climate Emergency’, and the following month the UK became the first major country in the world to make ‘net zero’ carbon emission by 2050 a LAW, rather than just Government Policy (Target). For the UK to achieve its net zero carbon emission legal target by 2050, it’s anticipated that we will need to plant 3 billion trees over an area of 70,000 hectares (270 square miles); double our current rate of tree planting; but doable.

How life will change in a world of net zero emissions:

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