The world still has time to escape the worst devastation from climate change.
A UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report released this week found that the world has 12 years to head off the most extreme disaster from climate change.
The report found that enormous economic changes are needed to keep the world at a 1.5 degree celsius increase in temperatures over the pre-industrial era, rather than 2 degrees, according to a thorough article in the Guardian.
That .5 degree margin will make a big difference, according to the report, saving hundreds of millions of people from poverty and death. Sea levels won't rise as dramatically, and ocean ecosystems will have better chances of survival.
But urgent political commitment is required, as the Trump administration rejects climate change science and seeks to remove the United States from the Paris climate change treaty. Brazil's new right wing president reportedly wishes to remove his country from the treaty, and open up the Amazon Basin to commercial development.
Other countries are also backing off their commitment to reduce carbon emissions, as agreed to in Paris several years ago.
Biillonaire progressive Tom Steyer in an appearance on Chris Hayes' MSNBC show Monday night expressed optimism that a new generation of young voters will demand action. He also said the transformation from a carbon-based economy will increase prosperity, rather than causing the economic disruption claimed by conservatives.
While Steyer's views seem too rosy, the world must take action. Alas, the UN and other groups are new age Cassandras singing to an oblivious world.