DISCUSSION: There is no debate that from a global perspective, there is a conscious understanding that the degree to which society continues to maintain, increase, or decrease current as well as future fossil fuel consumption will be critical. The reason for that is because of the fact that the magnitude of future global fossil fuel consumption will greatly influence the extent of future planetary warming. This is a result of the fact that fossil fuel emissions act to collectively enhance the global influence of the greenhouse effect. As a point of clarification, the greenhouse effect is best defined as the process by which the molecules which compose gases including (but certainly not limited to) carbon dioxide act to trap anthropogenic (i.e., man-made) heat energy within the Earth's atmosphere which has a net increased heating effect.
Therefore, the graphic which is attached above (courtesy of Climate Central) further reflects the above concepts based on the respective trajectories which are shown for the respective future net planetary temperature changes. As you can clearly see, if we do not change the manner in which most of society goes about day-to-day functions, we are destined to arrive at a dangerously amount of net planetary warming which would create a tremendous global atmospheric/oceanic "ripple effect." More specifically, by not changing (or possibly increasing) our net global consumption of fossil fuel resources left on Earth, this would propel net planetary temperature increases well-above current threshold concerns. So, many atmospheric scientists and climate scientists around the world are therefore trying there best to push global education initiatives so as to largely avoid such an extreme planetary temperature increase scenario.
On the flip side, by considering the other end of the planetary temperature change spectrum, we can clearly see that considerable cuts to our net reliance on global fossil fuel resources would likely facilitate a scenario wherein we could actually potentially observe a net decrease from current global average temperature changes. Despite the high likelihood of such a scenario never playing out due to current global political issues at play, a scenario somewhere in between the two ends of the spectrum is certainly plausible and is where we need to aim for in the coming years and decades. That is, if Earth is going to maintain some semblance of future sustainability potential.
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© 2018 Meteorologist Jordan Rabinowitz