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Whether you’re a climate ‘doomer’ or ‘appeaser’, it’s best to prepare for the worst

By Bill McGuire

22 Aug 2022 · 4 min read

Editor's Note

In this opinion piece Bill McGuire, a professor emeritus of geophysical and climate hazards at UCL, explains why it is purely common sense to prepare for the worst.

Our world is on course for a climate cataclysm. Or is it? Not long ago, the global heating battle lines were clear: you either believed it was happening, and that it resulted from the colossal volumes of carbon spewed out by human activities, or you didn’t. As the year on year breakdown of our once stable climate has become more apparent, however, denial has become increasingly irrelevant, and new battle lines are being drawn.

While widespread blistering heat, drought and wildfires have kept climate change in the public eye, they have also heightened tensions between those I call climate appeasers, who seek to minimise how bad climate breakdown will ultimately be, and others, disparagingly branded doomers (or doomists), who are honestly concerned that it may be catastrophic, perhaps even posing an existential threat to civilisation and possibly humankind itself.

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