Worrying about global warming can be exhausting. What should we do? Recycle? Plant a garden? It's confusing. So it's good to hear a respected scientist say: Relax. We're already completely fucked no matter what.
James Lovelock is an 88 year-old scientist who's been warning of looming environmental disaster for at least five decades now. He helped discover CFCs and their role in the erosion of the ozone layer. He may be cranky, but he is not a crank. And now, in this somehow satisfying interview with the Guardian, he says that we are on the brink of catastrophe, no matter what we do now. The world's environmental problems have passed the event horizon. Just give up.
Sustainable development? "Words that mean nothing." Carbon offsetting? "Just a joke." Recycling? "A waste of time." Wind energy? "Waste of time." You have to respect the fact that James Lovelock is not going to sugarcoat this for you: You are fucked.
Lovelock believes global warming is now irreversible, and that nothing can prevent large parts of the planet becoming too hot to inhabit, or sinking underwater, resulting in mass migration, famine and epidemics...
"Enjoy life while you can. Because if you're lucky it's going to be 20 years before it hits the fan."
It's nice to be able to stop worrying and just enjoy these last few years.
UPDATE: It's come to my attention that this interview is from 2008. Whoops. I guess it's, uh... 14 years before it hits the fan now.
[Photo: Shutterstock. Thanks, JRL.]