“Planet Blue” clock is a ticking time bomb!

imageIn April this year we came across a measure system that was updating world statistics in real time format.  Since then some colleagues have been tracking the change which is quite staggering.

For example when look at the meters running now compared to the snapshot we took in April, the population growth year to date is now a staggering near 60 million. Annualized in percentage terms you could say that 1% is not that much of the total 6.9 billion. But consider also in that time that the planet has reduced in livable area by more 1% too as have deserts increase by nearly 2m hectares.

To make matters worse we also see the frightening Cancer and Aids statistics of nearly 10 million and an unacceptably staggering malnourished ongoing in disastrous and impoverished zones in total effecting over 4i million people,  On the opposite side not tabled are all the well to do oldies all now living way longer now. This means the net increase of Newbies will have less room to play while we demand to be taken care of from their taxes. In China especially now we need to just watch this space as a faster developing middle class there become petrol heads and use more of the resources.

A snapshot of the World clock numbers as at Oct 8 2010  means we are now able  to compare these to the April snap as follows:


It certainly shows the planet is warner, thanks to the 21 Billion  tons of C02 being pumped upstairs to keep the heat inside. It is worrisome as well to see the oil  reserves have continued to further decreased as has the exhaustion timer.

Depletion of the Oil reserves was of course accelerated by wanton waste and massive ecological damage caused by pumping of 23 billion barrel of  crude straight in into the sea. BP Oil in the gulf of Mexico being the majority although Nigeria has been pumping into the hinterland for years.

On the issue of population and space for us all to live I am reminded of some years back, of a theory I had when flying in and out of places like Los Angeles, London and New York. Counting the staggering number of planes coming and going saw my theory, accepted at least in humor circles, when making the point about sustainability innovation. I argued we could count as useable living space seats on planes being constantly in use and travelling.

My useless counting by the way helped kill the boredom of what were most often a long take off queues. And in my overnight stays near the airports, like counting sheep, I found was a good trick to overcome jetlag and get to sleep. I did note however a constant 24 hour stream of planes on the glide path all landing within minutes of each other in those places. And my mind would rattle as I tried to compute the fuel burn and the likely number people in the air at any one time.  Around the time also World Trade fiasco saw everyone grounded and put paid to my theory as the opposite perspective took hold and the skies were then totally empty.

But even then my estimate of having 500,000 people always airborne was a drop in the bucket to solve the issue.  My guess I later found out, was way off when someone told me a Discovery Channel program had estimated 260 000 people is in the air at the same time. So I revert now to repeat the comment made in April as sensible to continue to make the sustainability point.

This earth clock shows incredible depletion rates that are actually frightening. When you see them presented in this interactive update page, yearly, monthly, weekly figures are one thing but what really makes you think is the daily depletion rate changing before your eyes.


Tolling on our minds as well is the fact that deserts of the world have now increased to over one-third of Earth’s land surface. And this has occurred as the populations expand and resources get burned.

clip_image004That encroaching fact has troubled even early years school children for decades but what is making this increasingly trouble-some now is the rate of tropical deforestation, which at the current rate will see the world’s remaining tropical rainforests will vanish in just 30 years.

Deforestation in the tropical areas of the world is following a course similar to the earlier clearing of the forests in Europe and North America, only advancing more rapidly.

In a paper I found entitled The Future of the Rainforests,  it quoted scientist estimates that 10,000 years ago, the world had 6 billion acres of ttropical rainforests. By 1950, we had a little less half of that left which is now being cut down at the rate of about 10 to 15 million acres per year, so we have only 1/4 left  now being 1.5 billion acres. The message is crystal clear. We must protect the world’s remaining rainforests and their rich biological resources.

clip_image006The graph on the left say with out any change of approach there will be nothing left for my 3 year old granddaughter’s kids.

Perhaps once glimmer of hope is the increase in forests replanting, as shown on the clock figures, giving us perhaps a sense of hoe that something can be be done. But all that does not even go close to the mark to compensate since April.the nearly 53 million new faces who now have to feed,  The outlook for them may be there will soon be no space for them to sit at the table to eat.

The big questions are how can we stop this and who will do it?  For sure, without the resolve of business and governments globally to work collectively and enforce excesses reductions to stave of certain oblivion it will be unachievable. More to the point what are you doing about it?

I have bookmarked this page to check back later to update the clock.

You can also subscribe to this page to get updates ongoing and comments by others.

4 thoughts on ““Planet Blue” clock is a ticking time bomb!

  1. @Bill Broes


    Many  thanks for your comment which is also shared by many. Being informed so you can make useful contribution in one way you can be of help.

    I argue that not everyone is a well up to date as yoiu suggest. And who is keeping it in front of the young people who have not been around before and who will inherit these issues?

    An example of making a contriubution albeit it opposing views on climate managemet, is Anthony Watts. I learn a great deal from him. And even though I don’t always agree with his bias he is a rich source of factual information and informed opinion. Through his mediation Watts really does put in a great deal of effort to make sure the climate debate is  balance as an academic argument.

    His blog at http://wattsupwiththat.com/ has contributions by many educated and thinking people  It is actually an an award winning blog that host opinion mostly by many scientists and anti climate change protagonists. People of note who contibute often have high credibilty having done the hardwork. You may also find some kindred spirits there who shares your views. Watts even has a section called Climategate where you can find anything ever written about the erroneous climate change efforts. On his blog today is some very good anti climate change propaganda tagged with an embedded line “While Copenhagen and its excesses rage, a quiet revolution is starting”.

    But I am also of the view that ongoing demise based facts about energy depletion and deforestation and increasing hunger in the world are major issues in their own right that must be addressed. If the focus makes business and governments and people in general change attitudes to fix that because they focus on on climate change that also threatens them, then that cannot be a bad thing

    For balance here are the political positions of  energy industries

    The politics of global warming have involved corporate lobbying, funding of special interest groups and public relations campaigns by the oil and coal industriesm which have affected policy decisions and legislation worldwide. In turn this has caused political debate over the science of and response to global warming.

    One of the biggest opponents of action on global warming has been the fossil fuels energy industry, and particularly the oil industry, such as ExxonMobil, which regularly publishes papers minimizing the threat of global warming.

    In 1998, the company started providing financial support to organizations and individuals who disagreed with the scientific consensus that human activities were contributing to climate change. One of the groups that received funds from the company was the Competitive Enterprise Institute. ExxonMobil also helped create the "Global Climate Science Team" whose members were active climate contrarians. According to a study by the Union of Concerned Scientists, between 1998 and 2005, ExxonMobil dispersed roughly $16 million to organizations that were challenging the scientific consensus view. After heavy criticism from the press and environmental groups in late 2006 and early 2007, ExxonMobil began distancing itself from these organizations.

    In 2005, the oil giant opposed a shareholders’ resolution to explain the science behind its denial of global warming. In recent years, other companies have increasingly come to accept global warming theory; for example, the Chairman of BP, John Browne, declared a need for action in 2002.

    Lord Oxburgh, non-executive chairman of Shell, said in a speech at the 2005 Hay-on-Wye Festival: "We have 45 years, and if we start now, not in 10 or 15 years’ time, we have a chance of hitting those targets. But we’ve got to start now. We have no time to lose.

    If you want the answers consider the effort that has already gone in to meeting these targets especially Kyoto Protocol which see Europe as one of the leaders.

    The Kyoto Protocol has market-based mechanisms that allow industrialized countries to meet their targets by benefiting from emission reductions in other countries. Under these mechanisms, Member States can trade emissions between themselves or acquire credits from emission-cutting projects they finance abroad. These mechanisms also help the transfer of low-carbon technologies to other countries and promote sustainable development. Greenhouse gas emissions are a global problem and reductions can be made where costs are lowest —— at least in the initial phase of combating climate change. The projected use of Kyoto mechanisms by ten of the EU-15 Member States will reduce emissions by 2010 by 3.0 % from base-year levels. These countries are Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain. For more information on Kyoto mechanisms, see the UNFCCC website.


    Regardless of whether Anthony Watts disciples are right or wrong about the climate change bogie her are some stats about who is making polluting the planet.

    Top-5 country emitters for the year 2005


    % of global total annual emissions 17 % Tonnes of GHG per capita 5.8

    United States

    % of global total annual emissions 16 % Tonnes of GHG per capita 24.1

    European Union

    % of global total annual emissions 11 % Tonnes of GHG per capita 10.6


    % of global total annual emissions  6 %Tonnes of GHG per capita 12.9


    % of global total annual emissions   5 % Tonnes of GHG per capita  2.1


    The range of targets for emissions reduction of the main greenhouse gases for countries included in Annex B to the Kyoto Protocol and their emissions targets are:

    1. Country Kyoto Target (1990 base)  for 2008- 2012
    2. EU-15, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia,Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Monaco, Romania,Slovakia,Slovenia, Switzerland  -8%
    3. US -7%
    4. Canada, Hungary, Japan, Poland  -6%
    5. Croatia  -5%
    6. New Zealand, Russian Federation, Ukraine 0 
    7. Norway  +1% 
    8. Australia  +8% 
    9. Iceland  +10%
  2. There is actually nothing new here that people don’t already know.
    Deserts increasing and rainforests shrinking are nothing new.

    How does C02 harm the planet anyway? Many scientists argue global warming is a myth which seems so as so many clever people cannot agree.

    Quoting figures to make a point is something anyone can do. Pointing out things that are obvious is not use to anyone what they want is answers

  3. The scariest thing about all is the inevitable. It is like people find it so big to grasp that they just ignore all the signs and say what can I do? Then they hope it will all go away.

    Others who think they see a glimmer of light doesn’t realize what they are seeing is like the locomotive in the tunnel metaphor bearing down on them.

    Just watch the digital clock dials run for minute and you get it real fast!

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