That's It, People: A Book of Serious Climate Change Jokes

SAVE PEOPLE! Stop Human Extinction By Stacy McAnulty Illustrated by Nicole Miles Some say the world will end on fire. Some say in the i...

Stop Human Extinction
By Stacy McAnulty
Illustrated by Nicole Miles

Some say the world will end on fire. Some say in the ice. Others are betting on a nuclear war or a supervolcano. There are even those who entertain the idea of ​​an alien invasion. At least that’s what I learned from “Save the People!” by Stacy McAnulty, a playful look at a global catastrophe. (Think “The Uninhabitable Earth” meets “Captain Underpants”.)

A mechanical engineer turned children’s book writer, McAnulty begins with an epic journey through Earth’s major mass extinctions, beginning with the end of the Ordovician – the first of the so-called Big Five – which took place there. about 445 million years old. At that time, life was almost entirely confined to water. The sun was weaker, the Earth was spinning faster (a day was about 20 hours), and, McAnulty notes, “there was no Wi-Fi.”

After the mass extinctions – “like all terrifying stories, it’s fun to hear about them, but it would stink to participate in them” – comes the encounters with asteroids. The impact of a mile-wide asteroid could, writes McAnulty, create shock waves strong enough to “rupture your organs.” Shit !Other space threats include coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and gamma-ray bursts (GRBs). The former are plasma explosions from the sun that generate strong magnetic fields. A CME could knock out power across North America, shutting down banks, supermarkets and water treatment plants, producing widespread chaos. GRBs are believed to occur during the formation of black holes. A particularly well-aimed target could destroy the Earth’s ozone layer, leading to crop failure, not to mention widespread blindness. Viruses, too, could wipe us out, although, as McAnulty gleefully observes, “we currently don’t have a 100% fatal infectious disease.”

McAnulty devotes the last third of the book to climate change. Our gas emissions are destroying the planet, she says. “We have to stop farting and get them under control.” This section is peppered with “fun and scary facts”, for example: “The fire season in the United States is 78 days longer than it was 50 years ago” and “Earth is warming faster now than it has been doing it for millions of years”. In Paris in 2015, leaders from nearly every nation in the world came together and pledged to reduce their country’s emissions. But their agreement does not include any penalties for not respecting its terms. As McAnulty puts it, it’s like “a giant group project where everyone is supposed to do their part, but nobody gets in trouble with the teacher if they don’t.” Meanwhile, time is running out to avoid the worst effects of global warming: “It’s like wanting a big pumpkin for Halloween. You can’t plant the seeds the week before and expect a prize squash.

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Newsrust - US Top News: That's It, People: A Book of Serious Climate Change Jokes
That's It, People: A Book of Serious Climate Change Jokes
Newsrust - US Top News
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