An abrupt halt to fossil fuel use at current levels would limit the period of future climate instability to less than 1,000 years before climate largely returns to pre-industrial norms. But, if fossil fuel use stays on its current trajectory until the end of this century, then the climate effects begin to resemble those of the PETM, with major ecological changes lasting for 20,000 years or more and a recognizable human "fingerprint" on Earth's climate lasting for 100,000 years.The article has one semi-bright note. It suggests that 56 million years ago, in the PETM (which stands for Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum), life in the oceans was hit hard -- but there were few extinctions on land. First time I ever heard that. So maybe we'll live while the ocean dies off. In other words, the ocean's food web will be the first to collapse.
To be clear, this is no reason to get happy. The sea plays a huge role in our food web. I wish people cared enough to do something about this. If the climate could restore itself within 1,000 years, as suggested in the article, humans might actually survive in the long run. But we'll never get it together. Humans are lemmings. Sorry to be so negative, but you know how we are. Anyone know where I can get some good donuts?