I thought of a new way to visualize the ravages of global warming. According to the best models put forward by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the average global temperature will increase by about 2 degrees Celsius by the the year 2100. How will that feel to your ancestors?
One way to simulate that would be to compare the climate that you experience now, with one that is further south. Referring to the map of the US, The farther north you are, the colder the average temperature is, so that in the northern US some parts have an average January temperature of 20 degrees Fahrenheit, whereas down in Florida, some 1000 miles to the south, the average temperature may be some 60 degrees F. The difference is 40 degrees F or some 22 degrees C. In rough terms, if you drive south 50 miles it is going to be about a degree warmer. You need only drive about 100 miles south and you will experience the difference in climate.
For example, if you live in Indianapolis Indiana, you can drive down to Louisville, which is five degrees warmer (F) on the average. That will allow you to internalize what Global Warming is really going to mean to your descendants.
Now, of course I am not being quite fair. In addition to the average temperature, climatologists are now saying that the real problem is going to be something called "climate change." This is only now starting to even be defined. But basically they are saying that the weather is going to be more variable, and that there may be more hurricanes, tornados and other events. As a scientist, I look forward to seeing numerical predictions before further commenting.
But I have a feeling that humanity will survive this, or at least I'm less concerned about surviving global warming than surviving extreme politicians.