Published on Sep 28, 2013: “Last Hours” is the first in a series of short films that explore the perils of climate change and the solutions to avert climate disaster. Each subsequent film will highlight fact-based challenges facing the human race, and offer solutions to ameliorate these crises. The initial short film series will culminate in a feature film to be presented prior to COP21, the 2015 UN Conference on Climate Change in Paris.
An asset for the climate change movement, “Last Hours” will be disseminated globally to awaken modern culture worldwide about the various dangers associated with climate change.
“Last Hours” describes a science-based climate scenario where a tipping point to runaway climate change is triggered by massive releases of frozen methane. Methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, has already started to percolate into the open seas and atmosphere from methane hydrate deposits beneath melting arctic ice, from the warming northern-hemisphere tundra, and from worldwide continental-shelf undersea methane clathrate pools.
Burning fossil fuels release carbon that, principally through greenhouse effect, heat the atmosphere and the seas. This is happening most rapidly at the polar extremes, and this heating has already begun the process of releasing methane. If we do not begin to significantly curtail the use of carbon-based fossil fuels, this freed methane threatens to radically accelerate the speed of global warming, potentially producing a disaster beyond the ability of the human species to adapt.
This first video is designed to awaken people to the fact that the earth has experienced five major extinctions in the deep geologic past — times when more than half of all life on earth vanished — and that we are now entering a sixth extinction. Industrial civilization with its production of greenhouse gases has the ability to trigger a mass extinction; in the extreme, it could threaten not just human civilization, but the very existence of human life on this planet.
The world community and global citizens urgently need to chart a path forward that greatly reduces green house gas emissions. To take action and follow the pathway to solutions to the climate crisis, you can explore this website and you can also sign-up for future updates. Thank you.
“Last Hours” is presented and narrated by Thom Hartmann and directed by Leila Conners. Executive Producers are George DiCaprio and Earl Katz. Last Hours is produced by Mathew Schmid of Tree Media Foundation, and was written by Thom Hartmann, Sam Sacks, and Leila Conners. Music is composed and performed by Francesco Lupica.
Peter Sinclair notes: Thom Hartmann has produced a pretty scary, but rather accurate, piece here.
I’ve been thinking about the fine line between creating a sense of urgency vs a sense of hopelessness. There a natural urge among some folks to cut right to the “hopeless” phase, without actually wanting to do something about the problem.
There’s a lot of internet chatter about imminent doom for human civilization. And yes, I’m talking about you, Guy MacPherson.
This is, first of all, incorrect. Secondly, not helpful.
Even the worst case scenarios in the fossil record played out over millennia, and the experts I’ve talked to are pretty clear that no one, or at least very few, are expecting any kind of catastrophic single event in the coming few decades.
Important to remember that projected climate change impacts are a bell curve, as Stephen Schneider used to say, with “good for you” at one end, and “end of the world” on the other. Both those extremes are the most unlikely scenarios – but there’s a whole lot of that curve on this side of “end of the world” that we would still very much not like to see happen.
Planet Earth is going to take a hit in the coming century. It falls mainly to the generation of human beings currently alive to decide if that’s going to be a 5 percent hit, a 50 percent hit, or a 90 percent hit. URL