Sustainability by the Megaton

While I ponder the benefits of diversity in Australia, for some reason my mind turns to thoughts of war. The thought that no matter the number of accusatory ‘isms, people simply do not much like those different than themselves. I even rather much doubt the left would disagree with this thesis, choosing instead to leap into the pleasantly familiar frame of Yes there are frictions, and they are all the white man’s fault! Well sure, but the point is that regardless of blame, in layman’s terms…diversity sucks. And it does so to such an extent that disagreements sometimes emerge. And sometimes we call these disagreements…war.

But modern war features a little remarked upon, and perhaps counterintuitive, benefit. The Models claim it would offer a very effective mitigation of the Warming Change. Here’s the good news

War with 100 low-yield nuclear weapons

Summary of Consequences of Regional nuclear war between India and Pakistan(from studies done at Rutgers, the University of Colorado-Boulder and UCLA)

•War is fought with 100 Hiroshima-size weapons (currently available in India-Pakistan arsenals), which have half of 1 percent (0.05%) of the total explosive power of all currently operational and deployed U.S.-Russian nuclear weapons
•20 million people die from the direct effects of the weapons, which is equal to nearly half the number of people killed during World War II
•Weapons detonated in the largest cities of India and Pakistan create massive firestorms which produce millions of tons of smoke
•1 to 5 million tons of smoke quickly rise 50 km above cloud level into the stratosphere
•The smoke spreads around the world, forming a stratospheric smoke layer that blocks sunlight from reaching the surface of Earth
•Within 10 days following the explosions, temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere would become colder than those experienced during the pre-industrial Little Ice Age
•These nuclear war-induced effects on temperature would be twice as large as those which followed the largest volcanic eruption in the last 500 years, in 1816, which caused “The Year Without Summer”
•This cold weather would also cause a 10% decline in average global rainfall and a large reduction in the Asian summer monsoon.
•25-40% of the protective ozone layer would be destroyed at the mid-latitudes, and 50-70% would be destroyed at northern high latitudes. Massive increases of harmful UV light would result, with significantly negative effects on human, animal and plant life.
•These changes in global climate would cause significantly shortened growing seasons in the Northern Hemisphere for at least years. It would be too cold to grow wheat in most of Canada.
•World grain stocks, which already are at historically low levels, would be completely depleted. Grain exporting nations would likely cease exports in order to meet their own food needs.
•Some medical experts predict that ensuing food shortages would cause hundreds of millions of already hungry people, who now depend upon food imports, to starve to death during the years following the nuclear conflict.

Well it certainly sounds as though we’ve alighted upon a fairly simple solution to Global Warming’s terrifying new math. And look, it’s not like all 100 nuclear blasts have to occur over Calcutta and Karachi. Some could be earmarked elsewhere. The point is that if global warming is actually a threat to humankind, and we know that it is, then all options should be on the table…including thermonuclear war.

And what efficiency. A mere ten days after exchange, the Northern Hemisphere would be as cold as the last ice age. I suppose that’s the plan, after all. And what of world grain stocks? Complete depletion, which would mean no more food imports to Africa. And how exactly are we supposed to multiply that continent to two billion souls given that scenario? Does Sally Struthers even carry that many tears in her humps?

But that’s not all. The Cooling Change would cause a large decrease in global rainfall and the northern growing season would shorten dramatically causing millions to starve. Neither of those events sound particularly palatable. Is this an improvement? I wonder if we could set every remaining forest ablaze to restart The Warm after we reached The Cool? Perhaps what we should consider, even prior to harvesting mushroom clouds, is the exact correct temperature that the Earth should be. If the graph below is correct, man has been incorrigibly fickle on this issue for the last ten+ thousand years.


Perhaps we could all vote on what temperature we would prefer, with a plurality for the win. Alternatively we could design models to predict what the votes would be, embedded with certain assumptions about inner-city Philadelphia precincts. Though, as a pacifist, I say we wait to vaporize Hyderabad until there occurs a sober deliberation of the pros and cons of any climate fluctuations, how those relate to historical oscillations, and an admission of the plainly poor present capacity to forecast changes.

But, if The Models prove insistent, I suppose we’ll have little choice.



3 thoughts on “Sustainability by the Megaton

  1. It’s like people don’t understand how many megatons of unnecessary pollution an Indian engineer driving a brand new tesla represents, and that’s not even including the social costs of another assholes family infesting our land. I think it may be starting to piss off some of my people though, (they drive like shit)

  2. That study makes a lot of assumptions about the effects of firestorms. There has been a single explosion thousands of times as powerful as Hiroshima and it did not cause an ice age.

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