Our Changing Planet

Spiro Alexandratos at Online

Wed, Oct 7 at 7 p.m.   |   75 minutes
Olios: Drop-in classes led by professors

In this Olio, we will explore whether there is a causal link between the simple CO2 molecule and changes we see in the weather. Yes, we admit, a bit of science will be presented but, really, without it, all you have is opinion. Without it, all you have is “Who knows?”

 

These are strange days.

Raise a glass to the end of it all

Who's to blame when it's everyone's fault?

And we celebrate our way through dangerous times

Strange days are comin' for us

Say goodbye to the way that it was

- Strange Days, Three Days Grace

 

Planet Earth is undergoing changes at an unprecedented rate. What used to take millennia now takes 50 years. The changes in 2019 alone are striking: an atmospheric river deluged portions of Northern California in late February; Anchorage shattered an all-time record at 90oF; France hit its highest-ever temperature of 114.6oF. This year has been no better: In the first six months, Siberia had unusually high temperatures and a record-breaking 100 oF in Verkhoyansk.

But there has always been extreme weather; what’s different now? What’s causing this havoc? Carbon dioxide, scientists say. But without it, Earth would be a frigid planet, inhospitable to life as we know it. How did it go from benign to baneful?

In this Olio, we will explore whether there is a causal link between the simple CO2 molecule and changes we see in the weather. Yes, we admit, a bit of science will be presented but, really, without it, all you have is opinion. Without it, all you have is “Who knows?” Without it, many people (1-in-3) can deny it. And those who believe it, believe it but don’t know it and so are not motivated to change their behavior. But now you will know. It’s all rather simple. We promise.

We will discuss the changes, the science, the psychology, and how this all turned from science into a political debate. But we also discuss a glimmer of hope. People, especially young people, are demanding changing policies to rescue a changing planet. And we will end on the final ingredient that can save us.

*All proceeds to the speaker will be donated to Food Bank for NYC Community Kitchen (252 W. 116 Street) in the name of Elijah McClain.

Teacher: Spiro Alexandratos

Dr. Spiro Alexandratos is a professor of chemistry at Hunter College and in the Ph.D. program at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He received his doctorate at the University of California at Berkeley. He is a Fellow of the American Chemical Society and a Fulbright Scholar with an ongoing program in France.


Venue: Online

Zoom link will be sent upon signup.


Add to Calendar Oct. 7, 20207 p.m. Oct. 7, 2020 America/New_York Think Olio | Our Changing Planet In this Olio, we will explore whether there is a causal link between the simple CO2 molecule and changes we see in the weather. Yes, we admit, a bit of science will be presented but, really, without it, all you have is opinion. Without it, all you have is “Who knows?” Online

What is Think Olio?


Think Olio is here to put the liberation back into the liberal arts.

Classically, the liberal arts, were the education considered essential for a free person to take an active part in civic life. To counter a humanities that has been institutionalized and dehumanized we infuse critical thinking, openness, playfulness, and compassion into our learning experience.

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Liaisons Host an Olio

Olio: A miscellaneous collection of art and literature.