In a conversation on CNN Bill Gates states by 2050 climate change will kill as many people as Covid has and by 2100 5 times as many

The video in question (I will include it below this article) is actually discussing the pandemic and Bill Gates predictions for the future.

However, in passing he points out that the current likely global warming to take place in the next almost 3 decades before 2050 would leave us with a planet warm enough to kill roughly the same number of people a year as Covid has. More scary, by 2100 the death rate could be 5 times as high (and it should be remembered that these are direct deaths rather than indirect deaths from starvation due to crop failure).

Look at the global effort to fight Covid! It is true that world wide it has killed roughly 2.5 million, however this number must be put in context. The number of deaths in 2019 was roughly 60 million, or approximately 1% of those alive. As such 2.5 million is just a blip up on the radar – it is a change of less than 5%.

Roughly 1/3 of the human population lives within 5-10m of the sea (vertically). More concerning, roughly 200 million live less than 1m above sea level. If we meet the current 2 degrees c target, limiting temperature rise, the sea is expected to rise somewhere between 60cm and 110cm.

In this situation, roughly 3% of the human population will have to move, given the expectation that weather will get worse as the temperature rises, the actual percentage that will have to move is likely to be far higher.

Remembering all the indirect problems such as weather changes, loss of remaining forests, desert expansion and many more, the world we are heading towards leaving for our grandchildren is one that we would not want to have to live in.

These comments about global warming are just examples. They are not the main point of the interview. 

Humanity has shown an incredible ability of working together effectively during the pandemic. 

This must continue, we must address climate change to halt the doomsday scenario that our most educated are predicting we are heading towards.

For me (and for the website) one of the most exciting points is that a large part of the fight against climate change could be succeeded in by undoing the damage to many ecosystems around the world.

This would be surprisingly cheap and could lead to far higher financial benefits than the costs involved. It would serve a second fantastic goal of halting species loss, and allowing many wildlife populations to recover.

Two birds with one stone is always good. When they are both so essential this is fantastic news.

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