The University of Technology Sydney and Engineers Australia recently hosted a talk on the world’s climate and energy dilemma, with a keynote address from Ian Dunlop, a former coal executive turned climate activist.

Dunlop provided sobering analysis of what the climate science is telling us. Climate change, he said, was occurring far more rapidly than anticipated, and faster than was being officially acknowledged.

And despite the Paris agreement having an aspiration of a 1.5°C-2°C limit in global temperature rise, the practical implications of what had been agreed meant that a 3°C temperature rise had been normalised, and 4°C was a possibility under current settings.

The outcomes of such a temperature rise is severe, with a 4°C most likely leading to massive sea level rise and mass deaths. A 4°C world, he said, would probably mean a global population carrying capacity of under a billion.

Dunlop joins prominent commentators like’s Bill McKibben who are calling for drastic action.

McKibben recently called for a World War II-like mobilisation to tackle climate change.

“World War III is well and truly underway,” McKibben said. “And we are losing.”

Following Dunlop’s talk was a panel discussion featuring Institute for Sustainable Futures director Stuart White, Engineers Australia Environmental College chair Adrian Piani, and publisher and editor of The Fifth Estate Tina Perinotto.

It’s not easy viewing, but it’s necessary.

Watch the video and let us know what you think.

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  1. The conversation around this topic of a climate emergency continues on

    …and don’t forget to sign the petition for a climate emergency declaration – can be done on