Last week, Peter Kalmus, an activist and climate scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, delivered an emotional speech emphasising how humanity is on the verge of climate disaster. Dr Kalmus participated in a large protest organised by the group Scientist Rebellion, where over 1,000 scientists protested global inaction on climate change worldwide.
The NASA scientist attached himself to a JP Morgan Chase bank and delivered an impassioned statement before being detained along with three other scientists at the site.
Since his detention and release, Kalmus has used Twitter to provide information about climate change and videos of himself and other scientists participating in the protest.
In the video, Kalmus gives an inspiring speech in which he warns that “we’re going to lose everything, and we’re not joking, lying, or exaggerating.”
“I’m here because scientists are not being listened to. I’m willing to take a risk for this gorgeous planet.”
He then burst into tears and added, “For my sons.”
This protest comes as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued its latest report, warning that greenhouse gas emissions must peak by 2025 and then be cut in half within five years to give the planet a fighting chance of keeping global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
“It’s now or never if we want to restrict global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius,” said Jim Skea, a professor at Imperial College London and co-chair of the research group.
“Without immediate and deep emissions reductions across all sectors, it will be impossible.”
Scientists warn that if the earth’s temperature rises above 1.5 degrees Celsius, many of the effects of climate disruption will become permanent.