Heal Our Planet Earth
Anthony Marr called a "Heretic" for Speaking the Truth

Anthony Marr branded “alarmist” and “heretic”
for asserting that the dreaded but skirted


On April 23, 2008, Heal Our Planet Earth (www.HOPE-CARE.org) founder Anthony Marr made an unprecedented announcement on the World Wide Web that: “RUNAWAY GLOBAL HEATING HAS BEGUN!”

Within 24 hours, he was branded an “alarmist” by an internet-prowling professional global-warming-denier, and a “heretic” by an adherent to ultra-conservative global warming projections. Marr accepted both honors with a sad smile and a proud bow.

On April 25, in an interview of Anthony Marr by Animal Voices on CFRO radio in Vancouver, the following conversation (edited and paraphrased) ensued:

Animal Voices: I know you’re known as an animal rights activist, but an alarmist and a heretic?

Anthony Marr: There is a 4-alarm fire brewing, and somebody has to sound the first alarm. Back in 2004, scientists predicted a drying trend for the Amazon rainforest due to global warming, and were promptly branded ‘alarmist’. The devastating 2005-2007 drought exonerated them and temporarily silenced the professional global warming deniers. As for being a “heretic”, all I can say is that I’m glad they don’t burnt people at the stake any more.

AV: Why do you refer to the “global warming deniers” as “professional”?

AM: Because some global warming deniers are paid megabucks to open their mouths for Big Oil to put greasy words into them, then spit the very same words out in public. The entire denial counter-movement is by and large funded by Big Oil.

AV: So what do you do with them? Debate them point by point?

AM: No point in that. Let them say whatever they are paid in diamonds to say. I am paid to say what I say in hearts, the hearts being my love for our children, for the pinnacles of civilization we have achieved, for the millions of species in life on Earth, and for the life of Earth itself. I'm not paid a cent for saying it.

AV: And why do people who subscribe to global warming call you a heretic?

AM: In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change published its 4th Assessment Report based on information available up to 2005, in which it presented 5 major climate change scenarios spanning 1880, when the Industrial Age began, and 2100. The worst case scenario, dubbed A1F1 – “business-as-usual” - projects a global temperature rise of 6oC/10oF maximum, 6oC/10oF being generally accepted as the threshold of an 85% species extinction rate in the current 6th Mass Extinction. However, the Arctic sea-ice melt rate as of 2005, and in especially in 2007, turned out worse than IPCC’s worst-case scenario by 300%. Those who adhere to some of the less-bad-case scenarios would consider even the 2005-2007 data themselves heretical. And what I announced is even worse than what the 2005-2007 data themselves project. So, I fit very snugly into their “heretic” category.

AV: You call this the 6th Mass Extinction. So, there were 5 mass extinctions that happened before? I know only one – the one that wiped out the dinosaurs.

AM: Yes. That was the 5th, the End-Cretaceous Mass Extinction 64 million years ago. But this 5th mass extinction was the only one not caused by climate change. The 3rd, the End-Permian Mass Extinction 251 million years ago, which was indeed caused by climate change, wiped out 75% of all land species and 95% of all marine species including all corals which took 10 million years afterward to re-evolve. So, it’s not theory. It’s happened before under similar circumstances, and it is repeatable. It is happening now.

AV: When did this 6th mass extinction begin?

AM: I’d say about 14,000 years ago, when the North American Megafauna – woolly mammoth, woolly rhino, giant cave bear, giant ground sloth, saber-tooth cat, wild horse… almost simultaneously went extinct. 14,000 years ago was also when the last ice-age was about to end accompanied by global warming, as well as when human beings began to colonize North America. Since then, the extinction rate has been higher than the background extinction rate in geologically more stable eras. But it was not until 1880, when the Industrial Age began, that the extinction rate skyrocketed.

AV: What is the extinction rate today?

AM: About 100 species a day. I should say about 100 known species, and an unknown number of unknown species, a day.

AV: How many species are there altogether?

AM: Estimates run from 2 million species to over 40 million species. I’d take the mean of about 20 million species.

AV: According to your “heretical” scenario, how many species would become extinct?

AM: 100 percent, with the possible exception of the few species of anaerobic bacteria that live on the ocean floor near submarine volcanic vents.

AV: That is quite a claim.

AM: It is not a claim, but an inevitability with but one possible exit.

AV: How did you arrive at this conclusion?

AM: A combination of two factors: 1, that today’s global average temperature is less than 1 degree Celsius or 1.6 degree Fahrenheit warmer than the global average temperature of 1880, and 2. that the sub-Arctic permafrost is melting.

AV: Less than one degree and some ice melting up in the Arctic Circle doesn’t sound all that threatening to me.

AM: It is exactly because it is less than one degree that makes it that much more threatening.

AV: How so?

AM: Imagine how much more of the permafrost will melt when the temperature-rise climbs to 2 degrees, then 3, then 4, then 5, then 6…

AV: So what if the permafrost melts down altogether. It won’t raise the sea level by more than a foot or two. So the humans and animals will have to move some distance inland. But that is far from all 20 million species going extinct.

AM: Sea level rise is a minor problem compared to the global temperature rise, which will go through the roof.

AV: Why would the melting or even meltdown of permafrost have this drastic effect?

AM: Because of what is released into the atmosphere when the permafrost melts. It is the most dangerous substance on Earth today bar none, far more so than all the weapons on Earth combined - certainly much more potent, but also much more inevitable than a global nuclear holocaust.

AV: What can such a substance be?

AM: Methane.

AV: Methane? Being an animal advocate familiar with cattle farming, I know that methane is released from the cattle themselves. I know it’s a fuel, but I don’t see it burning the cows. So what’s so dangerous about it?

AM: Methane being a fuel, which produces carbon dioxide when burned, is less damaging than methane itself as a greenhouse gas. As a greenhouse gas, methane is 75 times more potent than CO2 in the short run (within years of release) and 20 times more potent in the long term (within decades). So, the more methane in the atmosphere, the worse global warming gets.

AV: So, the permafrost contains methane?

AM: The permafrost is a giant reservoir of methane held in frozen peat or in the solid form of methane clathrate or methane hydrate. When the permafrost melts, free gaseous methane is released into the atmosphere.

AV: What quantity are we talking about?

AM: From surface to 100 meters (330 feet) depth, there is an estimated 500 billion tons. From surface to 300 meters (990 feet) depth, over 1,000 billion tons, or 1 trillion tons.

AV: These are huge numbers, which I’m having trouble grasping. Could you put it in such a way that can help me understand this?

AM: Well, before 1880, the atmospheric carbon concentration was about 250 parts per million (ppm). This translates to a total carbon content of about 450 billion tons. Now, the concentration has risen up to 385 ppm or a total of about 700 billion tons. So, as you can see, if the permafrost melts totally, it will add 1 trillion tons of CO2 equivalent in methane into the atmosphere, more than doubling the amount of greenhouse gasses. The carbon total will rise to 1700 billion tons, and the concentration will rise to 935 ppm. This alone will mean the end of the world as we know it, and we haven’t even talked about the melting of the oceanic methane clathrate deposits, which totals about 10 trillion tons. If all oceanic methane clathrate deposits are melted, that would turn the Earth into another Venus.

AV: But how much of the permafrost will it really melt? Surely not the whole thing.

AM: Surely, the whole thing.

AV: Why?

AM: Without even considering the methane release, just the extant carbon dioxide in the atmosphere alone will drive the global temperature up by 6oC/10oF come 2100, especially considering that the recent Arctic sea-ice melt has already exceeded the IPCC worst case scenario of Arctic melting by 300% this early in the game. If the less than 1 degree rise today can start melting the permafrost, what would +2, +3, +4, +5 and +6 degrees do? These are inevitable numbers within the next century. We don’t really need the methane feedback-loop to bring about a total permafrost meltdown, releasing all 1 trillion tons of CO2-equivalent in methane into the atmosphere. This alone will drive the global temperature up by 10oC/16oF no problem. Do you want me to go further?

AV: Further meaning even worse?

AM: Yes. I’m now factoring in the methane feedback loop. With this in play, the speed of the heating will increase exponentially, and the temperature will rise even higher due to the extra methane. By then the oceans will have warmed to the point where the oceanic methane clathrate will have started melting. And there is nothing in nature that can stop it. The only natural way it will end is after all the methane have been released, by which time the atmospheric carbon concentration will have risen to over 10 trillion tons, compared to today’s 700 billion tons. The carbon concentration will have risen from today’s 385 ppm to a staggering 5500 ppm, when scientists have set the maximum at 450 ppm. The result of a total methane blow out will be global baking up to hundreds of degrees.

AV: So, let me make this clear for myself. You are saying that the permafrost has started melting, and that is the beginning of the end?

AM: Nicely put.

AV: So, we are doomed?

AM: If we carry on the way we have been carrying on, absolutely.

AV: But what is there to stop the runaway global heating from spiraling out of control?

AM: Nothing in nature can do it. And there is only one thing that humans may be able do that might be able to slow it down, or stop it, or even reverse it.

AV: Don’t leave me suspended too long.

AM: Well, I’ll start off by mentioning what won’t work. The first thing to realize is that nature won’t, can’t, do a thing about it. If we push her off her limits, she will let whatever consequences, include 100% extinction, run its course. Corn/soy/cane/palm-derived ethanol won’t do it, since it still releases CO2. On the contrary, it will aggravate global warming by directly destroying thousands of square miles of tropical rainforest every year to accommodate ever expanding soy plantations, thereby also directly causing the extinction of hundreds of thousands of endemic species as the ravage spreads. Conservation is important, but by itself won’t do it. Even if we have cars running on 300 miles per gallon, the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere will still increase, and the temperature will still rise. Even if we stop burning fossil fuel altogether, the temperature will still keep on rising, albeit at a slower rate. Clean energy – solar, wind, geothermal, wave and tidal – these are of utmost importance for long term sustainability, and can help reduce CO2 emission, and can even eventually reduce the emission to zero, but they cannot reduce the atmospheric carbon content and concentration, and they certainly cannot stop the methane release, and therefore cannot stop, much less reverse, runaway global heating. The only technology that can deal with runaway global heating is Carbon Sequestration and Storage (CSS) otherwise known as Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) which by definition pulls carbon out of the atmosphere and actually reduces the carbon content and concentration. We are not talking about small auxiliary CSS/CCS units attached to coal-fire plants. We are talking about large-scale free-standing CSS/CCS systems actively gobbling up carbon by the ton out of the atmosphere every day – on a global scale.

AV: This sounds expensive.

AM: Hundreds of billions of dollars, no doubt. The Stern Commission estimates that 1-3% of the world’s total GDP is needed to fully mitigate global warming. 1% of the global GDP equals about $635 billion/year. World experts think that $120 billion per year is a good place to start, to just slow things down a little to buy us some time.

AV: So where does this money come from?

AM: Again, I will first say where it will NOT come from: industry and government, because there is little or no profit potential in it. There is no product from the process that can be marketed, other than algae-based “Soylent Green” perhaps. Street level investors won’t be interested in it. Corporations won’t touch it. Governments are already maxed out with their economic woes and expensive social programs and mountainous military expenditures. So, it will have to be a non-profit and altruistic endeavor.

AV: Where in the world can we find hundreds of billions of dollars floating around not already working to maximum capacity, for a non-profit program? Are you suggesting that the super-rich should shell out for the good of all?

AM: I won’t hold my breath on that. What we need is to extract it from somewhere already with the money, but where the money could be better spent.

AV: Where?

AM: If we look at all options, we would likely all gravitate toward the same conclusion. The global military expenditure stands a towering $1.2 trillion a year or more. 10% of $1.2 trillion equals $120 billion.

AV: Seems like a marriage made in heaven.

AM: I have started a global petition addressed to the United Nations Secretary General titled “To the UN Secretary General for the $120 billion/yr Global Green Fund for combating global warming and saving Earth”. If I read the letter out here, it will answer your question fully.

AV: Yes, please do.

AM: It says:

Dear Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon,

On April 9, 2008, the Global Conference on Oceans, Coasts and Islands was featured in a newspaper article titled “Oceans warming 4 times faster than predicted”, which concluded with: “money must be spent on protecting international waters,” and we would add, “and the atmosphere, the Arctic and Antarctic, the Amazon rainforest, the Boreal forest, African wildlife, biodiversity, in fact, the entire biosphere itself”.

World experts have determined that a Global Green Fund for healing our planet Earth of $120 billion per annum is the bare bone minimum.

Almost shockingly, in this hour of critical planetary need, such a Global Green Fund DOES NOT EVEN EXIST. In contrast, the Global Military Expenditure towers $1.2 trillion per annum, and to what good end?

A mere 10% of it would make the $120 billion Global Green Fund.

As a nature-revering, peace-loving and deeply concerned planetary citizen, in view of the current global environmental crisis in climate change, habitat destruction and species extermination, I am writing to participate with other planetary citizens worldwide in presenting the following proposal:

As overseen by the United Nations, all member nations shall contribute ten percent (10%) of their military budgets, totaling $120 billion per annum approximately, to a U.N.-administered Global Green Fund dedicated to solving the environmental problems of the planet Earth.

Nations may contribute by means of environmental work performed by their military forces (e.g. by using the army for anti-poaching and habitat protection, and the navy for enforcing international laws on the high seas) in lieu of financial contributions.

By this method, there will be no relative loss of military strength for any nation, the world will be 10% safer, and Planet Earth will be 100% greener, and our children's future will be infinitely brighter.

Where the United Nations is concerned, it will finally have a real budget with the real means to heal our planet Earth.

We ask you to please use your influence to facilitate the creation of this Global Green Fund, for saving life on Earth from mass extinction due to global warming and habitat destruction.

Thank you for your attention.”

Does this answer your question?

AV: Yes, it does. So, how many signatures are you aiming for?

AM: I million worldwide.

AV: How’s it going?

AM: It is only a few days old, and is still taxiing on the runway, but it has already received signatures and comments from over a dozen countries so far. We’re in process of networking with environmental and animal advocacy groups, educational systems, churches and parenting groups on a global basis. We’re also asking signatories to pass it on. So, it should slowly gather momentum until it takes off.

AV: How does people go and sign the petition?

AM: Go to www.ThePetitionSite.com and look for the petition there. (If you’re online, go to http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/to-un-secretary-general-for-creating-the-

AV: Other than this, what else are you doing to fight global warming?

AM: Heal Our Planet Earth has started a major campaign titled the Global Emergency Operation or GEO, which has four quadrants: the Global Green Fund, the Time-Capsule-of-HOPE-2060, the Shut-Down-the-Alberta-Tar-Sands Campaign, and the Compassion for Animals Road Expedition #6 (CARE-6)…

For more information on these campaigns, please see www.HOPE-CARE.org. Or contact Anthony Marr for more info.

Anthony Marr, founder and president
Heal Our Planet Earth (HOPE)


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