By combing through the planet’s climate chronicles, the study suggests that life on Earth could become increasingly precarious for humans should global warming venture two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. Specifically, the temperature change could lead to substantial climate warming and a rise in sea levels, hence the catchy hothouse description. The study also outlines an alternate outcome—labeled Stabilized Earth—in which the climate remains comparable to its current state.
Some experts like Richard Betts—who provided his expertise for the hothouse review—caution us against pressing the panic button in response to the study. The odds of this frightening prediction developing beyond the literary-based speculation, Betts writes in EcoWatch, is highly unlikely, plus if it were to actually occur, we’re looking at a timeline of about one million years down the line, where humans may or may not have mined the cosmos and successfully settled on another planet altogether.