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Human Survival Climatic Scale (HUSCI)

Note: This is a draft that is work in progress.

The Human Survival Climatic Scale (HUSCI) is a concise, structured system for assessing and communicating the multifaceted impacts of climate change on human life, akin to the Beaufort Wind Scale in its simplicity and clarity. This scale aims to replace abstract temperature targets with a clearer, more relatable system for public and stakeholder engagement.


Climate change represents one of the most significant challenges of our time, impacting ecosystems, economies, and societies. Understanding its effects, however, can be daunting due to the complexity of scientific data involved. The Human Survival Climatic (HUSCI) Scale is developed to bridge this gap, offering a comprehensible and robust framework to communicate the impact of climate change effects on earth and humans.

Background and Problem Statement

The challenge of communicating complex scientific data in a manner that is accessible and tangible to the general public has long been recognized across various scientific disciplines. A notable example in this context is the use of scales to simplify complex phenomena. The Beaufort Scale, for instance, translates wind speeds into terms that are easily understandable by non-experts. Similarly, the HUSCI aims to encapsulate the multifaceted effects of climate change into a more digestible format.

The Challenge with Communicating in Degrees

When discussing climate change, the use of average temperature increases, often expressed in degrees Celsius, has been a standard. However, this method of communication has its limitations, particularly in conveying the severity and real-world implications of climate change to the general public. For instance, hearing about a “3-degree increase” might not sound alarming to many, as it seems minor in the context of daily weather fluctuations.

Misunderstanding the Impact

The problem lies in the underestimation of what these degrees actually represent. A global average temperature rise of even a few degrees can have catastrophic effects:

  1. Ecosystem Disruption: Small increases can lead to significant changes in weather patterns, affecting ecosystems and biodiversity.
  2. Extreme Weather Events: Higher averages are linked to more frequent and severe weather events like hurricanes, droughts, and floods.
  3. Long-Term Changes: These temperature changes can lead to long-term shifts in climate zones, affecting agriculture, water resources, and human habitability.

The Need for a More Intuitive Approach

Given these challenges, there’s a growing recognition of the need for more intuitive and impactful ways to communicate climate change. This is where tools like the Human Survival Climatic Scale (HUSCI) come in. HUSCI translates complex climatic data, including temperature changes, into a more relatable and understandable format. It focuses on the direct impact on human survival and well-being, making the abstract concept of climate change more tangible and immediate.


The HUSCI is derived from a comprehensive analysis of climatic variables, such as temperature extremes, precipitation patterns, and frequency of natural disasters. It also incorporates socio-economic factors like healthcare availability, local adaptation strategies, and community resilience. This multidimensional approach ensures that the scale reflects both the environmental and human aspects of climate change.


The HUSCI serves multiple purposes:

  1. Public Awareness: By simplifying complex data, HUSCI helps in raising public awareness about the urgency of tackling climate change.
  2. Policy Making: It provides policymakers with a clear indicator of climate change’s human impact, guiding more effective climate policies.
  3. Research Tool: For researchers, HUSCI offers a standardized metric to assess and compare the impact of climate change across different regions and time periods.

The Scale

The Human Survival Climatic Scale (HUSCI), while a significant step forward in communicating climate change’s human impact, is an evolving framework and work in progress.

Level Stage Description Frequency of Extreme Weather Events Human Relocation Required
0 No Climate Change A baseline state where climate change impacts are not present. Default Not required
1 Initial Awareness The earliest stage where changes in climate are just becoming detectable. Minor pattern shifts, slightly unusual seasons Not required
2 Mild Awareness Slight deviations from historical norms begin to cause minor inconveniences. Mild Increase of Severe Weather Events Not required
3 Light Strain Minor challenges and inconveniences become more common. Moderate Increase in Severe Weather Events Localized
4 Moderate Strain Daily life and systems are increasingly affected, requiring noticeable adaptations and changes. High Increase in Severe Weather Events Sub-Regional
5 High Strain Serious and constant impacts on human life, natural systems, and economies. Intense Increase in Severe Weather Events Regional
6 Intensifying Strain Challenges are intense and continuous. Critical Increase in Severe Weather Events Multi-Regional
7 Severe Strain The focus shifts to enduring the ongoing and severe impacts. Critical Increase in Severe Weather Events Multi-Regional
8 Critical Strain The situation is critical, with widespread and severe disruptions. Critical Increase in Severe Weather Events Multi-Regional
9 Crisis Urgent and drastic responses are needed to prevent catastrophic outcomes. Extreme and Unprecedented Weather Patterns Continental
10 Systemic Breakdown A breakdown of societal, economic, and environmental systems due to extreme climate conditions. Extreme and Unprecedented Weather Patterns Continental
11 Catastrophic The situation is dire, with extreme efforts being the last resort to salvage what remains. Extreme and Unprecedented Weather Patterns Continental
12 Terminal Stage The final and most severe stage, where the climate conditions no longer support human life.   N/A

Collaboration - We need your help!

Ongoing Evolution of HUSCI

The Human Survival Climatic Scale (HUSCI), while a significant step forward in communicating climate change’s human impact, is an evolving framework. Recognizing the dynamic nature of climate science and its socio-economic implications, HUSCI is designed to be adaptable and responsive to new data, insights, and global developments.

Scientists and Researchers

We invite the scientific community to contribute to the ongoing development of HUSCI. Collaboration is essential for:

Policymakers and Practitioners

The involvement of policymakers, environmental planners, and practitioners is crucial in ensuring that HUSCI remains grounded in practical realities and serves as a useful tool for policy formulation and implementation.

Public Participation

We also recognize the value of insights from communities and individuals directly affected by climate change. Their experiences and feedback can provide valuable ground-level perspectives that enhance the scale’s relevance and effectiveness.

Joining Forces for a Sustainable Future

The development of HUSCI is not just a scientific endeavor but a collective journey towards a more sustainable and resilient future. We encourage interested parties to join this collaborative effort, contributing knowledge, resources, and expertise towards a comprehensive understanding and mitigation of climate change’s impact on human survival.

How to Contribute to HUSCI

The HUSCI project leverages GitHub Pages for collaborative development and information sharing. Here’s how you can contribute:

  1. Creating a Pull Request:
    • Visit the HUSCI GitHub Repository and create a pull request Your pull request will be reviewed by the HUSCI team, and if approved, your contributions will be merged.
  2. Using Discussions for Ideas and Feedback:
    • For evolving ideas or providing feedback on HUSCI, use the GitHub Discussions section. This is a great platform for sharing ideas, asking questions, and engaging with other contributors. Regularly check the discussions for updates and ongoing conversations about HUSCI’s development. Your contributions, whether they are data, research findings, or innovative ideas, are invaluable in enhancing the accuracy and relevance of the Human Survival Climatic Scale. Join us in this collaborative effort to better understand and address the impacts of climate change on human survival.


In summary, the Human Survival Climatic Scale (HUSCI) is a pioneering tool designed to measure the impact of climate change on human survival in an accessible and scientifically sound manner. By translating complex climatic data into a more understandable format, HUSCI plays a crucial role in enhancing public understanding, informing policy decisions, and guiding research in the field of climate change and human survival.


Human Survival Climatic Scale (HUSCI), (


Christian Elbe

Further Reading

For further reading and a deeper understanding of the HUSCI methodology and applications, refer to the following resources: