- Consequences of Climate Change
- -01 Study: Global Warming Is Stuck on Fast Forward (theGuardian.com)
"The widespread mainstream media focus on the slowed global surface warming has led some climate scientists like Trenberth and Fasullo to investigate its causes and how much various factors have contributed to the so-called 'pause' or 'hiatus.' However, the authors note that while the increase in global temperatures has slowed, the oceans have taken up heat at a faster rate since the turn of the century. Over 90 percent of the overall extra heat goes into the oceans, with only about 2 percent heating the Earth's atmosphere. The myth of the 'pause' is based on ignoring 98 percent of global warming and focusing exclusively on the one bit that's slowed.”
"Previous estimates put the amount of heat accumulated by the world's oceans over the past decade equivalent to about 4 Hiroshima atomic bomb detonations per second, on average, but Trenberth's research puts the estimate equivalent to more than 6 detonations per second." 12-13
- -CO2 Emissions in the U.S. Determined in Detail (ScienceDaily.com)
"Biogeochemists located where the most carbon dioxide emissions occur in the U.S. using a new mapping system. With this program-available to anyone on the Web-researchers were able to extract information about carbon dioxide emissions by transforming data on local air pollution and combining it with geographic information systems (GIS) data to layer the emissions onto infrastructures at the Earth's surface. The map helps us learn more about carbon emissions and gives scientists a way to check the accuracy of satellite images."
"The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased by about 30 percent since the beginning of the industrial revolution in the late 1800's. Most of this increase comes from using fossil fuel -- coal, oil and natural gas -- for energy, but approximately 25 percent of the carbon came from changes in land use, such as the clearing of forests and the cultivation of soils for food production. Natural sources of atmospheric carbon include gases emitted by volcanoes, and respiration of living things. We breathe in oxygen, and breathe out carbon dioxide." 09-12
- -Farewell to the Arctic -- As We Know It (Time.com)
"While the world as a whole warmed by about 1°F (.55°C) over the entire 20th century, parts of the Arctic have warmed by 4° to 5°F (2.2° to 2.7°C) just since 1950. The physical changes from global warming are visible in the Arctic almost in real time — and they are a warning for those of us who live in more comfortable latitudes. As the polar expert Walt Meier of the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) has put it: "What happens in the Arctic doesn't stay in the Arctic."
"That's bad news, since not only is the warming threat in the Arctic bad, it's almost certainly intensifying." 07-12
- -Simulation Results: Temperature Rise Caused a Mass Extinction (BBC News)
"A computer simulation of the Earth's climate 250 million years ago suggests that global warming triggered the so-called 'great dying'."
"A dramatic rise in carbon dioxide caused temperatures to soar to 10 to 30 degrees Celsius higher than today, say US researchers."
"Some 95% of lifeforms in the oceans became extinct, along with about three-quarters of land species." 8-05
- -Study: Globally, 90 Companies Responsible for Majority of Emissions (theGuardian.com)
"Between them, the 90 companies on the list of top emitters produced 63% of the cumulative global emissions of industrial carbon dioxide and methane between 1751 to 2010, amounting to about 914 gigatonne CO2 emissions, according to the research. All but seven of the 90 were energy companies producing oil, gas and coal. The remaining seven were cement manufacturers.”
"The list of 90 companies included 50 investor-owned firms – mainly oil companies with widely recognised names such as Chevron, Exxon, BP , and Royal Dutch Shell and coal producers such as British Coal Corp, Peabody Energy and BHP Billiton." 12-13
- -Study: Greenhouse Gases Increased 36 Percent Since 1990 (Time.com)
"CO2 and other greenhouse gases trap heat on the Earth’s surface which warms it. The United Nations agency reports that there was a 36% increase in radiative forcing, which is the warming effect on our climate, due to higher levels of greenhouse gases such as CO2, methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) from 1990 to 2014." 11-15
- -Where We Are Now on Climate Change (Truth-out.org)
"Climate measurements continue to become both more precise and more reliable - and thus, more terrifying. A new report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which combines the work of 2,000 scientists from 154 countries, drawing from millions of observations from more than 9,000 scientific publications, confirms and strengthens previous predictions and adds one new and very important observation. Even 100 percent emissions reductions will no longer keep our climate from changing dangerously."
"The brave new proclamation in the new IPCC report was saved as the next to the last statement of fact in the SPM : 'A large fraction of anthropogenic climate change resulting from CO2 emissions is irreversible on a multi-century to millennial time scale, except in the case of a large net removal of CO2 from the atmosphere over a sustained period.' A large 'net' removal . . . this means greater than 100 percent annual emissions reductions . . . In other words, we have to take more out than we are putting in every year. We must begin to remove some of the long-lived carbon pollution that we have already placed in our skies. (SPM, E.8, Page 20)"
"Over the past six or eight hundred thousand years, our climate has almost always changed in radical jumps from one mode to another. In the last 110,000 years, Greenland ice cores show 23 of these events where the average global temperature jumped 9 to 14 degrees globally in time frames of as little as a few decades to as short as a few years." 12-13
- Acidification of the Oceans: Fastest Change in 300 Million Years (Time.com)
"The researchers found only one moment in the past when the oceans seemed to be changing anywhere near as fast as they are today. That was the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), which occurred some 56 million years ago. Back in the 1990s, scientists excavated a layer of mud off the seafloor near Antarctica that was traced back to that period. Over the course of 5,000 years during the PETM, carbon levels in the atmosphere doubled for reasons scientists still don’t know. That pushed global temperatures up by 6 C—one of the reasons why the era is called 'hothouse Earth,' while the pH of the oceans may have fallen by as much as 0.45 units, becoming significantly more acidic." 02-12
- Historical Record Predicts Catastrophic Climate Change (Voice of America)
"A new U.S. space agency study warns the Earth this century could see rapid and catastrophic climate changes if man-made global warming levels are allowed to reach an internationally-recognized so-called 'safe limit' of two degrees Celsius."
"NASA study leader James Hansen says the findings show that Earth’s climate is more sensitive than even recent estimates suggest. He described the notion of limiting man-made global warming to an increase of two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels as “a prescription for disaster.”
"Recent studies, including those by NASA, indicate the average global surface temperature since 1880 has gone up 0.8 degrees Celsius and is on course to continue rising by 0.1 degrees every decade." 03-12
- Recent Heat Spike Largest in 11,000 Years (News.Yahoo.com)
"A new study looking at 11,000 years of climate temperatures shows the world in the middle of a dramatic U-turn, lurching from near-record cooling to a heat spike."
"Research released Thursday in the journal Science uses fossils of tiny marine organisms to reconstruct global temperatures back to the end of the last ice age. It shows how the globe for several thousands of years was cooling until an unprecedented reversal in the 20th century." 03-13
- Scientists: Arctic Ice Loss Triggering Global Warming (BBC News)
" 'September 2005 will set a new record minimum in the amount of Arctic sea ice cover,' said Mark Serreze, of the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), Boulder, Colorado.' "
"The current rate of shrinkage they calculate at 8% per decade; at this rate there may be no ice at all during the summer of 2060."
" 'These dark areas absorb a lot of the Sun's energy, much more than the ice, and what happens then is that the oceans start to warm up, and it becomes very difficult for ice to form during the following autumn and winter.' "
" 'It looks like this is exactly what we're seeing - a positive feedback effect, a "tipping-point".' "
"The idea behind tipping-points is that at some stage the rate of global warming would accelerate, as rising temperatures break down natural restraints or trigger environmental changes which release further amounts of greenhouse gases."
"The Arctic Climate Impact Assessment, a four-year study involving hundreds of scientists, projected an additional temperature rise of 4-7C by 2100." 9-05
- Sources of CO2 in the Air (Wikipedia.org)
"Most sources of CO2 emissions are natural, and are balanced to various degrees by natural CO2 sinks. For example, the natural decay of organic material in forests and grasslands and the action of forest fires results in the release of about 439 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide every year, while new growth entirely counteracts this effect, absorbing 450 gigatonnes per year. Although the initial carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of the young Earth was produced by volcanic activity, modern volcanic activity releases only 130 to 230 megatonnes of carbon dioxide each year, which is less than 1% of the amount released by human activities (at approximately 29,000 megatonnes)."
"This addition, about 3% of annual natural emissions as of 1997, is sufficient to exceed the balancing effect of sinks. As a result, carbon dioxide has gradually accumulated in the atmosphere, and as of 2009, its concentration is 39% above pre-industrial levels." 01-13
- Temperatures of the Past Two Billion Years (one-simple-idea.com)
Provides a chart of temperatures for the past 2 billion years. For the past 100,000 years, we have been at the "cool" end of the spectrum (53.6F degrees average). The maximum plateau and most typical average was 71.6F degrees. 09-12
- Why Climate Change Deniers Are Wrong (Scientific American)
"Consensus science is a phrase often heard today in conjunction with anthropogenic global warming (AGW). Is there a consensus on AGW? There is. The tens of thousands of scientists who belong to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Chemical Society, the American Geophysical Union, the American Medical Association, the American Meteorological Society, the American Physical Society, the Geological Society of America, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and, most notably, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change all concur that AGW is in fact real. Why?"
"It is not because of the sheer number of scientists. After all, science is not conducted by poll. As Albert Einstein said in response to a 1931 book skeptical of relativity theory entitled 100 Authors against Einstein, 'Why 100? If I were wrong, one would have been enough.' The answer is that there is a convergence of evidence from multiple lines of inquiry—pollen, tree rings, ice cores, corals, glacial and polar ice-cap melt, sea-level rise, ecological shifts, carbon dioxide increases, the unprecedented rate of temperature increase—that all converge to a singular conclusion. AGW doubters point to the occasional anomaly in a particular data set, as if one incongruity gainsays all the other lines of evidence. But that is not how consilience science works. For AGW skeptics to overturn the consensus, they would need to find flaws with all the lines of supportive evidence and show a consistent convergence of evidence toward a different theory that explains the data." 03-16