Monday, May 23, 2016

Climate Change and its Effect over 20 years

A National Geographic documentary through Interesting Documentary Films.


With only 6 feet of Sea Level rise by 2100, Miami Beach will be inundated. South Florida will be destroyed.  Even levees will not work because the porous coral bedrock will allow seawater to seep through --- sooner rather than later. And I don't think the Sea Level rise will be uniform across the globe. In places like South Florida, Houston, Mobile, Jacksonville, Savannah and New Orleans, the sea level rise could be 2½ times as fast as the global mean. 6 Feet of global mean sea level rise could mean 15 feet in those places. Bye-bye! :^(

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast is at it! Greenland Melts, April Record Warmth, Bad Financial Damages Prediction.

Greenland has started to melt again... second majorly abnormal melt spike of the season.

Tip o' the hat to Tom Yulsman at Twitter and dtlange at Robertscribbler.

Source: Twitter: Tom Yulsman @yulsman

Source: Greenland Today, National Snow and Ice Data Center

From Discover: "The Arctic will 'go through hell this year,' says one prominent scientist."
On April 11, a dramatic early spike in melting of snow and ice at the surface of Greenland’s ice sheet prompted a Danish climate scientist to say that she and her colleagues were “incredulous.”
Now, there has been a second bout of unusual melting.

You can see both of them in the graph above from the National Snow and Ice Data Center, or NSIDC. It charts the percentage of the Greenland Ice Sheet experiencing surface melting. In both cases, the thaw exceeded 10 percent of the ice sheet’s area.
Also record warmth (except in Berlin, NY and other areas in northeast North America and in Europe) gripped the globe last month.

Tip o' the hat to redskylite at Robertscribbler.

Source: NASA via the BBC.
The above graphic shows April temps to be 1.11 degrees C (2.0 F) above the 1951-1980 mean, or about 1.33 C (2.4 F) above 1880s values.

From the BBC: "April was the seventh month in a row that broke global temperature records, Nasa figures show."

Last month smashed the previous record for April by the largest margin ever, the data show.

That makes it three months in a row that the monthly record was broken by the largest margin ever.

But in terms of its departure from the 1951-1980 temperature average used by Nasa, April was equal with January 2016.
The Beeb also admits in the above linked article that with the new record temperatures, it will be quite difficult to meet the 1.5 C (2.7 F) goad set by COP21 in Paris last year.

All in all, the first four months of this year are running at 1.43 C (2.6F) above 1880s levels.

And the Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast will be doing quite a number on global industrial civilization, putting 13 billion people and $US 158 trillion in infrastructure, buildings, farms, etc.

Tip o' the' hat to Ryan in New England at Robertscribbler.

From the Guardian: "Climate change puts 1.3bn people and $158tn at risk, says World Bank."

Source: Tony Karuba/AFP/Getty Images/the Guardian.
The global community is badly prepared for a rapid increase in climate change-related natural disasters that by 2050 will put 1.3 billion people at risk, according to the World Bank.

Urging better planning of cities before it was too late, a report published on Monday from a Bank-run body that focuses on disaster mitigation, said assets worth $158tn – double the total annual output of the global economy – would be in jeopardy by 2050 without preventative action.

“With climate change and rising numbers of people in urban areas rapidly driving up future risks, there’s a real danger the world is woefully unprepared for what lies ahead,” said John Roome, the World Bank Group’s senior director for climate change.

“Unless we change our approach to future planning for cities and coastal areas that takes into account potential disasters, we run the real risk of locking in decisions that will lead to drastic increases in future losses.”
According to the Guardian in this same article, The World Bank Report reveals that the coastal cities are also sinking, compounding the sea-level rise... which will not be uniform across the globe. One country on one continent in particular is really gonna get in trouble...

All courtesy of the Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast.


Saturday, May 14, 2016

The Sky Was the Limit.

A lovely cartoon by Tom Toles of the Washington Post.

Source and Copyright (c) The Washington Post.
This post consists of snippets of information found at Robertscribbler.

Tips o' th' hat to Robertscribbler, dtlange, coloradobob, june, and patternreplicas.

A CO2 milestone in Earth’s history
Antarctic field project captures 400 ppm levels


400 ppm of Carbon Dioxide now seen over West Antarctic Peninsula.
Source: ucar.edu.
May 12, 2016 | Earth’s atmosphere is crossing a major threshold, as high levels of carbon dioxide (CO2)—the leading driver of recent climate change—are beginning to extend even to the globe’s most remote region. Scientists flying near Antarctica this winter captured the moment with airborne CO2 sensors during a field project to better understand the Southern Ocean’s role in global climate.

This illustration shows the atmosphere near Antarctica in January, just as air masses over the Southern Ocean began to exceed 400 parts per million of CO2. The 400 ppm level is regarded as a milestone by climate scientists, as the last time concentrations of the heat-trapping gas reached such a point was millions of years ago, when temperatures and sea levels were far higher.

The field project, led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and known as ORCAS, found that there is still air present in the Southern Hemisphere that has less than 400 ppm of CO2—but just barely. In the north, the atmosphere had first crossed that threshold in 2013, as shown by observations taken at Mauna Loa, Hawaii…

‘The air found by ORCAS with less than 400 ppm of CO2 was located in a wedge at lower altitudes. At higher altitudes, the air had already exceeded 400 ppm. This pattern is mostly a consequence of the way the air circulates in the region. At these southerly latitudes, the air arrives from the Northern Hemisphere at higher elevations and then mixes downward.’

https://www2.ucar.edu/atmosnews/perspective/21081/co2-milestone-in-earths-history
Proof That Koch-Backed Professors Are Using Universities To Spread Right-Wing Policies

“Economic freedom centers” — or institutes with conservative, libertarian missions that are backed by the Charles Koch Foundation — are tightly controlled by the interests of the conservative foundation, according to remarks from Koch-backed professors and executives at the Association of Private Enterprise Education’s annual meeting in Las Vegas.

The remarks were recorded by UnKoch My Campus, a group that focuses on the influence of powerful donors on research and coursework in universities, and shared by Greenpeace staff. At the event, Koch-backed professors and Charles Koch Foundation executives said that students act as “foot soldiers” for free enterprise ideals, deans will take money from anyone, and the slightest mention of the foundation’s legal team can bring universities back in line.

Koch-backed institutes made their way back into the news lately after recent reports that $5 million was earmarked for these centers at Arizona public universities. …

http://thinkprogress.org/education/2016/05/13/3777688/koch-backed-professors-remarks/
Another amplifying feedback to human-forced warming. - Robertscribbler.

New Ice Age knowledge Pacific stores the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide at depths of thousands of meters

May 13, 2016, Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research

Summary: An international team of researchers has gained new insights into the carbon dioxide exchange between ocean and atmosphere, thus making a significant contribution to solving one of the great scientific mysteries of the ice ages.

In the past 800,000 years of climate history, the transitions from interglacials and ice ages were always accompanied by a significant reduction in the carbon dioxide content in the atmosphere. It then fell from 280 to 180 ppm (parts per million). Where this large amount of carbon dioxide went to and the processes through which the greenhouse gas reached the atmosphere again has been controversial until now. The scientists have now managed to locate a major carbon dioxide reservoir at a depth of 2000 to 4300 metres in the South Pacific and reconstruct the details of its gas emission history. Their new findings have been published open access in the scientific journal Nature Communications.

The southern Pacific Ocean is regarded as one of the largest ventilation windows of the world oceans. This is where the global conveyor belt of ocean currents transports the carbon-rich water from great depths to the surface of the sea for a short time. The gas concentration balance between water and air takes place where the two meet. This usually means that the carbon-rich water masses release the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide they had stored into the atmosphere, thus contributing to the greenhouse effect and the warming of the earth.
 
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/05/160513112148.htm
Retreat of the ice followed by millennia of methane release

Date: May 13, 2016 Source: CAGE – Center for Arctic Gas Hydrate, Climate and Environment.

Summary: Methane was seeping from the seafloor for thousands of years following the retreat of the Barents Sea ice sheet, shows a groundbreaking new study.

Scientists have calculated that the present day ice sheets keep vast amounts of climate gas methane in check. Ice sheets are heavy and cold, providing pressure and temperatures that contain methane in form of ice-like substance called gas hydrate. If the ice sheets retreat the weight of the ice will be lifted from the ocean floor, the gas hydrates will be destabilised and the methane will be released.

Studies conducted at CAGE have previously shown that ice sheets and methane hydrates are closely connected, and that release of methane from the seafloor has followed the retreat of the Barents Sea ice sheet some 20,000 years ago. But is all such release of the potent climate gas bound to be catastrophic?

Not necessarily, according to a new study published in Nature Communications. It shows that the methane was indeed released as the ice sheets retreated. However the seepage did not occur in one major pulse, but over a period of 7000 to 10000 years following the initial release.

"The release was too slow to significantly impact the concentration of methane in the atmosphere." says researcher and project leader Aivo Lepland at Norwegian geological Survey (NGU) and CAGE. This may help explain why we have yet to discover a signal for such events in the various climate records of the past.

Link: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/05/160513111837.htm.

"That would make the continental and land-sea margin zones of Greenland, Antarctica, Svalbard and the CAA hot spot regions to look for." - Robertscribbler.

This Is What It Looks Like When People All Over The World Break Free From Fossil Fuels

Protest march in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Source and Copyright (c) Commondreams.org.
http://commondreams.org/views/2016/05/13/what-it-looks-when-people-all-over-world-break-free-fossil-fuels
And this is what happens when people make things happen:

Two-acre rooftop greenhouse garden. Source: Greg via Robertscribbler.

"Here is the world’s largest rooftop greenhouse, two acres, producing local food otherwise grown on 50 acres of land." - Greg.

But often politics get in the way, as recently when in Nevada one tycoon, Warren Buffet, darling of the Democrats, has his way and the State Legislature destroys two entire industries: solar power station construction and solar panel installation.

"Can we please stop burning the fossil fuels that are setting this stuff into motion? The risks in continued burning are just too great. And the more we research, the more we find added risks." - Robertscribbler

"Climate science and description of phenomena and events: Great!  Political analysis and solutions: Insufficient." - patternreplicas

Jacque Fresco (scientist) on Politics and Legislation:


Well we won't get anything done if Trump gets to become President: watch the video below and see how he wrecked the local pristine sand dune environment near Aberdeen Scotland and ruined local people's lives... and even sicced the local police on them.

You've Been Trumped!


Granted, Hilary is bad -- she has backing of fossil fuel interests, even the Koch Brothers -- but if Trump gets in, everybody and everything will get Trumped. The American People, the biosphere, the rest of the people of the Earth, including Putin, who will not hesitate to declare war on us if Trump eyes his country as another place and government to just push over.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Climate Central predicts we will keep on feeding the Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast more and more through 2040.

The Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast. Source: Sandara.

The misleading headline reads:

Global 2040 Forecast Sees Only Slight Fall in Fossil Fuels

Article by Bobby Magill, Climatecentral.org, 11 May 2016

I doubt he wrote the headline, though.

Now, snippets from the rest of the story.

Despite the urgency to cut greenhouse gas emissions as climate change bears down on the globe, fossil fuel use is not likely to change much in the coming decades. Though renewable energy will grow quickly though 2040, gasoline and diesel will still move most of the world’s vehicles, and coal will still be the largest single source of carbon emissions.

Those are the conclusions of a forecast released by the federal government on Wednesday for how the world will use energy and what its carbon dioxide emissions will be over the next 25 years.
Feeding the Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast.
Gasoline and diesel will likely remain the globe's biggest transportation fuels in the coming decades.
Credit: Michael Kappel/flickr via Climate Central.

The US Energy Information Administration predicts that as a whole, we will be feeding the Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast more and more emissions (those are the derivatives, dear reader) through 2040:


Credit: US EIA via Climate Central.
Global carbon emissions from energy consumption are expected to grow at an average rate of 1 percent per year between 2012 and 2040, growing a total 34 percent in that time as fossil fuels provide the world with more than three quarters of its energy.

“With existing policies and regulations, worldwide energy-related carbon dioxide emissions will go from about 32 billion metric tons in 2012 to something like 43 billion metric tons out to the year 2040,” EIA administrator Adam Sieminski said.
And will consumption of fossil fuels decrease as a whole though 2040? Noooooooo...!

Look here:

Credit: US EIA via Climate Central.
Unless there are unexpected changes in global climate policy over the next 25 years, coal will still be the world’s king of carbon emissions in 2040.

Coal is expected to account for 38 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions in 2040, down from 43 percent in 2012. Annual growth of coal use by that time is expected to be about 0.6 percent. In 1990, coal was responsible for 39 percent of global carbon emissions. Natural gas, by comparison, will account for 26 percent of global carbon emissions in 2040, up from 20 percent in 2012.

Although renewables will enlarge from about 12 to about 25 percent, fossil fuels will still hold the lion's share at 75 percent. And the actual amount of fossil fuels that will be consumed in 2014 will be larger than the actual amount consumed in 2012!

More here.

We will probably break through 500 ppm of CO2 in the Atmosphere vs 400 ppm today, and definitely through 500 ppm of CO2e. We're at 485 ppm CO2e already and we're already making the Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast more and more active! See my sister blog, 2016 is strange!.

Imagine how bad the Fossil Fuels Derivatives Beast will behave when we're at 500ppm.

Tip o' th' hat to Elaine Meinel Supkis.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Global Atmospheric carbon dioxide content soon to be permanently North of 400 ppm.

At least for the duration of the human species, I think.



From The Guardian UK:

World's carbon dioxide concentration teetering on the point of no return

Mikey Slezak, Guardian UK, 11 May 2016
Future in which global concentration of CO2 is permanently above 400 parts per million looms.

The world is hurtling towards an era when global concentrations of carbon dioxide never again dip below the 400 parts per million (ppm) milestone, as two important measuring stations sit on the point of no return.

The news comes as one important atmospheric measuring station at Cape Grim in Australia is poised on the verge of 400ppm for the first time. Sitting in a region with stable CO2 concentrations, once that happens, it will never get a reading below 400ppm.
Source: Australian Government / CSIRO
Meanwhile another station in the northern hemisphere may have gone above the 400ppm line for the last time, never to dip below it again.

“We’re going into very new territory,” James Butler, director of the global monitoring division at the US National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, told the Guardian.

When enough CO2 is pumped into the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels, the seasonal cycles that drive the concentrations up and down throughout the year will eventually stop dipping the concentration below the 400ppm mark.
Source: United States Government, NOAA.
The IPCC maintains that 400 ppm CO2 in our atmosphere will give us 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) of Global Warming. Well we're already close to 1.5 degrees C temperature rise and even breached it for one month, and that the CO2e of all the greenhouse gasses is somewhere north of 485 ppm which means the rise could be more like 3 degrees C, not to mention the fact that the IPCC has been notoriously conservative in its predictions for example the Arctic Ice extent minima in 2007, 2011 and 2012 were not expected until mid-century.

And we've already seen dangerous climate changes, like the die-off in the Great Barrier Reef, the near-extermination of starfish on the North American Pacific Coast (thank goodness there's being a recovery there), the submersion of five Pacific Islands, and the deadly typhoons and cyclones such as Yolanda in the Central and South Pacific since 2013.

What's the solution? Get off of fossil fuels before the current Peak Oil finally peaks and goes back down. And plant lots and lots and lots of trees.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Yellowstone could put the schnitz on Global Warming.

Instead, it would create a new ice age which would lead to the deaths of BILLIONS of people. And wreck two-thirds of the United States, utterly. Which means the country would not be able to function, period.

In other words: Yellowstone blowing up means the end of America.

From the Inquisitor.com article, Mega-earthquakes in Major Population Centers Highly Imminent, Experts Renew Warning:

Fears have also been expressed about an imminent eruption of the Yellowstone Supervolcano, which experts say experienced a major eruption 640,000 years ago, followed by minor eruptions and lava flows 150,000 and 70,000 years ago, respectively.

Experts warn that major eruptions of Yellowstone comparable to the last super-eruption 640,000 years ago could be up to 2,000 times as powerful as the Mount St. Helens’ 1980 eruption. A major eruption of Yellowstone could devastate large swathes of the U.S. northwest and render about two-thirds of the country uninhabitable.

For more, click here.

And from another Inquisitor Article, Yellowstone Supervolcano Eruption May Happen Soon; Explosion More Catastrophic than Effects of Climate Change.

A Yellowstone supervolcano eruption capable of wiping out the western half of the U.S. may be closer than previously thought. Scientists say the Earth is now in a “volcano season,” and a large volcanic eruption poses a significantly greater global threat than even the effects of climate change.

According to scientists from the European Science Foundation (ESF), the Earth is experiencing a 300-year period of increased volcanic activity, or a volcano season. Some scientists have speculated this increased activity may be due to rising sea levels, possibly related to global warming.

In the report, entitled “Extreme Geohazards: Reducing the Disaster Risk and Increasing Resilience,” experts predict a supervolcano eruption with the ability to kill millions has a five to 10 percent chance of happening within the next 70 to 80 years. Such an event would make it difficult for a global society to adapt and remain sustainable.

Researchers are particularly worried about active volcanoes in Yellowstone National Park in the United States, Mount Vesuvius in Italy, and Popocat├ępetl in Mexico. As reported by International Business Times, the environmental impact would go well beyond any damaging effects of climate change over a 1,000 year period, should any of these three erupt.

For more, click here.

And here's why the Yellowstone Explosion could be huge:



Cross-posted at 2016 is strange!.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Arctic Ice Suffers Severe Melt-back as Satellite Monitor Begins to Fail.

This is a reblogging of and commenting on two recent articles posted by Robert Scribbler. Please note that this is not the only pole that's suffering ice melt. Antarctica is now melting, too.

First, Robert Scribbler predicts that the Arctic Ice will just about completely disappear by the end of this summer, and he backs it up with EVIDENCE, such as the now-ongoing break-up and meltback of ice in the Beaufort Sea:

Arctic Sea Ice is Falling off a Cliff and it May Not Survive The Summer

By Robert Scribbler 2 May 2016

Near zero sea ice by the end of melt season. The dreaded Blue Ocean Event. Something that appears more and more likely to happen during 2016 with each passing day.

These are the kinds of climate-wrecking phase changes in the Arctic people have been worrying about since sea ice extent, area, and volume achieved gut-wrenching plunges during 2007 and 2012. Plunges that were far faster than sea ice melt rates predicted by model runs and by the then scientific consensus on how the Arctic Ocean ice would respond to human-forced warming this Century. For back during the first decade of the 21st Century the mainstream scientific view was that Arctic sea ice would be about in the range that it is today by around 2070 or 2080. And that we wouldn’t be contemplating the possibility of zero or near zero sea ice until the end of this Century.

Melting more than Two Weeks Faster than the Early 2000s

Since April 27th, according to a record of sea ice extent provided by JAXA, daily rates of sea ice loss have been in the range of 75,000 square kilometers for every 24 hour period. That’s 300,000 square kilometers of sea ice, or an area the size of New Mexico, lost in just four days. Only during 2015 have we ever seen such similarly rapid rates of loss for this time of year.


Image source: JAXA via Robertscribbler.

We’ve never seen early season sea ice losses like this before. Severe sea ice losses of this variety can help to generate strong ridges and extreme heatwaves [and wildfires] like the ones we now see affecting [Canada,] India and Southeast Asia.
According to the rates of decline shown for this year, last year, 2007 and 2012, we are in for a record low area of Sea Ice Extent up in the Arctic. And one of the areas is the Beaufort Sea, described by Robert Scribbler, wherein there is a huge area of exposure of water close to the sea coast and the Canadian Archipelago, and an immense area of sea ice that is in shards:


Image source: LANCE-MODIS via Robertscribbler.

This Beaufort sea has never looked so bad off so early in the year. High amplitude waves in the Jet Stream continue to deliver record warmth, warm, wet winds, and record sea ice melt to this region of the Arctic. For reference, bottom of frame in this image is around 600 miles. The wispy threads you see in the image is cloud cover, the sections of solid white are snow and ice. And the blue you see is the open waters of the Arctic Ocean. Open water gap size in the widest sections is now more than 150 miles.

There, ice continues to rapidly recede away from the Arctic Ocean shores of the Mackenzie Delta and the Canadian Archipelago — where a large gap has opened up in the sea ice.
All this melting ice on sea and land will eventually convert to rising seas, and will inundate areas like Southern Louisiana, South Florida, the Chesapeake Bay including such major cities like New Orleans, Miami and Washington, D. C.

We can head it off if we do a crash program to get away from fossil fuels cold-turkey and start extracting carbon out of the atmosphere. But I have my doubts that this is politically possible at all.

And the US Congress and Senate are not helping. The GOP wants to cut everywhere except the War Department, and the Democrats are so ineffectual at stopping them, they are enablers. Which is why the Arctic Ice Satellite Monitor is starting to go on the fritz:

Republican Climate Change Denial is Blinding Our Ability to Observe the Arctic

By Robert Scribbler 26 April 2016
Denial.

It’s all-too-often what happens to the powerful when they are confronted with the consequences of their own bad actions. It can best be said that denial is blindness — the willful inability to open one’s eyes to the tough reality of the world. In literature, we can see denial in the tragic sin of hubris and in the metaphor of Oedipus the King gouging his own eyes out as a result of his failure to come to terms with the warnings of prophecy.

In the psychological sense, denial involves the inability to cope with reality such that a person will act in an irrational fashion to the point of generating fantasies that the object of said denial does not exist. Behaviorally, this results in an increasing degradation of a person’s ability to confront or cope with the object of denial — to the point of ardent, irrational, and possibly destructive outbursts when faced with it.

Arctic sea ice loss.

Ever since 1979 an array of satellite sensors has allowed our scientists to directly observe the sea ice in the Arctic. Since that time, and as a human-forced warming of the world ramped up, the area which that ice covers has dramatically shrunken. So much so that by this year, 2016, there’s a risk that not only will a new all-time record low be reached, but that by the end of this summer almost all the ice in the Arctic Ocean will be melted out entirely. A risk that a new climate change related event will start to take shape in the Arctic. The blue ocean events.
Data source: NSIDC. Image source: Pogoda i Klimat via Robert Scribbler.
Comment in red mine.
Arctic sea ice area as measured by observational satellites and most recently by  F17. The bottom line of the graph measures days of the year. The left side of the graph measures sea ice area. The corresponding intersections determine sea ice area on any given day of a year in the record. The up and downward swoop of each line on the graph shows the seasonal variation of sea ice area for that given year. The blue line on the graph represents 1980 sea ice area. The dark gray line represents the 1979 to 2000 average. The red line represents the 2012 record low year. 2016, in black, shows a squiggle as F17 begins to fail in early March of this year — a year that could significantly beat 2012 as the worst melt year on record. The sensor is failing because it is old and needs replacement. A replacement that is now sitting in a warehouse due to republican-led satellite research funding cuts.

Willful Blindness

Where does denial meet with Arctic sea ice loss? In the form of climate change denying republicans attempting again and again to cut and with-hold funding to NASA and NSIDC instruments that track what is an unprecedented and historic melt now ongoing. For ever since their coming to power in Congress in 2010, republicans have done everything they can to remove funding for the devices that provide a direct observation of the changes coming as a result of a human-forced warming of our world.

More here.