global warming
Arctic sea ice is an important component of the global climate system. The polar ice caps help to regulate global temperature by reflecting sunlight back into space. White snow and ice at the poles reflects sunlight, but dark ocean absorbs it. Replacing bright sea ice with dark ocean is a recipe for more and faster global warming. The Autumn air temperature over the Arctic has increased by 4 - 6°F in the past decade, and we could already be seeing the impacts of this warming in the mid-latitudes, by an increase in extreme weather events. Another non-trivial impact of the absence of sea ice is increased melting in Greenland. We already saw an unprecedented melting event in Greenland this year, and as warming continues, the likelihood of these events increase.
arctic ice global warming melting
CALL me a converted skeptic. Three years ago I identified problems in previous climate studies that, in my mind, threw doubt on the very existence of global warming. Last year, following an intensive research effort involving a dozen scientists, I concluded that global warming was real and that the prior estimates of the rate of warming were correct. I’m now going a step further: Humans are almost entirely the cause.
global warming climate denial anthropogenic
"This collapse, I predicted would occur in 2015-16 at which time the summer Arctic (August to September) would become ice-free. The final collapse towards that state is now happening and will probably be complete by those dates".Wadhams says the implications are "terrible". "The positives are increased possibility of Arctic transport, increased access to Arctic offshore oil and gas resources. The main negative is an acceleration of global warming.""As the sea ice retreats in summer the ocean warms up (to 7C in 2011) and this warms the seabed too. The continental shelves of the Arctic are composed of offshore permafrost, frozen sediment left over from the last ice age. As the water warms the permafrost melts and releases huge quantities of trapped methane, a very powerful greenhouse gas so this will give a big boost to global warming."
arctic ice risk collapse
Vehicle emissions can affect the environment in several ways. Cars emit greenhouse gasses, such as carbon dioxide, which contribute to global warming. (See Reference 2, page 13) Some air pollutants and particulate matter from cars can be deposited on soil and surface waters where they enter the food chain; these substances can affect the reproductive, respiratory, immune and neurological systems of animals. (See Reference 5) Nitrogen oxides and sulfur oxides are major contributors to acid rain, which changes the pH of waterways and soils and can harm the organisms that rely on these resources.
oil climate change carbon dioxide cars risk
NSIDC scientist Ted Scambos said, "Antarctica's changes—in winter, in the sea ice—are due more to wind than to warmth, because the warming does not take much of the sea ice area above the freezing point during winter. Instead, the winds that blow around the continent, the "westerlies," have gotten stronger in response to a stubbornly cold continent, and the warming ocean and land to the north." Researchers believe that climate change has created a "wind wall" that keeps the cold around the South Pole while the rest of the globe is warming.
climate change arctic ice antarctic
When we burn fossil fuels -- oil, coal and gas -- to generate electricity and power our vehicles, we produce the heat-trapping gases that cause global warming. The more we burn, the faster churns the engine of global climate change. Thus the most important thing we can do is save energy.
oil climate change global warming
Ed Davey, the UK climate and energy secretary, said: "These findings highlight the urgency for the international community to act. We understand that Arctic sea-ice decline has accelerated over recent years as global warming continues to increase Arctic temperatures at a faster rate than the global average.
arctic ice global warming melting
The fossil fuel companies have played the biggest role in making sure we don't slow global warming down. They've funded climate denial propagandists and helped pack Congress with anti-environmental extremists, making sure that commonsense steps to move toward renewable energy never happen.
oil climate change global warming climate denial
One of the world's leading ice experts has predicted the final collapse of Arctic sea ice in summer months within four years.In what he calls a "global disaster" now unfolding in northern latitudes as the sea area that freezes and melts each year shrinks to its lowest extent ever recorded, Prof Peter Wadhams of Cambridge University calls for "urgent" consideration of new ideas to reduce global temperatures.
arctic ice risk collapse melting
The World Health Organization blames 150,000 deaths per year on the effects of global warming including extreme weather, drought, heat waves, decreased food production and the increased spread of diseases like malaria.
oil global warming extreme weather cost
Americans’ belief in the reality of global warming has increased by 13 percentage points over the past two and a half years, from 57 percent in January 2010 to 70 percent in September 2012. At the same time, the number of Americans who say global warming is not happening has declined nearly by half, from 20 percent in January 2010 to only 12 percent today.
climate change climate denial
The monster Arctic storms like we've seen this year have sped up the rate of sea ice loss, but increased water temperatures and air temperatures due to human-caused global warming are the dominant reasons for the record melting of the Arctic sea ice. A July 2012 study by Day et al. found that the most influential of the possible natural influences on sea ice loss was the Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillation (AMO). The AMO has two phases, negative (cold) and positive (warm), which impact Arctic sea ice. The negative phase tends to create sea surface temperatures in the far north Atlantic that are colder than average. In this study, the AMO only accounted for 5% - 31% of the observed September sea ice decline since 1979. The scientists concluded that given the lack of evidence that natural forces were controlling sea ice fluctuations, the majority of sea ice decline we've seen during the 1953 - 2010 period was due to human causes.
arctic ice anthropogenic melting
The shrinking of the ice cap was interpreted by environment groups as a signal of long-term global warming caused by man-made greenhouse gas emissions. A study published in July in the journal Environmental Research Letters, that compared model projections with observations, estimated that the radical decline in Arctic sea ice has been between 70-95% due to human activities.
arctic ice global warming anthropogenic
The primary greenhouse gas responsible for global warming is carbon dioxide. The U.S. is responsible for 19.91% of the carbon dioxide emissions worldwide.
climate change carbon dioxide atmosphere
THE WORLD is changing; opinions are changing, economies are changing, values are changing and the environment is changing.The environment is arguably the most important thing that is drastically transforming. This global warming, as we know it, is being caused by the burning of fossil fuels — emitting CO2 and other greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere. These fuels are burned in cars, in our homes and first and foremost in power generating stations. One of the primary fuels burned in power stations is coal and lets get one thing straight from the start: burning coal is not clean.
climate change carbon dioxide atmosphere
"As [greenhouse gas] emissions continue to soar, extreme weather in the US and elsewhere provides a glimpse of our future food system in a warming world. Our planet is heading for average global warming of 2.5–5C this century. It is time to face up to what this means for hunger and malnutrition for millions of people on our planet."
extreme weather food production
A recent study commissioned by Oxfam into global warming and food prices, said: "Against a backdrop of rising populations and changing diets which will see global food production struggle to keep pace with increasing demand, the food security outlook in a future of unchecked climate change is bleak."
climate change food prices
We also need, desperately, to limit global warming, because even the most skillful adaptation measures cannot cope with 7˚F of global temperature rise. That means the federal government must stop ignoring the mounting climate crisis and take swift aggressive action to slash greenhouse gas emissions.
climate change human adaptability
One of the world's leading naturalists has accused US politicians of ducking the issue of climate change because of the economic cost of tackling it and warned that it would take a terrible example of extreme weather to wake people up to the dangers of global warming.
climate change politics
It is difficult to overstate the magnitude of what is now unfolding in the Arctic region. The Arctic ice cap used to cover 2 per cent of the Earth’s surface, and the ice albedo effect meant vast amounts of solar energy were bounced back into space from the bright white ice mass.Losing this ice, and replacing it with dark open ocean, creates a dramatic tipping point in planetary energy balance.“The extra radiation that’s absorbed is, from our calculations, the equivalent of about 20 years of additional CO2 being added by man,” Prof Wadhams said.With global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions already spiralling far beyond the levels that scientists have warned present grave risks to humanity, the injection of a massive new source of additional energy into Earth systems could hardly have come at a worse time.
carbon dioxide arctic ice risk melting
As the Arctic summer ice pack is floating, its melt does not directly raise sea levels, but as it spirals towards final destruction, all bets are off as to the stability of the adjacent massive land-based Greenland ice pack. There is enough frozen water locked up here to raise global sea levels by six to seven metres over time.
arctic ice risk collapse sea level
A prominent physicist and skeptic of global warming spent two years trying to find out if mainstream climate scientists were wrong. In the end, he determined they were right: Temperatures really are rising rapidly.
global warming climate denial
The study of the world's surface temperatures by Richard Muller was partially bankrolled by a foundation connected to global warming deniers. He pursued long-held skeptic theories in analyzing the data. He was spurred to action because of "Climategate," a British scandal involving hacked emails of scientists. Yet he found that the land is 1.6 degrees warmer than in the 1950s. Those numbers from Muller, who works at the University of California, Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, match those by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA.
global warming climate denial
the complete meltdown of the Arctic could roughly double the rate of warming of the planet as a whole.
climate change arctic ice global warming risk
This research shows how extreme weather events in a single year could bring about price spikes of comparable magnitude to two decades of long-run price rises. It signals the urgent need for a full stress-testing of the global food system in a warming world.
food prices extreme weather
To arrest man-made global warming, the world needs to stop the atmospheric stock of greenhouse gases from increasing. This requires emissions to be reduced until they balance with the rate of natural removal from the atmosphere.
carbon dioxide atmosphere
But if humans want to keep eating pasta, we will have to take much more aggressive action against global warming. Pasta is made from wheat, and a large, growing body of scientific studies and real-world observations suggest that wheat will be hit especially hard as temperatures rise and storms and drought intensify in the years ahead.
climate change food production
With global warming on the rise and species and their habitats on the decline, climate change is perhaps one of the greatest threats the planet faces today. Climate change is perceived as the presence of more diseases, more rainfall, change in climatic conditions and loss of agricultural output. But amid all the brouhaha about its deleterious effects on planet earth, a fact that has failed to find resonance is that global warming isn't gender-blind — women are especially vulnerable to its effects
global warming
Prof Peter Wadhams of the Polar Ocean Physics Group described the September 2012 figures as a “global disaster”. He now projects the destruction of Arctic summer sea ice by 2015-16 – more than half a century ahead of the IPCC’s projections. “The final collapse towards that state is now happening and will probably be complete by those dates,” he added.
arctic ice risk collapse
“We’re in uncharted territory,” says James Overland of the University of Washington. The weakening jet stream means “wild temperature swings and greater numbers of extreme events”. The last time the Arctic is believed to have been ice-free is during the Eemian period, about 125,000 years ago, when global sea levels were between four and six metres higher than today. However, current atmospheric CO2 levels are already far higher than during the Eemian; indeed, you would have to go back several million years to find any era in the Earth’s history to match today’s levels of this powerful heat-trapping “greenhouse gas”.Lags in the system mean that we have so far experienced only the very mildest of the effects of the ever-growing heat imbalance in our climate system.
arctic ice extreme weather jet stream
One of the curious features of the latest set of data is that Antarctic sea ice has seen a record expansion. According to NSIDC the reasons for this are ‘complex and surprising’ but are inextricably linked to global climate change.
climate change arctic ice antarctic
But the long-term consequences of the ice loss are far more substantial and far more difficult to predict, says Masters. The reason? The jet stream, the fast-flowing river of air that helps to regulate temperatures and weather patterns across much of North America and parts of Europe.Many climate scientists believe the jet stream could change in major ways thanks to warming temperatures and shrinking ice in the Arctic. By moving cold and warm air around the earth, the jet stream helps even out its overall temperature. If the Arctic gets warmer, there’s no need for the jet stream to move as quickly as it does now.“If you’ve got more heat in the Arctic, the jet stream decreases in strength,” he added. “When the jet stream slows down, now that means that when you have an extreme period of weather, it tends to hang around longer.”
arctic ice extreme weather jet stream
The second thing to fear about loss of Arctic sea ice is the potential to accelerate climate change on a global basis.
climate change arctic ice risk
The amount of greenhouse gases that are likely to be released from the Arctic melt this century is still uncertain. The UN report looked at a range of scenarios that would put between 43 billion and 135 billion tonnes of extra carbon dioxide from the Arctic into the air this century. ''Based on these ranges, you would have potentially anywhere between 3.8 per cent and 12.3 per cent more carbon being put into the atmosphere, on top of all the other sources that are emitted,'' said Pep Canadell, a CSIRO scientist and executive director of the Global Carbon Project, which tallies up CO2 emissions.
arctic ice atmosphere collapse
The shift toward low carbon requires global participation because every country is already affected by climate change and because of the need to deliberately guide an accelerated global changeover. Furthermore, the scale and pace of economic development driven by technology and the free movement of capital makes global participation essential. The low-emission economies of today will become high-emission economies of tomorrow faster than was ever possible unless they are adequately supported and encouraged to engineer clean energy futures.
climate change
Less burning of fossil fuels (gasoline) reduces the carbon dioxide emissions that cause global climate change. Human pedaling is an infinitely renewable resource; gasoline is not.
biking energy sustainable
Here's what we know: an overwhelming majority of scientists tell us that the Earth's climate is heating largely due to rising greenhouse gas emissions, which, in turn, is driving more extreme weather and climate events. The underlying changes -- warmer oceans, more intense precipitation events, and rising sea levels -- are significant contributors to storms like Sandy. Around the world, we're seeing heavier rainfall and record-breaking high temperatures, and many areas are experiencing more severe droughts and more wildfires. These patterns are precisely what climate scientists have said we should expect in a warming world. Further, these extreme weather and climate events are taking a serious toll as they disrupt people's lives and our economy.
climate change extreme weather
"We can't blame the existence of a single hurricane on global warming, just like a die weighted to roll sixes can't be blamed for any single roll of a six," said Michael Mann, a physicist and the director of the Earth System Science Center at Pennsylvania State University. Sixes, after all, will sometimes happen anyway, even when the dice aren't loaded, Mann explained. "But we can see that climate change is playing a role in setting the context for these storms," Mann continued, "in particular the record levels of North Atlantic ocean warmth that is available to feed these storms with energy and moisture."
global warming
One person’s global catastrophe is another’s commercial opportunity. Governments and energy companies, notably Shell, are busy jostling to be in position to loot the oil and minerals hidden beneath the region’s fast-disappearing ice. This is akin to setting your house on fire to keep yourself warm.
climate change arctic ice
"We are on the edge of one of the most significant moments in environmental history as sea ice heads towards a new record low. The loss of sea ice will be devastating, raising global temperatures that will impact on our ability to grow food and causing extreme weather around the world," said John Sauven, director of Greenpeace UK.
arctic ice food production
The sheet of ice that covers the North Pole melted to its smallest size on record in late August, shattering the previous record set just five years ago and providing a strong sign of the long-term warming of the earth's climate."This is happening before our very eyes," said Jennifer Francis, a research professor with the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences at Rutgers University. "It’s not something that’s happening decades from now or generations from now. It’s real and it’s now."
arctic ice melting
A study by engineers based at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology has questioned some common assumptions about the environmental credentials of electric cars.Published this week in the Journal of Industrial Ecology, the "comparative environmental life cycle assessment of conventional and electric vehicles" begins by stating that "it is important to address concerns of problem-shifting". By this, the authors mean that by solving one problem, do electric cars create another? And, if so, does this environmental harm then outweigh any advantages?The study highlights in particular the "toxicity" of the electric car's manufacturing process compared to conventional petrol/diesel cars. It concludes that the "global warming potential" of the process used to make electric cars is twice that of conventional cars.
electric cars
A new NASA-funded study by the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, Colo., finds climate model projections that show a greater rise in global temperature are likely to prove more accurate than those showing a lesser rise.
climate change global warming
By 2035, global energy demand is forecasted to increase by over a third. The EIA estimates this energy consumption increase will generate enough new greenhouse gases to raise climate temperatures by 3.6 percent.
oil global warming
Global food prices soared 10 percent in July due to the US drought, the World Bank has said, with maize prices jumping by 25 percent and set to rise further.
food prices extreme weather
When it comes to global warming, for instance, Representative Holt says we don't need people in congress who understand atmospheric pressure, or glaciation. We simply need them to be open to the idea that evidence might disprove what they think they know. And that, he says, is thinking like a scientist.
For centuries, Morris says, climate change has accompanied massive social change, upheavals ranging from the fall of the Roman Empire to the spread of the Black Death throughout Europe in the 1300s. Morris suggests that environmental and cultural events indicate the world might be heading for yet another transformation. Already, global warming is hurting parts of central and eastern Asia; Pakistan’s recent devastating floods are a case in point, Morris says. And he cited a respected British report cautioning that more negative environmental events could unleash as many as 200 million “climate migrants,” people who are desperately “driven by water and food shortages, undermining states as they go, and setting off wars.”
There is an overwhelming level of scientific consensus on human-caused climate change. Over 95% of actively publishing climate scientists agree that the earth is warming and that human activity is the cause. In spite of this agreement, only about 50% the general public think that scientists have reached a consensus on human-caused climate change. Two sources of the discrepancy are the unbalanced portrayal of the situation in the media, and the Manufactured Doubt Industry.
climate change anthropogenic
Science tells us that global greenhouse gas emissions must peak this decade and decrease rapidly thereafter. More importantly, it must occur soon if we are to lessen human costs. Extreme weather events in every region of the world provide ample proof of the mounting human costs, particularly to the most vulnerable.
extreme weather urgency
We know that the decisions we are making today are on track to create irreversible and inexorable changes in the global climate that our children and their children will inherit. We know that those changes threaten to slow or reverse our hard-fought gains in peace and health, leaving our descendants a world in violent, unceasing transition, with rising seas, greater droughts, more intense storms, shifting zones of fertility and disease, and waves of climate refugees. We discovered this not through shock or confrontation but through the slow accumulation and careful interpretation of evidence. It is still, to most people, almost entirely an intellectual phenomenon, something they know but do not feel.
climate change risk
The study focuses upon the physical depletion of conventional oil in the period to 2030 and includes an in-depth literature review, analysis of industry databases and a detailed comparison of global supply forecasts. This Communication summarises the main findings of the UKERC study. A key conclusion is that a peak of conventional oil production before 2030 appears likely and there is a significant risk of a peak before 2020.
oil peak
"All we have to have is a couple badly placed hurricanes which could constrain some of the refinery output capacity in some key locations," says Richard Hastings, strategist at Global Hunter Securities in Charlotte, N.C. "If you get weakness in the dollar concurrent with the strong driving season concurrent with the impact of one or two hurricanes in the wrong place, prices could go up in a quasi-exponential manner."
extreme weather
Past energy transitions have taken a long time to unfold. Firewood was mankind's first energy source and was not displaced by coal until the 18th century. With an increasing pace of technological advance, it took one century for oil to replace coal as the primary global energy source. Climate change is not the only motivation to move toward more renewables and enhanced energy efficiency, but it has injected unequivocal urgency into an otherwise normal evolution.
The risk of soaring global food prices in the event of a world energy shortage is real.
food prices
Even if emissions were to remain at the same level as last year — a highly unlikely prospect given the rapid growth of energy consumption in countries like China — the global economy, in about 30 years, would have to stop relying on fossil fuels entirely.
Average temperatures in the Arctic region are rising twice as fast as they are elsewhere in the world. Arctic ice is getting thinner, melting and rupturing. For example, the largest single block of ice in the Arctic, the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf, had been around for 3,000 years before it started cracking in 2000. Within two years it had split all the way through and is now breaking into pieces.
arctic ice melting
The Arctic sea ice, essentially, it is a big reflector of solar energy during the summer, and that keeps the Arctic cooler than it normally would be. It acts like an air conditioner in a sense for the Earth's climate system. And that helps not only keep the Arctic cooler, but also the globe as well. And it's basically a sink for heat that comes in at the equator, gets transported to the north. And then you lose the heat in the Arctic. And those -- that transfer of heat from the equator to the poles, that essentially helps set up things like the jet stream, our prevailing winds, our weather tracks. And so as we start to lose the ice cover and we warm up the Arctic, essentially, that's changing the balance between the equator and the poles. And that will shift things like storm tracks and the jet stream, and that will change weather patterns.
arctic ice risk thermodynamics
Kilometer per kilometer, electric cars in China beat out conventional vehicles as among the worst environmental polluters. On average, the fine particulate emissions per passenger-km are 3.6 times greater for electric cars than for gasoline cars. That’s better than for diesel cars but on par with diesel buses, which can spread their environmental impact across the number of passengers they carry. “If we compare gasoline car emissions to electric car emissions, the electric cars look very, very bad,” says Cherry. “So the point is that you have to consider the emissions exposure when the exposure source is far apart — the electrical power plant as opposed to the tailpipe of a car.”
carbon dioxide electric cars
"The general consensus is that if you power an electric vehicle from coal, the net carbon emissions are about the same as a gasoline vehicle," says Paul Denholm, senior analyst at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo. "But that's the worst-case scenario; anything that is a cleaner source is an improvement."
carbon dioxide electric cars
On the other end of the spectrum are those who think the melt could happen much sooner.  Peter Wadhams, who leads the Polar Ocean Physics Group at the University of Cambridge, has predicted since 2008 that the Arctic ice could be gone in summer by 2015.  He now believes there’s a chance that it could happen even sooner. Similarly, Mark Drinkwater, the European Space Agency’s senior advisor on polar regions and a mission scientist for the CryoStat satellite that measures arctic ice, believes that the Arctic could be ice free in September by the end of this decade.
arctic ice risk collapse melting
You might not think that what happens in the Artic has much bearing on what happens in Texas or Moscow or southern provinces of China, but a study published in 2012 in Geophysical Research Letters has drawn a convincing connection. Blowing around the periphery of the Arctic is the polar jet stream – a region of high speed wind that blows west to east, and helps drive wind circulation around much of the northern hemisphere.  The jet stream is powered by the temperature difference in fall and winter between the Arctic and the more temperate areas just to its south. But as the Arctic ice has receded, the Arctic Ocean waters have absorbed more heat in late summer and early fall.  In late fall and early winter, they’ve given that heat up, back into the atmosphere. That, in turn, has led to warmer Arctic autumns and winters, which has reduced the temperature difference that fuels the jet stream. The result is that the jet stream is now weaker than it once was – about 14% weaker than it was in 1980. Why does this matter? Because a slower jet stream makes it easier for ‘blocking’ weather patterns to develop.  Blocking weather patterns are the ones that hover over a region rather than moving on – like the drought that basted Texas in 2011 and decimated its forests and hay and wheat crops to the tune of more than $7 billion in damage, and like the heat wave that enveloped Moscow and much of the rest of Russia for most of the summer of 2010, killing an estimated 55,000 people in July and August of that year.
arctic ice risk jet stream
The radical decline in sea ice around the Arctic is at least 70% due to human-induced climate change, according to a new study, and may even be up to 95% down to humans – rather higher than scientists had previously thought.
climate change arctic ice anthropogenic
At a glance, the environmental benefits to electric vehicles seem obvious. No exhaust pipe means no harmful pollutants, right? Well, wrong, of course. It's well known that where the electricity comes from to power the car is a huge factor, and the manufacturing of electric cars is more environmentally taxing than producing conventional cars as well
carbon dioxide electric cars
A UN report issued at climate change negotiations in Doha, Qatar, found that human greenhouse gas emissions were triggering the Arctic thaw.
climate change arctic ice anthropogenic
Pedal power is the transfer of energy from a human source through the use of a foot pedal and crank system. This technology is most commonly used for transportation and has been used to propel bicycles for over a hundred years.
biking energy
But beyond the personal advantages, the real benefit of committing to the morning cycle commute is rooted in energy use. Each day we consume odious amounts of energy transporting people a few miles to work. While this may seem like the most expedient option, it’s not the most sustainable in the long term. There must come a time when we take steps to limit our environmental footprint – and biking is one of the best ways to do so. It’s green, emissions free, and the only byproduct is a stronger set of thighs.
biking energy sustainable
We just assume when we turn on the tap, the water will be there, and that the water system buried in the ground is doing fine. Both assumptions are out of date. Population growth, economic development (which changes dramatically how much water people want and use), and climate change are all putting pressure on water supplies — not just in places like Las Vegas or California, but in Atlanta, in Florida, in Spain, across China.
climate change water
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