Sea Ice Melting to New Lows in Arctic Ocean
August 21, 2012 6:49 PM
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Sea ice extent in the Arctic fell to 483,000 square km (186,000 square miles) on August 13, a new record
The Arctic Ocean is feeling
hot, hot, hot
, says new report released by the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center.
According to the report, sea ice extent in the Arctic dropped to a record low on August 13, and will continue dropping to new record lows by the end of the month.
Sea ice extent, which measures the amount of sea ice remaining in the ocean, fell to 483,000 square km (186,000 square miles) on August 13. This was a dip from the previous record low on the same date back in 2007.
But that's not the end of it. The Arctic sea ice is expected to continue melting through mid to late September, but more record lows have been predicted for the end of this month.
"A new daily record would be likely by the end of August," said Ted Scambos, lead scientist at the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center. "Chances are it will cross the previous record while we are still in ice retreat."
The news of a new record hasn't surprised many among the environmental community. This may be because the Arctic neared record lows last year, according to climate physics Professor Seymour Laxon from University College London. It almost seemed inevitable that this would happen at some point. "Rapid" melting occurred in June of this year as well with 100,000 square km melting daily.
However, Laxon worries that this rate of melting will adjust the prediction for an ice-free Arctic in summer. Previous reports estimated that the Arctic will have an
ice-free summer in 2100
based on melting at that time, but when the 2007 low hit, this estimate was brought to the 2030-2040 range. Scientists are now concerned that this year's lows will bring that date even closer, which is problematic because the melting of sea ice means warming of the oceans. Sea ice keeps the Earth's temperature controlled.
Global warming always seems to be a hot topic (pun intended). A recent controversial report released by James Hansen at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies claimed that
global warming has caused hotter summers
since 1980, but many question the merit of his opinions based on his position on climate change.
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People are morons
8/22/2012 9:16:57 AM
Over and over I keep reading how it's perfectly fine to be releasing trillions of tons of CO2 into the atmosphere each year because 'the dinosaurs lived like that. That we WILL survive and that there is no way the earth will turn into Mars or Venus just because everyone wants to drive their 3 ton SUV just so they can walk their dog.
The point that climatologists are making is that we are doing damage to the environment that we currently enjoy and take for granted. While that earth will not necessarily become entirely inhospitable, various species will be directly impacted by our insatiable appetite for burn fossil fuels. Species will go extinct, some land will become useless, others will become useful, water may become scarce, food will become more difficult to make (we rely heavily on fertilizer), etc.
Again, I'm not worried about humans as a species going extinct, but what I AM worried about is a large die off a many species of animals, having less arable land, massive starvation, and an overall much lower quality of life. I mean even if the climate can't warm at all from CO2 because it's impossible, the emissions of CO2 causes other ecological damage such as increasing the acidity in the ocean which is damaging the coral reefs. I like that kind of shit and while you may not, this is one example of something people's behavior has a direct, negative impact on others.
We have setup our societies to completely fail due to our heavy reliance on what is a limited resource and our culture of not planning for the worst. The great thing about large corporations that are run well is that they plan for this sort of thing ahead of time and they leverage their capital by investing in things that will secure their future. Unfortunately, the common man does not do such things and instead lives for today, doesn't save a dime. For example, when the common person builds a house, they scrimp on all the things that would make the house less expensive to own and instead spend it on all the wrong things. Instead of spending money on making the house energy efficient or self sufficient, they spend it on large windows, vaulted ceilings, copper gutters, lots of water intensive landscaping, outdoor kitchens, granite counter tops, or other such superfluous garbage. So while this means the homeowner can live in this house today, if water becomes scarce, energy becomes expensive or even unavailable, now this house has become unlivable. This is just one example though, and in essence when there is sudden adversity, instead of people taking responsibility for their irresponsibility, accepting the consequences and taking things in stride, if things get bad enough, society just simply crumbles and total chaos ensues. People have become so very complacent and evidence of this will be the responses to my post I'll be reading.
RE: People are morons
Dr of crap
Dr of crap
8/22/2012 9:53:43 AM
While I understand your post and AGREE with it, I'm just wondering what your house is like?
While I do not have granite countertops, there is a limit to what you can afford and what is available. I bought an existing house and as such took what I could get, vaulted ceiling, water intensive grass/landscape, you get what I'm saying.
We have/use what society has for us. Cost IS a factor. I can't afford to install a heat pump, cost is the issue. I burn natural gas to heat.
What is yours like??
"Intel is investing heavily (think gazillions of dollars and bazillions of engineering man hours) in resources to create an Intel host controllers spec in order to speed time to market of the USB 3.0 technology." -- Intel blogger Nick Knupffer
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