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Global Warming and Climate Change
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 22-12-2013 21:02    Post subject: Reply with quote

'Massive' reservoir of melt water found under Greenland ice
By Matt McGrath, Environment correspondent, BBC News

Researchers say they have discovered a large reservoir of melt water that sits under the Greenland ice sheet all year round.
The scientists say the water is stored in the air space between particles of ice, similar to the way that fruit juice stays liquid in a slush drink.
The aquifer, which covers an area the size of Ireland, could yield important clues to sea level rise.
The research is published in the journal, Nature Geoscience.

The melting of the Greenland ice sheet has been a significant contributor to a rise in sea levels over the past 100 years.
According to the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the ice sheet lost 34 billion tonnes of ice per year between 1992 and 2001 - but this increased to 215 billion tonnes between 2002 and 2011

Scientists still have many unanswered questions about the direction and speed and ultimate destination of this melted water.
This new research finds that a significant amount is stored in partially compacted snow called firn.
In the spring of 2011, researchers drilled deep into this slushy layer and to their surprise, found liquid water flowing back to the surface even though air temperatures were -15 degrees C.
As this was well before the onset of the summer melt, the team concluded the water had persisted in a liquid state through the Greenland winter.

"This discovery was a surprise," said Prof Rick Forster from the University of Utah.
"Instead of the water being stored in the air space between subsurface rock particles, the water is stored in the air space between the ice particles, like the juice in a snow cone."

The scientists have also come up with a rough estimate for the amount of water that is contained in the aquifer which itself covers an area of 70,000 sq km.
They believe that it holds roughly 140 billion tonnes of water, which is the equivalent to 0.4mm of sea level rise per year - about half of what Greenland contributes to the sea every year.

But crucially the scientists don't know the ultimate destination of the water in the reservoir.
"It depends on whether it is currently connected to a system that is draining into the ocean or if it is a bit isolated and completely acting as a storage source without a current connection," said Prof Forster.
"We don't know the answer to this right now. It's massive, it's a new system we haven't seen before - we need to understand it more completely if we are to predict sea level rise."

The scientists say the water is prevented from freezing by the large amounts of snow that fall on the surface of the ice sheet late in the summer.
This insulates the water from the air temperatures which are below freezing, allowing the water to persist as liquid all year long.
Other researchers believe this discovery may help explain disparities between projections of mass loss by climate models and observations from satellites.

"The large mass of liquid water in firn also represents a heat sink that could be playing a role in Greenland's interaction with the climate system," wrote Dr Joel Harper from the University of Montana, in a comment piece published alongside the study.

"As the intensity of surface melt in Greenland increases and expands upwards to the higher elevations that are covered by firn, liquid water storage may play an expanding role in the ice sheet's future response to climate change."

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-25463647
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tonyblair11
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PostPosted: 23-12-2013 04:38    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ice Sheet Mass

Mass of ice sheet: 2.66946 x 1018 kg
(calculations by P.J. Petersen, assuming ice density of 917 kg/m3)
Mass of ice sheet: 2.66946 x 1015 metric tons
Mass of ice sheet: 8.28886129 x 1012 Boeing 747's
Assuming airplane weight of 3.22053 x 105
Mass of ice sheet: 27,085,538,493 U.S. Naval aircraft carriers
Assuming carrier weight of 98,556.67 metric tons
http://bprc.osu.edu/wiki/Greenland_Factsheet

Some funny stats. Very Happy My math is terrible. What is the 249 billion ton loss of ice in those 20 years percentage of total ice?
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 01-01-2014 11:18    Post subject: Reply with quote

Planet likely to warm by 4C by 2100, scientists warn
New climate model taking greater account of cloud changes indicates heating will be at higher end of expectations
Damian Carrington
The Guardian, Tuesday 31 December 2013 14.02 GMT

Temperature rises resulting from unchecked climate change will be at the severe end of those projected, according to a new scientific study.
The scientist leading the research said that unless emissions of greenhouse gases were cut, the planet would heat up by a minimum of 4C by 2100, twice the level the world's governments deem dangerous.

The research indicates that fewer clouds form as the planet warms, meaning less sunlight is reflected back into space, driving temperatures up further still. The way clouds affect global warming has been the biggest mystery surrounding future climate change.

Professor Steven Sherwood, at the University of New South Wales, in Australia, who led the new work, said: "This study breaks new ground twice: first by identifying what is controlling the cloud changes and second by strongly discounting the lowest estimates of future global warming in favour of the higher and more damaging estimates."

"4C would likely be catastrophic rather than simply dangerous," Sherwood told the Guardian. "For example, it would make life difficult, if not impossible, in much of the tropics, and would guarantee the eventual melting of the Greenland ice sheet and some of the Antarctic ice sheet", with sea levels rising by many metres as a result.

The research is a "big advance" that halves the uncertainty about how much warming is caused by rises in carbon emissions, according to scientists commenting on the study, published in the journal Nature. Hideo Shiogama and Tomoo Ogura, at Japan's National Institute for Environmental Studies, said the explanation of how fewer clouds form as the world warms was "convincing", and agreed this indicated future climate would be greater than expected. But they said more challenges lay ahead to narrow down further the projections of future temperatures.

Scientists measure the sensitivity of the Earth's climate to greenhouse gases by estimating the temperature rise that would be caused by a doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere compared with pre-industrial levels – as is likely to happen within 50 years, on current trends. For two decades, those estimates have run from 1.5C to 5C, a wide range; the new research narrowed that range to between 3C and 5C, by closely examining the biggest cause of uncertainty: clouds.

The key was to ensure that the way clouds form in the real world was accurately represented in computer climate models, which are the only tool researchers have to predict future temperatures. When water evaporates from the oceans, the vapour can rise over nine miles to form rain clouds that reflect sunlight; or it may rise just a few miles and drift back down without forming clouds. In reality, both processes occur, and climate models encompassing this complexity predicted significantly higher future temperatures than those only including the nine-mile-high clouds.

"Climate sceptics like to criticise climate models for getting things wrong, and we are the first to admit they are not perfect," said Sherwood. "But what we are finding is that the mistakes are being made by the models which predict less warming, not those that predict more."

He added: "Sceptics may also point to the 'hiatus' of temperatures since the end of the 20th century, but there is increasing evidence that this inaptly named hiatus is not seen in other measures of the climate system, and is almost certainly temporary."

Global average air temperatures have increased relatively slowly since a high point in 1998 caused by the ocean phenomenon El Niño, but observations show that heat is continuing to be trapped in increasing amounts by greenhouse gases, with over 90% disappearing into the oceans. Furthermore, a study in November suggested the "pause" may be largely an illusion resulting from the lack of temperature readings from polar regions, where warming is greatest.

Sherwood accepts his team's work on the role of clouds cannot definitively rule out that future temperature rises will lie at the lower end of projections. "But," he said, for that to be the case, "one would need to invoke some new dimension to the problem involving a major missing ingredient for which we currently have no evidence. Such a thing is not out of the question but requires a lot of faith."

He added: "Rises in global average temperatures of [at least 4C by 2100] will have profound impacts on the world and the economies of many countries if we don't urgently start to curb our emissions."

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/dec/31/planet-will-warm-4c-2100-climate
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 03-01-2014 08:05    Post subject: Reply with quote

Editorial
Thursday 2 January 2014

As another storm threatens, the reality of climate change is starting to hit home
Britain needs better defences - and we can afford to do so

After an unusually blustery autumn, including the worst gale since the “Great Storm” of 1987, one might have hoped that the worst was over, at least in the short term. Instead, more than 150,000 households had no power over the festive season thanks to pre-Christmas downpours, and there is yet more to come. The Environment Agency issued no fewer than 10 severe flood warnings on Thursday, cautioning of danger to life and property, and there are forecasts of driving rain, strong winds and high tides starting today and continuing into the weekend.

After sharp criticism about unprepared officialdom, the Government is no longer leaving anything to chance. The Environment Secretary stressed yesterday that, with another round of “exceptional weather” on its way, all agencies are on full alert. Indeed, so seriously is the situation being taken that Owen Paterson convened a meeting of the Cobra emergency committee to discuss a national response to yet more flooding. This time, it is the South and West coasts of England and Wales that are thought to be most at risk. Earlier this week, swathes of Scotland were under water. Before that, it was the South-east of England, Cumbria and North Wales.

Amid the destruction and heartache, the saddest fact of all is that a run of extreme weather should come as no surprise. Here, and across the world, the effects of global warming are starting to be felt. Just as last year began with a heatwave in Australia, 2014 is also being ushered in with the mercury at record highs Down Under. From the extreme floods across central Europe last June, to Typhoon Haiyan, the most powerful storm in history, which claimed more than 6,000 lives in the Philippines in November, the drumbeat of so-called “weather events” is steadily speeding up.

Climate change has slipped down the agenda thanks to the combination of an unexplained “pause” in global temperatures rises, a dip in carbon emissions as recession dampened industrial activity and public debt crises that focused attention on austerity over green investment. But if the past 12 months tell us anything, it must be that such complacency is unaffordable.

For all the protestations from the political fringes, controversy is waning. The UN’s most recent judgment is that global warming is all but certain to result from human activity. Even in Washington, where sceptics were once in the ascendant, the reality of climate change is no longer in doubt. There is still no global deal to curb carbon emissions, however, and progress at this year’s summit in Lima is vital.

Meanwhile, Britain’s travails might look mild set against the devastation in the Philippines. Even at its most violent, our weather is temperate by comparison. We can also afford to defend ourselves. But we must do so. That means power companies beefing up their infrastructure and ensuring that maintenance teams are on hand to tackle problems. Even more importantly, it means a detailed survey of our flood defences.

Surrounded by the waterlogged ruins of Christmas, the Prime Minister pledged to make such investments a priority. But he will need to do more than talk. When the latest storm passes, and the Cobra committee disbands, the real work to make sure that Britain is better prepared must begin

http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/editorials/as-another-storm-threatens-the-reality-of-climate-change-is-starting-to-hit-home-9034610.html

This risks confusing 'extreme weather' with 'climate change', but proponents of CC have long said that one of its consequences would be more (and more frequent) extreme weather events, because of the increased energy levels in the atmosphere and oceans.
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 04-01-2014 08:10    Post subject: Reply with quote

Australia saw hottest year on record in 2013
[Video: In 2013 Sydney was hit by 'the most destructive fires since at least 1968']

Australia experienced its hottest year on record in 2013, officials have said.
Temperatures were 1.2C above the long term average, the warmest since records began in 1910, the Bureau of Meteorology said in its annual report.
The year also saw a record-warm winter that led into the most devastating fires in Sydney since 1968, it said.

The warming in Australia was consistent with global climate trends, where rising temperatures were influenced by greenhouse gases, it added.
According to the bureau, all but one of the last 10 years have had warmer-than-average temperatures in Australia.
"The Australian region warming is very similar to that seen at the global scale, and the past year emphasises that the warming trend continues," the bureau said in its annual climate statement.

The report listed significant climate events in 2013, including "the most destructive fires in the Sydney region since at least 1968", which were affected by "a record-warm and dry winter and an early spring".

Neil Plummer, from the bureau, told broadcaster ABC: "Most of the warming has occurred since around 1950, and that's consistent with the global pattern."
He said that figures from the bureau, and other bureaus around the word, provided a "body of evidence that we're all seeing a warming over Australia and a warming world".

The news will likely add to criticism from environmentalists that the new conservative government is not doing enough to tackle climate change, the BBC's Jon Donnison in Sydney reports.

Ministers recently cut funding for a number of organisations carrying out research into global warming, and the government has also pledged to abolish a carbon tax which makes the country's biggest polluters pay for the amount of greenhouse cases they produce, our correspondent adds. Rolling Eyes

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-25573712
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Ronson8Offline
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PostPosted: 04-01-2014 09:31    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.nst.com.my/world/deadly-freeze-hits-northern-us-eastern-canada-1.454798
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rynner2Offline
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PostPosted: 04-01-2014 09:50    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ronson8 wrote:
http://www.nst.com.my/world/deadly-freeze-hits-northern-us-eastern-canada-1.454798

That's a weather event, not climate change. But if every winter for ten years is colder than average, that might be a significant climate trend.
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Ronson8Offline
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PostPosted: 04-01-2014 11:23    Post subject: Reply with quote

And a hot summer in Australia is't a weather event ? I have family in Sydney and they've had some fairly cool summers in the past ten years, by Australian standards.
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MythopoeikaOffline
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PostPosted: 04-01-2014 11:51    Post subject: Reply with quote

rynner2 wrote:
Ronson8 wrote:
http://www.nst.com.my/world/deadly-freeze-hits-northern-us-eastern-canada-1.454798

That's a weather event, not climate change. But if every winter for ten years is colder than average, that might be a significant climate trend.


Well....they have had quite a few very severe winters in America in recent years...
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KondoruOffline
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PostPosted: 04-01-2014 23:26    Post subject: Reply with quote

Im going to wait at least a thousand years....
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Pietro_Mercurios
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PostPosted: 18-01-2014 15:33    Post subject: Reply with quote

Who contributes the most to Global Warming?
Quote:
http://www.salon.com/2014/01/17/these_7_countries_are_responsible_for_over_60_percent_of_global_warming/

These 7 countries are responsible for over 60 percent of global warming

The U.S. is by far the worst offender

Salon.com. Lindsay Abrams. Jan 17, 2014


http://i381.photobucket.com/albums/oo252/Pursuivant/GWarming_Most_zpsbd37ae66.png

Throughout a century of climate-damaging activity, seven countries have emerged as the worst offenders. According to a new study published in Environmental Research Letters, the U.S., China, Russia, Brazil, India, Germany and the UK top the list.

The research, as digested by New Scientist:
Quote:
Damon Matthews of Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, and his colleagues calculated national contributions to warming by weighting each type of emission according to the atmospheric lifetime of the temperature change it causes. Using historical data, they included carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels and changes in land use – such as deforestation. They also accounted for methane, nitrous oxide and sulphate aerosols. These together account for 0.7 °C of the world’s 0.74 °C warming between 1906 and 2005.

The US is the clear leader, responsible for 0.15 °C, or 22 percent of the 0.7 °C warming. China accounts for 9 percent, Russia for 8 percent, Brazil and India 7 per centeach, and Germany and the UK for 5 percent each.

The above map shows the U.S., Western Europe, Japan and India bloated by their disproportionate contribution to global temperature rise as compared to their size — in this visualization, the blame shouldered by Russia, China and Brazil appears less extreme, while places like Canada, Australia and most of Africa all but disappear.

“It is these very questions of equity and responsibility that currently represent major barriers to progress in international negotiations attempting to set national emissions targets, ” the researchers write, “and yet are critical to resolve as we move forward with climate mitigation efforts.” Of course, as the Onion brilliantly pointed out, 7 billion key individuals are responsible for the global warming crisis — and we’re all equally responsible for working to reduce our contribution to climate change.
Lindsay Abrams

Lindsay Abrams is an assistant editor at Salon, focusing on all things sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @readingirl, email labrams@salon.com.

A handy reference.
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KondoruOffline
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PostPosted: 18-01-2014 23:49    Post subject: Reply with quote

From, Canada, eh?
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Ronson8Offline
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PostPosted: 19-01-2014 00:04    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Chinese are not polluting much, you have to wonder why every industrialised city there is shrouded in smog.
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Pietro_Mercurios
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PostPosted: 19-01-2014 09:46    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ronson8 wrote:
The Chinese are not polluting much, you have to wonder why every industrialised city there is shrouded in smog.

Not polluting much, compared to the USA.
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PostPosted: 19-01-2014 12:05    Post subject: Reply with quote

China are only low on the scale because their areas of heavy industry are offset by the larger part of the country where people live in almost medieval conditions.
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