he Earth is now about 1.2 °C (2 °F) warmer than it has been for thousands of years. Why? How? What are the effects? Is it really that bad? At the current rate the Earth will be 3-4 °C (5-6 °F) warmer by 2100. Even if we immediately reach zero CO2 emmisions worldwide this fact will not change. Elevated CO2 levels will remain in our atmosphere for well over a thousand years! Methane for up to 100 years!
know 1.2 °C (2 °F) doesn't seem like a lot when you think about the temperature in your room or outside in the morning, but consider the enormous amount of energy required to raise the Average Temperature of the ENTIRE PLANET. That's a LOT of energy. The Earth has been very stable for millions of years, but during the last 120 years things have changed radically. WE Humans have pushed the delicate balance of Earth's Climate past its tipping point. Things are beginning to unravel and certain events are beyond our control.
tephen Hawking, and many other learned individuals, suggested that humanity has about 80 more years before we Self-Destruct and Become Extinct as a species. The year 2100 might be the limit of Humanity's reign on Earth. Certainly Your Grandchildren Will Be Living on a Transformed Planet. There are many reasons, not all are due to Climate Change. Over Population is a major driver of profound and far-reaching change. Just too many people and not enough resources. There are also increasing and unpredictable threats from Artificial Intelligence, Political Chaos, Wars, Pandemics, Famines, Pollution, Catastrophic Weather, and Nuclear Holocaust.
❄ Arctic Permafrost ❄
he Arctic Permafrost is currently thawing at an ever increasing rate. It covers an area of 24 Million km² (9.2 Million mi²) which is equal to the entire land area of the United States. As the Permafrost thaws the land sinks down, undermining the foundations of anything built on top of it. Icemelt ponds called Thermokarst form over vast stretches of open land. The sinking land wreaks havoc on the roads and highways which must be constantly repaired to keep vital supply routes open. Huge sinkholes are destroying all kinds of infrastructure, railroads, and private homes. Hundreds of thousands of people live on this land. As the Permafrost thaws near the coastal areas hundreds of acres slide into the ocean on lubricated layers of mud. And the process is accelerating.
s the Permafrost thaws it also releases all that's been stored up in it since the Last Glacial Age. The Permafrost contains huge amounts of really dangerous stuff including, but not limited to, Methane, CO2, Mercury, Anthrax, and 30,000 year old dormant Viruses & Diseases for which we have NO resistance whatsoever. If the thawing continues as expected, most of the Permafrost will have melted by the year 2100 and it will have released TWICE the amount of CO2 that already exists in our atmosphere (i.e. this will TRIPLE the amount of atmospheric CO2). Since the levels of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere will remain elevated for many many years, there is no way to stop this thawing. Time has run out for the Permafrost. We must adapt and deal with whatever emerges.
nd what's to be done about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch? Now twice the size of Texas! One study estimates that by 2050 plastic could actually outweigh all the fish in the sea!
When plastic breaks down it does so mechanically. Sadly, every plastic bottle generates thousands of plastic flecks, many microscopic. These flecks get taken up by the entire food chain, from the filter feeding Plankton & Clams to the Killer Whales, until ultimately we are eating seafood riddled with microscopic plastic. I have personally conducted many coastal Plankton samplings, and in every sample I found small bits of plastic!
e have our work cut out for us to be sure. To meet the challenge, both the European Union and Canada will ban all Single-Use plastics by 2021. This is such a great Forward-Thinking and Pro-Active move. Single-Use plastics make up 70% of all the trash in the ocean. I wish all of the world's leaders would join this effort.
umanity as a whole MUST ACT NOW. If our leaders won't lead then WE must. Try to go Plastic-Free. Avoid using plastic whenever possible but IF you must, always RECYCLE. Do it for your Grandchildren.
Sir David Attenborough - Live June, 2019 Presents "Seven Worlds One Planet" (Timestamp: 5.00 - 8.30)
🥶 Antarctica 🥶
Antarctica's land area covers 5.5 million square miles (14.2 million km²)
Antarctica is twice the size of Australia
Antarctica is 1.7 times the size of the Continental United States
Antarctica contains 90% of all Earth's ice
Antarctica contains 70% of all Earth's fresh water
Antarctica's ice is an average of 1.9 km (1.2 miles) thick
Antarctica's average elvation is 2,500 meters (8,200 feet)
The South Pole's elevation is 2,835 meters (9,300 feet)
Antarctica is the dryest continent on Earth
Antarctica has the coldest recorded temperature on Earth of -89.2 °C (-128.6 °F)
Antarctica has the smallest population of any continent on Earth (1,106)
🦟 🐂 🐄 Greenhouse Gases Reference ⛽ 🚗💨
AGreenhouse Gas is a gas, dissolved in an atmosphere, that reflects radiant heat back to a planet's surface. There are several such gases in our atmosphere including Water Vapor, but let's consider two gases related to human activity.
Past the Tipping Point?
Carbon Dioxide(CO2) is stored in all plant life, coal, oil, the Permafrost, and also dissolved in the Earth's oceans and atmosphere. The CO2 Cycle is a complex exchange cycle that has been stable on Earth for millions of years. But human additions in the last 120 years have tipped that extremely delicate balance.
Carbon DioxideCO2 is very stable and can remain in the atmosphere for thousands of years. In fact, 25% of the CO2 we have added will still be around for another 1,000 years, and 10% will still be around for 10,000 years. We have added Gigatons (Billions of Tons) of CO2 by burning fossil fuels for energy and by burning entire forests to clear land for agriculture. This insanity continues on unabated. Perhaps we can develop global Terraforming Devices to remove the excessCO2. I don't know.
Methane(CH4) is the other main greenhouse gas to consider, also known as Natural Gas. Methane is a by-product of most animal life on Earth. Atmospheric Methane is added by Natural Gas drilling, the Burps of 1.5 Billion cows, decaying organic matter in the world's 'dumps', 200 million termite mounds, and by the thawing of the Permafrost. Methane does, however break down much faster than CO2, lasting well less than a hundred years. As a greenhouse gas though Methane, in a 20 year period, is over 80 times more powerful than CO2.
FYI, There are over 1,000 Pounds of Termites for EVERY Human on Earth!
🌤 Air Quality Index ~ AQI 🌤
iPhoneMap App showing AQI
he Air Quality Index, AQI, is a measure of Particulate Matter of 2.5 microns in size (PM2.5) in the atmosphere. 2.5 microns (2.5 μm) is .0001 inch in diameter or half the diameter of a red blood cell. At this tiny size the Particulate Matter can get deep into the lungs and lead to serious health problems. Children and the elderly are especially vulnerable to this fine-size of Particulate air pollution. If you have an iPhone you can use the built-in Map App and it will give you the current AQI count as well as Basic Weather Stats for whatever area you are viewing. Also the AQI is available using the iPhoneWeather App. For each location scroll all the way to the bottom of the page.
The release of CO2 from the production and burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil, natural gas, transportation)
The release of CO2 from the burning of entire forests to clear-cut lands for agriculture & cattle grazing
The release of dissolved CO2 in the ocean waters as ocean temperatures rise
The release of Methane and CO2 from the world's 200 Million termite mounds (mostly Methane)
The release of Methane and CO2 from the world's dumps (15% of Greenhouse Gases, 50/50 mix)
The release of Methane from the world's 1.5 Billion cows (18% of Greenhouse Gas Emmissions)
The release of Methane stored in the Permafrost as temperatures rise
The increase of Water Vapor from a warming ocean
creating more cloud cover
The release of Water Vapor in contrails from global air traffic (500,000 people in the air daily)
Climate Change Effects
The raising of the average temperature of Earth's atmosphere
Sea Levels rise as icecaps and glaciers melt (2 - 20m estimated)
Fewer glaciers reduce the amount of reflectivity of the surface which increases temperatures
Continued loss of agricultural land from sea level rise and salt intrusion
Decreasing ability of the Earth to absorb CO2 due to deforestation
Loss of living space from sea level rise (New Orleans from 1985-2010 lost an average of 1 football field ⁄ hr)
Loss of entire ecosystems due to extreme temperatures and loss of habitat
Increased severity and frequency of weather events, storms, droughts, and flooding
Release of Methane, Nuclear Waste, and ancient Viruses and Deseases from the melting permafrost
Loss of fishing due to loss of fish habitats caused by sea level rise
Inability of many marine species to adapt to changing ocean currents
Altered migration routes of whales due to changing feeding grounds
Altered migration routes of birds due to changing weather patterns
Extinction of half of all animal, insect, and coral species
* Earth's estimated maximum carrying capacity
Greenhouse Gas Concentrations
1 million yrs BC - 1899
ppm = Parts Per Million ppb = Parts Per Billion
Carbon Dioxide Cycle ~ CO2 Exchanges
Gigatons (109 tons) per Year
Added to Atmosphere
Removed from Atmosphere
Burning Fossil Fuels
TOTAL (GT ⁄ Yr)
NET CO2 = 4 GT ⁄ Yr x 120 Years = 480 Gigatons
🤔 Some Final Thoughts 🤔
The Beast Approaches
hile mankind continues it's ridiculus bickering over national borders, religions, and ethnic variety, always trying to force other people to think and act as they themselves do, the Beast of Climate Change steadily approaches. It is an oncoming freight train and we are all dancing madly on the tracks, oblivious to it's approach. We are wasting precious time. Yes we take positive steps as individuals but it won't be enough. Our governments are moving TOO SLOW. Action is needed right now, not next month or in the next election cycle, but RIGHT NOW.
ortunately, away from the swirling fog of misinformation emanating from our blind, deaf, and self-centered politicians a NEW Climate Change leader has arisen, Greta Thunberg, a 16 year old girl from Sweden. She has spoken very clearly and passionately to the United Nations, and led marches of several hundred thousand peolple all demanding their leaders to take action and pass laws NOW - TODAY. Sadly she is being ridiculed and dismissed by the very people she is trying to reach.
e continue to slaughter each other over 2,000 year old predjudices. All religions preach Peace and yet every army that ever marched into battle did so with God on their side. How is that possible? The objective view is that, as a species, we are crazy. The world is arguably much better off without us. Yet we continue to ignore the approaching doom. After all, it is so far away, right? Even as hurricanes and floods destroy entire lands we do nothing! But the day will surely come when Climate Change will manifest itself beyond our ability to adapt, and we will perish under its onslaught. It will be an Unprecedented Global Collapse! By 2100 Earth will be in serious trouble and when the year 2200 rolls by the Earth will be an alien world, unrecognizable from today.