|« Bruno: A Glimpse into Zionism?||Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité – Providence, Miracle or What Really Happened »|
by ANDREW GLIKSON Earth and Paleoclimate scientist
The Earth surface temperature reflects the net balance between incoming solar shortwave radiation and outgoing terrestrial long wave radiation Kiehl and Trenberth, 1997 . The severe disturbance of the energy balance of the atmosphere ensuing from the emission of over 320 billion tons of carbon since 1750 threatens a shift in the state of the atmosphere/ocean system to ice free greenhouse Earth conditions. Based on the recent Copenhagen Synthesis Report , climate change trends at the top range of IPCC 2007 projections , and the identification of tipping points in the recent history of the atmosphere/ocean system i.e. at 14 - 11 and 8.2 thousand years-ago , the scale and pace of 21st Century climate changes  require re-consideration of mitigation and adaptation strategies.
John Holdren, Obama's science advisor, compared global warming to “being in a car with bad brakes driving toward a cliff in the fog."
Should humanity choose to undertake all possible mitigation and adaptation efforts in an attempt at slowing global warming down, or even reversing it, steps need to include:
It is possible that, in order to gain time, some governments may opt for geo-engineering efforts, including stratospheric injection of sulfur aerosols simulating volcanic eruptions , likely over polar regions, meant to temporarily raise the Earth albedo while other measures are undertaken.
The alternative to urgent fast tracked mitigation efforts does not bear contemplation.
1. Kiehl, J. T. and Trenberth, K. E.: Earth’s annual global mean energy budget, B. Am. Meteorol. Soc., 78, 197–208, 1997.
2. Copenhagen Synthesis Report. Copenhagen Synthesis Report http://climatecongress.ku.dk/pdf/synthesisreport/. Rahmstorf, S.R. et al. 2007. Recent Climate Observations Compared to Projections, Science Express, http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/sci;316/5825/709
3. Broecker W.S. 2000. Abrupt climate change: causal constraints provided by the paleoclimate record. Earth Science Reviews 51, 137–154; Alley, R.B., 2000. Ice-core evidence of abrupt climate changes.Proceedings of the Natural Academy of Science 97, 1331–1334; Alley, R.B. et al., 2003. Abrupt Climate Change, Science 299, 2005–2010; Kobashi, T., et al., 2008. 4±1.5 °C abrupt warming 11,270 years ago identified from trapped air in Greenland ice. Earth Planetary Science Letters, 268, 397–407; Steffensen, J.P., et al., 2008. High-resolution Greenland ice core data show abrupt climate change happens in few years. Science Express, 19.6.2008; Ganopolski, A., Rahmstorf, S., 2002. Abrupt glacial climate changes due to stochastic resonance. Physics Review Letters 88, 038501.
4. Lenton, T.M., et al., 2008. Tipping points in the Earth system. PNAS, 105, 1786–1793 _ www.pnas.org_cgi_doi_10.1073_pnas.0705414105; http://researchpages.net/ESMG/people/tim-lenton/tipping-points/. http://www.pnas.org/content/105/6/1786.abstract; Easterling and Wehner, 2009. Is the climate warming or cooling? Geophys. Res. Lett. 36, L08706 http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2009/2009GL037810.shtml; Eby, M., et al., 2009. Lifetime of Anthropogenic Climate Change: Millennial Time Scales of Potential CO2 and Surface Temperature Perturbations, J. Climate, 22, 15 May 2009; Dakos, V., et al., 2008. Slowing down as an early warning signal for abrupt climate change. PNAS, 105, 14308–14312. www.pnas.org_cgi_doi_10.1073_pnas.0802430105. Slowing down as an early warning signal for abrupt climate change ; Stipp, D., 2004. The Pentagon’s Weather Nightmare: the climate could change radically, and fast. That would be the mother of all national security issues. Http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/2004/02/09/360120/index.htm.
5. Zachos, J.C, et al., 2008. An early Cenozoic perspective on greenhouse warming and carbon-cycle dynamics, Nature 451 7176: 279–83; Royer, D. L., 2006. CO2-forced climate thresholds during the Phanerozoic. Geochim. et Cosmochim. Acta, 70, 5665–5675; Royer, D.L. et al., 2004. CO2 as a primary driver of Phanerozoic climate. GSA Today, 14, 4–10; Royer, D.L., et al., 2007. Climate sensitivity constrained by CO2 concentrations over the past 420 million years. Nature, 446. doi:10.1038/nature 05699; Beerling, D.J., Berner R.A., 2005. Feedbacks and the coevolution of plants and atmospheric CO2. PNAS, 102, 1302–1305; Berner, R.A. 2004. The Phanerozoic Carbon Cycle: CO2 and O2, Oxford University Press, New York; Berner, R. A., 2006. GEOCARBSULF: A combined model for Phanerozoic atmospheric O2 and CO2. Geochim. et Cosmochim. Acta, 70, 5653–5664; Berner, R.A., Vandenbrook, J.M.,Ward, P.D. 2007. Oxygen and evolution. Science 316, 557–558.
6. de Menocal, P.B., 2004. African climate change and faunal evolution during the Pliocene-Pleistocene. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett., 220, 3–24; Dowsett, H.J., et al., 2005. Middle Pliocene sea surface temperature variability. Paleoceanography, 20, PA2014; Haywood, A., Williams, M., 2005. The climate of the future: clues from three million years ago. Geology Today, 21 4, 138–143.
7. Anderson, K., Bows, A., 2008. Reframing the climate change challenge in light of post-2000 emission trends. Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. London, doi:10.1098/rsta.2008.0138; Global Carbon Project http://www.globalcarbonproject.org/. Hansen, J.R. et al., 2006, Global temperature change. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 101, 16109–16114. Hansen, J.R., 2007. Climate change and trace gases. Philosophical Transactions Royalk Society London, 365A, 1925–1954; Hansen, J., et al., 2008. Target CO2: where should humanity aim? http://arxiv.org/abs/0804.1126.
8. Gingerich, P. D., 2006. Environment and evolution through the Paleocene — Eocene thermal maximum. Trends Ecol. Evolution 21, 246–253; Sluijs, A.,et al., 2007 Subtropical Arctic Ocean temperatures during the Palaeocene/ Eocene thermal maximum. Nature, 441, 610–613.
9. Walter, K.M., Smith, L.C., Chapin, F.S., 2005. Methane bubbling from Siberian thaw lakes as a positive feedback to climate warming. Nature, 443, 71–75.
10. Chen, J.L., Wilson, C.R., Blankenship. D.D., Tapley, B.D., 2006. Antarctic mass rates from GRACE. Geophysical Research Letters 33, L11502; Frederick, T.R. E., Krabill, S. Martin, C., 2006. Progressive increase in ice loss from Greenland. Geophysical Research Letters 33, L10503, doi:10.1029/2006GL026075; Hanna, H., Huybrechts, P., Janssens, I., Cappelen, J., Steffen, K., Stephens A., 2005. Runoff and mass balance of the Greenland ice sheet: 1958–2003. Journal Geophysical Research, 110, D13108; NASA 2006. Greenland ice loss doubles in past decade, raising sea level faster, news release, 16 Feb. http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Newsroom/ Nasa News/2006 /2006021621775.html; National Snow and Ice Data Centre [NSIDC], 2008. http://nsidc.org/NSIDC, 2008, http://nsidc.org/news/press/20080325_Wilkins.html; Steffen, K., Huff R., 2002. A record maximum melt extent on the Greenland ice sheet in 2002. Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences CIRES, University of Colorado at Boulder, CO 80309-0216; Steffen, K., Nghiem, S.V., Huff, R., Neumann, G., 2004. The melt anomaly of 2002 on the Greenland Ice Sheet from active and passive microwave satellite observations. Geophysical Research Letters, 31 20, L2040210.1029/ 2004GL020444; Steffen, K. and Huff, R., 2002. A record maximum melt extent on the Greenland ice sheet in 2002. Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences CIRES, University of Colorado at Boulder; Velicogna, I., Wahr, J. 2006. Measurements of Time-Variable Gravity Show Mass Loss in Antarctica, Science, 311.
11. Rahmstorf, S.R., 2006. A Semi-Empirical Approach to Projecting Future Sea-Level Rise. Science, 315, 368–370; Church, J.A., White, N., 2006. A 20th century acceleration in global sea-level rise. Geophys. Res. Lett., 33, L01602, doi:10.1029/2005GL024826, 2006. http://www.pol.ac.uk/psmsl/author_archive/church_white/GRL_Church_White_2006_024826.pdf;
12. Bryden, H.L., et al., 2005. Slowing of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation at 25N. Nature 438, 655–657.
13. Rising natural disasters and insurance costs between 1950 and 2006: Values in $billion. Source: http://www.draeger-stiftung.de/HG/internet/SD/pdf/charts_hoeppe.pdf; Webster, P.J., Holland, G.J., Curry, J.A., Chang, H.R., 2005. Changes in Tropical Cyclone Number, Duration, and Intensity in a Warming Environment, Science, 309, 1844–1846.
14. IPCC 2007 SPM-2. http://ipcc-wg1.ucar.edu/wg1/Report/AR4WG1_Print_SPM.pdf; http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2008/07/aerosols-chemistry-and-climate/;
15. Raupach et al., 2007. Global and regional drivers of accelerating CO2 emissions. PNAS June 12, 2007 vol. 104 no. 24 10288-10293. http://www.pnas.org/content/104/24/10288/suppl/DC1;
16. Glikson, A.Y., 2008. Milestones in the evolution of the atmosphere with reference to climate change. Aust. Journal Australia Earth Science, 55, 125–140
17. http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=d97echlg1&show_article=1 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_dioxide_air_capture; Lenton, T. M., N. E. Vaughan, N.E., 2009. The radiative forcing potential of different climate geoengineering options. http://www.atmos-chem-phys-discuss.net/9/2559/2009/acpd-9-2559-2009.pdf
Figure 1. Top: Atmospheric CO2 and continental glaciation 400 Ma to present. Vertical bars mark the timing and palaeo-latitudinal extent of ice sheets. Plotted CO2 records represent five-point running averages from each of the four major proxies: stomata leaf pores, phytoplankton, Boron, pedogenic carbonates.
Middle: Global compilation of deep-sea benthic foraminifera 18O isotope records from 40 Deep Sea Drilling Program and Ocean Drilling Program sites updated with high-resolution records for the Eocene through Miocene interval.
Bottom: Detailed record of CO2 for the last 65 Myr. The range of error for each CO2 proxy varies considerably, with estimates based on soil nodules yielding the greatest uncertainty. Also plotted are the plausible ranges of CO2 from three geochemical carbon cycle models. After figure 6, http://ipcc-wg1.ucar.edu/wg1/Report/ AR4WG1_Print_Ch06.pdf
Figure 2. One realization of the globally averaged surface air temperature from the ECHAM5 coupled climate model forced with the SRES A2 greenhouse gas increase scenario for the 21st century. Easterling and Wehner 2009. Geophys. Res. Lett. 36, L08706 http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2009/2009GL037810.shtml
Figure 3. Map of potential policy-relevant tipping elements in the climate system, overlain on global population density. Subsystems indicated could exhibit threshold-type behavior in response to anthropogenic climate forcing, where a small perturbation at a critical point qualitatively alters the future fate of the system. They could be triggered this century and would undergo a qualitative change within this millennium We exclude from the map systems in which any threshold appears inaccessible this century e.g., East Antarctic Ice Sheet or the qualitative change would appear beyond this millennium e.g., marine methane hydrates. Question marks indicate systems whose status as tipping elements is particularly uncertain. Lenton, T.M., et al., 2008. Tipping points in the Earth system. PNAS, 105, 1786–1793 _ www.pnas.org_cgi_doi_10.1073_pnas.0705414105
Earth and Paleoclimate scientist
Australian National University
Your donation helps provide a place for people to speak out.
Not tax deductible. firstname.lastname@example.org
|<< <||> >>|