Climate Science

Bob Berwyn, Inside Climate News, May 26, 2017

The Arctic's record-warm winter has allowed thousands of square miles of sea ice off Alaska to melt more than a month early, leaving the shoreline vulnerable to waves and exposing dark ocean water to absorb more heat from the sun.

The loss of ice in the Chukchi Sea will boost the regional temperature and could increase precipitation over nearby land, said Alaska-based climate scientist Rick Thoman.

Lena R. Boysen, et. al., AGU Publications, May 29, 2017

Abstract: Massive near-term greenhouse gas emissions reduction is a precondition for staying “well below 2°C” global warming as envisaged by the Paris Agreement. Furthermore, extensive terrestrial carbon dioxide removal (tCDR) through managed biomass growth and subsequent carbon capture and storage is required to avoid temperature “overshoot” in most pertinent scenarios.

Jonathan Amos, BBC News, May 31, 2017

There has been an important development in the big crack cutting across the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica.

The fissure, which threatens to spawn one of the biggest bergs ever seen, has dramatically changed direction.

"The rift has propagated a further 16km, with a significant apparent right turn towards the end, moving the tip 13km from the ice edge," said Swansea University's Prof Adrian Luckman.

The calving of the berg could now be very close, he told BBC News.

Although he also quickly added that nothing was certain.

Nadja Popovich, New York Times, May 24, 2017

Glacier National Park is losing its glaciers.

The flowing sheets of ice scattered throughout the Montana park shrank by more than a third between 1966 and 2015, according to new data from the United States Geological Survey and Portland State University.

Jeff Goodell, Rolling Stone, May 19, 2017

The trouble with Thwaites, which is one of the largest glaciers on the planet, is that it's also what scientists call "a threshold system." That means instead of melting slowly like an ice cube on a summer day, it is more like a house of cards: It's stable until it is pushed too far, then it collapses. When a chunk of ice the size of Pennsylvania falls apart, that's a big problem. It won't happen overnight, but if we don't slow the warming of the planet, it could happen within decades. And its loss will destabilize the rest of the West Antarctic ice, and that will go too.

New York Times, Staff, May 23, 2017

The acceleration is making some scientists fear that Antarctica’s ice sheet may have entered the early stages of an unstoppable disintegration.

Because the collapse of vulnerable parts of the ice sheet could raise the sea level dramatically, the continued existence of the world’s great coastal cities — Miami, New York, Shanghai and many more — is tied to Antarctica’s fate.

RS, robertscribbler.com, April 27, 2017

This past week, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels passed a new ominous milestone.

Clocking in at 410.7 parts per million at the Mauna Loa Observatory, this key heat trapping gas hit a range not seen on Earth for many millions of years.

Mathew E. Hauer, Nature Climate Change, April 24, 2017

Many sea-level rise (SLR) assessments focus on populations presently inhabiting vulnerable coastal communities1,

Ben Guarino, Washington Post, April 24, 2017

Tens of thousands of people across the planet marched for science on Saturday. The first-ever March for Science was a pro-science and political event, according to the march organizers, but not a partisan one. But in Washington, as the crowd streamed down Constitution Avenue, several marchers broke away from the pack.

Cliff Connor, Socialist Action, April 24, 2017

The Earth Day 2017 March for Science signals resistance to Donald Trump’s sharp infusion of irrationality into the national discourse. Official support for climate-change denial and other anti-science agendas has suddenly become much more explicit. At the same time, many protestors recognize a continuity linking Trump’s bizarre bluster with a pre-existing condition sometimes referred to as the “Republican war on science.”

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