November 23, 2010

Arctic warming faster than forecast



Recent temperature readings collected with the help of sea mammals has revealed that the water in Baffin Bay, which links the Arctic Sea to the Atlantic Ocean, is getting warmer. In the study, US scientists led by Dr. Kristin Laidre of the Polar Science Center at Washington University placed a small device with temperature sensing data and satellite transmitter upon narwhals, a native marine mammal with a unicorn-type horn.

The oceanographic instruments measured sea temperatures throughout the winter in Baffin Bay, an area oceanographers had not previously been able to measure. In this study, the researchers found that the isotherm, a layer of winter surface water that normally protects the surface sea ice from higher temperatures below, was 50 to 80 meters thinner than climate models predicted.

This in turn allows the warmer water to mix more with the colder water, speeding the rate of surface ice melting. The researchers also found the water to be about 1 degree Celsius warmer than their previous estimates.

We are grateful, Dr. Laidre and colleagues, for your careful work and observations. Knowing of these threats to the Arctic and their potentially devastating consequences, let us rapidly act to halt climate change.

Ever-concerned for humanity’s balance on the planet, Supreme Master Ching Hai highlighted the perilous implications of such warming, as well as the most efficient solution, during an interview published in the September 2009 edition of The House Magazine.

Supreme Master Ching Hai: According to Dr. Hansen, our planet is on a dangerous course to passing irreversible tipping points with disastrous consequences. These you know already, like melting of the Arctic sea ice which causes oceans to absorb more sunlight and speeds up melting; and the melting of permafrost which in turn releases toxic methane gas, resulting in more warming of the atmosphere; and the extinction of cornerstone species that cause further collapse to our already ailing ecosystems, thus endangering even more species, and most important of all, us humans.

As temperatures continue to increase, methane is released from melting Arctic permafrost as well. This amplified feedback accelerates further global warming.

Thus, if meat eating were to be halted, methane production from livestock would be minimized, and then, consequently all the methane from the permafrost will also be stopped, then we will still have time to handle the CO2. It’s very logical, scientifically speaking and otherwise. So, being veg means saving our planet.

http://www.350resources.org.uk/2010/10/31/arctic-2-kilometres-under-the-ice-temperatures-are-1c-high-and-warming-is-faster-than-previous-assumptions/
http://www.nature.com/news/2010/101028/full/news.2010.569.html

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