Greenland Melting Fastest Any Time in Last 12,000 Years

Has the Drug-Based Approach to Mental Illness Failed?

One of the most impressive, disturbing works of science journalism I’ve encountered is Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America, published in 2010. In the book, which I review here, award-winning...

50, 100 & 150 Years Ago: October 2020

  1970 Sweet Suburbia “Massive movement from central cities to their suburbs, a population boom in the West and Southwest, and a lower rate of population growth in the 1960's than in the 1950's are the findings that stand out in the preliminary results...

How the Immune System of Older Adults Like Trump Weakens with Age

President Donald Trump’s announcement that he’s tested positive for COVID-19 is especially concerning because of his age. At 74 years old, Trump is solidly within an age group that’s been hit hard during the coronavirus pandemic. People of all ages can get...

COVID Collides with Weather Disasters to Affect Millions Worldwide

A total of 54 million people worldwide faced weather-related disasters this year while dealing with effects of the coronavirus pandemic, according to a report released yesterday by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. The report by one of...

Greenland is the biggest island in the world. And the ice sheet that sits atop it is massive.

“The pile of ice is so thick it extends more than 10,000 feet above the ocean. And if all that ice were to melt and go into the ocean, global sea levels would rise by 24 feet everywhere around the world.”

Jason Briner, a geologist at the University at Buffalo. The ice sheet IS melting, of course. But just how much, compared to the past?

Briner’s team did a computer simulation of the southwest portion of the Greenland ice sheet—which he says is a good proxy for ice melt across the entire ice sheet. The researchers plugged past climate data into that model, to “hindcast”, rather than forecast, the past activity of the ice sheet. They then checked the model’s predictions of the past shape and size of the ice sheet, by looking at piles of rocks and boulders and dirt on Greenland today, which outline the edges of ancient ice. And the simulation was in good agreement with the actual situation.

Using that reconstruction of the ice sheet over time, the team could compare the ice sheet’s historic losses to those happening today, under human-caused global warming. And they determined that Greenland is on track to lose more ice this century than during any century in the past 12,000 years. Possibly four times as much.

The results appear in the journal Nature. [Jason P. Briner et al, Rate of mass loss from the Greenland Ice Sheet will exceed Holocene values this century]

Ultimately it’s up to us how much ice actually melts. “Humanity has the knob—the carbon knob, and that knob is going to influence the rates of ice loss from the Greenland ice sheet.”

If the world goes net carbon zero by 2100, for example, Briner says ice loss could stop entirely at the end of the century, according to one model.

“That was what kept me from being completely depressed about our study.”

Dozens of countries have already announced goals to go net zero by the middle of this century—so far the U.S. is not one of them.

—Christopher Intagliata

[The above text is a transcript of this podcast.]

Source link

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Popular

Has the Drug-Based Approach to Mental Illness Failed?

One of the most impressive, disturbing works of science journalism I’ve encountered is Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America, published in 2010. In the book, which I review here, award-winning...

50, 100 & 150 Years Ago: October 2020

  1970 Sweet Suburbia “Massive movement from central cities to their suburbs, a population boom in the West and Southwest, and a lower rate of population growth in the 1960's than in the 1950's are the findings that stand out in the preliminary results...

Here Are 10 of the Best Climate Change Podcasts Out Right Now

Podcasting seems to be everywhere these days, so of course, there’s no surprise that there are quite a few shows that deal with the big, important topic on everyone’s minds: climate change. Honestly, it’s kind of hard not to think about...

Pakistan’s the latest country to ban China-owned app TikTok

Pakistan officials have announced a ban on TikTok after receiving complaints of unlawful content on the popular short-form video-sharing app. It’s the latest country to block the app after India instituted a similar ban and the U.S. attempted to do the...

Pakistan bans TikTok over ‘immoral and indecent’ content

TikTok may have received a temporary reprieve from its ban by the Trump administration recently, but the app is struggling to keep its welcome in other countries. Following a recent ban in India, TikTok has been blocked in Pakistan as well....

More from author

Has the Drug-Based Approach to Mental Illness Failed?

One of the most impressive, disturbing works of science journalism I’ve encountered is Anatomy of an Epidemic: Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing...

50, 100 & 150 Years Ago: October 2020

  1970 Sweet Suburbia “Massive movement from central cities to their suburbs, a population boom in the West and Southwest, and a lower rate of population growth...

Here Are 10 of the Best Climate Change Podcasts Out Right Now

Podcasting seems to be everywhere these days, so of course, there’s no surprise that there are quite a few shows that deal with the...

Pakistan’s the latest country to ban China-owned app TikTok

Pakistan officials have announced a ban on TikTok after receiving complaints of unlawful content on the popular short-form video-sharing app. It’s the latest country...