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Loss of Arctic’s reflective sea ice could advance global warming by 25 years (ucsd.edu)
65 points by hunglee2 80 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 16 comments

I have to say, I'm a bit surprised they figured this out so late as they did.

The reason for that is: as a layman I know that snow reflects sunlight. Surely, climate researchers would have figured out that this is one of the main factors that can change over time.

Ah well, I guess I was to optimistic. It's good to know that they found out now.

According to https://history.aip.org/climate/simple.htm, a region of dark terrain or water getting warmer was first suggested in 1875 by James Croll. The linked paper (PDF at http://eisenman.ucsd.edu/papers/Pistone-Eisenman-Ramanathan-... ) is trying to quantitatively "estimate the additional solar heating that would occur under the complete disappearance of Arctic sea ice", in their own words, and compare this figure to a certain amount of carbon emissions.

Their results are pretty worrying. Quoting again: "This heating of 0.71 W/m2 is approximately equivalent to the direct radiative effect of emitting one trillion tons of CO2into the atmosphere (see calculation in Appendix A). As of 2016, an estimated 2.4 trillion tons of CO2 have been emitted since the preindustrial period due to both fossil fuel combustion (1.54 trillion tons) and land use changes (0.82 trillion tons), with an additional 40 billion tons of CO2 per year emitted from these sources during 2007–2016 (Le Quéré et al., 2018). Thus, the additional warming due to the complete loss of Arctic sea ice would be equivalent to 25 years of global CO2 emissions at the current rate. This implies that if the Arctic sea ice were to disappear much more rapidly than in current climate model projections, it would drastically shorten the time available to adapt to climate changes and the time for achieving carbon neutrality."

We need 1 tonne lifestyles

With Trump at the helm, this now seems inevitable.

I really wonder if this climate destruction is a form of warfare. It certainly favours countries in higher latitudes.

It feels easier to attribute it to the human tendency to consume whatever is available to them without thought of the future.

The USA isn't one one those. Russia and Canada will probably fare well.

Russia has a great deal to gain by Siberia permafrost melting

I don't like Trump either, but there is not a single nation on Earth that is on track to reach the Paris goals. Blaming Trump is not helpful. I doubt that Hillary would have been much better.

The UK is currently part of the EU pledge, which is for a 40% cut in carbon emissions from 1990 to 2030, but the UK is already 43% down, more than 10 years ahead of the target.

The UK is indeed doing a better job than most countries but it is not on track to be carbon neutral by 2040 (or even 2050). Transportation is still a huge unsolved factor, as is agriculture and heating.

It’s not on track to be carbon neutral by 2040, but that is a much higher bar than its Paris commitment.

China already hit their 2020 goals years early. Their pledge was also far higher than the US's. Perhaps check your sources there mate, because you are provably wrong and should acknowledge that.

Those goals must be hilariously inadequate then: https://climateactiontracker.org/countries/china/

I am not trying to bash the conman here, but even if the hypothetical other US-president would’ve chosen to just do nothing and leave everything as it was they would’ve done better than Trump.

Trump actively made things worse and I am not sure if relativizing things in such an important area is a good thing.

Because the fire brigade that actively denies your country is on fire and pumps gasoline into it just to show it to you is objectively worse than the one that clumsily falls over their own protective gear while spraying your country with way too little water.

This tautology makes me sick. All I keep hearing is boring old tropes from the leader of the US.

I’m not sure if you’re aware of this, but we as a planet are guilty of doing nothing. It’s not beholden on any single country to save the world.

Yes, trump pulling out of the Paris accords is quite frightening, but if the US public didn’t have an appetite for convenience over longevity then we might not have such an issue.

I know I’m guilty of being wasteful and not supporting renewable or carbon neutral alternatives (I even complained that my energy prices are going up much faster due to the push for renewables).

But that’s where it needs to start. Not blaming those at the top; trying to inspire those down here who could be swayed to have a little less convenience in their lives and to buy from companies that pledge to be carbon neutral.

I would suggest that trying to blame individual action is incorrect. This is a collective action problem and all the standard solutions would work.


E.g. people wouldn't get a choice to buy from non carbon neutral businesses if legislation was put in place to ramp up a carbon fee. And they would all benefit from this.

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