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December 13, 2006

Arctic Ice May Be Gone By 2040 Environment

Earlier studies have said Arctic summers may be ice-free by 2070 or 2080. New NASA-funded research now says 2040 — and even that is probably too optimistic. Times UK:

Ice is melting so fast in the Arctic that the North Pole will be in the open sea in 30 years, according to leading climatologists. [...]

American researchers, assessing the impact of carbon emissions on world climate have calculated that late summer in the Arctic will be ice-free by 2040 or earlier, well within a lifetime.

Some ice would still be found on coastlines, notably Greenland and Ellesmere Island, but the rest of the Arctic Ocean, including the pole, would be open water. [...]

In 30 to 50 years, they concluded, summer sea ice will have vanished from almost the entire Arctic region.

Their forecast may, however, already be out of date and over-optimistic, said Professor Chris Rapley, head of the British Antarctic Survey.

He said a recent study by the Global Carbon Project suggested that emissions were rising more than twice as fast as in 2000, which was likely to speed up ice-loss even further.

"The study may be an underestimate of when the Arctic summer ice might be all gone," he said. "It could well be their assumptions are more optimistic than they might be." [Emphasis added]

Well, we can't say we haven't been warned. And warned. And warned. And warned.

Posted by Jonathan at December 13, 2006 04:47 PM  del.icio.us digg NewsVine Reddit YahooMyWeb


Global warming should no longer be thought of in terms of temperature rise. It should be thought of only in its effects on the planet. A seemingly insignificant rise in temperature (1 to 2 degrees) has already resulting in enormous, fast hitting events over the past 5 years - all around the planet. We've been clobbered over the head with observable evidence time and time again.

But everyone will get up tomorrow, get in their cars, go to work, come home and make dinner, blah, blah, blah.

Posted by: Jeff at December 13, 2006 05:57 PM