Sunday, January 20, 2019

Care for the Ozone Layer


The stratosphere normally is cold and very dry. Global warming can increase water vapor in the stratosphere in a number of ways. Global warming causes the troposphere to warm and since warmer air holds more water vapor, the amount of water vapor in the troposphere is increasing. This can cause more water vapor to end up in the stratosphere as well, as described below.

Stratospheric Water Vapor over the Arctic

Around the time of the December Solstice, very little sunlight is reaching the Arctic and temperatures over land at higher latitudes can get very low. At the same time, global warming has made oceans warmer and this keeps air temperatures over water relatively warm in Winter. This can lead to a number of phenomena including sudden stratospheric warming and moistening of the stratosphere.

Sudden stratospheric warming is illustrated by the image on the right, showing temperatures in the stratosphere over Siberia as high as 12.7°C or 54.9°F on December 24, 2018, and temperatures as low as -84.8°C or -120.6°F over Greenland.

At the same time, relative humidity was as high as 100% in the stratosphere over the North Sea, as the second image on the right shows.

Moistening of the stratosphere was even more pronounced on December 24, 2016, as illustrated by the third image on the right.

Storms over the U.S.

Jennifer Francis has long pointed out that, as temperatures at the North Pole are rising faster than at the Equator, the Jet Stream is becoming wavier and can get stuck in a 'blocking pattern' for days, increasing the duration and intensity of extreme weather events.

This can result in stronger storms moving more water vapor inland over the U.S., and such storms can cause large amounts of water vapor to rise high up in the sky.

Water vapor reaching stratospheric altitudes causes loss of ozone, as James Anderson describes in a 2017 paper and discusses in the short 2016 video below.


Methane

Stratospheric water vapor can also result from methane oxidation in the stratosphere. Methane concentrations have risen strongly at higher altitudes over the years. Noctilucent clouds indicate that methane has led to water vapor in the upper atmosphere.

The danger is that, as the Arctic Ocean keeps warming, large eruptions of methane will occur from the seafloor. Ominously, high methane levels have recently shown up on satellite images over the Arctic at lower altitudes, indicating the methane is escaping from the sea.

The images below show methane levels recorded by the NPP satellite:
Jan. 6, 2019, with peak levels of 2513 ppb at 1000 mb, 2600 ppb at 840 mb and 2618 ppb at 695 mb;
Jan. 11, 2019, with peak levels of 2577 ppb at 1000 mb, 2744 ppb at 840 mb and 2912 ppb at 695 mb;
Jan. 15, 2019, with peak levels of 2524 ppb at 1000 mb, 2697 ppb at 840 mb and 2847 ppb at 695 mb.

















The images below show methane levels recorded by the MetOp satellites:
Jan. 15, 2019, with peak levels of 2177 ppb at 840 mb, 2342 ppb at 695 mb and 2541 ppb at 586 mb;
Jan. 16, 2019, with peak levels of 2219 ppb at 840 mb, 2299 ppb at 695 mb and 2475 ppb at 586 mb;
Jan. 19, 2019, with peak levels of 2201 ppb at 840 mb, 2489 ppb at 695 mb and 2813 ppb at 586 mb.
















The Importance of the Ozone Layer

Increases in stratospheric water vapor are bad news, as they speed up global warming and lead to loss of stratospheric ozone, as Drew Shindell pointed out back in 2001.

It has long been known that deterioration of the ozone shield increases ultraviolet-B irradiation, in turn causing skin cancer. Recent research suggest that, millions of years ago, it could also have led to loss of fertility and consequent extinction in plants and animals (see box right).

Existential Threats

In conclusion, rising levels of emissions by people constitute existential threats in many ways. Rising temperatures cause heat stress and infertility, and there are domino effects. Furthermore, stratospheric ozone loss causes cancer and infertility. Only once the ozone layer formed on Earth some 600 million years ago could multicellular life develop and survive. Further loss of stratospheric ozone could be the fastest path to extinction for humanity, making care for the ozone layer imperative.

As described in an earlier post, Earth is on the edge of runaway warming and a moist-greenhouse scenario means oceans are evaporating into the stratosphere with loss of the ozone layer.

The situation is dire and calls for comprehensive and effective action, as described in the Climate Plan.


Links

• Climate and ozone response to increased stratospheric water vapor, by Drew Shindell (2001)
https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1029/1999GL011197

• Stratospheric ozone over the United States in summer linked to observations of convection and temperature via chlorine and bromine catalysis, by James Anderson et al. (2017)
https://www.pnas.org/content/114/25/E4905

• Harvard Speaks on Climate Change: James Anderson (2016)
https://vimeo.com/185794598

• Climate Week: Climate Science Breakfast with James Anderson (April 9, 2015)
http://environment.harvard.edu/climate-week-climate-science-breakfast-james-anderson

• 10°C or 18°F warmer by 2021?
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2017/04/10c-or-18f-warmer-by-2021.html

• Noctilucent clouds indicate more methane in upper atmosphere
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2012/09/noctilucent-clouds-indicate-more-methane-in-upper-atmosphere.html

• Noctilucent clouds: further confirmation of large methane releases
https://methane-hydrates.blogspot.com/2013/12/noctilucent-clouds-further-confirmation-of-large-methane-releases.html

• It could be unbearably hot in many places within a few years time
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2016/07/it-could-be-unbearably-hot-in-many-places-within-a-few-years-time.html

• Climate change: effect on sperm could hold key to species extinction, by Kris Sales
https://theconversation.com/climate-change-effect-on-sperm-could-hold-key-to-species-extinction-107375

• Climate change: effect on sperm could hold key to species extinction
https://theconversation.com/climate-change-effect-on-sperm-could-hold-key-to-species-extinction-107375

• UV-B–induced forest sterility: Implications of ozone shield failure in Earth’s largest extinction, by Jeffrey Benca et al. (2018)
http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/4/2/e1700618

• Co-extinctions annihilate planetary life during extreme environmental change, by Giovanni Strona and Corey Bradshaw (2018)
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-35068-1

• Earth is on the edge of runaway warming
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2013/04/earth-is-on-the-edge-of-runaway-warming.html

• Climate Plan
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/climateplan.html



Monday, January 7, 2019

GLOBAL EXTINCTION WITHIN 18 - 34 MONTHS

By Malcolm Light

Humanity is facing the final, western corporate capitalist, fossil fuel initiated, catastrophic Arctic methane hydrate destabilization and Permian style methane blowout - firestorm that will culminate in 1 to 8 years (2020 to 2027).

We will all be boiled alive like lobsters in a massively humid atmosphere and converted into stardust.

Recent data from the Arctic confirm an exponential rise in the temperature anomaly of the Arctic stratospheric methane which is now 65 degrees C above the normal, while it was only 20 degrees C above the normal, 6 to 8 years ago.

Using this data and the recent Piomass (2017) estimates of the minimum Arctic ice shelf volume it is now possible to estimate the timing of the Arctic - Permian style methane blowout firestorm more accurately and the events are tabled below.



1. An Arctic blue oceanic event is possible in 2020 due to the fast rise in Summer temperatures (Piomass - Zhang and Rothrock, 2003, Wipneus, 2017, Carana, 2016)



2. The start of the Arctic Permian style methane blowout event can begin as early as July 15, 2020 at the end of Summer in the Northern Hemisphere if the Mean Yearly Global Warming Potential of Methane is used (119.3959 from Goddard Space Flight Centre Data, NASA 2012)



3. The Major Arctic Permian Style, Methane Blowout - Firestorm Event which will cause the release of some 50 Gt of methane from the Arctic shelf and slope (Shakhova, 2010), a 10 Degree Centigrade Rise in Mean Global Atmospheric Temperatures causing a Catastrophic Permian Style Global Extinction Event, is timed to begin on 4th September, 2021 using an Atmospheric Methane Global Warming Potential of 100. This is an end Summer event for the Northern Hemisphere.



4. There is a 95% Probability that the Arctic Ice Shelf will have Zero Volume by the 5th of September 2022 (Piomass - Zhang and Rothrock, 2003, Wipneus, 2017, Carana, 2016) which is an end Summer event and exactly one year after the Catastrophic Permian Style Global Extinction Event.

This indicates a total 12 month delay in the atmospheric heat being transferred to the tropical ocean currents (e.g the Gulf Stream) and then being conducted north to heat up the Svalbard current which then destabilizes the shelf and slope methane hydrates in the Arctic ocean releasing methane to the atmosphere.

The Goddard Space flight Centre Arctic shelf data (NASA 2012) indicate a 7 month delay in Summer ocean heating and the release of methane from the Arctic shelf and slope.

The Arctic ice shelf is being melted from below so the ocean needs to be heated first by the methane in the tropical stratosphere and this heat is then transferred by ocean current to the Arctic over at least 7 months. Ice also has a large latent heat of melting adding an additional several months to the delay time for the total Arctic ice shelf melt.



WHAT YOU NEED TO DO

The start date of the Permian style global extinction event may be only 18 to 19 months away. This says that you must complete your bucket list of unfulfilled dreams before July to August 2020. A bucket list is a list of unfulfilled actions you need to complete before you die ("kick the bucket").

Do not worry about dying as it comes to all of us in the end, only this time we will all be going together. The Earth will soon after, lose all its oceans and become "Venus Like".

Empathy is organic evolution's key to group survival in a uncaring inorganic universe. Enjoy yourselves and be excellent to each other in these last days and hours on the only remaining habitable planet in this solar system.



The above message was posted by Malcolm Light on January 7, 2019.

Links

• Planetary Genocide - Ecocide between 2023 and 2031
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2015/01/planetary-genocide-ecocide-between-2023-and-2031.html

• Warning - Global Omnicide
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/warning-global-omnicide.html

• Poster created for Geophysical Congress on methane hydrates, earthquakes and global warming, Nice, France, 2002, by Malcolm Light and Carmen Solana
http://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/seismic-activity.html



In the video below, recorded January 5, 2019, Guy McPherson talks with Jamen Shively and Michael about extinction.



• Co-extinctions annihilate planetary life during extreme environmental change, by Giovanni Strona and Corey Bradshaw (2018)
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-35068-1

• As El Niño sets in, will global biodiversity collapse in 2019?
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2018/11/as-el-nino-sets-in-will-global-biodiversity-collapse-in-2019.html



Aaron Franklin comments:

Malcolm may be being too conservative. The Arctic has spat out the freshwater lid that allows sea ice to exist, and this may all kick off in September this year.

Biggest near term danger is to coastal communities, should the Greenland and/or Antarctic Ice sheets cascade collapse. They are poised to do this and it could produce worldwide megatsunami and 30m sea level rise in months of fast paced action. Good news is that flooding the north Atlantic and Arctic with huge icebergs of ice sheet origin should plug the methane dyke and stop the oceans being boiled. If we have enough tech capacity as after the cataclysm we can easily steer away from that cliff in the century or two grace a dryas event will afford us.

Get inland, and on high ground now! Unless you'd rather drown.



Saturday, January 5, 2019

The Gathering Climate Storm and the Media Cover-up | By Dr. Andrew Glikson

“Earth is now substantially out of energy balance. The amount of solar energy that Earth absorbs exceeds the energy radiated back to space. The principal manifestations of this energy imbalance are continued global warming on decadal time scales and continued increase in ocean heat content.” (James Hansen 2018)

“The people have no voice since they have no information” …“No First World country has ever managed to eliminate so entirely from its media all objectivity – much less dissent.” (Gore Vidal)

With the exception of the few who comprehend the nature of a Faustian Bargain[1], some billionaires, captains of industry and their political and media mouthpieces are driving humanity toward self-destruction through the two biggest enterprises on Earth, the fossil fuel industry, which is devastating the Earth atmosphere, and the industrial-military machine leading toward nuclear war. The rest of the world is dragged subconsciously, induced by bread and circuses.

[ 1880 - Feb. 2016 temperature anomaly from 1951-1980, source ]
By close analogy with the tobacco denial syndrome[2], albeit with consequences affecting the entire Earth, the fossil fuel industry has been paying climate pseudoscientists to propagate fabricated untruths regarding the origins and consequences of global warming, widely disseminated by the media.

Despite irrefutable evidence for global warming, such fabrications are still quoted by pro-coal lobbies and compliant politicians, including:
  1. Denial of basic laws of physics, i.e. the blackbody radiation laws of Plank, Stefan-Boltzmann and Kirchhoff[3]
  2. Denial of direct observations and measurements in nature, in particular the sharp rises of temperatures, ice melt rates, sea level rise and extreme weather events.
  3. Denial of the global warming origin of extreme weather events, i.e. the closely monitored rise in storms, hurricanes, fires and droughts in several parts of the world.[4]
  4. Denial of the bulk of the peer-reviewed literature summed up in the IPCC reports.
  5. Denial of conclusions of the world’s premier climate research organizations (NASA, NOAA, NSIDC (National Snow and Ice Data Centre), Hadley-Met, Tindale, Potsdam, WMO (World Meteorological Organization), CSIRO, BOM and other organizations).
In view of the rapidly growing direct evidence from the increase in extreme weather events, the common tactic has changed from outright denial to a minimization of the significance and consequences of the shift in state of the climate.

READ MORE: Crimes Against the Earth

Whereas news items channeled by international news agencies regarding extreme weather events are generally reported, at least by national broadcasters, the plethora of discussion and debate programs on TV and radio stations mostly overlook the enhanced toxic effects of carbon gases[5], or relegate it behind sports and entertainment news. In most instances discussion panels focus on the inside political machinations rather than the critical issues themselves.

According to Mary Debrett[6]:
“We are now in the middle of perfect storm of miscommunication about climate change. Various factors have converged to confound rational public conversation. Public opinion polling indicates that although there is widespread acceptance of climate change resulting from human activities, the public’s preparedness to pay for action to mitigate climate change is actually declining – even as climate scientists warn of the increasing urgency for action. These results signal a serious problem in the public communication of climate change. They reflect this perfect storm – where tensions between the media, politicians and various lobby groups have made it impossible for scientists and others with appropriate expertise, to cut through.”
The major influence the media exerts on public opinion[7], and the extent to which it can be referred to as the “tail which wags the political dog”, allows it nearly as much, or more, political power as political leaders, chief bureaucrats and heads of corporation. A power accompanied with little responsibility.

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Notes

[1] To “strike a Faustian bargain” is to be willing to sacrifice anything to satisfy a limitless desire for knowledge or power. https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Faustian_bargain

[2] https://tobaccocontrol.bmj.com/content/12/suppl_3/iii23

[3] https://rmets.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1002/wea.2072; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black-body_radiation

[4] https://www.nasa.gov/centers/langley/science/climate_assessment_2012.html; https://climate.nasa.gov/vital-signs/global-temperature/

[5] https://johnmenadue.com/andrew-glikson-the-abc-2018-year-roundup-and-the-defining-issue-of-our-time/

[6] https://www.latrobe.edu.au/big-fat-ideas/bold-thinking-social-conscience/the-media-on-climate-change-a-perfect-storm-of-miscommunication

[7] https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/bigideas/the-role-of-media-in-public-opinion/8213158

The original source of this article is Global Research.

Andrew Glikson
by Dr Andrew Glikson
Earth and Paleo-climate science, Australian National University (ANU)

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Carbon dioxide emissions are rising

CO₂ emissions are rising

In models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), carbon dioxide (CO₂) emissions were expected to come down in line with pledges made at the Paris Agreement. Yet, the Global Carbon Project projects growth in CO₂ emissions from fossil fuels and industry in 2018 to be +2.7%, within uncertainty margins from +1.8% to +3.7%.


This rise is in line with an image from an earlier post that shows growth of CO₂ in the atmosphere to be accelerating.
[ Growth of CO₂ in ppm, based on annual Mauna Loa data (1959-2017), with 4th-order polynomial trend added ]

Methane emissions rising as well

And it's not just CO₂ emissions that are rising. Methane emissions are rising as well. Sadly, politicians typically ignore this elephant in the room, in particular seafloor methane emissions that threaten to trigger a huge temperature rise within years.

[ ignoring the elephant in the room, i.e. seafloor methane ]
The MetOp image below shows high methane levels over oceans on December 9, 2018, pm, at 469 mb. Levels over the Arctic Ocean in particular are very high, as the large areas solidly colored magenta indicate.


The MetOp image shows many areas where no data were available, as indicated by the color grey. The NPP images don't have as many grey areas. The image below confirms very high methane levels over the Arctic Ocean on December 9, 2018 pm, closer to the surface, i.e. at 840 mb. While there still are many grey areas, the absence of data for many of them is due to altitude, since large parts of Greenland, Antarctica and the Himalayas are rather high.


As discussed in earlier posts, large amounts of methane appear to be rising from the Arctic Ocean. As the methane rises higher in the atmosphere, it moves closer to the Equator. The NPP image below shows levels at 399 mb on December 9, 2018, pm. At this altitude, there are very few grey areas, so it's possible to get a fuller picture of where the highest levels of methane are. Ominously, levels as high as 3060 ppb were reached.


El Niño events will intensify

The image on the right shows that, on December 30, 2018, sea surface temperature anomalies were as high as 9.7°C or 17.4°F in the Pacific Ocean, 11.1°C or 20°F in the Atlantic Ocean and 17.1°C or 30.8°F near Svalbard in the Arctic Ocean.

NOAA expects El Niño to form and continue through the Northern Hemisphere winter 2018-19 (~90% chance). A recent study concludes that global warming will enhance both the amplitude and the frequency of eastern Pacific El Niño events.

Albedo change

Albedo change due to decline of the snow and ice cover is another feedback that the IPCC has yet to come to grips with. The IPCC seems to have hoped that albedo loss in the Arctic was somehow compensated for by albedo gain in the Antarctic.

The IPCC (in AR5, WG1) did find a significant increase in Antarctic annual mean sea ice extent that is very likely in the range of 1.2 to 1.8 % per decade between 1979 and 2012 (0.13 to 0.20 million km² per decade) (very high confidence).

As the image below shows, global sea ice extent steadily came down, but then grew somewhat until end 2014. From end 2014 on, Antarctic sea ice extent fell rapidly, with huge repercussions for global sea ice extent, as also illustrated by the image on the right that highlights the most recent years of the graph below.

At the end of 2016, Antarctic sea ice extent was a lot smaller than it was at the end of 2014. Such a difference in sea ice extent corresponds with a huge difference in radiative forcing (RF).

Antarctic sea ice was 5.599 million km² on December 31, 2018, a record low for the time of year and 4.119 million km² less than on December 31, 2014, when extent was 9.718 million km².

This decline could make a difference of 1.3 W/m² in RF. By comparison, the IPCC estimated the net RF from all emissions by people from 1750 to 2011 at 1.6 W/m².
As the image below shows, global sea ice extent was at a record low for the time of year on Dec. 28, 2018,  and looks set to go lower in 2019.

Antarctic sea ice decline is only part of the picture, there's also Arctic sea ice decline and there's decline of the snow and ice cover on land.

Joint impact

A lot of this has not been accounted for by the IPCC, i.e. the recent increases in CO₂ emissions, increases in methane releases, increases in further emissions such as nitrous oxide and black carbon, albedo changes due to decline in the snow and ice cover and associated changes such as jet stream changes, more permafrost melting and stronger impacts of future El Niño events.

The image on the right shows the joint impact of the warming elements that threaten to eventuate over the next few years and that could result in a 10°C or 18°F global temperature rise in a matter of years.

The situation is dire and calls for comprehensive and effective action, as described at the Climate Plan.

Links

• Global Carbon Project
http://www.globalcarbonproject.org

• Looking the climate abyss in the eye!
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2018/09/looking-the-climate-abyss-in-the-eye.html

• How much warmer is it now?
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2018/04/how-much-warmer-is-it-now.html

• Feedbacks
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/feedbacks.html

• How much warming have humans caused?
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2016/05/how-much-warming-have-humans-caused.html

• Albedo change in the Arctic
http://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2012/07/albedo-change-in-arctic.html

• IPCC AR5 WG1 chapter 4
https://www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/2018/02/WG1AR5_Chapter04_FINAL.pdf

• The Threat
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/threat.html

• Extinction
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/extinction.html

• Climate Plan
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/p/climateplan.html

• NOAA El Niño forecast
https://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/lanina/enso_evolution-status-fcsts-web.pdf
https://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/enso_advisory/ensodisc.shtml

• El Niño events to become stronger and more intense
https://www.theage.com.au/environment/climate-change/el-nino-events-to-become-stronger-and-more-intense-study-finds-20181212-p50lrv.html
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-018-0776-9