Can we keep our Earth habitable? Abrupt Climate System Change

Given Abrupt Climate System Change, can we keep our Earth habitable? Part 1 of 2 // Nov 26, 2020

We risk an uninhabitable Earth if we allow abrupt climate change to continue unchecked, at its ever accelerating (even exponential) pace.

How do we stabilize our climate? Can we stabilize our planet, or are we too far gone, as more and more people think?

Years ago I brought up the concept of a three-legged barstool approach to stabilize climate. To recap, we need to:

1) Slash fossil-fueled Greenhouse Gas emissions to zero
2) Pull carbon out of the atmosphere/ocean system. This includes CH4 as well as CO2.
3) Deploy Solar Radiation Management methods to reduce surface heating to buy us time to do the first two steps.

There are all kinds of ideas for doing these three steps, and I will discuss them in detail in future videos. They include things like: cloud brightening; Iron Salt Aerosols (ISA) which simultaneously reduces CH4, increases cloud reflectivity, and seeds the ocean with iron stimulating carbon sucking phytoplankton; injecting sulphur dioxide in the stratosphere to block some sunlight; regrowing sea ice in the Arctic (using wind-turbine powered pumps to put sea water on top of the ice to accelerate freezing, distributing glass nano-beads onto the ice surface to reduce surface melt, increasing cloud reflectivity over the Arctic); etc.

I chat about a recent paper claiming that we have already passed the tipping point with thawing Arctic permafrost, and even with zeroed emissions in 2020 (obviously not feasible) we would get additional warming for centuries.
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Given Abrupt Climate System Change, can we keep our Earth habitable? Part 2 of 2 // Nov 26, 2020

Second of two videos.

Ref:  ‘An earth system model shows self-sustained melting of permafrost even if all man-made GHG emissions stop in 2020‘, Published: 12 November 2020.  Jorgen Randers & Ulrich Goluke.  Abstract:

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The risk of points-of-no-return, which, once surpassed lock the world into new dynamics, have been discussed for decades. Recently, there have been warnings that some of these tipping points are coming closer and are too dangerous to be disregarded. In this paper we report that in the ESCIMO climate model the world is already past a point-of-no-return for global warming. In ESCIMO we observe self-sustained melting of the permafrost for hundreds of years, even if global society stops all emissions of man-made GHGs immediately. We encourage other model builders to explore our discovery in their (bigger) models, and report on their findings…continues, at link here.
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Paul on Chess:  ‘When I was growing up a few years ago (some would argue that it hasn’t happened yet) board games like chess, checkers, backgammon, Blitzkrieg, etc. were always part of my family life. Chess became my passion, and I attained a ranking of 40th or so in Canada, with a master rating (2321), and at some point or other managed to beat most of the top players in Canada, and I even drew with Zsuza Polgar, who went on to be the Woman’s World Champion.

The Netflix series “Queen’s Gambit” is an extremely accurate portrayal of the chess world at the highest levels. It also captures the sacrifices that top players must make to stay at the top of their game and try to eke out a living. I highly recommend it.

If I had been a chess consultant for the series, the only thing that I would have done differently would be to have had the top players being defeated by Beth Harmon actually be real world class Grandmasters; it would have been fantastic to see Kasparov himself in the series as the defeated Russian!! This would have added an extra twist to the show, that the chess world would have just loved:).
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Smorgasbord of Abrupt Climate Change Happenings

A Mishmash of Abrupt Climate Change Topics: Part 3 of 3 // Nov 6, 2020

My main focus is on the lack of Arctic sea ice regrowth in the Eastern Siberian Arctic Shelf region and the Laptev Sea region. These two regions faced extremely anomalous sea ice loss much earlier than normal in the Spring this year, and regrowth this Fall was much delayed.

Meanwhile, ice regrowth over the past week has set near record levels; basically unnoticed due to the US election distractions. The problem with the much longer ice free duration over these two Siberian shelves is that the water is over 5 C throughout the water column to the bottom, and thus the warmed sediments are thawing the enclosed methane hydrates, leaving large pock marks on the ocean floor, releasing methane that saturates the water column, and venting large amounts of methane into the atmosphere. Not a pretty picture.

Video part two, here. Video part one, here.

Ref 1:  Our Final Warning: Six Degrees of Climate Emergency, by Mark Lynas.

Ref 2:  On Writing: A Memoir Of The Craft, by Stephen King

Ref 3:  Video, ‘‘‘Twas the Night before US Elections when all through the Lands, Many People were Stirring…‘:

Donald Trump had a grimace he held tight in his teeth,
And the anger and tension encircled his head like a wreath;
He had an orange face and a enormous round belly,
That shook, when he ranted like a bowlful of smellies.’
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‘‘Twas the Night before US Elections when all through the Lands, Many People were Stirring…

‘‘Twas the Night before US Elections when all through
the Lands, Many People were Stirring
… // Nov 2, 2020

Twas the night before US elections, when all through the lands,
Many people were stirring, some with shaking hands;
The ballots were put in the boxes with care,
In hopes that Joe Biden soon would be here;

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of a safe future danced in their heads;
And mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled down from a long ordeal’s nap,

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the hopeful land,
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a jolly Joe Biden, and wonderful cheers.

With a strong wise statesman, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be Joe Biden.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;

“Now, DECENCY! now, HONESTY! now, GOODNESS and WISDOM!
On, JOBS! on SUCCESS ! on CLIMATE PLAN! and HEALTHCARE!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the team full of Policies, and Joe Biden too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each Joe vote.
As I drew in my hand, and was turning around,
Down the victory platform Joe Biden came with a bound.

He was dressed all in smiles, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with true grit and hard work;
A bundle of good policies he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a saviour just opening his pack.

Joe’s eyes — how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His knowing smile was drawn up like a bow,
And the stubble on his chin was as proud as the snow;

Donald Trump had a grimace he held tight in his teeth,
And the anger and tension encircled his head like a wreath;
He had an orange face and a enormous round belly,
That shook, when he ranted like a bowlful of smellies.

He was chubby and plump, a right lying old con,
And I cringed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
An evil look in his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had everything to dread;

He spoke many words, not one of them true,
And blustered and raved; then turned like a jerk,
And laying his finger into obscene gestures,
And giving a snarl, to the golf course he fled;

He sprang to his limo, to his proud boys gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
DAMN YOU AMERICA, FOR VOTING ME OUT.
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US Election 2020 Chaos and Existential Climate Chaos

On the Existential Risks of Abrupt Climate Change and a chat on Chomsky Election Thoughts // Oct 31, 2020

Hello Everybody, I agree completely with Chomsky on the following statements, and have said these things for years:

Definitely the worst one I can think of in history, Adolf Hitler was pretty hideous – [but] he wasn’t trying to destroy organized human society on earth,” — Chomsky

The facts are pretty straight; there is almost universal consensus among serious scientists that we are racing towards the cataclysm, if current tendencies persist,” — Chomsky

By the end of this century, you might have reached the level three, maybe four degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. And every analysis concludes that’s a total cataclysm. Organised human societies – nothing survives.” — Chomsky

Repeated for emphasis:  “Definitely the worst one I can think of in history, Adolf Hitler was pretty hideous – [but] he wasn’t trying to destroy organized human society on earth,” — Chomsky

Challenged on this, with the fact that the Nazi Holocaust killed at least six million Jewish people, Chomsky, whose parents were Jewish, says Hitler also killed “30 million Slavs, but not human civilization”.

Here is the article link; please read it and think about it carefully:
Trump’s denial of climate change represents worse threat to humanity than Hitler, says activist Noam Chomsky, Andrew Buncombe in Seattle, Oct 30, 2020.

I agree with Chomsky, and have been saying these exact things for many years; it’s why I study climate change and have done so for many years. Presently, we are only 1.1 C above the 1880-1910 average (1.4 C above 1750) and we already experience weather extremes, loss of the Arctic ice and cold, mega-wildfires, and looming global food shortages.

We face civilization collapse. Global food shortages. Frequent pandemics due to loss of global biodiversity. Collapsing political systems. Fascism and lies.

Climate destabilization is the fundamental root cause of all this accelerating chaos.

Please use our easy to operate, Donate feature.  Does not require a PayPal account.. I have hundreds of videos on all aspects of climate change science produced over many years.

Thanks for watching, and for your support.

Sincerely, Paul

Ref:  Our Final Warning: Six Degrees of Climate Emergency, by Mark Lynas:  ‘This book must not be ignored. It really is our final warning.  Mark Lynas delivers a vital account of the future of our earth, and our civilization, if current rates of global warming persist. And it’s only looking worse.

We are living in a climate emergency. But how much worse could it get? Will civilisation collapse? Are we already past the point of no return? What kind of future can our children expect? Rigorously cataloguing the very latest climate science, Mark Lynas explores the course we have set for Earth over the next century and beyond. Degree by terrifying degree, he charts the likely consequences of global heating and the ensuing climate catastrophe‘.
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Super-typhoon Goni Strikes Philippines with 195 mph winds; likely strongest storm landfall on Earth // Oct 31, 2020

While the eyes of the USA and much of the sane world are focused intently on the elections, the world is blissfully ignorant of the massive Superstorm Goni that has just hit the Philippines.

Goni has maximum sustained winds estimated at 195 mph (170 knots, 315 km/hr) with gusts exceeding 235 mph (295 knots, 380 km/hr).

The minimum central pressure in the eye reached a staggeringly low 876 mbar. Normal atmospheric pressure at the surface is 1013 mbar, so this enormous drop gives rise to a very large pressure gradient which drives the high winds.

Philippine Sea temperatures are in the 31 to 32 C range, representing an anomaly of 2 to 3 C warmer than normal for this time of year, and Ocean Heat Content above 150 means that not only is the surface sauna-like but the heat extends downward into the depths. Basically, rocket fuel like ocean conditions to feed the storm. Driven inexorably worse by climate change.

Also, wind changes in direction with altitude, known as wind shear was minimal, so there was no hope of shear induced chopping off for the storm tops.

Essentially, conditions were ideal for rapid storm intensification over 48 hours from 35 knots to 155 knots.

Damage in the Philippines, including the capital Manila will be extremely severe. The storm had a direct hit on a western Philippine island with a population of 250,000 people, and that will have unbelievable catastrophic damage.

One of Strongest Storms EVER, Super-Typhoon Goni Strikes Philippines with 195 mph Winds: Part 2 of 2 // Oct 31, 2020


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A Halloween Treat: The “Dance with Emily” Troupe in the Glebe, Ottawa blocks traffic! // Oct 31, 2020

A Halloween treat: The students of my local community centers “Dance with Emily” troupe blocking a street in the Glebe neighborhood of Ottawa to bust some moves, and shake some tunes.

How could I not stop and film a video. Happy Halloween. It’s pretty much cancelled in Ottawa due to our most estimate city council.
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Notice name of Street: 
Beckwith Rd.
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This study of 1.6 million chess moves found the age we hit our cognitive peak, Victoria Masterson:

More than 24,000 chess games played in professional tournaments over 125 years have been analyzed by scientists to measure how age affects cognitive ability.

They conclude that humans reach their cognitive peak around the age of 35 and begin to decline after the age of 45. And our cognitive abilities today exceed those of our ancestors.

Posted in Basic Science, Catastrophe, Climate, Climate Change, Collapse, Global Warming, Rapid Climate Change, Science, Social Comment, Social Critique, Warnings | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Marine Joy Ride: Contemplating Today, Future, Past

A Marine Joy Ride in Paradise: Contemplating the Contemporary, Future and Past // Oct 23, 2020

What can be better than being on a small lake in Ontario in the Fall, puttering around an island taking in the brilliant colours of the shoreline forest, while inhaling crisp fresh air and contemplating “our rickety planet”, in the words of the illustrious and brilliant Elon Musk. Rickety indeed.

Weather is going to hell in a hand basket, as:

  • the Arctic snow and ice melts to oblivion,
  • our wavy and ever slowing jet stream fracturing into a million swirls and eddies,
  • our political systems degenerating into idiocy and fascism,
  • our financial systems heaving under inequalities as we accelerate to a world where a handful of people grab the entire wealth of the planet,
  • the raw savagery of racism coming to the fore and openly exposed for all to see,
  • as evil triumphs over good in all aspects of society.

Battles between good and evil are being lost on all fronts, but the war is just beginning. We really are over the brink and plunging into the abyss. I hope that our proverbial barrel is sturdy and well padded for the impacts to come.

Ref:  ‘The Rideau Canal, also known unofficially as the Rideau Waterway, connects Canada’s capital city of Ottawa, Ontario, to Lake Ontario and the Saint Lawrence River at Kingston, Ontario. It is 202 kilometres long. The name Rideau, French for “curtain”, is derived from the curtain-like appearance of the Rideau River’s twin waterfalls where they join the Ottawa River. The canal system uses sections of two rivers, the Rideau and the Cataraqui, as well as several lakes. Parks Canada operates the Rideau Canal.

‘The canal was opened in 1832 as a precaution in case of war with the United States. It remains in use today primarily for pleasure boating, with most of its original structures intact. The locks on the system open for navigation in mid-May and close in mid-October. It is the oldest continuously operated canal system in North America, and in 2007 it was registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site‘.
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Stunning Scenery from Sand Lake to Jones Falls in World Heritage Designated Rideau Canal Waterway// Oct 23, 2020


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Coronavirus Transmission, Indoor Ventilation, Niagara Falls “Ghost Town” Chat

Coronavirus Transmission; Indoor Ventilation Chat from a Scenic Niagara Falls “Ghost Town” Vista // Oct 18, 2020

I visited Niagara Falls for a few days this past week, and got a first-hand look at how the virus has completely devastated this border tourist town. Normally the town gets 12 million visitors a year (averaging 33,000 per day), in the peak months of July, August, and September it is way more than the average. With only a few percent of this number of tourists now, the place is essentially a ghost town. It looks like a neutron bomb went off killing all the people but leaving all the structures intact.

     

In my previous Coronavirus videos, I strongly emphasized that COVID-19 is an Indoor Disease. Sure, if you hug and kiss people outside you can transmit, however if you social distance and wash your hands frequently you are relatively safe being outside without a mask. I chat about how indoor air circulation is vital for suppressing the virus, and mask wearing indoors is imperative but not sufficient to stay safe.
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Earth Energy Imbalance: How HEAT Impacts Ocean, Land, Cryosphere, Atmosphere

Earth Energy Imbalance – EEI: How HEAT Impacts Ocean, Land, Cryosphere, and Atmosphere: Part 1 of 2 // Sep 25, 2020

Human-induced atmospheric composition changes cause a radiative imbalance at the top of the atmosphere driving global warming. The Earth Energy Imbalance (EEI) is the most critical number defining the prospects for continued and accelerating global warming and climate change. Understanding the heat gain of the Earth systemparticularly how much and where the heat is distributed – is fundamental to understanding consequences like:

  • warming oceans,
  • atmosphere and land;
  • rising surface temperatures;
  • rising sea levels; and
  • loss of grounded and floating ice,

which are all fundamental concerns for society.  I chat about a new peer-reviewed study, part of Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) efforts to update Earth’s heat budget and give updated numbers on ocean warming and heat gain in the atmosphere, cryosphere and land. The long-term Earth system heat gain over the period 1971–2018 comprises a total heat gain of 358 ± 37 ZJ (Z – Zeta is 10**21) equivalent to a global heating rate of 0.47 ± 0.1 W/m2.

Heat distribution has the global ocean with 89%, broken down into 52% in the upper 700m ocean depths, 28% for the 700–2000m depths and 9% for below 2000m depths.

Heat gain over land amounts to 6%, 4% is available for the melting of grounded and floating ice, and only 1% is available for atmospheric warming.

EEI is not only continuing, but also increasing: it amounts to 0.87±0.12 W/m2 during 2010–2018. Stabilization of climate, the goal of the universally agreed upon United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1992 and the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015, requires that EEI be reduced to approximately zero to achieve Earth system quasi-equilibrium.

The amount of CO2 in the atmosphere needs to be reduced from about 410 ppm to 353 ppm to increase the amount of heat radiation to space by 0.87 W/m2, bringing Earth back towards overall energy balance. This simple number, EEI, is the most fundamental metric that the scientific community and public must be aware of as the measure of how well the world is doing in the task of bringing climate change under control, and we call for an implementation of the EEI into the global stocktake based on the best available science.

Continued quantification and reduced uncertainties in the Earth heat inventory can be best achieved through the maintenance of the current global climate observing system, its extension into areas of gaps in the sampling, and the establishment of an international framework for concerted multidisciplinary research of the Earth heat inventory as presented in the study.

Ref 2:  Heat stored in the Earth system: where does the energy go?
von Schuckmann, Cheng, Palmer,  Tassone, Aich, Adusumilli, Beltrami:  Earth Syst. Sci. Data, 12, 1–29, 2020.
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Earth Energy Imbalance – EEI: How HEAT Impacts Ocean, Land, Cryosphere, and Atmosphere: Part 2 of 2 // Sep 25, 2020

Second video.

Ref 2: The global energy balance as represented in CMIP6 climate models, by Martin Wild: May 2020
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Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity is WORSE than Expected

How Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity is WORSE than Expected; Dependent on Initial Temperature: 1 of 3 // Oct 4, 2020

Part 1: I chat in detail in a three video series on how today’s climate and rate of change of climate related to the Eocene and PETM (Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum). Despite recent advances, the link between evolution of atmospheric CO2 and climate during the Eocene greenhouse period remains unclear. Modelling studies suggest that to achieve the global warmth that characterized the early Eocene, warmer climates must be more sensitive to CO2 forcing than colder climates.

In other words, climate sensitivity (temperature vs CO2 level) depends on the starting conditions. In the new peer-reviewed paper that I discuss, they test this assertion in the geological record by combining a new high-resolution boron isotope-based CO2 record with novel estimates of Global Mean Temperature.

They find that Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity (ECS) was indeed higher during the warmest intervals of the Eocene, agreeing well with recent model simulations, and declined through the Eocene as global climate cooled. These observations indicate that the canonical IPCC range of ECS (1.5 to 4.5 °C per doubling) is unlikely to be appropriate for high-CO2 warm climates of the past, and the state dependency of ECS may play an increasingly important role in determining the state of future climate as the Earth continues to warm. In other words, we are fucked.
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New Peer-Reviewed Research: Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity is Worse that We Thought: Part 2 of 3 // Oct 4, 2020

Second video:

Ref 1:  Nature Communications volume 11, Article number: 4436 (2020), Published: 07 September 2020:  Proxy evidence for state-dependence of climate sensitivity in the Eocene greenhouse
Anagnostou, John,  Babila, Sexton, Ridgwell, Lunt, Pearson, Chalk, Pancost Foster:

The Eocene Epoch is the most recent greenhouse period in Earth’s history. Atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and temperature peaked in the early Eocene, and both declined towards the late Eocene, ultimately leading to an icehouse state at the Eocene-Oligocene Transition.

However, to better constrain the potential mechanisms driving the early Eocene warmth and the subsequent cooling, high-resolution records of CO2 and temperature are required. While obtaining continuous marine records of temperature through this interval has been an ongoing effort, similar records for CO2, are fragmented and of low temporal resolution with large uncertainties, and thus remain insufficient to fully characterize the climate dynamics of the Eocene.’
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Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (56 million years ago) informs us on today’s Climate: Part 3 of 3 // Oct 5, 2020

Third video.

Ref 2:  ‘What Are “Proxy” Data?‘  ‘In paleoclimatology, or the study of past climates, scientists use what is known as proxy data to reconstruct past climate conditions. These proxy data are preserved physical characteristics of the environment that can stand in for direct measurements. Paleoclimatologists gather proxy data from natural recorders of climate variability such as tree rings, ice cores, fossil pollen, ocean sediments, corals and historical data. By analyzing records taken from these and other proxy sources, scientists can extend our understanding of climate far beyond the instrumental record‘.

Ref 3:  ‘The Perplexing PETM, Posted on 23 September 2014.

Rapid change and environmental turmoil
At the onset of the PETM, oceans acidified in less than 10,000 years (a geological blink) by around 0.3pH units as average surface ocean temperatures across the planet rose by 4° to 5°C (7-9°F), with the subsurface oceans warming by 5-6°C (9-11°F). Ecosystems across the world were plunged into turmoil, with poleward migrations, decline of reefs, extinctions of some sea-bottom-living creatures, and in some places 20% of land plants went extinct while plant diversity dropped by more than a third.

‘In mammals the effects included strong natural selection for small body size, and high species turnover, though there was no vertebrate mass extinction. Globally the resulting climate of the early Eocene was up to 15°C (27°F) warmer than today, supporting lush vegetation on Antarctica and the Arctic‘.
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Salty Ocean Parts Getting Saltier; Fresher Parts Getting Fresher: From Amplified Hydrological Cycle

   

Salty Ocean Parts Getting Saltier; Fresher Parts Getting Fresher: From Amplified Hydrological Cycle // Sep 25, 2020


We know that as climate change accelerates wet regions of the planet are getting wetter and dry regions of the planet are getting drier.

  • In this video, I chat about new research showing that ocean regions that have high salinity (very salty) are getting even saltier (since Evaporation-E exceeds Precipitation-P),
  • while low salinity (fresher) regions are getting even fresher (salinity is decreasing since P exceeds E).

I show salinity for the ocean surface (Sea Surface Salinity – SSS) down to a depth of 2000 m (6600 feet) on a 1×1 degree grid between 1960 and 2017.

The Salinity Contrast (SC) (maximum-minimum) has increased by 7.5% at the surface (SC0), 2.9% between 0 and 1000 m (SC1000) and increased 1.6% between 0 and 2000 m (SC2000). These contrast amplifications are caused by the global hydrological cycle intensifying by between 2 to 4% between 1960 and 2017.
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Please consider donating to support my work. I put a lot of time and effort into researching, studying and producing my videos so that you can learn how quickly our world is changing. Donating does not need a PayPal account, but simply a credit card. Please click here.
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