Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/25/2014 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Cryosat 2 has affirmed that ice mass is being lost at an unprecedented rate.

The European environmental satellite Cryosat 2, has independently confirmed what scientists have been saying for some time - the ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland are melting. The blame for this melting is laid squarely on global warming and correlates with global sea level rise.

An artist's impression of Cryosat 2. The ESA mission has confirmed that massive ice sheets are melting fast.

An artist's impression of Cryosat 2. The ESA mission has confirmed that massive ice sheets are melting fast.

Highlights

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/25/2014 (2 years ago)

Published in Green

Keywords: Greenland, sea level, ice, global warming, Antarctica, Cryosat 2


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The European Space Agency's Cryosat 2 has confirmed that the world's largest ice sheets are losing ice much faster than it can be replaced. Ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are melting, losing thickness as their ice turns to liquid and flows into the ocean where it contributes to sea level rise.

The rate of loss has also doubled since just 2009, alarming scientists further. The concern is that the impacts of global warming are about to become increasingly apparent as climate change, spurred on by warming, becomes more dramatic.

Keep Catholic Online free, keep it going!

Notably, all of this appears to be happening at a time when the pace of global warming appears to be moderated to a minimal level, creating an apparent paradox that scientists have been struggling to answer. Global warming appears to be on "hiatus" with averages barely rising over the past decade. Despite this hiatus, other changes predicted by scientists as a result of global warming, appear to be developing.

The winter of 2014 was especially warm for most regions, including the western USA and Siberia. Nota

The winter of 2014 was especially warm for most regions, including the western USA and Siberia. Notably, it was exceptionally cold in the American east. This overall temperature pattern has remained constant into the summer of 2014.


Scientists can't agree on the reason behind the global warming hiatus, although they do not think the pace of warming has stopped -only that some previously unaccounted mechanism is absorbing more of the warming, keeping atmospheric temperature rise moderated. However, the hunt for the "missing warming" has continued.

Just last week, the most plausible explanation for this "missing warming" was announced. Scientists announced that the deep Atlantic could be storing the excess heat because of a natural process whereby the Atlantic currents absorb more heat and store it for an extended period. That period could last for another decade or even two, then it will reverse and release the excess heat, leading to a sharp spike in global warming.

However, in the meantime, global warming will remain moderated by the present natural cycle.

The problem with the Atlantic hypothesis is that good, comprehensive data is only dated to 2001 onwards which is right when the hiatus began. Before that time, records suggest the Atlantic was in a cool phase for the previous two decades, and was not absorbing as much heat. However, the data suggesting that isn't as comprehensive.

Scientists have also offered other competing hypotheses to suggest why global warming has paused, suggesting that solar activity or aerosols in the atmosphere could be to blame.

Despite this acknowledged speculation, the impacts of global warming appear to continue. As ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland melt, they powerfully suggest that the global climate is changing despite what temperature records suggest.

Also, 2014 appears to be among the hottest years on record, even with minimal warming occurring. A notable exception to global warming appears to be in the American east, where temperatures have hit record lows. Speculation also suggests that is also the result of global climate change.

It should also be recognized that the Cryosat 2 mission has demonstrated an increase in ice mass in some places in Antarctica, but mission scientists have warned this is not nearly enough ice increase to offset the losses from elsewhere in the continent.

What can be concluded with virtual certainty, beyond the raw data presented by the Cryosat 2 mission, is that climate models remain inadequate to explain precisely why the climate is behaving the way it is. There does appear to be a powerful, long-term correlation between human activity and global warming, however there remains a number of variables that are not yet factored into the equation.

For example, the north polar ice cap should be entirely melted, should we recall prior predictions from scientists. The fact that Arctic ice remains suggests that something is missing from the calculation. What those variables are and how powerful they are remains to be discovered.

Despite the imperfections in the models, we should rest confident that global climate change is real, the climate is warming, and despite any hiatus, the pace of climate change and warming will eventually increase leading to dramatic changes in many areas.

Certainly, global sea level rise continues at the rate of at least 3mm per year. This rate has increased within the past decade, during the current hiatus. In fact, sea level has increased by over one foot since 1870. Sea level rise is expected to increase for centuries with impacts on coastal communities and marine ecosystems.

All of the trends point upwards, so it is time to move the discussion from "if" global warming is real to "what" we ought to do about it. A delay in that discussion could lead to fewer options later on as the problem accelerates and grows increasingly critical for billions of people who are closely impacted by changes to the environment.

---


'Help give every student and teacher Free resources for a world-class moral Catholic education'


Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for DECEMBER 2016
Universal:
End to Child-Soldiers: That the scandal of child-soldiers may be eliminated the world over.
Evangelization: Europe: That the peoples of Europe may rediscover the beauty, goodness, and truth of the Gospel which gives joy and hope to life.



Comments


More Green

The Green Pope warned us but no one listened - Now the devastation of nations is upon us Watch

Image of What will happen to the world if the Great Barrier Reef dies?

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Green Pope, Pope Benedict XVI, is known for his conservation and call for carbon-neutral states - but too few have listened and the world may suffer deadly consequences. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Pope Benedict XVI warned the world of the dangers that come ... continue reading


A Catholic perspective on Standing Rock Watch

Image of It is important to remember there are Catholics on both sides of the lines.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

What is happening at Standing Rock, and what is the Catholic Church's viewpoint on the protests? Americans appear to be taking sides on the issue, but where's the guidance for Catholics? Can we be neutral about it? LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) -- "Native ... continue reading


It's dark and cold at the North Pole, so why is it MELTING? Watch

Image of Ice is growing int he Arctic, but at a slower rate than normal. El Nino may be to blame, but the overall trend is worsening.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Arctic sea ice has set a new record low for November. At a time when the ice should be growing, it appears to have plateaued for a moment, and is growing much less rapidly than normal. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) -- Arctic sea ice has set a new record low for ... continue reading


Months after Trump denies California drought, 102 million trees die from lack of water Watch

Image of Over 100 million trees have died (Lucy Nicholson/Reuters).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

California residents have been caught in a five-year drought, which has deeply impacted the nation's largest production of fruits, vegetables and nuts. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - During a <a ... continue reading


Secrets behind London's mysterious deadly fog revealed - Can it help save China? Watch

Image of Have the mysteries of London fog been revealed?

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

One of the deadliest disasters in British history occurred on December 5th, 1952, when a mysterious veil of fog settled over London. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - No one gave the fog much thought at first.Fog is a regular occurrence in London, after all.[media ... continue reading


Did Catholic Online predict the Supermoon Quake in New Zealand? Watch

Image of The supermoon has been hypothesized to influence quakes, but evidence remains sparse.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Did Catholic Online predict the supermoon double quake in New Zealand? On Nov. 4, we reported that a major quake was possible on or around Nov. 14. To be fair, we were far from certain, but the eerily accurate prediction may cause some to take notice of the influence ... continue reading


This just has to be the saddest fossil in prehistory Watch

Image of 'Tongtianlong limosus' was stuck in the mud, 66 million years ago. Sadly, the creature was unable to free itself and died a miserable death.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

It may be the saddest dinosaur fossil ever discovered, a birdlike creature that suffered a slow, agonizing death, stuck in mud. But it may also be one of the greatest fossil finds in recent history, giving scientists a glimpse into evolutionary history and the ... continue reading


Why giant snowballs in Siberia are bad news for Americans Watch

Image of Giant snowballs are piled on a Siberian beach, what does this mean for America?

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Giant snowballs have appeared on the beach in Siberia and they mean bad news for Americans. Do the Russians have a secret weapon in a possible war against the West? LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - A beach in Siberia is covered with massive snowballs and it is ... continue reading


Will the supermoon on Nov. 14 trigger a superquake? Watch

Image of The supermoon will rise on Nov. 14, but will it trigger earthquakes?

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

On the night of Nov. 14, you will have the chance to see an amazing sight. On that day, the Moon will pass closer to Earth than it has in nearly 70 years. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - The closest supermoon of the past 70 years is this November 14. On that ... continue reading


WARNING: Have you heard about the secret danger about to destroy the Vatican? Watch

Image of Within the next millennium, a volcanic eruption on the outskirts of Rome will damage or even destroy the Vatican. Nobody knows how much time is left.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Pope Francis and the Vatican are on secret high alert, on the lookout for terrorists and others who would do harm to the Church. However, if the scientists are to be believed, there is a rapidly developing threat to Rome from nature itself. A long-dormant volcano on ... continue reading


All Green News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Genesis 3:9-15, 20
9 But Yahweh God called to the man. 'Where are you?' he ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 98:1, 2-3, 3-4
1 [Psalm] Sing a new song to Yahweh, for he has performed wonders, his ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:26-38
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in ... Read More

Reading 2, Ephesians 1:3-6, 11-12
3 Blessed be God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 8th, 2016 Image

St. Romaric
December 8: In the account of St Amatus of Remiremont it is ... Read More