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Greenhouse Gases Rise to Record Levels: Arctic Ice Retreats

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posted on Mar, 15 2006 @ 09:00 AM
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The Industrial Revolution dates back about 250 years. Since then, industry has created greenhouses gases that have accumulated in the planet's atmosphere. Here's the tally as of 2004:

Carbon dioxide: 35 percent higher than in 1750.
Methane: increased by 155 percent over the previous 250 years.
Nitrous oxide: up 18 percent since 1750.

Predictably, the Arctic ice is melting at unprecendented rates as greenhouse gases build up. This melt causes sea levels to rise and contributes to the climate change feedback loop.




The concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere reached record levels in 2004, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in Geneva said Tuesday.

Levels of carbon dioxide were 35 percent higher than in 1750, before the Industrial Revolution, said the U.N. agency, which based its observations on a worldwide monitoring network. ..."Levels of carbon dioxide continue to increase steadily and show no sign of levelling off," it said. ..."Given that the lifetime of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is 50 to 200 years, depending on how you calculate it, ... it doesn't take a nuclear scientist to state that we're going to have this problem for a long time," Len Barrie, head of the WMO's environment division, told the media.

...the concentration of methane, which accounts for 20 percent of greenhouse gases, stabilized in 2004 after increasing by 155 percent over the previous 250 years. ...The concentration of nitrous oxide, which represents six percent of greenhouse gases, went up 0.22 percent in 2004 and 18 percent since 1750.

Greenhouse Gases Rise to Record Levels

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For the second year in a row, the cloak of sea ice on the Arctic Ocean failed to grow to its normal winter expanse, scientists said yesterday. The finding led some climate experts to predict a record expansion of open water this summer. ..."We keep looking for the ice to recover, but it isn't," said Mark C. Serreze, a senior scientist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colo., which monitors the region using satellites. "Unless conditions turn unusually cold this spring and summer, we may be looking at sea ice losses in 2006 that will rival what we saw in 2005."

The ice retreat recorded last September was the biggest since satellites began routine monitoring in 1979 and was probably the biggest in 100 years, according to Dr. Serreze's research group and an independent University of Illinois team. ...Next week, when the Arctic begins six months of daylight, the warming trend is likely to be amplified by the shift from ice to water, since water absorbs sunlight that ice would otherwise reflect.

Ozone generated in polluted cities and by industrial sources in the Northern Hemisphere tends to accumulate in the lower layers of the atmosphere over the Arctic in winter, when a lack of sunlight prevents natural chemical reactions from breaking it down. ...As a result, it appears to be contributing to winter warming there, said Drew Shindell, the leader of the NASA research, which was conducted at the agency's Goddard Institute for Space Studies in Manhattan. ..."Reducing ozone pollution can not only improve air quality but also have the added benefit of easing climate warming, especially in the Arctic," he said.

Ice Retreats in Arctic for 2nd Year; Some Fear Most of It Will Vanish




And of course, the same industry-funded "experts" who say there's no Mad Cow or Bird Flu in the USA also say greenhouses gases don't contribute to climate change, or accelerate or disrupt the planet's natural cycles.

Surprise, surprise.




posted on Mar, 15 2006 @ 03:05 PM
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Methane increased 5x the rate of CO2. Methane is a more important gas to global warming than CO2. The majority of the increase in atmospheric methane is from natural causes.

So this report is reaffirming what many experts have been saying all along -- anthropogenic CO2 is a contributing factor to global warming, but not the causal factor. And global warming would continue regardless of any human actions to reduce anthropogenic carbon.



posted on Mar, 16 2006 @ 12:39 PM
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Originally posted by dave_54
Methane increased 5x the rate of CO2. Methane is a more important gas to global warming than CO2. The majority of the increase in atmospheric methane is from natural causes.




Any sources perchance? Links?





So this report is reaffirming what many experts have been saying all along -- anthropogenic CO2 is a contributing factor to global warming, but not the causal factor.



Scientists say climate is a complex system - and every factor has an effect.

Attempts to create models that assign hierarchical importance and percentage contributions to the various factors seems to have been mired in various problems. Complex systems being complex and all.

Any links to back up your statements? References?



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