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North Pole may disappear [briefly] this summer

  1. Jun 27, 2008 #1

    Ivan Seeking

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    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2008/06/080620-north-pole.html
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 27, 2008 #2
    Shall we have a barbecue in the North pole on solid ground for the first time in man's history ? :biggrin:

    White ice reflects quite an amount of heat, and the breakdown of this can cause a serious feedback loop in the heating process. On the other hand, we know of a few ways of reflecting Sun's light, which would be quite efficient in reducing our temperatures. Geoengineering, although politically incorrect, faces us both because we know better and better how to do it, whether we want or not, and also because the need to use it becomes more and more urgent. What if tomorrow morning you read in the news that China for instance, in order not to reduce CO2 emissions, decided on its own to use geoengineering ?

    It seems to me, independently of whether we want to use geoengineering or whether we don't, despite its political incorrectness, we can not afford not to talk about it anymore. We need a responsible international organization to make decisions, to define rules, at least to officially release an assessment :approve:

    Planetary engineering
     
  4. Jun 27, 2008 #3

    Ivan Seeking

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    On the up side, shipping will be much cheaper this summer.

    As for the OP: When I heard this, I nearly soiled myself.
     
  5. Jun 27, 2008 #4
    Isn't the geographical North Pole just ice and no land beneath?
     
  6. Jun 27, 2008 #5

    Ivan Seeking

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    Yes, that is true of the North Pole proper, if you will, however the arctic circle includes plenty of land mass. Glaciers contain a vast reserve of fresh water.

    Salinity changes are huge concern.
     
  7. Jun 27, 2008 #6

    Hurkyl

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    Oh, ha ha ha. They're not saying the arctic ice will disappear, just the ice located at the geographic North pole. :tongue:
     
  8. Jun 27, 2008 #7

    Ivan Seeking

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    Sure, but if the ice at the northermost lattitude experiences historic melting, that would certainly be true for everything South, until we get South of the equator.
     
  9. Jun 27, 2008 #8
    A couple of years ago there was talk of black soot being deposited on the ice as the culprit involved in the arctic melting.

    I am thinking that pollution from China could be involved.
     
  10. Jun 27, 2008 #9

    Ivan Seeking

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    I would think any evidence of this would be easily seen by satellite.
     
  11. Jun 27, 2008 #10

    Hurkyl

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    Would it? Climate is complicated subject; I know I am certainly unqualified to judge whether such a thing is certain. But if they were predicting the entire ice pack was going to melt, don't you think that would have found its way into the article, not to mention every major news outlet?

    We should base our opinions on facts (these climate models predict ice at the North pole will melt), and not exaggerations of facts (these climate models predict the Arctic ice pack will melt).


    (I'm not trying to diminish whatever significance the article has -- I'm trying to diminish exaggerations of that significance)
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2008
  12. Jun 27, 2008 #11
    Ah!, fine, we have 5 years left before it happens. Maybe 10. Maybe 15. Who cares. To me that's missing the point. Even though you might be technically right, the article ends up on
    and points to at least 2 other articles mentioning the entire Arctic all together.
     
  13. Jun 27, 2008 #12
    NASA did use satellite info during a study of the possible involvement of soot in 05. I think they mostly used temperature information because the soot doesn't turn the ice black it just reduces the reflectivity.

    http://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/environment/arctic_soot.html

    Edit: This more recnet study implicates China

    http://my.telegraph.co.uk/reasonmclucus/blog/2008/01/18/black_soot_causes_arctic_melting
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2008
  14. Jun 27, 2008 #13
    Does this mean that the opening to hollow earth will be visible again?






    Sorry but this is GD. ;-p
     
  15. Jun 28, 2008 #14

    Borek

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    I hate such an anthropocentric approach. At best it will be for the first time in the history of our observations.
     
  16. Jun 28, 2008 #15

    Ivan Seeking

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    Yes, I think the correct number is something close to 20,000 years.
     
  17. Jun 28, 2008 #16

    Ivan Seeking

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    Where did I say that? I said historic melting, not complete melting. From everything that I've seen with possibly one or two exceptions, historic melting is an accurate description.
     
  18. Jun 28, 2008 #17

    Ivan Seeking

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    I remember when suggestions of the polar ice melting in our lifetimes was considered to be a crackpot assertion posited only by the most extreme fear mongers.
     
  19. Jun 28, 2008 #18

    Hurkyl

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    Just goes to show that even a broken clock is right twice a day.
     
  20. Jun 28, 2008 #19
    The reasons why arctic ice increases melting rates include rougly in this order:

    - Temperature and flow of water below the ice

    - Increased direct solar radiation

    - Air temperature and windspeed.

    The unusual large arctic melt of 2007 was attributed to unusual winds:

    http://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/lookingatearth/quikscat-20071001.html

     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2008
  21. Jun 28, 2008 #20

    vanesch

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    Well, I remember a discussion I had with a PhD student in geology, now about 15 years ago, who told me that the ice sheet on top of Greenland is actually metastable: there shouldn't be that ice sheet. However, because it was there, it kept itself in place because of two reasons: high reflectivity, and the top of the ice sheet was pretty high, which means that the precipitation which should have come down as rain, was in fact snow up there at that altitude. He told me that if ever it were to melt down, it would "flip" in the stable state of Greenland, which is no ice cover at all.
     
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