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With All Eyes on Trump White House Dysfunction, the Real Meltdown Is in the Arctic


#1

With All Eyes on Trump White House Dysfunction, the Real Meltdown Is in the Arctic

Jon Queally, staff writer

Leave it to the headline writers (this one included) to bury the lede.

'Hell Night at White House,' reads the top banner at the Huffington Post.

'The Wild Wars Within,' was the title of Axios' widely-read morning dispatch for beltway insiders.


#2

Should significant losses in sea ice occur, the resulting reduction in the albedo (reflectance of solar radiation) produces a feedback mechanism that further reduces the ice inventory. While melting sea ice will not in and of itself directly increase sea levels, this reduction in albedo will tend to increase the average global temperature, thus melting glacier ice on land–the effect of which will increase sea levels. The geological record clearly indicates that climate conditions often involve nonlinear transitions, which seem to be characteristic of the anthropocene resulting from the industrial revolution and the burning of fossil fuels. The climate has long been a moral issue swept largely aside by the forces of greed and access to the levers of power. The evolving climate paradigm will not be kind to much of life on earth. Notwithstanding my pessimism, action must be taken to attempt to stem the furtherance of destruction.


#3

This is the first year shipping lanes remained open through-out the winter. I believe were well past the “tipping” point.


#4

Twitler’s antics have provided distraction to cover lots of bad stuff, but this may be the worst.


#5

But Twumpy Wumpy Poo doesn’t believe in global warming. Therefore it is magically supposed to disappear. Maybe if we don’t believe we have a real president in the White House hard enough, Twumpy will disappear?


#6

We are in deep trouble the whole planet for a host of reasons. One rarely discusses is geoengineering which has been going on for over 70 years but has really been amped up over the last 20.


#7

So the 1% media moguls/robber barons don’t follow science news any longer especially when it might hurt the fossil fuel industry.

Media consolidation is just as bad as Citizen United and further deregulation of the banks. The media doesn’t cover climate change as a real threat, they should have there licenses removed if it is even required to have a license any longer.

Get money out of politics and break up to big to fail banks and media consolidation.


#8

I call BS on empty talk. We need leadership and a plan of action.


#9

Hold onto your hats folks, we are in for one hell of a ride. If you think last summer was bad just wait a few months more.


#10

Climate change is the issue of this century. Since the industrial revolution human activity has largely been powered by burning fossil fuels but we know now that continuing down this path could lead this planet to be largely uninhabitable for humans, perhaps for thousands of years. What makes this problem particularly difficult to solve is that it occurs in the earlier stages at a slow pace and there are no simple solutions for applying alternative sources of energy on large scale quickly. And to make matters worse there is a lack of political agreement surrounding the entire issue. It also cannot be solved by any one country and it also cannot be solved only by federal governments even if they cooperate. Rather it will take efforts from billions of individuals as well as all sorts of businesses and institutions in addition to governments. Carbon dioxide levels are now around 409 ppm and it has been estimated that carbon dioxide emissions increased globally last year by about 2%. The situation is dire yet most people don’t even discuss this issue. In summary, things look bad and that is probably an understatement.


#11

Mother Nature doesn’t give a $hit about whether one believes in climate change or not. All the political infighting in the USA is akin to rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. We passed any so-called tipping point decades ago and we are on the path to extinction. Enjoy your lives as best you can. It’s coming to an end.


#12

Wow. You’re still so far from getting it, Lurks. This century?

Let me be the first to let you know (I hope you’re sitting down) - the pace and trajectory of current change is poised to overtake the biggest mass extinction ever, 250 million years ago, “when life nearly died.”

“What makes this problem particularly difficult to solve” is a catastrophic failure of comprehension and imagination. People like you may never fully comprehend that the scale of the climate emergency mandates a radical rebooting of civilization itself: much less energy consumption for all, but enough for everybody if we can imagine the possibility of human equality.


#13

For those interested in the interaction of human capacities with the climate emergency, Elsevier posted a free preprint of “Total Systemic Failure?” by Philip Garnet. (After awhile, this’ll be behind their paywall.)

The abstract (my emphasis):

While the world argues about whether climate change is real, what if all systems are failing? This paper seeks to ignite further discussion concerning human impact on all aspects of our environment as we move further into the Anthropocene, not only in terms of the pressure we produce, but also how our activity changes the nature of the relationships between Earth’s systems. The paper suggests that we currently lack the tools and analytical capacity to understand the significance of these changes and therefore we cannot answer the question, “are all systems failing?”. We discuss how complexity theory, complex networks, and Artificial Intelligence, could contribute part of a solution.

[Edit: my initial link (from one the author provided) ran into problems. I think it’s fixed now.]


#14

Watch Mr. Mueller perform his Magical Act on the World Stage, and make Trump and many of Trumps poorly trained Monkeys disappear.


#15

I have had a business in Alaska since 99 and I can attest to the fact that devastating climate change is real, because I have seen it first hand in Alaska. And to me, Trump is an insidious, climate denier. When Trump calls what is happening to our planet a " CHINESE HOAX" he is the liar in chief.


#16

Well done, Jon Queally, staff writer !!!

As the poet said:

The food of hope is meditated action.”

And what I see is this - WE are getting it. It’s a steep learning curve, as AlephNull replied to Lrx, and many others on this thread are ‘getting it’ too.

I return to my favorite philosophical argument, “The Borders of Order - do all living things exist at the edge of chaos?” by Philip Ball. New Scientist, 26-April-2014.

Perhaps an observation from the mountains:

One finds oneself in this precise situation all too often while pushing the envelope in the hills. It is in some ways why we climb - a test.

In short, we know how to operate in a fast changing environment, where all is at stake.

But it takes absolute faith in oneself to proceed successfully.

In the words of Joshua Slocum, first solo circumnavigator (ca 1895):

'When the sea is in its grandest mood, then one must know the sea, and one must know that one knows the sea."

This is where we are.

We have scientists equal to the challenge. They have been silenced or otherwise prevented from doing their jobs.

This will change as nature turns nasty.

Spread the word - educate, educate, educate, including oneself.


#17

This planet will survive us. Life on this planet will survive us, however altered in its course. Our ability to adapt to a dramatically altered planet is questionable, and in that adaptation what crimes might come.


#18

I agree, but for people like Trump who will not be here too much longer, it does not bother them because in my view, they know they are soon coming to an end and being narcissistic and insouciant their foolhardy disregard of the coming danger of to our planet, for future generations, does not seem to be important to them.


#19

By licensing I suppose you mean for use of the airways. Newspapers, magazines, internet, do have licensing.


#20

My mother and father bought a Beach place on the Eastern Shore of Maryland back in the late 80’s.

In the 30 years since then, I have watched ocean levels rise and flood coastal and bay areas around their property.

I’ve since lost both of my folks who left me this home, and in the summer of 2012, after some rather large storms, the water was so high that it covered the driveway directly out front.

I called a real estate agent that week, listed it and sold it.

There was a news story this week, that many Military Commanders have reported to the Pentagon, that their bases are in danger of flooding due to sea level rise.

Well, as you well know, I am constantly railing against the Empire with its 700+ Military bases worldwide, so, I reckon we can credit Global Warming with slowing the growth of the Evil Empire.