It has been awhile since I’ve touched on the Arctic sea-ice dilemma plaguing us at the moment, and this recent story seemed worthy of bringing it back to the surface. Though we are only coming up on the Northern Hemisphere’s Fall/Autumn, experts do not like what they have seen so far.
Speaking at the Alaska Forum on the Environment, Ignatius Rigo, a University of Washington climatologist, believes that this summer will see the sea-ice pushed in to the North Atlantic Ocean by a combination of global warming and cyclical climate patterns.
According to Rigo, the remnants of the old sea ice that – thanks to their age – are stronger and thicker, are slowly being pushed in to the North Atlantic where they have no chance of surviving. “The buoys are streaming out,” Rigor said, referring to the markers used to monitor the flushing of ice into the North Atlantic.
The ice that is currently covering the Arctic is not the thick kind that could withstand such temperature and climate shifts as are taking place. Where in 1989 at least 80% of the ice in the Arctic was at least 10 years old, today that percent is down to 3.
So, “Have we passed the tipping point?” he asked. “It’s hard to see how the system may come back.”
This obviously presents us with a new shipping route through the area, but the fact that people are viewing this as a plus is just the epitome of why humanity is going to hell in a hand-basket.
When you consider that one of this planet’s most beautiful animals – the polar bear – is at risk of being wiped off the face of our planet thanks to these ice shortages, and people view shipping as a plus, you somewhat have to just shake your head and wonder; how did humanity get to this self-absorbed piousness that pits themselves above anything or anyone else.
Photo Courtesy of wili_hybrid via Flickr
AP via MSNBC – Too late to keep Arctic sea ice from vanishing?