Pessimistic Realist

September 4, 2010

Ocean water all over is apparently getting warmer.

Above the Bering Strait, in the Chukchi Sea, northwest of Alaska, the water there is nearly pool worthy as recorded in this captain’s blog: “The water temperature is 7.5 degrees. If we weren’t sailing, it would be a great temperature for a swim!” (via ClimateProgress).

And in the Atlantic Ocean, the even-more warmer water has fostered realization that storms like the recent Hurricane Earl will be the ‘now normal’ for weather along the US eastern seaboard — citing a temperature map, ClimateCentral reports: The above map of sea surface temperature anomalies from the last week of August shows the abundance of unusually warm water in the Atlantic, from the coast of Africa to southern New England. This is one of the reasons why the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has predicted an above average hurricane season, and helps explain how Earl was able to stay so strong as it neared the Carolinas.

(Illustration found here).

Also in the Atlantic, the gigantic iceberg that broke off from a Greenland glacier last month has struck a small island, and although its drift speed was reduced (it has moved more than 18 miles in less than 30 days), officials are a fear the ‘berg could waddle into Canada’s shipping lanes and oil platforms.
An image of the break-away ‘berg from the European Space Agency can be seen here.
When the iceberg melts, according to University of Delaware ice scientist Andreas Muenchow, the freshwater there “could keep the Delaware or Hudson rivers flowing for more than two years” and could keep “all U.S. public tap water flowing for 120 days.”
Of course, business can see the profit in dwindling Arctic ice:

Due to global warming, scientists say they expect the Arctic ice cover to completely disappear during the summer months in coming decades.
“The northern route could in time open up new possibilities for transport between the United States, Europe and Asia, and could help improve infrastructure in northern Russia,” said Sturla Henriksen, the chairman of the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association.

Out of the water and up on land, the US has been feeling the heat, or the lack thereof, all this summer with temperatures acting goofy from the Pacific and Atlantic coasts with eastern-seaboarders frying — During June, July and part of August as well, it seemed that many coastal areas of the West were missing out on summer entirely.
Both cold and heat are are gearing-up for some crazy times:

“The climate is changing,” said Jay Lawrimore, chief of climate analysis at the National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C., in the Times article.
“Extreme events are occurring with greater frequency, and in many cases with greater intensity.” And the heat? It’s “consistent with our understanding of how the climate responds to increasing greenhouse gases,” Lawrimore said.

Coupled onto this misbegotten weather, too, was an odd, but nasty environmentally-related story last week which may reveal an example how climate change will mess with peoples’ heads: James J. Lee, a loony-bad-tune-warped individual shot to death by police after a hostage/stand-off at the Discovery Channel HQ building just outside Washington, DC.
Amongst a shitload of horrific personal problems — Lee mangled an interpretation of the novel, “My Ishmael,” into an ironic take on human behavior — the process of climate change seemed to have perforated his brain that all kinds of nefarious man-made shit is leading mankind to eventually destroy itself.
But..?
According to a study published Friday in the journal, Science (via msnbc):

Mass extinctions have served as huge reset buttons that dramatically changed the diversity of species found in oceans all over the world, according to a comprehensive study of fossil records. The findings suggest humans will live in a very different future if they drive animals to extinction, because the loss of each species can alter entire ecosystems.

Two years ago, hostage-taker Lee also reportedly posted a full-age ad in a free local newspaper, displaying this commentary listed among other nit-wit tidbits: “We are running out of time to save this planet and the Discovery Channel is a big part of the problem,” he wrote. “Instead of showing successful solutions, their broadcast programs seem to be doing the opposite.”

The dreadful news, however, is so far there’s no successful solutions.
In fact, anyone with any bit of walking-around-sense knows something dreadful is in the wind (or has some notorious vested interest to say otherwise) and global warming is a nightmare scenario coming at us like a thunder storm on the horizon.
Has climate change with all its mitigating circumstance passed the so-called “tipping point“?
Nowadays, the answer to that question creates a pessimism that’s coated with realism like a gop of BP oil.

Last week, I came across a most-saddening, most-gloomiest of outlooks in regards to earth’s most-immediate future — but all-too true.
Wyoming rancher Tom Bell, one of the original watchers of the environment and founder of the ecological watchdog-type magazine, High Country News, says because the planet has waited too long to face/come-to-grips with what so-called civilization has wrought, mankind is headed for the way of the DoDo Bird.
In a long-ranging interview in HCN on the publication’s 40th anniversary, Bell said the current historical practice of “overconsumption” of natural resources will only lead to some big, bad shit coming our way.
Money quote (h/t The OilDrum):

Bell cites tons of evidence like that to explain why he’s come to believe the whole human race is doomed.
Especially “climate change — I think that’s going to call everything to a halt.
Just like the wreck of the Titanic, what we’re facing is so big, it’s too late to make enough changes to avoid it.”

And so it goes…

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