Melting Talks

November 13, 2015

SurrealPaintingIn a world getting warmer quick, what was considered ‘stable,’ might go unhinged, even in colder, drier climes — like Greenland’s northeastern glaciers.
From Scientific American:

But a new study detailed in the journal Science shows that two of those glaciers are showing worrying changes, and that one has been retreating at an accelerating rate in recent years as it faces a dual attack by warm air from above and warm water from below.

Sea-level rise cometh…

(Illustration found here).

If all of Greenland’s ice melted, supposedly global sea levels would in turn rise by 20 feet. Although it seems slow, speed is relative.
More from SA and the ice melt:

The new study compiled data from some of the sources for two marine glaciers in northeast Greenland, Zachariae Isstrom and its neighbor, Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden.
Together, these glaciers, essentially slowly flowing rivers of ice, reach deep into the center of the ice sheet, draining about 12 percent of it.
The two glaciers hold enough ice to raise sea levels by about 3.5 feet.
Marine glaciers are ones that run from land to sea, where the ice begins to float.
That tongue of floating ice is called an ice shelf and acts as a doorstop, buttressing the glacier behind it.
In their data, the researchers saw that while Zachariae was stable for decades, that all changed when a huge chunk of its ice shelf broke off in 2002-03, after which the remainder continued to crumble.
Today it is only 5 percent of the size it was in 2002.

Right now the total amount of melt from Zachariae is small compared to other big-name retreating glaciers, like Jakobshavn Isbrae in the southeast.
But that could easily change, Mouginot said.
“Right now it’s at the beginning.”

Of the end, or what?

A report signifying urgency just as the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21) will be held beginning at the end of this month in Paris. Trouble with getting a handle on climate change also includes not just the reality of climate change itself, but the big-business money involved with the so-called ‘fighting‘ it.
From Sonali Kolhatkar at TruthDig on ‘corporations are people‘ and the horror underpinning the Paris talks.

But there are already alarm bells ringing over the influence that corporations will be allowed to wield at COP21.
Our global capitalist system has enabled businesses to extract ever-greater resources and generate relentless pollution.
Now, many of the same companies that are guilty of destroying our climate are being lauded as “partners” and “stakeholders” in the climate talks.

“Kick Big Polluters Out” was built on the findings of Influence Map, a United Kingdom-based organization that tracks corporate influence on climate policies through detailed score cards.
A new Influence Map report issued last month described how fossil fuel companies specifically damage climate agreements.
According to the report, “The energy majors’ slogan leading up to Paris 2015 is to call for a price on carbon.
Behind the scenes, however, they are systematically obstructing the very laws that would enable a meaningful price.”
Rather than endow them with a central role in climate negotiations, corporations need to be sidelined and even derided and ridiculed for leading us into the climate mess we are in. To that end, Corporate Europe Observatory has set an appropriate tone by launching its “Pinocchio Awards,” a campaign that “highlights, and denounces, the negative impacts of multinational companies” who use deception to “greenwash” themselves.

I.e., Exxon…

And detail the reality endgame in Paris — Janet Redman, director of the Climate Policy Program at the Institute for Policy Studies, at Foreign Policy in Focus yesterday:

For starters, the draft ­agreement they’ll be using as the basis for discussion makes no reference to fossil fuels at all.
Perhaps that should come as no surprise, given that dirty energy companies and their financial backers are among the sponsors of the summit.
In the absence of a concrete plan to roll back our reliance on coal, oil and gas, governments are kicking around climate “solutions” that let countries keep on burning them.

In other words, even as governments are talking about setting climate targets, they’re working hard to expand the extractive global economy with measures that could deepen the climate crisis.
That’s ridiculous.
We need to cut carbon, not find new places to bury it.
More fundamentally, we need a new economy based on using less — and sharing it better.

To challenge undemocratic corporate influence in the climate talks, meanwhile, civil society groups are also proposing that a new climate deal follows the example of the international Tobacco Treaty, which bars tobacco companies from participating in treaty negotiations or interfering in national public health policy.
Proponents say it could go a long way to protect climate policy from the stranglehold of Big Oil, Big Gas, and King Coal.

In reality, humans need to keep more than 80 percent of known oil, coal, and gas reserves in the ground to avoid triggering catastrophic climate change.

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