It's the End of the Ice Caps as We Know Them, and I Don't Really Feel All That Good

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Here's a little story that put me off my coffee yesterday, detailing a heat wave in the Canadian high Arctic, such that permafrost--stuff that has been frozen solid for millennia--is melting rapidly. Temperatures have reached 22 C (that's 71 F, for those of you still used to what used to be called Royal weights and measures), far above normal temperatures of 5 C (41 F).

Even the worst-case scenarios suggested by computers and models aren't equal to the devastating results that are actually occurring. I can't believe we're not taking more action on this. I can't believe it. I'm thinking about all the air travel I've got slated for the next few months and trying to figure out how to balance out the impact of all those flights on the environment--what energy consumption I can cut out, what resources I can save.

I mean, I am currently enjoying a breath-takingly beautiful autumn day: there's just a hint of red to the leaves of the sugar maples in the area, and my chrysanthemums are beginning to bloom--the deep red ones are especially pretty and autumnal. It's clear, calm and 71 F (22 C), decently above the seasonal average of a high of 61 F (16 C). It's frankly impossible not to enjoy the weather today, but I do have to recognize that it's the result of really fucking up the weather systems of our entire planets. It doesn't seem worth the price.

p.s. I found this story in a British newspaper. Haven't read anything quite so dire in an American news source, but maybe I'm just not reading the right papers.

2 Comments

I was reading about peak oil production the other day and the devastating economic effects of the coming crunch of competing for less and less oil. One could argue that running out of fossil fuels will finally force humans to stop destroying the atmosphere, but I think that it's more likely that the damage will be done and then we'll discover that we no longer have the (cheap energy) means to deal with it even if it's a priority.

I get the impression that our species is skipping along the brink of disaster and should be doing something serious now to turn things around. But it's hard to move the masses in the right direction without good leaders.

I imagine that as you read The Independent, you've already seen this. The buring the Amazon rainforest to create pasture land for cattle has been going on for years, with territories as large as entire Brazilian states on fire at times. Unlike the Western American forests, where fire has been an essential part of the ecosystem, these fires not only destroy the trees but because there is so little topsoil in the rainforest, they destroy the forest itself.

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This page contains a single entry by Holly published on October 4, 2007 1:37 PM.

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