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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Study: Antarctic ice melt actually slowing climate change

By Agence France-Presse

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009 -- 6:25 pm

Global warming has been blamed for the alarming loss of ice shelves in Antarctica, but a new study says newly-exposed areas of sea are now soaking up some of the carbon gas that causes the problem.
Scientists led by Lloyd Peck of the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) said that atmospheric and ocean carbon is being gobbled up by microscopic marine plants called phytoplankton, which float near the surface.
After absorbing the carbon through the natural process of photosynthesis, the phytoplankton are eaten, or otherwise die and sink to the ocean floor.
The phenomenon, known as a carbon sink, has been spotted in areas of open water exposed by the recent, rapid melting of several ice shelves -- vast floating plaques of ice attached to the shore of the Antarctic peninsula.
Over the last 50 years, around 24,000 square kilometres (9,200 square miles) of new open water have been created this way, and swathes of it are now colonised by phytoplankton, Peck's team reports in a specialist journal, Global Change Biology.
See rest of story.

As I am watching the movie "The Day After Tomorrow" I stumble on this. The movie is based on ice melt changing the Atlantic Ocean currents due to the increase of fresh water added to ocean. An ice age comes because the warmer currents that flow up the eastern side of the Atlantic suddenly stop. This causes the area to freeze.
We end up freezing to death in the U.S. or moving to Mexico.

It was just a movie but is the new carbon sink good news or just a bait and switch from mother earth?

3 comments:

  1. In reading the whole story you see that the numbers aren't anywhere near enough to offset the total output by human activity on the planet It should be included in any science about carbon credits and the new monetary trading device that we have assumed in the name of saving the earth. Who knows where this goes? Hopefully it reduces CO2 gasses and does some good but it is starting to seem like the bundled housing loans and all of the bets for and against them.
    Trying to make sense of it can be a bit like having your brain smashed out by a slice of lemon, wrapped around a large gold brick, if I may borrow from Douglas Adams.

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  2. Everyone knows that preventing climate change, or at least the worst consequences of it, is not going to be easy. While the task required is large and difficult, there are some simple, quick, and easy fixes that can make a real difference, and perhaps even buy us more time. But they are being ignored.

    http://www.selfdestructivebastards.com/2009/11/low-hanging-fruit.html

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  3. Canada Guy, those are some good ideas. I like the idea of smaller homes and dividing large ones into multi residences. Also rail good NASCAR bad, I can go along with that.

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