Ponder hungry microorganisms lurking within the Arctic tundra. Vast regions of permafrost – defined as permanently frozen layers of rock, soil and sediment – now thawing at alarming rates due to increased global temperatures. I’m not talking the thin “active” top layer of permafrost covering 24% of Northern Hemisphere land – ponder deep layers of ancient glaciated tundra surrendering to the elements.
Boreholes in northern Canada, Norway and Russia indicate a .4 degree increase in ground temperatures at a depth of 60 meters. It might sound like no big deal – let me assure you otherwise. In the last decade it translates to an increase greater than the last 100 years. So why worry about mushy tundra?
Trapped in that permafrost are enormous amounts of formerly frozen ancient carbon. As the ground warms, billions of voracious microorganisms belly up to the all you can eat buffet. Devouring carbon releases vast amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere – CO2 that contributes to accelerated global warming.
Robert Spencer from the University of Florida, lead researcher of a paper published April 23, 2015 in Geophysical Research Letters said –
“When you have a huge frozen store of carbon and it’s thawing, we have some big questions. The primary question is when it thaws, what happens to it? Our research shows this ancient carbon is rapidly utilized by microbes and transferred to the atmosphere, leading to further warming in the region and therefore more thawing. So we get into a runaway effect.”
While the climate denial camp busily pats itself on the back for convincing the masses we have nothing to worry about – stop and ask yourself why people gobble their self serving propaganda hook, line and sinker.
I’m no denier, but for me the jury’s still out on the extent to which change is driven by anthropogenic effects. One things for sure though. Life will go on. Just not life as we know it. Which may not be a bad thing.
I’m not atop a soap box preaching mankind is responsible. Climate changes, history tells us that beyond a shadow of doubt. My blood boils when nincompoops claim it isn’t happening. Is man speeding up the process – who knows. I bristle when hot headed mouth pieces call me an “eco-tard” , backing their position with links to James Inhofe ( the Republican Senator who threw a snowball in Senate while claiming God would never allow climate change) Holy freaking crap 🙂
As I say, change is real, for reasons not fully understood. One of the really interesting things here is that the large carbon deposits were probably laid down by plant life, so at some point the tundra must have been pretty warm. Turning back the clock, it appears.
I’m always surprised at the number of references to god from many of your politicians, since the Constitution, and Bill of Rights, specifically separate state and church. The GOP seem to have forgotten this.
Agreed on climate change, and yes the Arctic has seen many a balmy day.As for the GOP, don’t get me started – I’m off to bed and don’t need nightmares 🙂
This is an object lesson in how to fudge the figures. Sweet dreams. 🙂
Argh! Now I’m dealing with a mouth full of vomit. Holy cherry picked asinine bat shit crap. Thanks a lot 🙂
So glad you enjoyed it. You know my attitude to spurious ‘official statistics.’
PS – just struck me as absurd that this Godless heathen can’t resist using “holy” as my preface for freaking crap. I need to go to bed…..
Easy trap to fall into…
does this mean that micro-organisims will be the death of humankind and that Momma Nature will once again have the last laugh on man’s (and woman’s) hubris?
I love the thought. Fortunately I’ll be long gone before it happens…. 🙂