2010/11/22

The Price of Change - This just out from Dr James Hansen

The Price of Change
James E Hansen
http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/mailings/2010/20101122_ChinaOpEd.pdf

"Sea level rise is one problem.  Carbon dioxide amounts of 400ppm (parts per million), expected in 2016 with current emissions, will cause an eventual sea level rise of about 25 metres.  China's land area will shrink rapidly, requiring about 250 million people to move inland.

"How rapidly ice sheets will collapse is uncertain.  A sea level rise of one metre every 20 years has occurred in the past ice sheet disintegrations.  But the human-made climate forcing is far greater and faster than past natural forcings. Ice shelves - tongues of ice protruding into the ocean and buttressing the great Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets - are melting.  Both ice sheets are now loosing over 100 cubic kilometres of ice each [year]. If mass loss continues to accellerate, ice sheet collapse may begin within decades."

"Governments must recognise this harsh fact:  Burning all fossil fuels would increase carbon dioxide to more than 555ppm and create a different planet - a desolate, ice-free planet with sea levels 75 metres higher than today.
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