Saturday, 12 September 2009

Climate tipping point...

Many thanks to Graham Davey for passing on the link to this excellent animation. The website a page with the full script of the film plus supporting references.

Wake Up, Freak Out - then Get a Grip from Leo Murray on Vimeo.
It turns out that the way we have been calculating the future impacts of climate change up to now has been
missing a really important piece of the picture. It seems we are now dangerously close to the tipping point in the world's climate system; this is the point of no return, after which truly catastrophic changes become inevitable

Wake Up, Freak Out - then Get a Grip from Leo Murray on Vimeo.

4 comments:

  1. Glen,

    Doing some research.

    Was there ever a time previously where there was the same amount of carbon in the atmosphere as today?

    Also,

    Has world temperature ever been higher than presently?

    If you could quote me what models/sources are used to look at temperature/carbon would be really helpful

    Thanks,

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  2. ps - also, the theory mentioned in the video where there were wars for land - apart from UK where else would be OK and who came up with the theory.

    thanks again

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  3. Yes, on a geological timescale the Earth has experienced both higher and lower temperatures and carbon dixide concentrations than now. Doing a google search on something like 'carbon dioxide over geological time graphs' will get you a range of data. However, the recent rate of temperature increase and the potentially huge scale of impacts is key to showing how humans have considerably boosted patterns of natural change - and is why the problem is considered very serious and requiring urgent action by the UNs Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The only way to accurately reproduce the measured pattern of temperature change over the last 150 yrs or so using climate models is to factor in human-caused emissions and the changes they trigger...

    Mathematical models called General Circulation Models (GCM) of several types have been and are used to simulate our climate - though modelling is progessing/changing rapidly. There are atmospheric GCMs and oceanic GCMs and when atmospheric and oceanic models are coupled together they produce useful predictions.

    I'm not entirely clear what you are asking in your second comment. However, the IPCC was given the Nobel Peace Prize for their work and so its clear that they have been warning of the interrelationship between availablity of suitable resources such as water/fertile land, environmental degradation and war/security...Go to the IPCC website for further details.

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  4. Cheers Glen.

    I'll have a look. The second comment - I've heard from other sources that if GW models are correct, the UK and a few other places will be one of the few place habitable.

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Genuine, constructive, relevant comments are most welcome.