Climate, Climate, Climate

The only answer to the question, ‘What are the three most serious issues confronting the world today?’ is ‘Climate, Climate, Climate.’

Methane release:

Permafrost is beginning to melt under the influence of climate change across parts of Siberia, Canada and Alaska in a trend that threatens homes, railways and oil pipelines, according to a new U.N. report.

The accelerating melt is also poised to free vast amounts of carbon dioxide and methane that have been trapped in the ground for thousands of years, the U.N. Environment Program (UNEP) report cautions.

Acid Oceans

The shell of a tiny snail that is an important food source for fish and birds in the water surrounding Antarctica is being dissolved in an ocean that is becoming more acidic due to climate change, new research shows.

Increasing carbonic acid levels in the world’s oceans are due to the water absorbing carbon dioxide from the air.

The source of that greenhouse gas is the burning of fossil fuels.

The water’s pH is now dropping faster than at any other time in the past 300 million years.

The shell of Limacina helicina being eaten away by ocean acidity

More CO2 

Global emissions of carbon dioxide from fossil-fuel burning jumped by the largest amount on record last year, upending the notion that the brief decline during the recession might persist through the recovery.

Emissions rose 5.9 percent in 2010, according to an analysis released Sunday by the Global Carbon Project, an international collaboration of scientists tracking the numbers. Scientists with the group said the increase, a half-billion extra tons of carbon pumped into the air, was almost certainly the largest absolute jump in any year since the Industrial Revolution, and the largest percentage increase since 2003.

The increase solidified a trend of ever-rising emissions that scientists fear will make it difficult, if not impossible, to forestall severe climate change in coming decades.

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