Posts Tagged ‘Melting’

Asia After Full Glacial Melt

April 24, 2016

The Way Of Life Of Some "Leading" Countries Brings Us Back To The Jurassic

What is that a map of? (Answer at the bottom.)

The positive side of a full glacial melt is that the devastated Aral Sea will be reconstituted to its former glory, and more. Tourists may be able to travel from Missouri to the Aral Sea on electric cruise ships. Let’s notice in passing that shallow seas were characteristic of the Jurassic, and exerted a positive feed-back on the climate, which was remarkably warm and wet then… thanks to these shallow seas. The Earth was ice-free (except on the top of very high mountains).

The Decision Is Now. The Next Two Decades Will Decide If This Is What Will Be

The Decision Is Now. The Next Two Decades Will Decide If This Is What Will Be

Some may sneer, but there is tremendous inertia in the system. Here is a depiction of temperatures in the last half a billion years:

The Projection That We Are On Two Degree Centigrade Rise By 2050 Is Optimistic: It Ignores Positive Feed-Back On Ice Melt

The Projection That We Are On Two Degree Centigrade Rise By 2050 Is Optimistic: It Ignores Positive Feed-Back On Ice Melt

As soon as we launch the shallow sea effect, it will feed-back on itself. That will be another feed-back on top of the ice melt feed-back. Scandalously, a European Union Commissioner just declared that the COP 21 treaty will be ratified in 2018 only. The French government has declared this “scandalous”, and intends to do something about it on Monday (EC Commissioners have been obviously on the take from major fossil fuel company such as Exxon, as stealth recordings recently showed).

Hence the moral quality of the following graph depicting Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions, per capita, and per country:

GHG Per Capita: The Redder, The Worse. The Way Of Life Of Some "Leading" Countries Brings Us Back To The Jurassic

GHG Per Capita: The Redder, The Worse. The Way Of Life Of Some “Leading” Countries Brings Us Back To The Jurassic

At this point, some always ask: what can we do? Shall we recycle? Recycling is a related question, yet mostly independent of the energy problem. It’s much more efficient than fighting racism by never saying “nigger”, but still, it pales relative to burning fossils. Energy procurement has got to change radically. One has to de-carbonize. Now. Not just in 2050: by then it will be too late.

To de-carbonize, there is just one way: tax carbon so heavily that silly activities such as frantic tourism by plane, disappear altogether. So those who want to do something moral should agitate for an enormous carbon tax (while compensating for the poor with some of the proceeds).

Something similar is to push for local sustainable energy. An example: San Francisco just passed a law requiring plants or solar panels on roofs of all new building less than ten stories tall (to start with). Starting January 1, 2017. The law is identical to a mandate passed in France last year that all new buildings be covered in partial green roofing or solar panels.

In France, buildings producing more energy than they use have been erected. In other French news, Paris organized its first car race since 1951… 65 years ago. It was done with Formula One style cars: monospaces. It was also remarkably silent: the cars were electric. An Audi driven by the Brazilian Di Grassi won this “Formula E” event. There will be another one, next year (a necessary way of fighting terrorism is to act and behave as if there was no terror).

If enormous de-carbonization is not imposed quickly, fabulous wars may ensue… Except if some countries have such a lead in military matters that none of the others will try anything; as is presently the case of the West, mostly the USA, relative to the Rest; a fascinating twist on might makes right.

However, morality means “the mores”, what has proven sustainable to a tribe. And this brings still another moral twist. Some tribes (also known as nations) have profited a lot from war, thus may not be, very secretly, deep down inside, that adverse to adversity of the lethal type. Indeed, if adversity enables them to unleash the Dark Side, their empire may extend. Or, at least, such is the computation. because, in the past, war always proved such an excellent lever. It is especially the case of the USA (although Russia also lives under that illusion; and giant countries such as Canada and Australia are not far behind in that same general mood; even China, considering its recent conquest of gigantic, highly profitable Tibet and Xing Kiang, may feel that way, all too much).

Notice in passing that the US emits close to 20 tons of GreenHouse Gases per year, per capita. That’s around three times more than the French. And France is not three times poorer, per capita. Actually, according to Hillary Clinton, France is richer, per capita, than the USA: she herself says that the USA cannot afford universal health care. Whereas the French can afford a universal health care system. It is even worse than that, as the French health care system (with the Italian and Swedish ones) is leading in quality, whereas the USA trails, in quality of health care, behind all developed countries.

Once again, what Hillary really means is that those who are paying for her propaganda and helping her with various services, cannot afford a country with universal health care, because they are too busy overdosing inside their private jets (allusion to Prince, one of many). One’s morality not better than one’s logic.

The naïve, gullible and thoroughly obsolete, often believe there is just one way to be logical. But logic can be pretty much anything. Anything goes in logic. Differently from cooking ,where a few rules apply. In cooking at the very least, one should not put too much salt, or burn food to such a crisp that it becomes, well, pure carbon.

However logic is much more adaptable. And thus, a fortiori, is morality.

Tomorrow’s morality has often be made from yesterday’s computation. And computations can sometimes go awry.

So what to do? Change the moods ASAP. Solar roofs are an example. Another is the just announced change of the Twenty Dollar Bill. It figures president Jackson. Jackson followed Jefferson’s example, conquering and annexing giant swathes of territory for the USA. Those two, with Washington himself, were the three most important presidents, in the sense that they created, not just the USA as a state, but also its extent and its mood. Jackson was as macho as Washington, if not more. He went on his conquests, as the head of the US Army, without any order, and Congress did not dare contradict him, lest he made a coup. He had no problem harboring a bullet or two from successful duels.

Nowadays, more and more people in the USA feel that Jackson’s mentality is something which should not be viewed as an example anymore. So Obama and his sidekicks want to replace him by an abolitionist ex-slave who happened to be a woman (I had never heard from, I think, demonstrating that the masses need to further their education, indeed.)  Not bad. At the last hour, Obama and Al. minister admirably the details. However, if one removes all the slave masters from US currency, one may be left with the insipid mild and neutral pseudo-bridges found on European currency.

Removing the face of slavery would not be progress, if all one did, was to forget, and thus deny, where one came from, institutionally speaking, and in the genealogy of moods.

Without its demonic males to lead and fabricate appropriately evil systems of thought, the USA would not have become the world’s leading empire it is now. Beyond whether this is right or wrong, it’s important to remember that, first of all, that’s what happened. Yes, the USA was fabricated by slave masters. This politely brings in the natural question: Is the USA still ruled by slave masters?

The first moral duty is always to the truth. When the morality used is the one closest to the essence of the genus Homo. Yet, special circumstances, (such as inheriting a continent which has been grabbed,) have incited special moralities to blossom.

Patrice Ayme’

 

Antarctica Disintegrating Soon

December 9, 2015

[One more essay to contribute to the Paris’ CO2 negotiations!] One has to be careful with science. Science is certain knowledge. And certain knowledge is not just hard to gather, it is subtle, and even harder to organize in a coherent logic. It is pretty much certain that Antarctica will melt (in my opinion). However a NASA study, just out, claims that Antarctica is gathering a huge amount of ice:

“A new NASA study says that an increase in Antarctic snow accumulation that began 10,000 years ago is currently adding enough ice to the continent to outweigh the increased losses from its thinning glaciers.

The research challenges the conclusions of other studies, including the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) 2013 report, which says that Antarctica is overall losing land ice.

According to the new analysis of satellite data, the Antarctic ice sheet showed a net gain of 112 billion tons of ice a year from 1992 to 2001. That net gain slowed to 82 billion tons of ice per year between 2003 and 2008.”

If One Looks Carefully, One Can See The Three Places Where Warm Water Is Sneaking In Below (In Green & Blue in WAIS and In East Antarctica).

If One Looks Carefully, One Can See The Three Places Where Warm Water Is Sneaking In Below (In Green & Blue in WAIS and In East Antarctica).

This, paradoxically, does not contradict any of my apocalyptic predictions about Antarctica. Quite the opposite: a greater snowfall is a mark of a warming climate. Warmer air carries more moisture. The gathering of snow and ice in the interior and at high altitude, over wide expanses has not effect to the melt extending below.

In truth, the situation is dire and will evolve quickly. One is reminded of the Space Shuttle Columbia, when hot gases penetrated in its left wing. After they got in, they melted vital equipment all over inside, including hydraulics, and the shuttle struggled for control, finally losing its wing.

http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/details.cgi?aid=4347

Antarctica’s ice shelves — the thick, floating slabs of ice which encircle the continent — are melting. The shelves slow and stabilize the glaciers, hundreds of kilometers behind them. They are succumbing to a hidden force: deep, warming ocean currents are melting the ice from beneath ice shelves, and up giant valleys penetrating the continent.

The collapse of small ice shelves caused glaciers to accelerate two-fold to ten-fold and spill more ice into the ocean, raising sea level. A study published in April shows that more ice shelves are threatened: From 1994 to 2012, the rate of ice shelf shrinkage increased twelvefold. Parts of the ice sheet considered at risk hold enough ice to raise the global sea level by 22 feet (seven meters). Here’s the latest on Antarctica’s vulnerability in 2015:

More Snow, Less Ice:

Climatologists speculated in the 1990s that Antarctica might slow sea level rise. They fancied that rising temperatures would produce more water vapor, leading to more snowfall and more ice. This is indeed what the latest NASA study shows. Researchers reported in March, and November 20215, that over the past 20,000 years, warmer temperatures have indeed correlated with higher snowfall: For each Fahrenheit degree of warming, snowfall increased by about 2.7 percent. But that does not mean the threat of fast melting receded..

Larsen B’s Last Gasp:

Glaciologists reported in June that the last remnant of the Larsen B Ice Shelf is splintering, and glaciers flowing into it are accelerating. Its approaching demise continues a disturbing trend: the progressive collapse of five ice shelves since 1989.

Next, Larsen C:

The neighboring, and much larger Larsen C Ice Shelf, a significant part of the Antarctica Peninsula, could soon collapse (hey, it’s summer!). A major crack is advancing rapidly, reaching an unprecedented 60 miles long in early 2015. (A British base in the Ross Ice Shelf is threatened by another advancing crack, and is scheduled to be moved ASAP! A German base disappeared altogether.)

Southern Peninsula “Starting to Sweat “:

(“Sweating” was the term used in a scientific report…) While the glaciers in this region seemed stable, warming ocean currents have been melting the belly of the ice. Results published in May show this region crossed a threshold in 2009, with a dozen major glaciers simultaneously starting to thin, “sweating off” 60 billion tons of ice per year.

Weak Underbelly:

The Amundsen Sea coast is the vulnerable underbelly of West Antarctica. Its glaciers slide on beds that lie nearly a mile below sea level, exposing them to ocean currents. New data show ice shelves are collectively losing 100 billion tons of ice per year, and glaciers have accelerated by up to 70 percent.

Hidden Hazards in the East:

East Antarctica, situated on high ground that protects it from warming ocean currents, was considered stable, impervious, a Reich to last 10,000 years, strong and dominating. But not exactly, according to surveys with ice-penetrating radar. A March study shows that one large swath of the ice sheet sits on beds as deep as 8,000 feet below sea level and is connected, by very long, deep valleys to warming ocean currents. Totten Glacier, one of East Antarctica’s largest ocean outlets, is already thinning — an ominous sign, since this single glacier drains enough ice from the AURORA Basin to raise the sea level more than all of West Antarctica’s ice loss would. The mouth of the Totten glacier is well north of the southern polar circle. This means that the potential for warming from decreased albedo is considerable.

The same story is unfolding with the Wilkes Basin, as I have explained.

Thus, right now, sea level is rising slowly, and climate change deniers are chuckling, because Antarctica is gathering warm snow. But, once the warm currents penetrate in force, and they will, Antarctica will go the way of the Space Shuttle: sudden, irresistible disintegration.

A last riddle is that, should the latest story (above) from part of NASA, be correct (and not another piece of disinformation to serve the fossil fuel plutocracy, as happened more than once in the past), how come sea level is increasing as fast as is presently observed? The math just don’t add up: the greatest contribution to sea level rise comes in with the wrong sign! So either the latest NASA accumulation studies are wrong, or there is a massive contribution to sea level rise undetected so far (the worst is imaginable…) Just when we saw that the Green House Gas disaster was boring in its irresistible unfolding, a new mystery surfaces…

Patrice Ayme’

 

Polar Melt Computation For Idiots

December 6, 2015

Let me explain why POLAR MELTING IS INELUCTABLE & UNDER WAY, using a reasoning I have seen nowhere else, and which is so simple, even a complete idiot should be able to understand it. As there are many of these, and always keen to serve the Demos, it is my pleasure to present a primary school reasoning for the masses about why it is that permafrost (and the glaciers sitting on top of it) is already condemned. (So they can take their two degree Centigrades of warming, and shove it; actually according to the UK meteorological service we are already one degree up, globally.)

For reasons having probably to do with sun activity (?), the Earth’s surface was pretty warm at the end of the Roman Republic, and then again around the year 1000. Shortly before that, the Viking discovered Greenland “Green-Land”). Having cut all forests of Iceland, they brought trees from North America, but had bad relations with the “skraelings” (“weaklings”).

However, by 1300 CE, climate change struck. It was most probably the Sun responding to cycles of its own making. By 1500 CE the Vikings of Greenland died of cold (the proof was found by studying the adaptation to cold of the insects which had feasted on Viking corpses; and similar studies on crops, etc.).

PPP Glacier d’ Argentiere Already In Full Retreat, But Still Close to Valley Floor, 1850

PPP Glacier d’ Argentiere Already In Full Retreat, But Still Close to Valley Floor, 1850

By 1300 CE, Europe peaked in population, and had surpassed the Ancient Greco-Roman empire in many ways (in particular energy use per person). However, the climate soon took a turn for the worse, and the conflict with the still increasing population brought ecological devastation, famines, wars and the plague, within less than 30 years. European population collapsed by half, or more (no plutocrat got killed in the making of this movies, stand reassured, good people: only losers died, and plutocrats came out richer and more powerful and crazy as ever).

By 1650 CE, during the Little Ice Age, the city of Chamonix was threatened by disappearance, crushed by “horrible glaciers”. No less than three huge glaciers reached the Chamonix valley floor, at 1,000 meters of altitude: the glaciers of Argentiere, Bossons, and the Mer de Glace.

The communes, with moult details, told the authorities that they should be exempt from taxation, because of the “horrible glaciers“. The glaciers stayed on the valley floor until 1840 CE. All over the Alps, glaciers were advancing, villages had to be abandoned.

By 1850, the Little Ice Age was finishing, while the Green House Gas crisis had started (CO2 ppm: 287, from a baseline of 275 ppm during the Little Ice Age).

Melting has to do with how warm it gets in the warmest months. The permafrost line at 45 degree north is roughly at an average of 3000 meters right now, and 3,000 kilometers north of that, it is at sea level (that’s (45 + 27) degrees north = 72 degree north; the Arctic Circle is at 66 degrees). This means that one meter up brings a cooling equivalent to the cooling that going one kilometer north brings. (Call this Patrice’s rule of thumb.)

Looking at Alpine glaciers at 45 degrees, the most detailed historical example known is Chamonix, in the French Alps, at an altitude of 1,000 meters. (French glaciologists went to Greenland, and studied glaciers there which have retreated by 50 kilometers, on flat to rolling terrain, unbeknownst to humanity… But the Chamonix glaciers are known from Roman times.)

Glacier d’Argentiere, July 2015, Terminal Tongue, 1000 Meters Higher

Glacier d’Argentiere, July 2015, Terminal Tongue, 1000 Meters Higher

1000 meters higher means a northern retreat of the glaciation line by 1000 kilometers north, as I have explained.

Now the large glaciers around Chamonix end around 2000 meters. French glaciologists are the world’s most dedicated and most expert, from a long institutional memory: in the present condition, from refined studies, on and inside (!) glaciers, they expect an unstoppable retreat all the way to 3500 meters.

Let’s think about this. It means that, by 45 degree of northern latitude, the terminal tongues of glaciers will have gone from 1000 meters, up to 3500 meters. Now, as we saw, going up one kilometer north is equivalent to going up one meter. Thus, the permafrost line will go 2,500 meters up in the Alps and 2,500 kilometers north at sea level, since 1850 CE. However, the permafrost line is basically 2000 kilometers south of the pole. (There are important local variations, depending upon sea currents, east-west air circulation, etc.)

Conclusion: in its migration north, the permafrost is going to run out of planet. And this has already happened. Simply, there is colossal inertia in the system. Just as small Alpine glaciers disappear readily, and large ones look better longer, giant ice caps and ice shelves do take longer to look as bad. But the latter will disappear just as well, from the temperatures we already have now.

Desperate French and German mountaineers, in their anxiety to save whatever they can, have resorted to covering some glaciers with special white canvass. Actually the method is used on the Argentiere glacier itself, up high, to allow summer skiing (otherwise there would not be summer skiing anymore; by the way, I skied there, in summer, so I have more than a passing acquaintance to the situation). The canvass method works very well. But this kind of geoengineering will not work on a planetary scale (just too expensive, energy-wise)..

All right, ladies and gentlemen, time for serious de-carbonization! Because you have not seen anything yet of the incredible melting which we already cannot stop. As the permafrost melts, it will release colossal amounts of methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2), and the effect will feed on itself, non-linearily, including with methane hydrates in the shallow, and immense, Siberian seas…

Fluctuat Nec Mergitur, Paris’ ancient motto: it’s agitated, but we navigate, has to apply to all of humanity. So navigate away from carbon. And that means nuclear energy, yes, and much more solar, and going industrial with hydrogen (which can store both nuclear, and solar).

Patrice Ayme’  

Antarctica Heat Records. A Consequence Of Hubris?

April 1, 2015

WE KNEW OF NUCLEAR MELT-DOWNS. WHAT ABOUT HUBRIS MELT-DOWNS?

Hubris melting down world security, including Antarctica. Five national heat records were beaten since the start of 2015.

Including the one in Antarctica, last week.

The poles are where heat records are going to be achieved the most.

Why?

Planetary warming is concentrated there. If the temperature goes up two degrees Celsius overall, it will get up TEN degrees Celsius at the Poles. Or so I claim. (Right now we are up officially only .8 degree Celsius, in the global average.)

NASA explains why climate change is warming the poles of our planet faster than the rest this way: “energy in the atmosphere that is carried to the poles through large weather systems.”

That is true, but does not explain the big picture.

500 Kilometers South Of Esperanza Base, Lemaire Channel.

500 Kilometers South Of Esperanza Base, Lemaire Channel.

[Antarctica has 70% of the World’s sweet water.]

The big picture of why the poles are warming up so fast is proven by history, and explained by simple physics. The history of the last five million years, basic thermodynamics, biology and celestial mechanics. It’s etched in stone.

Five millions years ago, the planet was warm. The global CO2 level was the same as now. The global sea level was much higher (30 to 40 meters higher). Then the Central America isthmus closed down, thanks to all its volcanoes. This modified currents worldwide. Or, at least, so went the theory that reigned for thirty years. But now doubts have surfaced; the isthmus between the Americas may be much older than previously thought.

In any case, a few million years ago, Earth’s orbital parameters changed: the inclination of the Earth on the ecliptic (the plane in which its rotation occurs) diminished. That implied colder summers, hence the persistence, thus built-up, of ice at the poles.

Glaciations are all about the peak temperatures, in summer (the rest of the year does not count: ice melts mostly in the warmest two months).

The Arctic became colder, as it got colder in summer. Ice gained, shutting down the CO2 within the ocean with a cold water lid. So CO2 levels in the lower atmosphere collapsed… Down to about 280 ppm. That increased the cooling down. The ice gained further… Until it went so south that it melted in summer.

The planet ended up with two very white, snowy and icy poles, reflecting a lot of light back to space. Earth got equipped with two immense refrigerators. This is the environment in which our species evolved (although there were a few transient spikes even warmer than today, for as inclination over the ecliptic became momentarily pronounced, with torrid summers that made ice melt; the present warming is different, as it is Anthropogenic Green House Gases driven; particularly nasty volcanism could drive the CO2 up, but did not happen in the last five million years.)

Now we are back to Pliocene CO2 levels, 5 million years ago. With these levels of CO2, so much infrared radiation gets trapped close the ground, that the refrigerators are bound to melt. Another reason is that the warm CO2 blanket tends to unify the temperature.

Another way to look at it is that the temperature of the equatorial regions is an average of 25C. The average temperature of the planet is 15C. The average temperature within Antarctica goes from -10C (Coast) to -60C (Interior). Say it’s minus 45C (the official estimate).

If the CO2 blanket is thick enough, the poles will roughly get as warm as the rest.

There will be a lot of inertia: when an ice cube melts in water, the water stays around freezing during the process.

The warmest temperature recorded on the continent of Antarctica occurred on Tuesday, March 24, 2015, when the mercury shot up to 63.5°F (17.5°C) at Argentina’s Esperanza Base on the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. Shown below:

Esperanza Base, Antarctica: the Glaciers Even Appear To Be Melting

Esperanza Base, Antarctica: the Glaciers Even Appear To Be Melting

[Glaciers that are melting are thin at the margins, and convex… Just as above on the left and center.]

The previous record was 63.3°F (17.4°C) set just one day previously at Argentina’s Marambio Base, an island just off the coast of the Antarctic Peninsula.

I am warming up to this subject. (And I did not even mention the relationship between obesity and rising CO2 that some researchers have recently suggested. C02 rose around 30% in 60 years…)

According to satellite data, researchers from the University of Southampton in the UK, found that sea level rise around the coast of Antarctica over the past 19 years was 8 centimeters (3.15 inches).

Average sea level rise was 6 centimeters (2.36 inches).

Why the difference?

Last summer, in Nature Geoscience, the specialists explained that melting glaciers create an outflow of sweet water. As it is less dense, it floats above the salted water, according to Archimedes Principle.

This will only accelerate melting.

Up north, on February 25, 2015, Arctic sea ice extent reached its annual maximum extent. It was the lowest, and earliest, ever.

Humanity would seem to be in a fascinating state of denial. But not really. After all, maybe only 2,000 individuals lead the world.

Those individuals, who Obama calls the “leaders” (what else?) can only adopt Louis XV of France’s utterance: ”Après moi, le déluge”. (After me, the flood.)

Indeed those leaders are different creatures. Those who are so much greedier for personal power that they end up dominating billions, can only be blinded by it. They have more power than anybody before. More power than any tyrant ever had before.

Contemplate Benjamin Netanyahu: he could fry Iran, with Israeli H bombs. That has got to make him dizzy. And he leads only six million Israeli Jews (who make 75% of Israel’s 8 million).

Now think of Putin, with 24 times more subjects, and more than 8,000 nukes.

Then contemplate the senseless wars the Greek city-states were making to each other. Everybody was allied, and enemy, of everybody else, and often in very short order (weeks). Meanwhile the “King”, namely the emperor of Persia, was busy making the mess messier, with the tremendous money, power and influence at his disposal.

This fibrillating, bellicose frenzy went on and on. Until the plutocrats from the north, the Macedonians, whose wealth rested on horses and gold mines, swooped down.

We could easily fall back in a similar state.

It was the inability of Athens to impose a sustainable empire that caused the war panic in Greece. The war itself was launched by Sparta’s anxiety for the rise of Athenian power (said Thucydides, 24 centuries ago). Sparta’s socio-economic model, ferocious racist exploitation (of the Helots) was failing. Athens’ global trade was winning.

But, too sure of her strength, Athens mismanaged the war (in several dimensions: ethically, strategically, tactically, diplomatically, epidemiologically, etc.).

Result? 23 centuries of eclipse of direct democracy. And counting. Direct Democracy has been re-installed only in Switzerland. Now the stakes are higher. Western Europe is at peace… All too much.

The Main Stream Media have put everybody to sleep. Regularly the media, in turn, publish articles of Matt Ridley. An excellent writer, with a PhD in biology, author of many best sellers in life sciences, Matt Ridley returns to the Wall Street Journal to to argue against clean energy rapidly scaling up, and the science linking the year 2014’s record heat, widespread extreme weather with carbon pollution.

Lord Ridley is a parody of plutocrat. Not only he sieges at the Chamber of Lords, he is a “coal baron” with a revenue from a coal mine on his family estate of six million dollars a year. Yes, he is a major corrupt banker too.

Such people mold world public opinion, as their friends in the MSM give them the means for propaganda. See Lord Ridley’s Rule.

Because they did not have even enough elements to get angry, let alone fight our corrupt leaders, and take over their so-called leadership, our supine populations will soon have to fight the flood. And a real one.

And that will come with a Greek situation, the war of all against all (whom Xenophon related in his Hellenica, the primary source for Greek history from 411 BCE to 362 BCE, the explicit continuation of the History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides).

The war of all against all may have already started. See Obama desperate to strike a deal with his friends of the instant, in Iran and Russia, while others (notably France) want an exemplary accord, and hang tough. Well, France is right. The last thing we need is nuclear weapons all over, while the global flooding accelerates.

Patrice Ayme’

East Antarctica Melting

March 20, 2015

SHALLOW SEAS COMING ALL OVER:

East Antarctica Melting Could be Explained by Oceanic Gateways

Antarctica is very cold. Most of it is always frozen. So why are some country-sized glaciers there, thinning by six meters per year? Enquiring minds want to know.

This thinning was not anticipated, by common scientists. Apocalyptic considerations do not advance academic careers. However it looked ineluctable to yours truly, long ago:

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2009/05/31/sun-cooling-ice-melting/

The naïve had bellowed that East Antarctica would not melt for thousands of years. I pointed out that vast swathes of the ice continent were below sea level, and would melt in a geological instant, if warm water got below. This is exactly was is happening.

Let me have the pleasure to present to you the outlet of the Totten Glacier, hundreds of kilometers long, and fifty kilometers wide:

Warm Water Flowing Through Narrow Red Marks (5 Kms Wide). I Melt, You Drown.

Warm Water Flowing Through Narrow Red Marks (5 Kms Wide). I Melt, You Drown.

As I said, this is just the outlet of the Totten Glacier. As the picture below shows, most of the glacier is in the interior, and it is hundreds of time greater in area… And volume. More troubling, its bottom is miles… under water. Many glaciers of Antarctica, East or West, rest kilometers below sea level. (Much of the interior of Greenland is also below sea level; it is entirely possible that the sea could enter, too; a grand canyon was just discovered there.)

The reason is the weight of the ice. Two miles of ice press down with 3,000 tons per square meter. Over a square kilometer, that’s three billion tons. As continents float on a liquid layer which rests on something viscous, continental masses sink under the ice (“isostasis”). Conversely, 10,000 years after the disappearance of the ice, Scandinavia is still lifting up.

The euphemistically named “climate change” see even a drying California’s Sierra Nevada, going up: a drying Sierra is lighter than a wet Sierra.

So what is going on with these East Antarctica glaciers? Let’s consider Totten.

The “catchment basin” of the Totten glacier is larger than California. It firmly rests on the continent with depths as great as more than two miles below sea level (nearly four (4) kilometers!). I warned explicitly, six years ago, that it would melt soon, with the exact mechanism now revealed as being in full swing.

This Will All Melt. Map Above, The Entrance of Totten, Is The Red Rectangle

This Will All Melt. Map Above, The Entrance of Totten, Is The Red Rectangle

The coast of East Antarctica hugs the Polar Circle. Thus, it is not that far south. It is potentially exposed to warm waters. It is roughly at the same latitude as Iceland, a place where forests are growing again.

All this ice is protected by, or used to be protected by thick frozen lips, next to the Antarctic Ocean. (Reason: on the margin of the continent, there is no more ice, or then floating ices shelves; thus, there is no more weight pressing down, and the continent flexes back up, forming the lips; I made up the word “lip”, by the way).

The frozen lips used to be stuck with giant ice plugs. Those are melting, or, in the case of Totten, have melted, and relatively warmish water is increasingly circulating below. (The reason is that warm salted is denser than colder sweeter water; so warm water passes below.)

If the warm water passes the threshold, the lip, it will fall on the other side, below the giant glacier, or, as it called, the icecap.

The warm water has advanced below the Totten Glacier by hundreds of kilometers, and has lifted the glacier. The line where the glacier is still resting on the continent is called the “Grounding Line”.

The study published in Nature was the result of cooperation from NASA, ESA, USA, France, UK, Australia, and more than 100 scientists. East Antarctica Melting Could be Explained by Oceanic Gateways

 

The Grounding Line can be picked up on ice penetrating radar. Such radar can distinguish the polished ice lifted and melting, and the grounded ice.

It is known that the entire Totten basin has melted in the past. One has to understand the human species evolved in the last two million years or so, roughly coincident with the freezing of Antarctica.

Why, when did Antarctica freeze? When the CO2 density fell below 450 PPM. Now it’s 400 PPM, if restricted to CO2.

However, in truth, we are well above 450 PPM, because one has to count the other man-made greenhouse gases (which did not exist when Antarctica started to freeze three million years ago).

So now Antarctica is unstable. As a frozen continent.

The warm water is not just lifting the glacier, but melting it. From below. When the glacier is entirely melted, all the ancient water molecules frozen above sea level in the past will rejoin the oceans. And the oceans, in turn, will rise.

A secondary effect is that, as the sea level rises, the ice shelves will get pushed up. As this happen, they will fracture, and melt even faster than expected. This will have an effect especially on West Antarctica, much of it been anchored by giant ice shelves.

Antarctica, and Greenland, if they thoroughly melted, would stay melted. Forests would grow (they started to, in Greenland).

Scientists are reassuring: if the Totten glacier melts completely, it will take centuries. They look at each other, and opine. I can hear them bleat from here. They have to be reassuring, because they are Very Serious People, on whom plutocracy leans.

It is the same crowd who, six years ago, was absolutely sure East Antarctica would never melt.

Yet, it is melting.

I will not bother to roll out mathematics and compute. Take California, cover it with two miles of ice. Then direct at it cold water, with a hose, five miles wide, half a mile deep. How long? Ah, a detail that may not be a detail: it’s coming from below. With ice shelves, lifting from below induces their brutal disintegration. The same happens with flowing glaciers. The spectacle is nearly incomprehensible in its violence and gigantism.

So watch this video, of the largest calving event ever filmed:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hC3VTgIPoGU

This is the future of the Totten glacier, soon, and on a wide, getting ever wider, front.

No, it will not take centuries.

Decades, at most.

Melting Totten will change human civilization, forever. And of course, it will not melt alone. As I showed in detail, six years ago, there is an ever larger catchment basin in East Antarctica, with its bottom miles under sea level

Patrice Ayme’

Biosphere Destruction. Not Just “Climate Change”

May 20, 2014

Psychological Change Needed

“Climate Change” is an ambiguous notion. It does not reflect reality. It neither respect the reality of what is happening nor the reality of what it is going to mean for common people.

The expression “climate change” is too close to positive emotions. Indeed, who does not want “change”? Or, for that matter, a “change of climate”?It’s the wrong emotional semantics.

Biosphere destruction is more like it. So let people evoke that, biosphere destruction, rather than the misleading euphemism “climate change”.

Warming Wave Hitting Alaska. Muir @ Glacier Bay

Warming Wave Hitting Alaska. Muir @ Glacier Bay

[1941 picture on the left, a more recent one on the right. ]

The truth about “climate change”? It’s not just about the climate and it’s beyond a change of clothing.

The  two pictures of the glacier above reminded me of an adventure I had in Alaska recently. I wanted to show my toddler the most accessible glacier in Alaska, at the neck between the Kenai peninsula and Alaska proper. I had been there in the past: one could drive nearly to the massive glacier, which was resting like a giant beast in a valley. I drove, and drove. Reached a parking. No more road. Clear blue water. Up on the mountains, several glaciers, in full retreat, could be seen. The famous glacier had completely disappeared.

In “Disintegrating Antarctica”, I did not mention the latest on Greenland. Several research teams announced that there are at least 100 deep hidden fjords penetrating Greenland. Many extends more than 100 kilometers.

That means melting in Greenland is going to go faster than expected in all previous models.

The average length, and undersea depth of glacier tongues were found much greater than previously estimated. A paper in Nature Geoscience reports that 107 marine-terminating glaciers are underlain by fjords extending on average 67 kilometers (42 miles) inland below sea level, a number 300 percent greater than previous assessments.

The excellent Paul Handover of “Learning  From Dogs” wonders upon “the nature of delusions”. He notices that people are less afraid of “climate change” in the English speaking countries.

One of the reason is the tremendous propaganda. I read recently a long article about Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders (OCD) in New Scientist. This main feature article was written by an eminent pundit, long editor of the science journal “Nature”, and other prestigious English speaking media (I am a subscriber to both NS and Nature).

He mentioned terrible OCD such as serial killing, or Winston Churchill (and others) feeling like jumping from high places to their deaths. He also said science showed people’s mad inclinations fit the “mania of their ages“.

The most recent instance of a mania the respected editor rolled out as inducing a flurry of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, worldwide ? Worrying about “Climate Change“. A mania of our age, he insisted. Presumably affecting yours truly, Barack Obama, Europe, the United Nations, and more than 97% of climate scientists.

I made a quick search, and found very long articles from the same character vaunting the merits of natural gas extraction, already 15 years ago, in… Nature. When one knows the influence and prestige of Nature, no wonder nothing of sufficient significance is made about “Biosphere Destruction”. I will leave to the imagination how the gentleman gets financed.

Another reason for doubting that biosphere destruction will affect negatively English speaking countries, is that, under the leadership of ravenous lords, the exploitative mentality, accompanied by whole sale destruction, as needed, as proven very profitable to the population of said countries. It’s natural to expect that this exploitative mentality will keep on bearing fruit.

Against giant money, the voices of the many are like those of mice.

Patrice Aymé

Note: Apparently a powerful El Nino, comparable to the largest one ever seen in 1997-98, is gathering steam in the Pacific.

Buoys show that an enormous blob of abnormally warm water, up to half a kilometer thick, is migrating eastward. This is the preferred warming mechanism for the planet, as it transfers great heat from the western Pacific to the much colder eastern Pacific. During maximum warming, the historical record seems to show continuous El Ninos.

Thus the probability seems around 2/3 that atmospheric heat records will be beaten next year (accompanied with floods, droughts, and other dynamic effects).

 

Antarctica’s Glaciers Disintegrating

May 14, 2014

Unstoppable Retreat Of Glacial Antarctica Officially Launched:

Two independent teams working differently arrived to similar conclusions about the main glaciers plunging in Antarctica’s Amundsen Sea next to the Pines Island Glacier (PIG) (see map below).

Modelling and radar data from Amundsen Sea suggest current melting will run away.

This has to be put in the context that, as far as official science was concerned, this was not supposed to happen. A completely independent agent such as yours truly predicted this many years ago, and incredibly much worse, because of a confluence of very precise reasons.

Don't Worry, Be Happy: Catastrophe Ineluctable, And Soon

Don’t Worry, Be Happy: Catastrophe Ineluctable, And Soon

Pine Island Glacier covers about 160,000 square kilometers, about two-thirds the area of Great Britain. Just one glacier.

Like the Thwaites, Smith, Haynes, Pope, Smith and Kohler Glaciers in this region – the PIG has been thinning and retreating rapidly. The Twaithes is much larger than PIG.

Joughin’s team found that Twaithes glacier’s grounding line — the border between sections of ice that float on the sea and sections that rest on the bedrock — currently sits about 600 meters below sea level (2,000 feet!). But 60 to 80 kilometers inland, the bedrock topography under the glacier drops to more than 1.2 kilometer below sea level!

When the grounding line reaches that inward-sloping basin, the glacier’s retreat will speed up dramatically, Joughin’s team calculates (I have explained the same phenomenon will happen in giant basins of East Antarctica in “Sun Cooling, Ice Melting“).

The reason for this is that two degree Celsius water is denser than colder water (!), and will slip below the ice. That will happen in a matter of centuries, the team suggested (to please the higher-ups).

The team has, of course, to suggest total melting would take centuries, otherwise it would irritate the powers that be, and, thus, the financing of the entire field.

These scientists have to earn a living, feed their families, bask in successful careers. They have comfortable houses, cars… They sell not just science, but hope. As the great mathematician Gregory Perelman, who solved the Soul, Thurston and Poincare’ conjectures, among other things, said, about American mathematics:

It’s possible to sell a theorem and it’s possible to buy it. Even if you don’t have anything to do with it.”

(Perelman was talking about a few dozen top mathematicians that I personally knew for years, before getting as disgusted by their dishonesty, not to say viciousness, as he later would be!)

If that intrusion of the lowest human traits happens in math, it’s worse in much more money oriented fields. Such as the confluence of the fossil fuel plutocracy and climate science (typical representative of fossil burn plutocracy: Vlad Putin.)

This buying and selling of theorems is exemplary of the problem of mixing power, politics and money, as is the case in the mightiest “private” or “public” universities in the USA (and wherever the American university system is imitated). I am NOT saying that the system these universities (Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, pseudo-public Berkeley, etc.) represent is to be condemned and eradicated like RasPutin, just that it needs to be taken for what it is: a plutophile system.

Plutophilia needs to be counterbalanced by the love of wisdom. (Thus a true public university system ought to be preserved.)

In the case of these glaciers, wisdom consists into realizing that considering that it will take centuries for these glaciers to melt, is wishful thinking. The evidence, both factual and theoretical, points the other way.

Grounding lines determined by radar from now defunct European satellites were found in some cases to retreat by more than one kilometer per year.

Radar data show that the Pine Island Glacier retreated by 31 kilometers between 1992 and 2011. It retreated fastest between 2005 and 2009.

Rignot’s team found no underlying ridge that could potentially slow the retreat, for any of the glaciers studied.“These systems, whether Greenland or Antarctica, are changing on faster timescales than we expected. We are kind of rediscovering that every day,” says Rignot.

Telling us that it will take at most centuries to melt those glaciers is exactly the sort of politeness that authorities and the plutocrats who have elected (“financed”) them would expect.

Actually Observing Glaciers Thinning

Actually Observing Glaciers Thinning

Yet, is that science? Indeed, how do they know it will take centuries? Well, they roll out “models” that are as good as what they put inside them, and no better. Let’s reason a bit.

Why will the glaciers melt ever faster? The glaciers will melt ever faster because their cold bellies rest on what would be the new ocean bottom after enough warm sea water has insinuated itself below.

The seas are warming up around Antarctica, because wind speeds have augmented, augmenting the up-welling, another of these run-about effects from global warming. Around Antarctica, surface waters are colder than those in the depths. Wind speed have augmented because of my (six year old) generalization of the Equipartition of Energy Theorem that rules the climate (and also all of thermodynamics!).

Such phenomena as the warming of the underbellies of ice sheets by sea water, tend to be exponential, not linear. And we have the proof: the Hudson Bay, now a sea, transformed itself from ice shield to ocean in a few decades. That, in turn, made the Mediterranean spill catastrophically into the fertile Black Sea area, flooding there around 100,000 square kilometers in no more than 30 years. (That gave the legend of Noah’s Ark.)

Notice that retreating over a continent at one kilometer per year (the speed of the Labrador-Quebec Laurentide ice sheet disintegration), is probably slower by orders of magnitudes to that a sub-oceanic margin. The “forcing” at the time was caused by more insolation, 8,200 years ago (from more sun in July-August then). Now, though, the situation is worse as the “forcing” is from a low lying blanket of man-made greenhouse gases (so, instead of warming equally the entire atmosphere, the greenhouse concentrates the warming at low altitudes, say below 8,000 meters; the stratosphere is actually cooling!).

It was already known, in 1990, that the disintegration of the gigantic Laurentide ice sheet centered around Hudson Bay took no more than 4 centuries. (That ice sheet used to be more than 3,000 meters thick, being the world’s largest, 20,000 years ago).

It boils down to this: is it wiser to risk underestimating the speed of melting of these glaciers, or is it wiser to risk overestimating said speed? Obviously, for those who are anxious to please their masters who feed them, it’s wiser to say there will be a problem, but only in a generation or two.

For those who don’t want to risk the biosphere we know, it’s much wiser to consider the worst possible case. Remember inertia: short of astronomical objects, the system with the most inertia is the biosphere itself. That’s a system that has been capable of maintaining the planet’s temperature within fifteen degrees (Celsius) of the present temperature for more than three billion years. It has enormous inertia. However, our stupid obstinacy to burn all the carbon we can find has definitively got that enormous system to start moving.

We imparted acceleration to the biosphere. We are pushing the biosphere around. And we know that the force we are applying is only augmenting. That means the acceleration, and even more the speed of the change, is going to get worse quick. That’s basic dynamics, first quarter of undergraduate physics.

Of course, neither the leaders of France, Great Britain, or the USA has taken such a course: they are basically ignoramuses at the helm (and Angela Merkel, who knows plenty of physics, made a risky bet she seems to be losing).

Clearly, we should instead apply the brakes to the maximum (instead of flooring the accelerator). What would be the price of this cautious? None, for common people: hard work to de-carbonize the world economy would require dozens of millions to be employed that way, in the West alone.

That, of course, is a scary thought for plutocrats, who much prefer us unemployed, impotent, and despondent.

Patrice Aymé

References:

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2008/03/08/the-equipartition-of-energy-theorem-should-be-applied-for-climate-change-and-predicts-wild-fluctuations-of-temperatures/

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2009/05/31/sun-cooling-ice-melting/

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2014/04/20/ten-years-to-catastrophe/

Record Arctic Melt Down

August 28, 2012

ARCTIC SEA ICE IS PLUNGING BELOW 2007 RECORD LOW

Sea Ice is now the lowest in maybe fifteen thousand years (and possibly 100,000 years). Just the beginning of the nuclearized Jurassic.

Ice August 26 2012 Versus Minimum 1980-2010

Notice that Greenland is sticking out like a sore, frozen thumb. Ready to melt, obviously. When the remaining huge white, reflecting expanses will be replaced by dark, light absorbing surfaces (that’s why they will be dark), the heating of the Arctic will accelerate, and become irreversible.

(I am using the adjective “heating” on purpose; it’s exactly how the average rise of maybe twenty degrees Celsius which is coming for the poles, should be qualified.)

With two to three more weeks left in the melt season, Arctic sea ice is certain to fall well below 4 million square kilometers. The previous minimum was the September 18, 2007 extent of 4.17 million square kilometers. The six lowest ice extents in the satellite record have occurred in the last six years (from 2007 to 2012).

And it’s not just the Arctic. In Antarctica, the temperature of the  giant peninsula down there has augmented by at least three degrees Celsius, and plants have started to grow around scientific stations (feeling culprit, the naïve scientists are trying to remove the grasses by hand). In Greenland, forests have been planted, and harvested, for the first time ever.  

Arctic Sea Ice in 2012 is less than half of the minimum extent of 1980. Everything indicates that, within a few years, ice will be at the lowest extent in three million years.

Another drastic fact: in mid July 2012 all of Greenland’s surface was melting, including at Summit Station (up at 3,216 meters altitude, 10,551 feet). Records from ice cores shows that this happens in the average ONCE every 150 years. Should it happen again next year, many of Greenland’s glaciers would become unhinged.  

Why? Because the water flows down “moulins“, all the way down the ice cap, 3,000 meters down, two miles down (to speak in units the Romans used to have before the planet went metric, except for a few savages in the woods). There the water flows below the ice, in channels (in Antarctica, there are hundreds of lakes, 4,000 meters down, some huge, up to 160 kilometers long, and below the icecap water flows from one lake to the next… rather ominously).

Should there be way too much water, it will have to break out of the channels, and force itself more below the icecap, and lubricate it from below.

Entire glaciers have suddenly slipped in Greenland, as if they were rumbling snakes come alive, generating up to Richter 6 quakes. Ice quakes.

Now what’s next? Well, as there is less sea ice than ever, solar radiation will penetrate the sea, even during Fall 2012, and warm it deep down inside. Even ultra violet light can penetrate sea for dozens of meters. So all this solar radiation, usually bouncing on the sea ice back to space, will dissipate itself deep down in the ocean, warming it up. In depth. The huge caloric capacity of the ocean will guarantee a milder winter, and even thinner ice, comes next Winter, and thus an even faster melt, starting next March.

All the more since solar activity is on the upswing (part of the sun’s eleven years solar cycle, which reached its nadir last year). So we can be sure that, come next July, all of Greenland’s surface will be melting again, including at Summit Station. And the glaciers will come unhinged.

What to do? Beyond getting properly informed about the unfolding disaster?

***

FIRST MOVE TO SAVE THE WORLD. A HEAVY CARBON TAX:

First one has to understand that the exponentially rising greenhouse gas curve is completely amoral. In the deepest sense of what “moral” means. See “Immoral CO2 Curve“. (See note.)  

To curtail the CO2 rise is very simple: just put up a hefty carbon tax. If fossil fuel energy is expensive inside the free market, the free market will adapt, and replace it by sustainable energy. Right now fossil fuels and their users are heavily subsidized. Strike those subsidies.

Sweden introduced a carbon tax in 1990. Not only it did not adversely affect economic growth, but now bio mass is massively used in Sweden, thanks to the tax. Most European countries have inchoating, or partial carbon taxes (even Britain). Even in the USA, the San Francisco Bay Area air quality management passed a (local) carbon tax in 2008. A question of intellect reaching a critical mass around UC Berkeley, UCSF, Stanford, the Silicon Valley.

The USA has done its best to block any worldwide carbon tax. The idea of such a carbon tax would be to tax any product according to how much CO2 was created to produce, transport and distribute it. Such a tax would lower the mercury in fish and the Arctic (which is condensed mercury vapor in colder regions from coal burning, mostly in China).

A worldwide carbon tax would not just lower the CO2 and give a chance to sustainable energies, but also a carbon tax would lower unemployment considerably in developed countries (good are transported using what is, by far, the dirtiest oil, bunk oil, being the cheapest and only giant ship engines can devour it).

So why is a carbon tax not implemented? Mostly through opposition of the USA. Because those who truly rule the USA make USA politicians understand they should not disrupt the entangled miracles that feed them so well.

***

CO2 PERPETRATORS ARE MOSTLY ANGLO-SAXON COLONISTS & THEIR SERFS:

One has next to understand that it is mostly the Anglo-Saxon colonies, which have created a mood of CO2 criminality. Here is the CO2 pollution of the USA: 18 tons per person per year. Here is Australia: 20 tons. And Canada: 16 tons. Canada celebrated its choice of the Dark Side by quitting the Kyoto protocol, the only country to have done such a thing. Why? Because not only Canada is not reducing its CO2 emissions, it’s planning to augment them as much as it can. Federal Canada is hell bent to exploit its tar sands. That means burning twice its tar sands, to extract all the money it can from hell itself (tar is so viscous one needs to heat those sands really hard; oil companies are hush about how exactly they heat up and extract the oil from the sands).

Provinces such as Quebec and British Columbia, with splendid unspoiled nature, and no fossil fuels, have implemented local carbon taxes.

By contrast to the federal behavior of the USA, Canada and Australia: Britain pollutes with 9 tons of CO2 per year, per person. Hint: there are hefty fuel taxes in Europe, including in Britain. The Europeans have been trying much harder, for much longer. Big industrial Germany is at 9.3 tons, Italy at 7 tons, France at 6.3. Switzerland, about twice richer than the USA per head, is at 6 tons of CO2. Japan, another industrial heavy weight is at 8.6 tons of CO2 per year.

So why does the USA block a carbon tax? One has to understand the USA is an imperial plutocracy made of entangled components: the banks, their banksters, and shady financial plotters, the Military Industrial Complex (MIC), the fossil fuel lobby, the plutocratic universities. The various components have a vested interest in the CO2 exponential, and even the CO2 catastrophe, and they reign in Washington.

For example some have evaluated the price of gasoline at 14 dollars a gallon, when hidden subsidies are incorporated, such as the cost of the various military programs that allow to control the Middle East (and, indirectly Venezuela, etc.) Of course the MIC has interest that this spending keeps on going. And even countries such as Israel, a sort of land locked USA carrier, receiving, with its Egyptian buddy, billions from the USA, are all entangled in the USA MIC and fuel lobby.

The plutocrats have lined up all the colonist Anglo-Saxon sheep, and taught them to bleat non sense. One can read deep consideration on why it is human nature that the Anglo-Saxons ought to use so much more oil than anybody else. Soon the bleating ones will be singing that the ice is not melting, it’s just going to heavens. Fossil fuel lobbyists even sing in unison that the more CO2, the better, CO2 is life sustaining. They congratulate each other for such strokes of genius, bleating even louder.

***

THE USA HAS GOT WORSE:

A fascinating experience in the USA is to visit a truck parking area where dozens of giant gas guzzling trucks can be parked, all running their engines. For hours, with no one inside (the truckers are partying somewhere else). A curious religion of waste erected as a basic expression of pride and freedom. What I deduce from that sort of scene, when I have recovered from the breathing difficulties that cause my brain to nearly shut down, is that the price of oil is ridiculously too low in the USA.   

In a country such as Switzerland, running a vehicle on idle is against the law. In countries with highly taxed fuel, it’s not an economic proposition. European car makers have even invented “stop-start” engines, which cut off, as soon as the car does not require traction. That saves up to 10% fuel (engines have to be redesigned so that secondary systems such as cooling can run on electric engines, as they traditionally run directly on the combustion engine). One may wonder why it is that the USA poisons the atmosphere twice more, per person, than Britain. Why is Britain so much more reasonable?

The fate of the gasoline tax is indicative of how regressive the USA has become. In constant dollars, that tax used to be much higher in the past, although then, people were driving gas-guzzlers. What seems to have changed is that people used to believe much more in sacrificing much more for the common good. Too long frequenting R. Reagan and G.W. Bush?

And the gasoline tax used to be high, just to pay for roads. Now we have a good reason to bring up the tax: Arctic sea ice is now at its lowest ever. And yet CO2 production in the USA peaked in 2005 (just before the Greater Depression took hold).

***

WHY ARE THE BRITS SO CO2 MORAL, & THE USA  SO CULPRIT?

Britain has learned to fear hubris.

It has to do with Britain suffering terribly in WWI and WWII. The British elite knows that hubris is the source of most flaws that affect civilization, because that is what the Greeks believed. Hitler’s hubris that he could free himself from his American masters’ oil, and invade all places with fossil fuels such as Poland, Romania, the USSR, Iraq, was what set him on a collision course with France, igniting World War Two…

Britain knows hubris well, and knows it can work for quite a while. Britain’s murderous expansion in Ireland and then in North America was driven by the “West Country Men” the plutocrats who ruled England in the Elizabethan age. That spirit of relentless exploitation was leveraged further when tobacco growing in America made them rich and the Dutch took control of England, leveraging the bank of England and the Royal Navy to the hilt, in the hope of subduing their creator (at the time autocratic) France… And that in turn also worked.

All fair and good… Until the “West Country Men” exploitative logic backfired, when Twentieth Century USA plutocrats learned to use it against Europe. England, that, ever since Guillaume Le Conquerant had created it, had been obsessed to prevent the rise of a super power in Europe, found itself the pawn of the one, on the other side of the pond. The one that Britain and France had given birth to.

The British started to feel progressively, same as a lot in Europe, as the new Indians. A change of paradigm was in order, and the French ultraconservative approach, to husband one’s resources, won over. Same in Germany (this also explains why the German birth rate has collapsed). And all over Europe.

Where does the ultraconservative French approach comes from? From the fact that, from government policy through the Middle Ages, by 1600 CE, French peasants were small owners of what they cultivated (the opposite of the situation in England, ruled by enormous land owners). The French peasant-owners were no non sense, they were very close to their sous ( a word denoting money that evolved from the Roman “solidus”). The first thing they did was to curb their birthrate, to protect their resources (as they owned them). When Louis XVI, in an astounding access of hubris, idealism and naivety, spent money, trillions, that he did not have, to make a revolution in America, he lost the support of French peasants..

So doing nothing about CO2 is, first of all, an Anglo-Saxon “West Country Men” led phenomenon. It’s a mental world of ravenous exploitation united by hunting Mr. Assange, Mr. Manning and denying that the ice is melting, while having an open season on Iraqis, Afghans, and singing the praises of global, delirious finance.

Unfortunately the USA-Canada-Australia block has 370 million gas guzzling souls, and their collaborator is called China. All together this axis of fossils produces about two-thirds of the world CO2.

***

PLOTTING AGAINST THE MOTHER OF THE GODS:

For the Greeks, Gaia, Earth, was the mother of all gods (including Zeus-Deus). Great powers have always conspired to further their rule. As the power of human technology has exploded, those conspiracies have reached new heights (the arch example being Auschwitz). Now they involve conspiring against the entire biosphere.

Some will say I am going too far by supposing that letting the CO2 catastrophe run its course is part of a conspiracy. But the facts support this. For years great billionaires of the USA, such as the (fossil fuel) Koch brothers have paid professors in what are supposedly the world’s best universities to come up with obviously false science (like CO2 does not cause warming, and there is no warming, etc.)

Here is an anecdote showing that the plutocrats who leads the USA really view hell as a friend. For years USA taxpayers have given, through their government, hundreds of millions of dollars to the Pakistani theocrats to make nuclear bombs. Very strange but true (and reminiscent of the USA support for Hitler!). An excellent proof, though, that the Washington leaders (whoever they truly are) see great opportunities in future crises, such as a nuclear war in Asia. Let alone some terrorists getting their hands on a nuke (of which Pakistan has more than 100). So that they see great opportunity in the mess the CO2 catastrophe will entail, is a small logical step to make.

In this general mood, a melting Arctic crisis spells an even greater opportunity. And it’s coming, much faster than people expect. When there is no more Arctic sea ice in summer, it’s just a matter of a very short time before there will be no more in winter. Because the ocean will warm up irreversibly (while cold sweet light water on top will shut down the Gulf Stream beyond Iceland).

In the Jurassic not only were there polar dinosaurs in Alaska, but crocodiles in Greenland.  Some will scoff, and say it’s an opportunity: Washington will be among the places to drown. Actually fossil fuel and mining companies are scrambling to exploit the parts of the Arctic freed of ice. However the whole planet’s climate will lurch into the Jurassic. In a few decades.

Most of the Earth’s greenhouse is from water vapor (about two third). As the oceans get warmer, steam content is going up. Some scientists say it’s already 5% up. Steam increasing fast is one of the NON linear effects that is going to make planetary heating exponentiate.

The planet, as it is, function as a giant Carnot engine. The moving parts of the engine are the sea currents and the wind. The expansion and contraction come from heating and cooling sea and air. All this will come to a halt as the cold sinks the poles, disappear. Thus a lot of sustainable energy will disappear.

Excepting man, any exponential phenomenon is an immoral phenomenon.

***

Patrice Ayme

***

Note: Why is the rising greenhouse gas curve exponentiating? Because the CO2 equivalent gases brings up the temperature, which then brings up the water vapor, at a rate proportional to the temp rise! (Thanks to Paul Handover for chastising me for a careless version of this statement)