Friday, November 12, 2004

Arctic's increasingly balmy weather a bad sign

The Independent has a nicely detailed story that draws out the many bad effects that global warming is already having on the Arctic and the many worse effects to come.

Here's one excerpt:

The rapid and unprecedented shrinkage of the ice, and the extra burden it places on the animals, has resulted in the polar bears here weighing, on average, 55lb less than they did in the 1970s. And the bears have long become more than a nuisance in Churchill, Manitoba, on the shore of Hudson Bay. They are frequently tranquilised and flown back north.

Scientists at the World Wildlife Fund said that, if that continues, many of the polar bears in the Hudson Bay area will be so thin within the next 10 years that they could become infertile. Lara Hansen, chief scientist at the WWF, said: "If the population stops reproducing, that's the end of it."

Here's another:

A comparison of sea-ice measurements made during 1958-76 with 1993-1997 found it had thinned by 42 per cent. An analysis of similar data gathered by British submarines between 1976 and 1996 found a 43 per cent thinning of Arctic sea-ice.

(Comments are open to all. After clicking on "Comments," click on "Or Post Anonymously" if you don't have an account.)

No comments: