Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Misunderstanding Global Warming?

I'm not a climatologist, but sometimes I wonder if journalists ever take the time to understand the issues they report on. In the article linked below, the author speaks of the financial repercussions of global warming on europe, i.e. good for northern europe, bad for southern europe. However, what the writer does not take into account is this: many climatologists agree that a dramatic and prolonged warming of the planet has the potential to hasten the next ice age, a super boomerang effect, if you will.

In the worst case scenario, it basically works like this: severe planetary warming causes the melting of arctic ice. This new influx of fresh water affects the salinity of the ocean and enough of it may slow or potentially even stop the movement of the great ocean conveyor. The conveyor is a warm water current that helps create the gulf stream in the atmosphere above the ocean. Of course, it goes without saying that the gulf stream is extremely important. Without it, the United Kingdom would be about as tourist friendly as Iceland.

So, in actuality, the worst possible aspect of global warming may not be a hotter world, but rather a dramatically cooler planet, as least as far as the northern hemisphere is concerned.

Tip: moving to Canada may not be such a good idea in the near future and beach front property may turn out to be a poor investment due to changing sea levels. (of course, even climatologists agree that such scenarios are only speculative)

Wrong again

While I'm at it, here are a couple of other interesting articles on the subject.

Weird weather all across the USA

Never has good weather felt so bad

A great and scary quote from the last article: "The weather will be almost normal, briefly, before all hell breaks loose again".

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