Climate ChangeRecent Post

RealClimate: Unforced Variations: Jun 2021

Killian says:

11 Mike says:
3 Jun 2021 at 4:20 PM

Climate tipping points could topple like dominoes, warn scientists

Domino toppling tipping points. That sounds like a bad outcome.

Surely this is not a surprise to you, Chris?

“We provide a risk analysis, not a prediction, but our findings still raise concern,” said Prof Ricarda Winkelmann

Risk analysis. Huh. Imagine that, a risk framing for climate… Who’da thunk it…?

at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) in Germany. “[Our findings] might mean we have less time to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and still prevent tipping processes.”

What?! Faster than predicted? You mean, like, “Time is short?” No, we have, like, tons of time for incremental changes. Everybody says so… NetZero by ’50, right? But, errr… how short?

The level of CO2 in the atmosphere required to push temperatures beyond the thresholds could be reached… “In the next years or decades

…the risk clearly is increasing…

Oh… that short. Shocked, I tell you. Never saw it coming!

In May, scientists reported that a significant part of the Greenland ice sheet was on the brink of a tipping point. A 2019 analysis… may already have crossed a series of climate tipping points… “an existential threat to civilisation”.

Alarmist! Or… maybe not…?

The climate crisis may also mean much of the Amazon is close to a tipping point, at which carbon-storing forest is replaced by savannah…

An example of the complex chain of interactions the researchers tracked is the melting of the Greenland ice sheet. …fresh water into the ocean and slows down the AMOC… less heat is transported from the tropics towards the north pole, which in turn leads to warmer waters in the Southern Ocean. …destabilise ice sheets in Antarctica, which pushes up global sea level and causes more melting at the edges of the Greenland ice sheet.

This is what worries me about the way this is written up: Was this a surprise to them? I mean, this wasn’t *obvious* already? Or, is this paper merely a result of wanting to quantify in writing what has been obvious for a while?

I have been harping on tipping points and cascades for *ever* and getting no traction. Seriously, this stuff is *obvious.* Or should be. I have specifically talked about cascading failures and more recently trophic cascades precisely because this is how systems function and because it was obvious our general abuse of the planet had reduced hysteresis.

It’s really scary to think this wasn’t already obvious to them…

And don’t get me wrong, more information is always good, and finding specific teleconnections is very useful to understand cause and effect in changes we observe, but we passed the knowledge tipping – knowing enough to respond intelligently and effectively a long time ago.

Source link

Comment here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.