Earth’s Prognosis – “Critical Condition”

As an overly concerned citizen of our home, Planet Earth, I have to say that my research and findings related to the health and stability of our planet, are all pointing to a major crisis, occurring as we speak, for all species living on Earth.

Atomic scientists, including 16 Nobel Laureates, announced recently that the world’s metaphorical “Doomsday Clock” representing how close we are to planetary destruction, or “midnight,” will remain at its 2015 position of 3 minutes to midnight.

“We announce, with utter dismay, that the clock remains at three minutes to midnight, the closest it has been in last 30 years,” the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists announced in a recent live broadcast. The scientists attribute this “grim” timetable to Cold Warlike tension between the United States and Russia and recent nuclear threats, including one from North Korea, among other things.

This is the closest the clock has been to disaster since early above ground hydrogen bomb testing, according to the Bulletin’s press release. A team of scientists adjusts the Doomsday clock annually based on conditions of positive and negative variation in climate change, nuclear weapons, biotechnology and other technological advancements.

I will be covering the following subjects, as they are all interrelated, synergistic, and organize the same conclusion mentioned earlier. These are not in any specific order, yet play off each other, as they are all tied to one common core, the survival of all species on Planet Earth.

• 6TH MASS EXTINCTION
• WARMING OCEANS
• CLIMATE CHANGE
• ACIDIFICATION OCEANS / REEFS
• SEA LEVEL RISE
• GLOBAL TEMP RISE
• SHRINKING ICE SHEETS
• EXTREME EVENTS
• WATER FOR LIFE
• OVER POPULATION

So let’s take them one by one and start organizing information that will ultimately come to a consensus conclusion.

6TH MASS EXTINCTION

The loss and decline of animals around the world – caused by habitat loss and global climate disruption – mean we’re in the midst of a sixth “mass extinction” of life on Earth, according to several studies found in the journal Science.
“We were shocked to find similar losses in invertebrates as with larger animals, as we previously thought invertebrates to be more resilient.” said Ben Collen of the U.K.’s University College London, one of the study’s authors.

Although big, photogenic species, such as tigers, rhinos and pandas, get the bulk of the attention, researchers say it’s clear that even the disappearance of the tiniest beetle can significantly change the various ecosystems on which humans depend.

Five times in the history of the Earth, a huge percentage of the planet’s life has been wiped out in what are called mass extinctions, typically from collisions with giant meteors.

About 66 million years ago, one well-known extinction killed off the dinosaurs, along with three out of the four species on Earth. About 252 million years ago, the “Great Dying” snuffed out about 90% of the world’s species.

Overall, scientists estimate that due to all of the past extinctions, about nine out of 10 of all life-forms that have existed on our planet are extinct.

The study says that species are disappearing at a rate 100 times faster than would normally be expected – and that is a conservative estimate.

The human population growing in numbers, per capita consumption and economic inequity have altered or destroyed natural habitats, the researchers say.

In conclusion, the facts outweigh the many conversations associated with this area of study that defy logic and are carelessly used in defense of human activity.

WARMING OCEANS

Warmer oceans put coastal communities at risk, increase infrastructure costs, endanger polar creatures and threaten coral reefs and fisheries. Perhaps most alarmingly, rising ocean temperatures accelerate the overall warming trend.
Not only are ocean surface waters getting warmer, but so is water deep below the surface. These increases in temperature lie well outside the bounds of natural variation.

The oceans are the flywheel of the climate system. As atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases increase, the Earth system is warming, and over 90 percent of that increase in heat goes into the ocean.

Most estimates of ocean warming have been limited to the upper 700 meters of water, owing to the limited availability of ocean-temperature data below that depth.

However, the ocean is also warming near the bottom, in the coldest waters of the abyssal zones. Oceanographers measure the abyssal ocean to depths of 6,000 meters by lowering accurate recording thermometers and other instruments to the ocean floor on long cables from research vessels. During the 1980s and 1990s, an international program called the World Ocean Circulation Experiment collected thousands of such profiles around the globe.

Indeed, add together the net global heat content of the atmosphere, land, ice, surface ocean waters and deep ocean waters, and the total shows a continued, clear – and, in fact, rising – increase. As environmental scientist and climate blogger Dana Nuccitelli, co-author of the aforementioned 2012 paper on ocean warming, points out, this means that “the slowed warming at the surface is only temporary, and consistent with research. The global warming end result will be the same, but the pattern of surface warming over time may be different than we expect… while many people wrongly believe global warming has stalled over the past 10-15 years, in reality that period is “the most sustained warming trend” in the past half century. Global warming has not slowed down, it has accelerated.”

CLIMATE CHANGE

Earth’s temperature depends on the balance between energy entering and leaving the planet’s system. When the incoming energy from the sun is absorbed by the Earth system, Earth warms. When the sun’s energy is reflected back into space, Earth avoids warming up. When absorbed energy is released back into space, Earth cools. Many factors, both natural and human, can cause changes in the Earth’s energy balance.

Scientists have pieced together a record of Earth’s climate, dating back hundreds of thousands of years (and, in some cases, millions or hundreds of millions of years), by analyzing a number of indirect measures of climate such as ice cores, tree rings, glacier lengths, pollen remains, and ocean sediments, and by studying changes in Earth’s orbit around the sun.

This record shows that the climate system varies naturally over a wide range of time scales. In general, climate changes prior to the Industrial Revolution in the 1700s can be explained by natural causes, such as changes in solar energy, volcanic eruptions, and natural changes in greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations.

Recent climate changes, however, cannot be explained by natural causes alone. Research indicates that natural causes do not explain the most observed warming, especially warming since the mid-20th century. Rather, it is extremely likely that human activities have been the dominant cause of that warming.

The sun’s energy received at the top of Earth’s atmosphere has been measured by satellites since 1978. It has followed its natural 11-year cycle of small ups and downs, but with no net increase. Over the same period, global temperature has risen markedly.

Climate is influenced by natural changes that affect how much solar energy reaches Earth. These changes include changes within the sun and changes in Earth’s orbit.

Causes of Climate Change

• Both natural and human factors change the Earth’s climate.
• Before humans, changes in climate resulted entirely from natural causes such as changes in Earth’s orbit, changes in solar activity, or volcanic eruptions.
• Since the Industrial Era began, humans have had an increasing effect on climate, particularly by adding billions of tons of heat-trapping greenhouse gases to the atmosphere.
• Most of the observed warming since the 텍사스홀덤 mid-20th century is due to human-caused greenhouse gas emissions.

These factors have caused the Earth’s climate to change many times.

Recent climate changes, however, cannot be explained by natural causes alone. Research indicates that natural causes do not explain the most observed warming, especially warming since the mid-20th century. Rather, it is extremely likely that human activities have been the dominant cause of that warming.

The poles have already seen the greatest warming, and will continue to warm more rapidly than other areas. Already we’re seeing record losses of ice in the Arctic. That melting ice contributes to rising sea levels, affecting the entire planet. In addition, warm water expands, so sea levels will rise as the atmosphere warms. The ocean has risen 4-8 inches globally over the last hundred years. As sea level continues to rise, flooding and storm surges will threaten freshwater sources, as well as coastal homes and buildings. Coastal facilities and barrier islands in many parts of the world are gradually submerging, and some low-lying islands have already had to be evacuated.

ACIDIFICATION OCEANS / REEFS

Over 180M Tons of Toxic Waste are dumped Into World’s Oceans, Rivers, and Lakes each Year. The 313 million people who live in the United States send about 120 million tons of trash to landfills every year.

Earthworks and Mining Watch Canada spent the past year investigating this egregious, and outdated, practice. Findings reported in a new study,Troubled Waters: How Mine Waste Dumping is Poisoning Our Oceans, Rivers, and Lakes. The report identifies the world’s waters that are suffering the greatest harm or are at greatest risk from dumping of mine waste. These include rivers in Papua New Guinea on which fishing communities depend, Norwegian fjords where tourists once flocked, once-pristine lakes in Alaska and British Columbia, and coastal waters off the islands in the Indonesian archipelago.

Today’s industrial gold and copper mines produce an unimaginable amount of waste. Mining enough gold for just a single wedding band generates, on average, of 20 tons of Mine Waste.

Ten companies are currently dumping their waste into these waterways, and 27 more are proposing to do so. This list includes some of the largest, most profitable mining corporations in the world – Canada’s Barrick Gold, US-based Newmont Mining Co., and Freeport McMoRan, and Brazilian-owned Vale.

The Surfrider Foundation, along with many county and state health departments has always advised the public never to swim or surf within 72 hours after a rain. During these periods, the coastal waters are polluted with urban runoff and may also contain sewage from leaking sewer pipes or overflowing sewer manholes. In most places, and especially in heavily urbanized areas like Southern California, ocean water quality after a rain typically has high concentrations of bacteria and may also have high concentrations of pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, heavy metals, and petroleum products.

Viruses are believed to be a major cause of swimming-associated diseases, and are responsible for many cases of gastroenteritis, hepatitis, respiratory illness, and ear, nose, and throat problems. Other microbial diseases that can be contracted by swimmers include salmonellosis, shigellosis, and infection caused by E. coli, a type of enteric pathogen.

There is also what can be referred to as a “toxic cocktail” of pesticides, herbicides, heavy metals and other pollutants that are not monitored regularly and the health effects of which are poorly understood. It is important to understand that the typical ocean water monitoring program used by most municipalities in California consists only of tests for total coliform, fecal coliform, and Enterococcus bacteria. No tests for viruses, hydrocarbons, pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, metals, or other pollutants are routinely performed.

Author:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *