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Bill USA

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Member since: Wed Mar 3, 2010, 05:25 PM
Number of posts: 6,436

About Me

Quotes I like: "Prediction is very difficult, especially concerning the future." "There are some things so serious that you have to laugh at them. __ Niels Bohr Given his contribution to the establishment of quantum mechanics, I guess it's not surprising he had such a quirky of sense of humor. ......................."Deliberate misinterpretation and misrepresentation of another's position is a basic technique of (dis)information processing" __ I said that

Journal Archives

the increasing rate of thawing of the permafrost a huge unknown - how much will it accelerate GW?

(emphases my own)

Over hundreds of millennia, Arctic permafrost soils have accumulated vast stores of organic carbon - an estimated 1,400 to 1,850 petagrams of it (a petagram is 2.2 trillion pounds, or 1 billion metric tons). That's about half of all the estimated organic carbon stored in Earth's soils. In comparison, about 350 petagrams of carbon have been emitted from all fossil-fuel combustion and human activities since 1850. Most of this carbon is located in thaw-vulnerable topsoils within 10 feet (3 meters) of the surface.

But, as scientists are learning, permafrost - and its stored carbon - may not be as permanent as its name implies. And that has them concerned.

"Permafrost soils are warming even faster than Arctic air temperatures - as much as 2.7 to 4.5 degrees Fahrenheit (1.5 to 2.5 degrees Celsius) in just the past 30 years," Miller said. "As heat from Earth's surface penetrates into permafrost, it threatens to mobilize these organic carbon reservoirs and release them into the atmosphere as carbon dioxide and methane, upsetting the Arctic's carbon balance and greatly exacerbating global warming."

Current climate models do not adequately account for the impact of climate change on permafrost and how its degradation may affect regional and global climate. Scientists want to know how much permafrost carbon may be vulnerable to release as Earth's climate warms, and how fast it may be released.

research published in Nature, April 15, 2015 points out that as microbes break down the organic material in thawed permafrost they generate more heat and will speed up the process of melting more permafrost - with greater release of carbon dioxide and methane.


Decomposition of organic carbon from thawing permafrost soils and the resulting release of carbon to the atmosphere are considered to represent a potentially critical global-scale feedback on climate change1, 2. The accompanying heat production from microbial metabolism of organic material has been recognized as a potential positive-feedback mechanism that would enhance permafrost thawing and the release of carbon3, 4. This internal heat production is poorly understood, however, and the strength of this effect remains unclear3. Here, we have quantified the variability of heat production in contrasting organic permafrost soils across Greenland and tested the hypothesis that these soils produce enough heat to reach a tipping point after which internal heat production can accelerate the decomposition processes. Results show that the impact of climate changes on natural organic soils can be accelerated by microbial heat production with crucial implications for the amounts of carbon being decomposed. The same is shown to be true for organic middens5 with the risk of losing unique evidence of early human presence in the Arctic.

Here's the whole paper: http://www.nature.com/articles/nclimate2590.epdf?referrer_access_token=aZJygArBfYYSiUzB60TqbNRgN0jAjWel9jnR3ZoTv0M-PY6I018KtzmgQoAY5EQbmH76TfMseb9NFOSHHqdzKJm_9NtSZ_chqLlF3XZh5tJmNTjj6z22l6mKbdk6TcbKG2bVCK8Mh6MSBH88MUG6-GF-t4HNRT-0fhBSSSyU5-NFba_qY5Je4QkMRiGCevx5_3nHpHSSE9FoPj6-fHdHse-1sAUlSHT1-CMf97IVH-BIUa1s4O5tJ61MxjPt1E4r&tracking_referrer=grist.org

GW is accelerating. I haven't been able to find an estimate for the GHG production for the permafrost and a prediction of how fast it is growing (they may not have enough data to make what scientists consider a reliable estimate yet). But it is definitely accelerating. At some point in the future, if efforts at combating GW continue at the current pace, the World-wide annual release of CO2 and methane will be greater than what we will be able to reduce GHG production per year. It could get to the point that even if we could cut GHG emissions to zero, the planet will continue to warm on its own. At that point, you could say we will have reached the point of no return. And that is why we don't have the luxury of taking 20 to 30 years to achieve modest reductions in GHG emissions. With accelerating production of GHG emissions, a given amount of GHG reductions achieved sooner will have a greater impact than that same amount of GHG reductions achieved later.

After Forming Clinton Cash "Exclusives," NY Times, Washington Post Fail To Report On Book's Errors

After Forming Clinton Cash "Exclusives," NY Times, Washington Post Fail To Report On Book's Errors

Ever since Peter Schweizer's new attack book Clinton Cash was touted as the must-read tome of the campaign season, a growing number of media organizations, including Politico, BuzzFeed, ABC News, FactCheck.org, and Time, have detailed factual shortcomings in the book. (Media Matters has, too.) Noticeably absent from that fact-checking procession has been The New York Times and the Washington Post, the two newspapers that entered into exclusive editorial agreements with Clinton Cash's publisher.

The Times' and Post's seeming lack of interest in detailing the book's long list of misstatements certainly raises questions about whether the papers' exclusive pacts made the dailies reluctant to highlight Clinton Cash's obvious shortcomings.

After all, if those other media organizations can find the Clinton Cash errors, why can't the Times and the Post? And even if Times and Post reporters can't spot the misinformation, why aren't they at least writing about the key revelations that others are uncovering? Recall that it was the Times that trumpeted Clinton Cash as the "the most anticipated and feared book" of the campaign season. If it's so important, why isn't the Times documenting the crucial errors found between the Clinton Cash covers?

By entering into exclusive agreements, both the Times and the Post used Clinton Cash as the basis for larger investigative articles that raised questions about the Clintons' finances.

The New Pulitzer Prize Chair, Paul Gigot (WSJ), Pushes Climate Science Denial


Paul Gigot, Wall Street Journal editorial page editor since 2001, was named chair of the Pulitzer Prize Board on Monday. Under Gigot, the Journal editorial page has had several ethical lapses and has been a regular source of misinformation on climate science, health care, the Iraq War, and a host of other issues.

Pulitzer administrator Mike Pride told Media Matters a new board chair is chosen annually and the board member or members who have served nine years of their 10-year term normally get the post.

Gigot, who is going into his 10th and final year on the board, was the only member in that position this year, Pride said.

"It is really relatively automatic and nine years on the board give you a greater understanding in the way things work."

Pride, a former board member from 1999 to 2008, left in April 2008 after one year as co-chair with Joann Byrd. He is also the former editor of Concord Monitor. Pride became board administrator in September 2014.
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