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Permafrost melt.


Arctic permafrost -- hard, permanently frozen ground -- thaws and collapses as temperatures rise, forming sinkholes that destroy homes, highways and pipelines. In low-lying areas, seawater inundates sinking areas of melted permafrost. In this Landsat image of Cape Halkett, along the north coast of Alaska, green and light blue indicate land lost to permafrost melting between 1955 and 2005. Heat-trapping greenhouse gases held within the permafrost, such as carbon dioxide and methane, are released when it melts, further contributing to atmospheric warming. Methane is 25 times more potent per molecule than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas. If the high northern latitudes continue warming at current rates, the region's soils will release more carbon dioxide and methane into the atmosphere, which could accelerate global warming.

Image taken by the Landsat satellite. Credit: Mars/Houseknecht, USGS.
More visualizations from +NASA at http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/Gallery/
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Enaa Aussen's profile photoAlex Diaz's profile photoJim Stuttard's profile photoBrian Gauspohl's profile photo
13 comments
 
What I find amazing is that denialism exists with such vigor in the face of this living evidence. Puts the burden on us to be even more intense in our climate advocacy, since studies show that most deniers are open to persuasion.
 
It seems everybody has it right....and everyone else must be forced to their one true belief....hahahah
science is inheriting the same attitudes and beliefs that the churches have displayed for millennia...
 
Science isn't like that. There is no dogma. Scientific statements are only as good as the evidence. The reason why people (mostly non-scientists) speak of "deniers" is because there is a quite consistent and well founded body of evidence, and to pretend that there isn't is dishonest. Skepticism in science is a good thing, but ignoring the evidence is the opposite of skepticism.
 
well....that is not really true...
data is interpreted....
and theory is not reality...it is a projection...
also i have no complaint with science...i am a medical student...
my complaint is about attitude...
 
Certainly data is interpreted. The point is that the scientific papers providing a plausible alternative interpretation of the data are virtually non-existent,

"and theory is not reality...it is a projection..."

True as far as it goes, but not really relevant here. You don't need a complicated theory to explain global warming. Most of the significant work on the greenhouse warming theory was done over 150 years ago and is very well established.
 
i didnt respond to the subject but to the auto-attitude....
i think there are problems with the subject too, because attitudes allow or dis-allow... and scientists and doctors and those who cling to these territories tend to be myopic about their attitudes and how these crimp their minds and how they then become limited in their acceptance of data and interpretation too...
but because it is a question of internal development and psychologies...it is dismissed.....
its not science....
so how can it have any relevance....???
...
the churches are full of this too....
 
That's just so much vague handwaving. Data has to be interpreted, but again where are the scientific papers giving plausible alternative interpretations of the data?

At a certain point (and in global warming that point was several years ago) you have to conclude that the data is speaking clearly enough. Saying "Yes, but the scientists could be wrong" isn't enough.
 
i am so sorry ...
you are myopic...
 
If I'm myopic, show me what I am missing.
 
i dont know what you are missing...
its your subject...your expertise....
and i dont disagree with you anyway...though i am not qualified in the area..just read...
...
but in mine i see this error all the time...
professors and psychiatrists who are stuck despite their vast knowledge...
and for me it makes the difference between so many assiduous scientists who run with the pack..and others like feynman...etc...
they didnt do better science...
they just allowed their minds to be free...
...
 
So, because climate scientists nearly all agree with one another on a subject, they're not allowing their minds to be free. Is that your point? Sorry that doesn't wash. Token denial of evidence is not the same as skepticism.
 
what i find embarassing about so many scientists is their adoption of the mind state so common in the religons of our world...
exclusivity....
everyone is wrong but me....
all paths are wrong but mine....
all views are wrong but the one i take...
 
Enaa, at the end of the day, the data HAS to come down one way or the other. This is not neutral. Warming is either caused by human activity or not. Yes or no. So the question is, who's right? And we're saying the overwhelming evidence proves it's human activity. Whoever claims otherwise has to present their evidence to peer review, and so far, they have fallen way short. In science, when an overwhelming number of scientists have reviewed the evidence and agree, that is taken seriously by policymakers and corporafe leaders, and action follows. That should be happening with warming. Right now!!!
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