Sunday, December 19, 2010

Arctic ice could even recover?

Many scientists support the thesis that once temperatures reach "tipping point" then the climate change will eventually push the Arctic's ice towards the total melting, meaning that Arctic summer ice would completely disappear.

Among scientists who do not agree with this opinion is Steven Amstrup, a professor at the University of Washington. Professor Amstrup in his recent study concluded that "There is no 'tipping point' that would result in unstoppable loss of summer sea ice when greenhouse gas-driven warming rose above a certain threshold".

The most recent reports claim that Arctic ice has shrank by close to 20 percent in the last few decades, and many scientists are worried that if the current warming trend (regional temperature at Arctic has in the same period increased twice or triple the global average) at Arctic continues in years to come Arctic will become totally free of ice during summer months.

Professor Amstrup has based his study on computer models, and his study showed that if annual emissions of greenhouse gases are significantly reduced over the next twenty years, an initial phase of rapid ice loss would afterward be replaced by a period of stability and, eventually, partial recovery.

This would in the best possible scenario mean that polar bears might actually get a decent chance to survive because after some time Arctic could recover enough ice, which would give polar bears more habitat needed to stop the further population decline.

Many polar bears are dying of hunger because the ice has started melting much sooner in the spring which has significantly shortened their hunting season. World needs to do something fast or Arctic' largest predator will soon come to the very brink of the extinction.

Cancun climate talks have showed certain positive outlook but world needs to transform this into legally obliging international climate deal. This shouldn't be done only to protect polar bears from extinction but also to ensure our future generations healthy planet, free of environmental disasters such as droughts, floods, sea level rise, etc.

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