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(2 of 3) – $60 TRILLION Arctic ‘Time Bomb’

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Via: Huffington Post

A release of methane in the  Arctic could speed the melting of sea ice and climate change  with a cost to the global economy of up to $60 trillion over  coming decades, according to a paper published in the journal  Nature.

Researchers at the University of Cambridge and Erasmus  University in the Netherlands used economic modelling to  calculate the consequences of a release of a 50-gigatonne  (55,115,565,546 tons) reservoir of methane from thawing permafrost under the East  Siberian Sea.

They examined a scenario in which there is a release of  methane over a decade as global temperatures rise at their  current pace.

They also looked at lower and slower releases, yet all  produced “steep” economic costs stemming from physical changes  to the Arctic.

“The global impact of a warming Arctic is an economic  time-bomb,” said Gail Whiteman, an author of the report and  professor of sustainability, management and climate change at  the Rotterdam School of Management, part of Erasmus University.

“In the absence of climate-change mitigation measures, the  model calculates that it would increase mean global climate  impacts by $60 trillion,” said Chris Hope, a reader in policy  modelling at the Cambridge Judge Business School, part of the  University of Cambridge.

That approaches the value of the global economy, which was  around $70 trillion last year.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/24/arctic-methane-climate-change_n_3643917.html

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July 26, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

(1 of 3) ‘Lake North Pole’

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Via: The Atlantic

In what has now become an annual occurrence, the North Pole’s ice has melted, turning the Earth’s most northern point into a lake. Call it Lake North Pole. To be clear, the water surrounding the pole is not seawater seeping up from the ocean but melted icewater resting on top of a thinning layer of ice below the surface.

It’s a shallow lake. It’s a cold lake. But it is, actually, a lake,” writes William Wolfe-Wylie of Canada.com.

That lake started to form on July 13 during a month of abnormally warm weather — temperatures were 1-3 degrees Celsius higher than average in the Arctic Ocean this month — and has come to stretch a significant distance, though not out of the camera’s range. In addition, the water is likely to get worse over the coming week, as an expected Arctic cyclone’s strong winds and rain will loosen the ice coverage even further.

The picture above is what the North Pole looks like now, via the North Pole Environmental Observatory. The photo below is what it looked like back in April, and probably how you pictured it before you starting reading.

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http://www.theatlanticwire.com/global/2013/07/north-pole-has-melted-lake/67577/

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July 26, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wes Riddle (R-TX) – ‘GOP Moron of the Day’

Via: Think Progress

A congressional hopeful has a plan to impeach President Obama, deep in the heart of Texas.

Wes Riddle, a Republican tea party activist locked in a run-off with fellow GOPer Roger Williams in Texas’ 25th congressional district, is campaigning on a conspiracy theory even more bizarre than the fantasy that the United Nations and George Soros are conspiring to eliminate the game of golf.

Riddle has promised to begin the impeachment process against President Obama the day he enters Congress — seemingly implying that he believes Obama will be reelected — because of a boundary treaty that was ratified by the Senate in 1991.

Obama was 30 years old at the time and just finishing up law school.

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Riddle, a retired Army officer (see photo) from Gatesville, wants to impeach Obama for “giving away” seven Arctic Ocean and Bering Sea islands near Siberia to Russia.

(Yes, even though those islands were ceded in 1991 under President George H.W. Bush (remember him?).

Riddle ALSO wants to impeach Obama, according to the paper, because of “President Obama’s abuse of power and blatant disregard to the Constitution.”

This paranoid fantasy appears to have been spawned by Tea Party favorite Joe Miller. According to his World Net Daily piece, the Obama administration gave away “seven strategic, resource-laden Alaskan islands.” Miller was apoplectic: “We won the Cold War and should start acting like it.”

Though FactCheck.org (Facts? – Fuck facts!) has thoroughly debunked this conspiracy theory, reality hasn’t stopped Riddle from using it as a rationale for his goal of impeaching Obama.

http://thinkprogress.org/

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June 23, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment