23.07.2013

Climate change and the area of ice spread in the Arctic

Now actively discussing observed in recent decades, global warming of the Earth's climate and the retreat of Arctic ice. Meanwhile there is some confusion in the terms. There are various, often opposing views on what can be expected in the future. What actually are we talking about?

Over the past hundred years, the average temperature on the Earth has increased by 0.6 degrees, and for the last 250 years - by 1.4 degrees. It is a scientific fact, which no one disputes. Positions of experts disagree on the role of the various factors that have led to warming. Hence the difference in the forecasts.

The first version of events – the so-called hotbed theory, which adherents believe that the main cause of warming is the accumulation in the atmosphere of greenhouse gases of anthropogenic origin. It is primarily carbon dioxide. As humanity goes on burning the hydrocarbon fuel, the CO2 accumulation will continue. Therefore, according to proponents of this theory, and warming will continue (the temperature will rise, ice sheet decrease, glaciers melt, ocean levels rise), which ultimately will lead to catastrophic consequences. This direction is dominant: climatologists of this school have found understanding in many governments and administrations that provide substantial funds for the prevention of the effects of warming and what it is important to "warming scientists" themselves, to continue their studies.

Supporters of an alternative version believe that greenhouse gases although affect, but are not the main factor in climate change. In their view, the climate varies cyclically under the influence of mainly natural causes. Several cycles, of which the core (60 years and 180-200 years) are associated with changes in total solar energy reaching the Earth, due to changes in the situation of heavy planets of the solar system. It follows that in the coming decades humanity can expect a cold snap. Though it is not catastrophic, but one that has already been observed in the past.

Neither of the two versions has not proven or disproven. However, supporters of the cyclic changes due to natural causes, have a number of reasonable objections to key provisions of the greenhouse theory which, in fact, is only a hypothesis. One objection is that carbon dioxide can not be considered as a major factor, because its content in the atmosphere is relatively small (0.03 – 0.04%) and it absorbs several times less of the radiation of the Earth than water vapor, quantity and variability of the content of which is much more (0.1-4%). Impact of fluctuations in air humidity, which is not related to human activities, must completely extinguish the effect of changes in the concentration of CO2.

Another objection. By adopting greenhouse "theory" can not explain why in some periods of time (and it has been observed), the concentration of carbon dioxide increased significantly, but the temperature remained constant or decreased. Thus, since 2002 the temperature rise has stopped (some experts believe that the temperature started to gradually decline), while the amount of carbon dioxide continues to steadily increase.

There are other circumstances, contrary to the prevailing so far point of view on climate change. It follows that one can not fully trust the conclusions of its supporters, in particular, their expectations that the Arctic ice cover will become of the seasonal nature (every year will be fully melted). The results of the simulation based on questionable assumptions, in turn, can not but raise doubts.

The alternative scenario of climate change and the Arctic ice cover is contained in the forecast, prepared by experts of the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI). Of course, like any forecast, it may be justified or not justified or partially justified.

According to the forecast of the AARI, it is expected that in the next 5-10 years will remain elevated background air temperature, with a gradual decrease of it to 2015-2020 years. Lowering of the air temperature will last until mid 30's and 40's, then one should expect the transition to the next warming. Beginning now a cooling will be similar to that which was recorded in the 40-50 years of XX century.

The Arctic ice cover will respond to the expected cold snap with some delay. Increased area of ice cover and, consequently, the prevalence of heavy ice conditions, is expected in the period from 20’s to 40’s years. Sea ice extent will reach its maximum between 2030 to 2035.

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