Thursday, March 14, 2013

Getting Hot and Uncomfortable

So, this is nothing new in my opinion, but the recent study on the quick and accelerating rise in global temperature is simply stunning:
Early Holocene (10,000 to 5000 years ago) warmth is followed by ~0.7°C cooling through the middle to late Holocene (<5000 years ago), culminating in the coolest temperatures of the Holocene during the Little Ice Age, about 200 years ago. This cooling is largely associated with ~2°C change in the North Atlantic. Current global temperatures of the past decade have not yet exceeded peak interglacial values but are warmer than during ~75% of the Holocene temperature history.
It's very bad news, especially for our kids, who will suffer most of the consequences of this global temperature rise, in the next hundred, or so, years. Check out this projection, from ThinkProgress:

Looks pretty ominous, especially because more and more scientists agree that the past projections were vastly underestimating the rate of temperature change, and now, it looks like we are in for a much bumpier ride.

Now, if you think all this has no immediate effects on your life, think again. If you complain of allergies, and most of the people I know do, you should thank our insatiable thirst for fossil fuels. A recent study (here is the CNN article about it, and the study itself - paid access required) showed that the amount of allergens in the air between the years 2000 and 2040 will increase dramatically. This will make us and our children feel more and more miserable.

So, the next time you'll vote for someone who's not willing to do something about global warming, or just flatly denies it, think back to the last allergy season, and realize that in less than 30 years it could get three times as bad if we don't come up with some solutions.