Sunday, February 15, 2009

Global warming much higher than stated in the past

Last year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) had warned that the rate of climate change was reaching epic proportions, and the effects were generally under-estimated. It had predicted that the rate of warming would increase and damage would be far more than thought. Well, a recent research indicated that the actual bad effects of global warming are going to be far more severe than thought. Research shows that the atmospheric levels of greenhouse gases increased far more than thought, and this is just the beginning:

The severity of global warming over the next century will be much worse than previously believed, a leading climate scientist has warned. Professor Chris Field, an author of a 2007 landmark report on climate change, said future temperatures "will be beyond anything" predicted.
Speaking at the American Science conference in Chicago, Prof Field said fresh data showed greenhouse gas emissions between 2000 and 2007 increased far more rapidly than expected. "We are basically looking now at a future climate that is beyond anything that we've considered seriously in climate policy," he said. Prof Field said the 2007 report, which predicted temperature rises between 1.1C and 6.4C over the next century, seriously underestimated the scale of the problem.

As has been stated in the past, global warming will have disastrous effects on global weather, such as increased ferocity of storms, skewing of weather patterns (which will make dry regions drier), the sinking of coastal regions, and so on. It will not discriminate between developed and developing countries; developed countries have more people staying near the water (which affects them due to both water fronts during storm and higher sea levels), developing countries will be increasingly affected due to climate changes, and affect of increasing water levels on coastal regions (severely affecting many regions such as Maldives, Fiji, Bangladesh, etc).
However, the focus on global warming that was there just a couple of years ago is gone, with the worries about the global economic recession having wiped out all other worries. No more is there a focus on the increasing ill-effects of global warming (even though a slow down in the economy is not going to lead to a decrease or cut-down in the emission levels and there is no current way that the ongoing increase in global warming can happen). It is pessimistic, but there is almost no current push to reduce or cap emissions in a way that will have beneficial effect.

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posted by Ashish Agarwal @ 7:57 AM