Seven climate change truths

 I read an article in a newspaper recently which explained, in authoritative terms, that global warming was not true; it is apparently a scientific conspiracy invented by third rate scientists whose motives we can suppose, was to get themselves research grants and make them important. The article firmly stated that the real experts on climate change knew that climate change was nothing to do with human emissions but everything to do with the sun’s influence.

It is astonishing just how some journalists, distinguished in reporting, can condense matters of genuine scientific complexity into a few ill chosen phrases. Continue reading

Methane and the melting permafrost

The Arctic region has been a store of organically produced methane for tens of millennia. The methane was formed by rotting vegetation but locked into the ice sheets and ground covered with ice. The ground is frozen soil – the permafrost – which is rapidly becoming in danger of being the unpermafrost, if there is such a word. Over the past ten years scientists have worried that global warming would unlock the methane – far more dangerous as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide (about twenty five times more potent) but fortunately less long lived in the atmosphere – which would then warming the planet even faster than we would imagine, sending the climate beyond the point of recovery, as far as humans are concerned. Continue reading