Saturday, December 23, 2006

You Can Kiss Arctic Ice-dwelling Wildlife Good-bye

Santa's Gonna Be Pissed

Arctic summer ice could melt nearly completely by mid-century, study says

The Arctic Ocean could lose nearly all of its summer ice by 2040, says a study published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. Research suggests that Arctic ice will begin retreating rapidly around 2024; by mid-century, far northern Canada and Greenland may claim the summer's only ice, while the North Pole will be ocean.
A different study, from the National Snow and Ice Data Center, finds that the Arctic refroze slooowly this fall, with November's average ice cover the lowest since satellite measurements began in 1979.
"It's becoming increasingly unlikely that things will be able to turn around," says researcher Walt Meier, a glass-half-empty sort of chap.
But don't worry your Conoco-dipped heart about it. The money machine will grind along as usual. While a melting Arctic sucks for polar bears and Inuit subsistence hunters, The Man will profit from new shipping lanes, more-accessible oil supplies, commercial fishing grounds, and tourism. Next week, advisers plan to urge President Bush to get busy replacing the U.S.'s aging icebreakers. We only wish we were making that up.

straight to the source: The New York Times, Andrew C. Revkin, 11 Dec 2006
straight to the source: Reuters, 11 Dec 2006
straight to the source: The Times, Lewis Smith, 11 Dec 2006
straight to the source: CBC News, 11 Dec 2006

Via Grist...

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