Global Warming

Visit Introductory video on world effects to global warming. Copy & paste this URL : mms:\\\ACIA_Impacts_of_a_Warming_Climate

Global warming

Main article: Effects of global warming
There are several reasons to expect that climate changes, from whatever cause, may be enhanced in the Arctic, relative to the mid-latitudes and tropics. First, is the ice-albedo feedback, whereby an initial warming causes snow and ice to melt, exposing darker surfaces that absorb more sunlight, leading to more warming. Second, because colder air holds less water vapour than warmer air, in the Arctic, a greater fraction of any increase in radiation absorbed by the surface goes directly into warming the atmosphere, whereas in the tropics, a greater fraction goes into evaporation. Third, because the Arctic temperature structure inhibits vertical air motions, the depth of the atmospheric layer that has to warm in order to cause warming of near-surface air is much shallower in the Arctic than in the tropics. Fourth, a reduction in sea-ice extent will lead to more energy being transferred from the warm ocean to the atmosphere, enhancing the warming. Finally, changes in atmospheric and oceanic circulation patterns caused by a global temperature change may cause more heat to be transferred to the Arctic, enhancing Arctic warming (ACIA 2004).

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), "warming of the climate system is unequivocal", and the global-mean temperature has increased by 0.6 to 0.9 °C (1.1 to 1.6 °F) over the last century. This report also states that "most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely [greater than 90% chance] due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations." The IPCC also indicate that, over the last 100 years, the annually-averaged temperature in the Arctic has increased by almost twice as much as the global mean temperature has. There was a period from the late 1920s to the early 1950s during which the Arctic was almost as warm as it is today, though the spatial pattern of today's warming differs from that of the earlier period. Sea ice extent has decreased by 5.25% to 8.25% since 1979, the beginning of the reliable satellite record, with a larger decrease in summer (12.5% to 24.5%) than in winter (IPCC 2007).

Climate models predict that the temperature increase in the Arctic over the next century will continue to be about twice the global average temperature increase. By the end of the 21stCentury, the annual average temperature in the Arctic is predicted to increase by 2.8 to 7.8 °C (5.0 to 14.0 °F), with more warming in winter (4.3 to 11.4 °C; 7.7 to 20.5 °F) than in summer (IPCC 2007). Decreases in sea-ice extent and thickness are expected to continue over the next century, with some models predicting the Arctic Ocean will be free of sea ice in late summer by the mid to late part of the century (IPCC 2007).

John Huston Global Warming 101 video clip

Climate Change and
Arctic Sustainable Development:

scientific, social, cultural
and educational challenges

International Experts Meeting
3-6 March 2009, Monaco

Climate change is accelerating the transformation of environmental, social and cultural landscapes across the Arctic and Subarctic. These alterations, including their global impact, have yet to be comprehensively evaluated and monitored. To address this challenge, a coordinated effort is required that brings together relevant natural and social science expertise, cultural and educational perspectives, as well as appropriate ethical frameworks.
To this end, UNESCO organised an international experts meeting on climate change and sustainable development in the Arctic, which was held in Monaco from 3-6 March 2009. H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco provided his support for the meeting, hosting and opening the event, alongside the Director-General of UNESCO, Mr Koichiro Matsuura. Mr Achim Seiner, Executive Secretary of UNEP, also addressed the experts group.

The expert meeting had a twofold objective: first, to provide a broad overview of changes due to global warming that are anticipated across the circumpolar North and to investigate ways that they be monitored; and second, to assess the scientific, social, cultural and educational challenges that must be met to ensure the region’s sustainable development within a global context.

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Climate Change, Human Health and Sustainable Development in the Arctic

What we need is Education

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