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Thousands of meteorites in Antarctica are destined to be lost forever


Still Waters

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Antarctica is a wonderland of stardust.

There, amid the pristine whiteness of the ice and snow, scientists have retrieved more than 48,000 meteorites that have fallen to Earth over perhaps millions of years.

But the reservoir isn't going to last forever. New analysis suggests that warming temperatures are making the ice softer, resulting in meteorites sinking deep beyond our reach.

Over coming decades we could be losing some 5,000 meteorites per year – an archive of the Solar System and potentially interstellar space disappearing forever.

https://www.sciencealert.com/thousands-of-meteorites-in-antarctica-are-destined-to-be-lost-forever

The findings have been published in Nature Climate Change.

Related:

 

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I think our future problem will not be the loss of meteorites.

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30 minutes ago, Abramelin said:

I think our future problem will not be the loss of meteorites.

It's possible for a situation to produce more than one problem. Admittedly this won't be our biggest problem but that doesn't mean it's not problematic. 

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4 hours ago, Waspie_Dwarf said:

It's possible for a situation to produce more than one problem. Admittedly this won't be our biggest problem but that doesn't mean it's not problematic. 

Yeah,  it's a probem for science, and I agree.

But the melting of the Antarctican ice shields will create problems that go far beyond the loss of mere meteorites.

That's all I wanted to mention.

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I have a question! 

Is it even possible for the polar ice caps to melt? And wouldn't that be the end of all life on Earth!?

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8 minutes ago, joc said:

I have a question! 

Is it even possible for the polar ice caps to melt? And wouldn't that be the end of all life on Earth!?

I'll try this @Essan 

Don't know him well enough to make sheep jokes though 😄

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2 hours ago, CrimsonKing said:

I'll try this @Essan 

Don't know him well enough to make sheep jokes though 😄

My go to guy for all things Climate Change:  @Doug1066

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Like I keep saying folks, we can fix Climate Change cheaply via Iron Fertilization.

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16 minutes ago, Alchopwn said:

Like I keep saying folks, we can fix Climate Change cheaply via Iron Fertilization.

First I've heard of this. Just Googled it. Very interesting. Thanks 

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Just now, Hankenhunter said:

First I've heard of this. Just Googled it. Very interesting. Thanks 

No, thank you Hankenhammer.  If you want to know more, please PM me.

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4 hours ago, Alchopwn said:

Like I keep saying folks, we can fix Climate Change cheaply via Iron Fertilization.

 

Since 1990, 13 major large scale experiments have been carried out to evaluate efficiency and possible consequences of iron fertilization in ocean waters. A study in 2017 determined that the method is unproven; sequestering efficiency is low and sometimes no effect was seen and the amount of iron deposits that is needed to make a small cut in the carbon emissions is in the million tons per year.[8]

Research on this area has suggested that fertilization through deposition of large quantities of iron-rich dust into the ocean floor can significantly disrupt the ocean's nutrient balance and cause major complications in the food chain for other marine organisms.[41][42][43][44][45][46][47]

Critics are concerned that fertilization will create harmful algal blooms (HAB) as many toxic algae are often favored when iron is deposited into the marine ecosystem. A 2010 study of iron fertilization in an oceanic high-nitrate, low-chlorophyll environment, however, found that fertilized Pseudo-nitzschia diatom spp., which are generally nontoxic in the open ocean, began producing toxic levels of domoic acid. Even short-lived blooms containing such toxins could have detrimental effects on marine food webs.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iron_fertilization

 

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2 hours ago, Abramelin said:

Since 1990, 13 major large scale experiments have been carried out to evaluate efficiency and possible consequences of iron fertilization in ocean waters

The fact is that at present, most of the iron in the oceans of the world are deposited as a result of high winds blowing west to east in the Sahara desert.  This is the sole source of bio available iron for phytoplankton that occurs naturally with any regularity in nature.  Phytoplankton rely on that iron for their reproduction and there isn't nearly enough of it.  In recent tests, the results have been extremely positive, showing rapid uptake of Iron in solution by phytoplankton.  The phytoplankton blooms produced also had a salutory effect on fish reproduction in the area.

2 hours ago, Abramelin said:

Research on this area has suggested that fertilization through deposition of large quantities of iron-rich dust into the ocean floor can significantly disrupt the ocean's nutrient balance and cause major complications in the food chain for other marine organisms.[41][42][43][44][45][46][47]

Which is fine if the same is done on the West coast of Africa where such iron deposits happen naturally via the Haboob winds and support the entire marine ecosystem.

2 hours ago, Abramelin said:

Critics are concerned that fertilization will create harmful algal blooms (HAB) as many toxic algae are often favored when iron is deposited into the marine ecosystem. 

So why doesn't this happen with frightening regularity on the West African coast?  Why is the West African coast a good fishery when it is receiving all this harmful iron  that causes bad algal blooms?  Something doesn't add up, does it?  The studies are limited in scope and don't tell the full story.

 

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10 hours ago, joc said:

I have a question! 

Is it even possible for the polar ice caps to melt? And wouldn't that be the end of all life on Earth!?

It's possible, it would take a very long time and it wouldn't end life on Earth, though the resultant rise in sea levels and general climate change would be very problematic for humans.   But it would be a gradual process taking thousands of years, so we could probably adapt.   It would result in a much warmer world as there would be no ice to reflect back sunlight.   There were no ice caps back in the Cretaceous. 

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1 hour ago, Alchopwn said:

The fact is that at present, most of the iron in the oceans of the world are deposited as a result of high winds blowing west to east in the Sahara desert.  This is the sole source of bio available iron for phytoplankton that occurs naturally with any regularity in nature.  Phytoplankton rely on that iron for their reproduction and there isn't nearly enough of it.  In recent tests, the results have been extremely positive, showing rapid uptake of Iron in solution by phytoplankton.  The phytoplankton blooms produced also had a salutory effect on fish reproduction in the area.

Which is fine if the same is done on the West coast of Africa where such iron deposits happen naturally via the Haboob winds and support the entire marine ecosystem.

So why doesn't this happen with frightening regularity on the West African coast?  Why is the West African coast a good fishery when it is receiving all this harmful iron  that causes bad algal blooms?  Something doesn't add up, does it?  The studies are limited in scope and don't tell the full story.

 

Interesting guy, this Russ George:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russ_George

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11 hours ago, Alchopwn said:

Like I keep saying folks, we can fix Climate Change cheaply via Iron Fertilization.

 But then there's this:

This technique is controversial because there is limited understanding of its complete effects on the marine ecosystem,[5] including side effects and possibly large deviations from expected behavior. Such effects potentially include release of nitrogen oxides,[6] and disruption of the ocean's nutrient balance.[1] Controversy remains over the effectiveness of atmospheric CO
2
 sequestration and ecological effects.[7] Since 1990, 13 major large scale experiments have been carried out to evaluate efficiency and possible consequences of iron fertilization in ocean waters. A study in 2017 determined that the method is unproven; sequestering efficiency is low and sometimes no effect was seen and the amount of iron deposits that is needed to make a small cut in the carbon emissions is in the million tons per year.[8]

link

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3 hours ago, Abramelin said:

Interesting guy, this Russ George:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russ_George

I don't really trust people who present themselves on a red chair with red couches on either side.  But that's just me.

What I really don't trust are people who have Swat teams invade their offices.  There is a lot more to that story than meets the eye.

And finally, while dramatically increasing the overall amount of Salmon by iron fertilization sounds like a good thing, is it?  I think it is a bad idea for humans to start jacking with the chemical aspects of the oceans.  How much iron is good and at what point does iron fertilization take a wicked and unexpected path that we then discover is irreversible?  I'd say, let the planet purge us...let's don't purge ourselves.

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On 4/13/2024 at 11:33 PM, Alchopwn said:

Like I keep saying folks, we can fix Climate Change cheaply via Iron Fertilization.

Powdered battleships?

Doug

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