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Science & Technology

Global warming 'beyond point of no return'

December 2, 2016 | Comment icon 178 comments

Are we now too late to stop global warming in its tracks ? Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0 Chris Lim
A groundbreaking new study suggests that scientists have underestimated the impact of climate change.
The report, which was authored by an international team of researchers, draws upon data from several dozen field experiments conducted over the last two decades.

The biggest finding was that, up until now, scientists had failed to take in to account the fact that organisms in the soil have been producing carbon at an ever-increasing rate.

Global temperatures are now expected to rise by one degree Celsius by the year 2050 due to 55 billion tonnes of additional carbon being released in to the atmosphere over the coming decades.

"It's fair to say we have passed the point of no return on global warming and we can't reverse the effects, but certainly we can dampen them," said study author Dr Thomas Crowther, who has also branded President-elect Donald Trump's skepticism of the topic as 'catastrophic for humanity'.
"Climate change may be considerably more rapid than we thought it was."

At this stage it's difficult to determine exactly how rising temperatures will impact communities around the world however it is likely that the effects are going to be pretty devastating.

"These effects of climate change will certainly be felt disproportionately by poorer people, particularly the billions whose livelihoods are intrinsically linked to the land," said Dr. Crowther.

"But the impacts on sea-level rise, ocean currents and the health of natural ecosystems are equally devastating for a vast multitude of reasons."

Source: Independent | Comments (178)

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #169 Posted by Doug1029 5 years ago
Wikipedia is a good place to start, but you wouldn't want to get caught citing it on a term paper. Sorry about my snarky comment in Post 165. It wasn't very polite. I'll try to do better. There's a "ladder" of learning regarding global climate change. Starting at the bottom, here are the "rungs:" 1. There's no such thing as climate change. 2. OK, climate change is real, but we don't know what causes it. 3. OK, we know what causes it, but it's natural. 4. OK, we know humans play a major part, but there's nothing we can do about it. 5. OK, there is plenty we can do about it, but it's... [More]
Comment icon #170 Posted by Noteverythingisaconspiracy 5 years ago
Just a little nitpick. Global warming isn't a political issue, it is a scientific issue. What we should do in response to global warming is a political issue. I feel that a lot of the global warming sceptics know that manmade global warming is a real thing, it is just that they think that dealing with it will be too expensive, so it is easier to pretend that there is some kind of controversyabout it. I think it would be a lot more honest if people just admitted that they know its a real thing, but they just don't think it is worth the cost to do anything about it. That is an honest political ... [More]
Comment icon #171 Posted by MWoo7 5 years ago
Yeah its tripe, think that's why I said I can't stand wiki bingo Although I'm sure some profs have looked the other way, when they noticed it but with a word changed. True, look at any lab in any college, book in lap flying away copy copy copy copy, haven't seen to many geeks doing that, well actually none but there were loads of little missies in there doing it oh they weren't copying what am I thinking. ... but somehow it keeps being pushed that way, almost as though I was citing Wikipedia. A broken record of sorts. Yeah they'd changed pages at that server sorry for the bad link. So your de... [More]
Comment icon #172 Posted by Doug1029 5 years ago
That's where your link led. I tried it twice to be sure. Doug
Comment icon #173 Posted by ChaosRose 5 years ago
It's hard to accept that we're responsible for this, because if you do, then there is a need to try and do something to avert disaster. It's much easier to just say we can't be the cause, since then we don't have to change. The fact of the matter is that we can already see the effects of warming, and they're becoming catastrophic. Warming is happening faster than scientists predicted, and even with their predictions, the entirety of our coastal communities will be underwater in a relatively short amount of time.
Comment icon #174 Posted by Doug1029 5 years ago
Sort oflike the lightning fire coming over the hill toward your house. It's natural. Does that mean you shouldn't fight it? Doug
Comment icon #175 Posted by Poppi 5 years ago
Cheers Woo, you have moxy, in a good way. Thanks to MrDoug for his efforts...MrDoug, there was a Nature(?) episode where divers entered some cave (i'd have to look who when where why)...They dove deep and took samples of stalagmites/tights. Analysis of those showed that at one time the cave was above water...there had been several dramatic changes in climate, shown by the several red dust layers in the stalagmites- indicating dust storms from the Sahara. Several changes within a small timescale...Before Man. As well as thousands of meters of ice/ dinosaurs/jungle/current prairie conditions...H... [More]
Comment icon #176 Posted by Doug1029 5 years ago
If that's the same one I saw, it was in the Yucatan. They were exploring cenotis that provided water to the Mayans. According to the USGS (, during the Last Glacial Maximum sea levels were about 410 feet below modern. As of 3000 years ago (Psusennes I was Pharaoh and the biblical Zoane was being built [actually, re-built]), sea levels reached their more-or-less current level; although, they have jumped up and down some since then (Roman Warm Period, Medieval Warm Period, Little Ice Age, etc. Stalactities could have forme... [More]
Comment icon #177 Posted by Poppi 5 years ago
Without seeing the show again, from what i recall- there were 4(?)- 8(?) very significant climate changes that came rapidly. Just saw a show on BBC Earth where a scientist was saying that skulls found around the African Rift showed changes due to climate change...could you comment on that?...Makes sense that Man adapts to climate. A part of evolution no doubt. So, the conclusion would be- climate changes with or without Man...So why the carbon tax
Comment icon #178 Posted by Doug1029 5 years ago
Maybe there's a reason folks of a scientific bent aren't convincing climate deniers. We have marshaled lots of facts, but nothing happens. Why? Maybe it's because one really can't make claims about how the world should be based on how it is. Reactions like alarmism and blame don't necessarily follow from climate science. The skeptic thinks that if there shouldn't be such a thing as a human cause to warming, then there can't be a human cause and so the science must be wrong. But what if we introduce values? The denier values things like jobs - conversion will create thousands. He values h... [More]

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