Tag Archives: Antarctica

Melting icebergs sign for the world

In Geophysical Research Letters, the first assessment of how quickly floating ice is being lost today, has been published. (> Andrew Shepherd, Duncan Wingham, David Wallis, Katharine Giles, Seymour Laxon, Aud Venke Sundal. Recent loss of floating ice and the consequent sea level contribution. Geophysical Research Letters, 2010; (in press) DOI: 10.1029/2010GL042496 )

Icebergs around Cape York,Greenland. The icebe...

Icebergs around Cape York,Greenland. The icebergs are beautiful and display many interesting shapes. You could see the iceberg with a hole at the image. The hole was caused by weathering effects – erosion by waves, wind and melting. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to lead author Professor Andrew Shepherd, of the University of Leeds, it would be unwise to discount the loss of floating ice which is equivalent to 1.5 million Titanic-sized icebergs each year. However, the study shows that spread across the global oceans, recent losses of floating ice amount to a sea level rise of just 49 microns (μm) per year — about a hair’s breadth.

Professor Shepherd and his team used a combination of satellite observations and a computer model to make their assessment. They looked at changes in the area and thickness of sea ice and ice shelves, and found that the overall signal amounts to a 742 cubic kilometres per year reduction in the volume of floating.

Because of differences in the density and temperature of ice and sea water, the net effect is to increase sea level by 2.6% of this volume, equivalent to 49 microns per year spread across the global oceans.

The greatest losses were due to the rapid retreat of Arctic Sea ice and to the collapse and thinning of ice shelves at the Antarctic Peninsula and in the Amundsen Sea.

Also Dr. John P. Kotter, from Harvard,  strongly believes that the world needs much more action from a broader range of people— action that is informed, committed, and inspired — to help us all in an era of increasing change.

Thirty years of research by leadership guru Dr. John Kotter have proven that 70% of all major change efforts in organizations fail. Why do they fail? Because organizations often do not take the holistic approach required to see the change through.

However, by following the 8-Step Process outlined by Dr. Kotter, organizations can avoid failure and become adept at change. By improving their ability to change, organizations can increase their chances of success, both today and in the future. Without this ability to adapt continuously, organizations cannot thrive.

Dr. Kotter has proven over his years of research that following The 8-Step Process for Leading Change will help organizations succeed in an ever-changing world.

English: Leone, AS, October 2, 2009 -- Chris R...

Leone, AS, October 2, 2009 — Chris Reiner, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), discusses hazardous waste removal with members of the Hawaii National Guard, Civil Support Team. The EPA and U.S. military are part of the federal family that support the Federal Emergency Management Agency in its recovery from the recent earthquake and tsunami. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We all, by know, should be fully aware that it seems that in the last 100 years the earth’s temperature has increased about half a degree Celsius and if it continues to increase it shall be causing a lot of problems for many low countries to keep the ground for living and for others it shall present a lot of storms and problems of water by too much run after periods of extreme draught. Lots of people may think half a degree is nothing, but even half a degree can have an effect on our planet. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the sea level has risen 6 to 8 inches (15 to 20 cm) in the last 100 years (see How do they measure sea level?).

­On the video below you can see what this higher temperature causes. The last decennial we have seen more some floating icebergs to melt. Icebergs are large floating chunks of ice. In order to float, the iceberg displaces a volume of water that has a weight equal to that of the iceberg. Submarines use this principle to rise and sink in the water, too.

The rising temperature may be causing more icebergs to form by weakening the glaciers, causing more cracks and making ice mo­re likely to break off. As soon as the ice falls into the ocean, the ocean rises a little. The rising temperature and icebergs could play a small role in the rising ocean level and will give a change in water-temperature causing also an effect on the flow of air coming from the seas.

English: Wordie Ice Shelf location within Anta...

Wordie Ice Shelf location within Antarctic Peninsula (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The main ice covered landmass is Antarctica at the South Pole, with about 90 percent of the world’s ice (and 70 percent of its fresh water). Antarctica is covered with ice an average of 2,133 meters (7,000 feet) thick. If all of the Antarctic ice melted, sea levels around the world would rise about 61 meters (200 feet). But the average temperature in Antarctica is -37°C, so the ice there is in no danger of melting. {If the polar ice caps melted, how much would the oceans rise?}

At the other end of the world, the North Pole, the ice is not nearly as thick as at the South Pole. The ice floats on the Arctic Ocean.
Acclaimed environmental photographer James Balog was once a sceptic about climate change and a cynic about the nature of academic research. But through his Extreme Ice Survey, he discovered undeniable evidence of our changing planet.

Here we present a video where Balog deploys revolutionary time-lapse cameras to capture a multi-year record of the world’s changing glaciers. His hauntingly beautiful videos compress years into seconds and capture ancient mountains of ice in motion as they disappear at a breathtaking rate.

English: Mike Metzer, from the Environmental P...

Mike Metzer, from the Environmental Protection Agency, checks one of the many air sampling locations set up around the World Trade Center site. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Such video should be a warning for us to lower CO2 emissions from the atmosphere. If we do not take measures soon the planet may continue there, but without us! We have no excuse, and cannot say it is all part of nature. There is enough proof it was man’s fault. Lots of people still do not want to know about it, but it is to the others to awaken them. If governments around the world don´t act quickly, it will be too late for humanity to survive. Several people who have been visiting at the centre of the North Pole saw the melting with their own eyes and lots of investigators and scientists who were more than once on the North Pole have seen the changes which took place in a very short time. We ourselves also have been witnessing the changing in the disappearing glaciers in our own Europe.

Upworthy, their mission is to lift up stuff that matters using evocative media. They look for visual content that is both meaningful and shareable (that’s the definition of “Upworthy”) and curate the things that have the best chance of going viral.

Upworthy presents a video where the calving face of 300, sometimes 400 feet tall can be seen and where a comparison is made with Manhattan. Pieces of ice were shooting up out of the ocean 600 feet, and then falling. The only way that you can really try to put it into scale with human reference is if you imagine Manhattan, and all of a sudden, all of those buildings just start to rumble, and quake, and peel off and just fall over, fall over and roll around. This whole massive city just breaking apart in front of your eyes. We’re just observers. It’s two little dots on this side of it now. And we watched and recorded the largest witness calving event ever caught on tape.

You may name it:

magical, miraculous, horrible, scary thing. I don’t know that anybody has really seen the miracle and horror of that.

but we all should be concious that it took a hundred years for the ice to retreat eight miles from 1900 to 2000. From 2000 to 2010 it retreated nine miles. So in ten years it retreated more than it had in the previous 100.


Video from the YouTube channel of exposurelabs and excerpted from the award-winning documentary “Chasing Ice.”


Step 1: Establishing a Sense of Urgency

Help others see the need for change and they will be convinced of the importance of acting immediately. Learn More »

Step 2: Creating the Guiding Coalition

Assemble a group with enough power to lead the change effort, and encourage the group to work as a team. Learn More »

Step 3: Developing a Change Vision

Create a vision to help direct the change effort, and develop strategies for achieving that vision. Learn More »

Step 4: Communicating the Vision for Buy-in

Make sure as many as possible understand and accept the vision and the strategy. Learn More »

Step 5: Empowering Broad-based Action

Remove obstacles to change, change systems or structures that seriously undermine the vision, and encourage risk-taking and nontraditional ideas, activities, and actions. Learn More »

Step 6: Generating Short-term Wins

Plan for achievements that can easily be made visible, follow-through with those achievements and recognize and reward employees who were involved. Learn More »

Step 7: Never Letting Up

Use increased credibility to change systems, structures, and policies that don’t fit the vision, also hire, promote, and develop employees who can implement the vision, and finally reinvigorate the process with new projects, themes, and change agents. Learn More »

Step 8: Incorporating Changes into the Culture

Articulate the connections between the new behaviors and organizational success, and develop the means to ensure leadership development and succession. Learn More »


English: Approximate locations of the missing ...

Approximate locations of the missing Larsen A and Larsen B ice-shelves. Note the irregularly shaped island in the north-east corner of the map. Just south of it is where the missing Larsen A ice-shelf began. Note the two islands off the west coast of the peninsula. The southern boundary of the missing portion of Larsen B seems to lie just south of the southernmost island. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Please do find to read:

  1. Our Iceberg Is Melting
  2. Voice for the plebs
  3. Preparing the road trip avoiding congestion
  4. Stopping emissions will not stop the warming of our planet
  5. Postponing once more
  6. USA Climate Change Action Plan
  7. Common Goods, people and the Market
  8. A risk taking society
  9. Securing risks
  10. Science, 2013 word of the year, and Scepticism
  11. The natural beauties of life
  12. How to make sustainable, green habits second nature
  • Melting icebergs causing sea level rise (eurekalert.org)
    Professor Shepherd and his team used a combination of satellite observations and a computer model to make their assessment. They looked at changes in the area and thickness of sea ice and ice shelves, and found that the overall signal amounts to a 742 cubic kilometres per year reduction in the volume of floating.Because of differences in the density and temperature of ice and sea water, the net effect is to increase sea level by 2.6% of this volume, equivalent to 49 micrometers per year spread across the global oceans.

    The greatest losses were due to the rapid retreat of Arctic Sea ice and to the collapse and thinning of ice shelves at the Antarctic Peninsula and in the Amundsen Sea.

  • Livermore Scientists Suggest Ocean Warming in Southern Hemisphere Underestimated (prweb.com)
    Using satellite observations and a large suite of climate models, Lawrence Livermore scientists have found that long-term ocean warming in the upper 700 meters of Southern Hemisphere oceans has likely been underestimated.”This underestimation is a result of poor sampling prior to the last decade and limitations of the analysis methods that conservatively estimated temperature changes in data-sparse regions,” said LLNL oceanographer Paul Durack, lead author of a paper appearing in the October 5 issue of the journal Nature Climate Change.

    Ocean heat storage is important because it accounts for more than 90 percent of the Earth’s excess heat that is associated with global warming. The observed ocean and atmosphere warming is a result of continuing greenhouse gas emissions. The Southern Hemisphere oceans make up 60 percent of the world’s oceans.

  • Radioactive Waste: Can Membranes Reduce The Fear Factor? (wateronline.com)
    It’s no wonder that the word “radioactive” scares people. I remember Chernobyl. I was raised on The Simpsons, with its bumbling nuclear plant operators and three-eyed fish. I’ve followed the Fukushima tragedy closely for Water Online. But, scary or not, nuclear power isn’t going anywhere soon — a fact that points to the need for enhanced safety and environmental responsibility.At the recently wrapped International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) conference, IAEA director-general Yukiya Amano announced the “continued growth in the use of nuclear power,” noting that there are 437 nuclear power reactors currently operating in 30 countries, and 70 more reactors under construction. Thirty-three countries, he said, are considering, planning, or starting nuclear programs. Such activity produces a lot of liquid radioactive waste (LRW), but nuclear plants aren’t the only source.

    Beyond what is produced for fuel supply — from the purification and enrichment of uranium, the operation of power reactors, within spent fuel reprocessing, or even during the decommissioning of nuclear facilities — there is also institutional waste to deal with. Institutional LRW arises from the production and use of radioisotopes in medicine, research, industry, and agriculture.

  • Goats better than chemicals for curbing invasive marsh grass (brightsurf.com)
    Phragmites australis, or the common reed, is a rapid colonizer that has overrun many coastal wetlands from New England to the Southeast. A non-native perennial, it can form dense stands of grass up to 10 feet high that block valuable shoreline views of the water, kill off native grasses, and alter marsh function.Land managers traditionally have used chemical herbicides to slow phragmites’ spread but with only limited and temporary success.

    Now, field experiments by researchers at Duke and six other U.S. and European universities have identified a more sustainable, low-cost alternative: goats.

  • The Gravity of Climate Change: How Melting Ice Affects Planetary Pull (prn.fm)
    NASA–German GRACE satellite, allowed scientists to look at changes in ice mass in small glacial systems and compare those to high-resolution measurements of Antarctica’s gravitational field.“They have found that the loss of ice from West Antarctica between 2009 and 2012 caused a dip in the gravity field over the region,” according to a GOCE press release.

    A study earlier this year showed that the world’s two largest ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are melting at the fastest rates ever recorded. Another study, published in August, found that human-caused climate change has become the primary driver of glacial melt.

  • Study suggests current changes in the ocean around Antarctica could trigger steep rise in sea levels (thewatchers.adorraeli.com)
    Researchers at ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science pointed the last time this occurred, 14,000 years ago, the Antarctic alone contributed 3-4 metres to global sea levels in just a few centuries. The accelerating melting of land ice into the sea makes the surface of the ocean around Antarctica colder, less salty and more easily frozen, leading to extensive sea ice in some areas. It is one of the reasons ascribed to the increasing trend in sea ice around Antarctica.According to UNSW ARC Future Fellow Dr Chris Fogwill, the results of model simulations they used demonstrate that while Antarctic ice sheets are remote, they may play a far bigger role in driving past and importantly future sea level rise than we previously suspected.
  • Evolving plumbing system beneath Greenland slows ice sheet as summer progresses (sciencecodex.com)
    A team led by scientists at the University of Texas at Austin’s Institute for Geophysics has for the first time directly observed multiple parts of Greenland’s subglacial plumbing system and how that system evolves each summer to slow down the ice sheet’s movement toward the sea.
    Each summer, the surface of the Greenland Ice Sheet melts as temperatures warm, sending meltwater into channels that drain to the bottom of the ice sheet, lubricating the underside and speeding up the ice sheet’s flow toward the sea. While the basic outline of this process is understood, scientists have been puzzled about how the meltwater interacts with the bed of the ice sheet. These new observations clarify scientific understanding of how this plumbing system evolves each summer and how it may change in the future as the climate continues to warm.

    A camera used to image the structure of glacier ice is lowered into the borehole by a winch. The instrument is encased in a plastic cage to keep it stable as it is lowered 600 meters to the bed of the ice sheet.

  • Prospecting for Archaeology in the Northern Isles (rubiconheritage.com)
    We were recently commissioned to evaluate a proposed housing development near Kirkwall in Orkney. Orkney is one of the richest archaeological landscapes in Britain and therefore there is always high potential for archaeology- with the resulting high risk for developers. Our approach in this case was to carry out a very rapid geophysical survey of the entire site followed by targeted trenching on areas of high potential as defined by the results of the geophysical survey.
  • Tom Daley Announced as New ESD Geophysics Department Head (earthsciences.typepad.com)
    Tom Daley will be the new Geophysics Department Head, effective October 1, 2014. Tom is a Staff Scientist in ESD who has been with Berkeley Lab since 1987. His research focuses on the acquisition and analysis of borehole seismic data from field scale experiments. He has contributed significantly to the use of geophysical approaches to monitor processes critical to many subsurface energy strategies, with an emphasis in recent years on geological CO2 sequestration.
  • Germany removes University Fees – what we Should Learn from That (deanstalk.net)
    Andrei’s background is in geophysics, and he published his first scientific paper when he was still an undergrad; now, his main focus is on how geology and geophysics can be applied to understand and protect the environment. Feeling that there is a gap between scientists and the general audience, he started ZME Science – and the results are what you see today.

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Nature, Video, World affairs

The Blues Can Make You…….Happy!

Lots of people have forgotten how to look at nature. We only can be happy such marvellous photographers like the retired psychotherapist/mental health director Cindy Barton Knoke can bring the incredible beauty and richness of the world back onto their doorstep.

Perhaps because she now can take lots of time and can not be disturbed by cell phones, because they do not work out there where she lives: the outer limits of no-wheres-ville to a home she calls “the holler.” People perhaps also are better to forget their GPS, because it misdirects. Looking at her pictures I can believe you quickly can be taken away far far away in the countryside, forgetting time and other people. Sometimes I even think she got caught up in a paradise on earth.

I would love she would be one of the persons not minding to share some beauties with us. Because she herself presented herself not yet, I take the liberty to already share and direct you to her pages, where you might find liberating animals, and see where the odd or unusual, becomes something magic.

Even when she gives us the advice best not to wander too much out there, in heavenly Appalachia in rural California she allows us to have a look at the wonders of her world, which also can bring the peace or the wonders of the creation to others living in cities and other rural environments where weather conditions may not be so nice.
At her place the people (and their dogs) are kinda twitchy, but they may perhaps be still more connected with each other and with their environment, than by those living in the more industrial and economical parts of the world, where many have lost feeling with nature.

It looks incredible that she has the blessing to be able to see all those lovely animals. Nice that she can capture them also so beautifully, and bring lovely pictures of woodpeckers, redwing blackbirds, wren, yellow finches, robins, doves, hummingbirds , kestrels …

Enjoy the beautiful world of the hidden imagination of natural reality, which if people would closely in their garden can be hidden also somewhere there, be it different, but also so magic. …


If you’d like to follow Cindy Knoke elsewhere, please check out the following links:



  • Cindy Knoke: With an Eye on the World (becausewerepoets.wordpress.com)
    Today’s feature is a photographer whose work is as beautiful as her own humanity.  In fact, it is not enough to say that it is merely beautiful.  Infused throughout her work is the unambiguous rawness of her passion for nature and her love of life and all that the natural world has to offer the patient observer.
    Since her retirement from serving her fellow human being in such a demanding way, Cindy takes about 3 months out of each year to travel.  Her focus, as you will see, is photography, a focus that began as means by which she could document the experiences of her travels.  And Cindy has documented such travels as her self-drive trip through Kruger National Park in South Africa, her adventures through the Amazon, and an excursion to Antarctica.  For those of you that don’t know, the lowest temperature ever reliably recorded in Antarctica is -89.2 degrees Celsius (-128.6 degrees Fahrenheit).  Most recently, Cindy enjoyed a tour Patagonia.  For details of the trip, check out her blog entry Lodging Options In Southern Patagonia!
    Cindy Knoke, a beauty through and through.  While she would not regard herself as an artist, I must, and will, say that she is a photographer that I look up to, personally; not just for her talent and skill, but for the love that she expresses for what she does.  It is honest, it is pure, and it is purposeful.  It is real.  What can I say?  That she is an example of what we artists may do when we set not only our minds to it, but our hearts.  With an eye on the world and her finger ever on the shutter button, Cindy Knoke captures moments in vivid color stills just as we poets capture the very same in black and white.  And while we will not all call ourselves artists, even stilling time itself, that the moments we cherish or the moments we abhor may be immortalized, living beyond our natural lives, is an act of creativity.
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When Samson waves high five at you!
Or the variegated Pride of Madeira blooms~
The blue morphos dips her azure wings?
And Samson flashes his hues of blue~
The blue headed lorikeet can do it too!
When Morphos lifts her wings……
These hues will drive the blues from you!
Cheers to you from nature’s beauteous blues~

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