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Earth

Study Links Rapid Ice Sheet Melting With Distant Volcanic Eruptions (upi.com) 117

schwit1 quotes UPI: New research suggests volcanic eruptions can trigger periods of rapid ice sheet melting... "Over a time span of 1,000 years, we found that volcanic eruptions generally correspond with enhanced ice sheet melting within a year or so," Francesco Muschitiello, a postdoctoral researcher at Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, said in a news release. The volcanoes of note weren't situated next-door, but thousands of miles from the ice sheet, a reminder of the unexpected global impacts of volcanic activity.

The new research -- detailed this week in the journal Nature Communications -- suggests ash ejected into the atmosphere by erupting volcanoes can be deposited thousands of miles away. When it's deposited on ice sheets, the dark particles cause the ice to absorb more thermal energy and accelerate melting... Some scientists have even suggested melting encouraged by volcanic eruptions could trigger even more eruptions, a positive feedback loop. As glaciers and ice sheets melt, pressure is relieved from the planet's crust, allowing magma to rise to the surface.

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Study Links Rapid Ice Sheet Melting With Distant Volcanic Eruptions

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    It contradicts climate change "science"...

    • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      But we have to get rid of this anthropogenic volcanic activity. Without some solid science to stop it, the liquid magma keeps on rising.

    • How exactly does it contradict it?
      • Re: (Score:1, Offtopic)

        by The123king ( 2395060 )
        I think if anything, it proves it. Large quantities of greenhouse gases (sulphur dioxide, carbon dioxide) are emitted with every eruption. If these gases are making ice melt when there's a volcanic eruption, it doesn't take a genius to realize the CO2 coming out the back of your car is probably going to have the same effect.
        • by K. S. Kyosuke ( 729550 ) on Sunday October 29, 2017 @12:05PM (#55453425)
          It's a different pathway, though. Extra heating of the atmosphere by increased GHG concentrations is a different way of making the ice melt faster than decreasing its albedo through fine particles, and volcanoes could be effecting both. On that note, though, I'm wondering about other aspects of human activities such as emitting coal ash. Certainly past local effects of our coal plants involved dirtying up everything around. Volcanic CO2 output is negligible compared to recent fossil CO2 release from human activity, though. Not sure about SO2 effects.
          • by Jzanu ( 668651 )
            Environmental problems are absolutely interconnected. Technological change solving one allows the evidence of another to be collected. So it was with the particulate problem [ucsusa.org] from soot and the phenomenon of global warming. The chemical basis of both is easily understood, but the environmental interaction was such that the warming effect of CO2 emissions was partly masked by the sunlight reduction from coal ash [ucsusa.org] and other particulates in the atmosphere.
            • So by scrubbing the coal ash, but keeping the CO2 in "cleaner" coal plants, we've actually exacerbated the warming impact of fossil fuel electricity? It looks like there's always something next waiting to bite us.
              • Exacerbated? No. Made it more easily observable because there wasn't something with a bigger impact overshadowing it. It was just harder to collect data before.

        • I think if anything, it proves it. Large quantities of greenhouse gases (sulphur dioxide, carbon dioxide) are emitted with every eruption. If these gases are making ice melt when there's a volcanic eruption, it doesn't take a genius to realize the CO2 coming out the back of your car is probably going to have the same effect.

          Yes, most people far short of being genius all the way up to being a genius can see that that makes no sense at all. Just because something does X and Y, and X causes Z, doesn't mean tha

          • I think your getting mixed up here. X does Z, Y does Z. Z causes N. Therefore both X and Y are doing Z which causes N.
        • In this case, the suggested mechanism is the significant amounts of particulate literally darkening the ice sheets. Of course, that doesn't mean we need to disregard the other stuff coming out.
        • Sulfur dioxide is not a greenhouse gas.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      So there are 29 comments. It looks like 14 are currently at -1.

      I think it really highlights how far this site has fallen. There's so little discussion to begin with, and a good chunk of the comments aren't even visible by default because of the atrocious moderating.

      I don't see why people asking legitimate questions about the role, or rather the lack of the role, of humans in climate change should be downmodded here.

      Questioning theories, claims, observations and evidence is the very foundation of science. It

      • Yours would join them if I hadn't already commented. Offtopic, too meta.
        • The answer to the problem is to step up your game and engage in discussion about the topics at hand, rather than rip on the venue where the discussion would otherwise be taking place.
  • An open shipping lane across the top of the world would unlock the Siberian landmass for the Russians, and then who knows what happens next...

    http://www.sjsu.edu/faculty/wa... [sjsu.edu]

    --#

  • by WindBourne ( 631190 ) on Sunday October 29, 2017 @12:08PM (#55453435) Journal
    China's particle emissions from their coal plants are reaching the arctic and causing faster melting. THis is on top of their massive CO2, lead, mercury, uranium, etc. etc. etc.
    • by 0123456 ( 636235 )

      "China's particle emissions from their coal plants are reaching the arctic and causing faster melting"

      That can't be right. In the 70s, the West's particle emissions were causing cooling that would lead to a New Ice Age if we DON'T BAN FOSSIL FUELS NOW!

      • That is only true if you buy off on fake news.
        OTOH, if you don't, then nope. It is just fake news.
    • Your post may be in jest, but you are pointing at one of the real problems in taking action on climate change.

      India and China have between them 1/3 of the Earth's population, and far to many of them live in energy poverty. These two countries have to raise their people's standard of living, or their people will revolt and install a government that will. If you stopped all CO2 and thermal emissions outside of these two countries it would only be a rounding error in global CO2 emissions over the next 50 yea

      • yes, but china adding 35-50 GW more coal plants EACH year, is not a rounding error, esp since they are not turning on emissions controls on these.
        And china's particulates DO hit the arctic ice. They have so much pollution and of course, if flows not only west to east, but also northwords. Then top that with CHina adding another 100 GW around the globe to other nations.
        Likewise, India is adding more.
        What needs to happen is it needs to be a combination of nuke, along with AE.

        Until we stop adding more
  • Of course volcanic eruptions can cause ice sheet melting. Put soot on snow and it's more likely to melt. They also cause temporary warming. Hydrogen Sulfide is a green house gas. And they can add lots of CO2 to the atmosphere.

    BUT The "year without a summer" was caused by a volcano eruption. So don't try to make this a global statement. It depends on the particulars.

    If you go back a few centuries volcano eruptions were one of the big driving factors behind temporary climate changes ... temporary meaning they didn't last more than 20 years, except for trailing effects, like a lake flooding or a grassland turning into a desert, which tended to persist. Even today there *are* volcanoes that could swamp everything people do. Yellowstone is an example, but not the only one. And that isn't new knowledge.

    The feels like somebody rehashed things that everybody knows, and got a reporter to call it news.

    Actually, when I read the article it sounds as if they do have some no findings, but nothing that wouldn't have been predicted ahead of time. It sounds as if the actual research is valid, but the write-up is hyperbolic shit.

    • Change:
      Actually, when I read the article it sounds as if they do have some no findings, but nothing that wouldn't have been predicted ahead of time. It sounds as if the actual research is valid, but the write-up is hyperbolic shit.
      to:
      Actually, when I read the article it sounds as if they do have some new findings, but nothing that wouldn't have been predicted ahead of time. It sounds as if the actual research is valid, but the write-up is hyperbolic shit.

      • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

        Nope you completely missed what it is about, why it seems hyperbolic to you. This is not about climate, this is about weather, there is a huge difference between the two. When you start trying to forecast weather extremes, compounding negative probability outcomes can become quite severe when expressed. Than the decision is whether or not to and to what extent to protect against those forecast severe weather outcomes. So how strong does a building need to be to survive a measured risk over time for a weathe

    • Hydrogen Sulfide is not a greenhouse gas.
      It actually has the opposite effect, like most sulfur compounds.

      • by HiThere ( 15173 )

        You sure about that? I thought it could act either way depending on exactly where it ended up, and how it bound to water. But if not, that just makes my point stronger, because it doesn't persist.

        I'm rather sure though that I've read that it could cause clouds to turn into rain and clear the air...temporary cooling, but longer term warming.

        • by hey! ( 33014 )

          Hydrogen sulfide is a reactive gas that normally has a half-life in the atmosphere measured in days -- too short to be a long-term greenhouse gas. The reaction is as follows

          H2S + OH HS + H20.

          Sulfanyl (HS) is highly reactive and converts mainly to sulfur dioxide (SO2), which carries the sulfur out of the atmosphere as acid rain. So again the total half life of sulfur in the atmosphere is a matter of days or weeks at most. This precludes it H2S being a greenhouse gas concern.

          In comparison the half-life of

        • Even if it causes warming over some side effects, it is not a green house gas.

          Green house gases are gases that absorb the IR light that is reflected from the earth surface.

          I'm rather sure though that I've read that it could cause clouds to turn into rain and clear the air...temporary cooling, but longer term warming.
          This would not be a long term warming, why would it?

  • When snow sticks temperatures drop 15 degrees or 7 for those on the Celsius scale as the snow reflects the heat of the sun back into space. Air is not heated by the sun. It is heated by the surface of the ground.

    If black ash were on the snow it would warm up rather than reflect the heat back into space.

    It also explains why Antarctica is so much colder than the northern equivalent which is ice free in the summer. Alaska can get warm in the summer and is the same latitude as the shores of Antarctica which nev

  • Proof finally that evil people in their volcanic lairs are causing global warming.
  • ...it's almost like we have a feedback system in which there are infrequent but regular 'spikes' of temp and CO2, which are then almost equally counteracted* by a comparable more-or-less sudden drop thereafter?

    You know, like this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org] (look at the 'pulse' beat of spikes every 120k years or so, for certainly the last million years, more like 2-3 million).

    *curiously, nobody seems to be talking/studying this mechanism - how or why it happens? Personally my bet is on cloud cover a

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