Saturday, February 27, 2010

Icebergs May Alter Ocean Currents

Massive iceburgs that have calved away from the vast Antarctic ice sheet may alter ocean currents, which may also cause a die-off of ocean life due to oxygen deprivation. The question is, will ocean inhabitants be able to migrate quickly enough to be saved, given an outside human-generated impetus of some sort? Will this be necessary? Hopefully scientists will be carefully monitoring the situation in the coming months and years.

Many other questions come to mind. Will this alteration of oceanic currents eventually also affect sea surface temperatures, change the albedo of the planet, and alter our weather and climate? Will this cause the release of some of the carbon dioxide and methane stored in our oceans? Will all of this begin another negative feedback loop? If there is a massive die-off of ocean life, how will we feed the continually growing population of this planet, most of whom live along our coastlines, and many of whom depend upon fishing for survival?

Whether or not the calving of country-sized iceburgs is caused by global warming, I sincerely hope scientists are modeling all of the effects they may have on our planet.


  1. I tell you Patrica, I am not sure about the warming of the ocean's temps. Causing iceburg errosion, etc.
    What I do know is that the Louisiana coastline (where I live) is erroding by upwards of 35 miles a year of coastal wetlands. Which is a huge problem. Especially when we are impacted by a hurricane such as Katrina...that figure went higher that year.
    And I do know that this year alone...Louisiana has had SNOW even as far south as where we live in Baton Rouge. Which is unheard of. IF we have snow once in say 20 years. Then that is amazing.
    But we also had it LAST year too...once.
    Yet to have it three times in a year...unheard of.
    The entire south has been rampaged with bad weather...freezing cold temps ruining our fruit crops. This includes Florida.
    At one point during the last snowfall which was last month...40 states were receiving snowfall.

    We have all joked in the South this year about Global Warming and how much money some men have made off of it.
    Not that this isn't a problem because it is. But certainly something is amiss in the weather this year.
    The oceans...that is an entirely different matter of course and that may impact us all at some point.
    Thank you for your sentiments regarding my upcoming surgery. I will be speaking positive things over my body!
    Hang in there....

  2. Dear Joyce,

    Thank you so much for sharing the effects weather changes have had on you and your region. Erosion of 35 miles of coastline/year is far too much. The summer before Hurricane Katrina hit, I went for teacher training on the Jason Project: Disappearing Wetlands. I was dismayed at the lack of initiative on the part of the federal government, as well as state and local governments, to work together to fix the levee problems. I also learned that when the US Army Corps of Engineers fixed the course of the mighty Mississippi, they essentially opened the door to coastal erosion. Have you read the book "Bayou Farewell" by Mike Tidwell? It was one of the best books on the subject included on our suggested reading list.

    Well, I hope your surgery went well and that you are feeling much better soon. Take good care of yourself.



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