The rapidness of the observed warming is unprecedented in the records studied to date. Almost every year there are records being set in air temperature, the amount of drought in dry regions and amounts of rain in wet regions. The light isotopic signal of the CO2 in the atmosphere traces it back to the burning of fossil fuels. The Antarctic Ice Sheet is losing mass at an increasing pace due to excessive subsurface melting. If the whole ice sheet melts it could rise sea level by 57 meters, I am concerned.
We still don’t fully know the effects this warming has on the Antarctic Ice Sheet and the surrounding water masses. Hence, us being here, drilling through the informational layers of sediment on the sea floor on the research vessel JOIDES Resolution in the Scotia Sea, investigating the long-term climate history of Antarctica and the ice sheet’s responds to changes in atmospheric CO2.
IPCCs compilation of climate reconstructions and model predictions highly recommends that we keep warming under 1.5°C above the preindustrial level. But with the business as usual we could face a warming of 5°C by the end of the century. The planet is already changing faster than humans can cope with. The best tips I’ve received are to educate yourself on conscious choices you can make, such as where you choose to spend your money and what you eat, wear, and how you travel, who you vote for, and where you can raise your voice to make a change. It matters. Try your best to leave the planet on a less devastating trajectory for the coming generations.