Rise in global warming - Ocean might have become 'saturated' with our emissions – An alarm bell:
When the industrial revolution started, the level of CO2 in the atmosphere was around 280 parts per million by volume (ppmv) but that has risen to around 380ppmv due to our burning of fossil fuels. Because of tremendous rise in CO2 (about 35% rise) the global warming scenario has been deteriorated or faster. The melting of arctic ice, severe climate changes are some of the effects among many, of the global warming. This unexpected growth of CO2 level in the atmosphere, scientists suspect, is due to mainly two reasons –
(i) Inefficiency in the use of fossil fuels which increased the CO2 level by 17% and
(ii) Other 18% came from a decline in the natural ability of land and oceans to soak up CO2 from the atmosphere, i.e., decline in global carbon sinks. In addition, the growth of global population is responsible for significant growth of atmospheric CO2, as well.
A. The decline in global sink (there are two major carbon sinks in the biological cycle: the oceans and the land "biosphere", which includes plants and the soil) efficiency suggests that stabilization of atmospheric CO2 is even more difficult to achieve than previously thought. Study suggests, about half of emissions from human activity are absorbed by these natural "CO2 sinks" but it has been observed that, the efficiency of these sinks has fallen. Scientists believe global warming might get worse if the oceans soak up less of the greenhouse gas.
B. The weakening of the Earth's ability to cope with greenhouse gases is thought to be a result of changing wind patterns over seas and droughts on land. Nearly half of the decline in the efficiency of the ocean CO2 sink is, expected, due to the intensification of the winds in the Southern Ocean, study suggests. The declining effect is also being seen in the North Atlantic, as per the recent study.
C. In fact, the researchers are clueless about the exact reasons, whether this change in behavior of ocean is due to climate change or to natural variations. It is a tremendous surprise and troublesome factor because there were grounds for believing that in time the ocean might become 'saturated' with our emissions - unable to soak up any more. This phenomenon of ocean being saturated, leave us with all our emission to heat-up our globe – results rapidity in global warming.
D. We have to find out the ways to deal with this rapid pace in global warming. Implementation of carbon sink technology, iron fertilization of Southern oceans etc., have to be thought of. The major responsible factors such as, the issues like reduction of emission of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere are to be tackled efficiently.