Your Fault: Antarctica Could Become As Warm As When It Was A Rainforest

If only you’d be willing to buy an EV and give all your money and freedom to government, we could stop this

Antarctica was once a rainforest. Could it be again?

Not far from the South Pole, more than half a mile below the ocean in a region that was once covered by ice, a layer of ancient fossils tells a surprising story about the coldest continent on Earth. Today, the South Pole records average winter temperatures of 78 degrees Fahrenheit below zero. But roughly 90 million years ago, the fossils suggest, Antarctica was as warm as Italy and covered by a green expanse of rainforest.

“That was an exciting time for Antarctica,” Johann P. Klages, a marine geologist who helped unearth the fossils, told Vox. “It was basically the last time the whole continent was covered by vegetation and probably also wildlife — dinosaurs, and all that.” (snip)

As climate change warms Antarctica and shrinks its enormous ice sheet, many scientists are wondering whether history could repeat itself. But relatively few research teams have the tools to work in a place where Titanic-sized icebergs pepper the ocean.

Yes, this was like 75 million years ago. And Antarctica was not at the South Pole. It was getting there, but, not quite. Anyhow, the rest of the Vox piece is an interview with the people involved

That was the final question we asked ourselves. Such a diverse environment with such mild temperatures — temperatures that today you have in northern Italy, for example. What is necessary to maintain that for a long stretch of time 90 million years ago?

Therefore, we invited some climate modelers into our team. They came up with [a carbon dioxide concentration of] at least 1,100 parts per million CO2, which is four times preindustrial [the CO2 concentration before the Industrial Revolution]. This was needed, at least, to meet the conditions we reconstructed.

We knew this period was the warmest in the last 145 million years. Now we had much better numbers on the CO2 content.

The model still has a problem: It can’t really simulate well enough the gradient between lower latitudes and high latitudes. We now know that the gradient was very shallow.

Models. LOL. There couldn’t have possibly been other conditions at play in the Climate Cult world. Question: even if it was primarily CO2, what caused that concentration?

This is now what brings it to the significance for the future of the climate, if we drift into a high-CO2 future. We are doing that right now. We are 420 parts per million CO2, something around that. If we go to this high-CO2 future, we know that models struggle. This is a chance to use moments in Earth’s past to calibrate those models, to improve their predictive capabilities for tomorrow.

So, Doom.

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2 Responses to “Your Fault: Antarctica Could Become As Warm As When It Was A Rainforest”

  1. Dana says:

    So, Antarctica was once temperate, yet, shockingly, earth survived and thrived as a place where things could live, and CO2 was at 1,100 PPM. In other words, not exactly doom!

    This was before Fred Flintstone stared belching CO2 into the atmosphere with his stone car, but, since then, human beings have shown that they are the most adaptable creatures on earth: we live in steaming tropical jungles, scorching dry deserts, and barren Arctic wastelands. We live in lands pumped dry of seawater, in level plateaus 600 feet above the oceans, and in mountain ranges 15,000 feet above sea level. We’ve reached the point where people are looking seriously at colonizing Mars!

    Whatever happens to our climate, we will adapt to living in it, because that’s what human beings do.

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