A few summers back, the arctic got abnormally hot; 28 degrees Celsius. As a result, a lot of salmon died. Unfortunately, the death of these animals was just a small cog in a bigger problem facing our eco-system.
According to NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory atmospheric scientist, Chip Miller, the arctic is warming up three times as fast as the rest of our planet. Miller and his colleagues have been collecting and analyzing data of our atmospheric carbon dioxide, monoxide, and methane. They aim to accurately deduce the number of gases that will remain frozen for the next two years.
A Large-Scale Study of Environmental Change and its Implications
Miller, together with 600 international scientists, examined the various factors affecting the vulnerability of Alaska’s arctic. Hopefully, the results obtained from this study will help in predicting, measuring, and making positive changes to the arctic. Incidentally, this is a very popular topic of student essays. If you have trouble writing on your own, you can find someone to write essays for money.
The study drew conclusions to many factors affecting the arctic. First, arctic warming and thawing permafrost are both causing the infrastructure present in Alaska to fall. According to Miller, those villages that have inhabited the coast for centuries are now washed up.
This is mainly because of the warm waters causing coastal erosion and lack of sea ice. The permafrost that was once the bedrock for the infrastructure in these communities has dwindled, making the houses fall and rendering the roads impassable.
Fires on the Upswing
The northern regions have seen an increase in forest fires that are ‘hotter and intense than ever before. Previously, the fires were pretty ‘normal’ as they would burn a few things. But now, these wildfires are consuming even the debris and charcoal that covered the forest floor. As a result, a lot of carbon is making its way into the atmosphere from the ground.
Millions of Methane Hotspots
Methane gas plays a crucial role in global warming. As the gas rises to the air, it reacts with other gases such as hydroxyl radical to form water and carbon dioxide. However, the levels of methane in the atmosphere have been increasing with each passing year.
As a result of this increase in methane, other gases such as hydroxyl suffer are significantly reduced. This makes it harder to form water, which translates into rain. According to the study, there are over two million hotspots in the artic where permafrost had thawed.
Caribou in Crisis
Human actions have also had a significant role to play in global warming. As a result, other vital components of the eco-system, such the caribou have been affected. Their migration, feeding, and mating patterns have been negatively affected by global warming.
Biome Shifts and Other Changes
Again, human actions such as deforestation, pollution, and hunting animals alter biomes. Miller himself witness a prime example of a biome shift in Canada, along river Mackenzie where many shrubs grew out of nowhere. Biologically, they weren’t supposed to grow there.
Getting the Arctic ‘Big Picture’
Miller said that the Arctic was no longer the same. Different parts of the arctic are changing at different paces. Nonetheless, they all remain a vital component of the earth’s eco-system. According to Miller, any change in the arctic will be felt by the whole world. We should all be concerned.