Will global warming stop

November 15, 2014 – 11:37 am

Nevada's Lake Mead had a white 'bathtub ring' upstream from the Hoover Dam in July 2007. A seven-year drought and increased water demand spurred by climate change and explosive population growth in the Southwest has caused the water level at Lake Mead, which supplies water to Las Vegas, Arizona and Southern California, to drop more than 100 feet to its lowest level since the 1960s. Ethan Miller/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Climate change is essentially irreversible, according to a sobering new scientific study.

As carbon dioxide emissions continue to rise, the world will experience more and more long-term environmental disruption. The damage will persist even when, and if, emissions are brought under control, says study author Susan Solomon, who is among the world's top climate scientists.

"We're used to thinking about pollution problems as things that we can fix, " Solomon says. "Smog, we just cut back and everything will be better later. Or haze, you know, it'll go away pretty quickly."

That's the case for some of the gases that contribute to climate change, such as methane and nitrous oxide. But as Solomon and colleagues suggest in a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, it is not true for the most abundant greenhouse gas: carbon dioxide. Turning off the carbon dioxide emissions won't stop global warming.

"People have imagined that if we stopped emitting carbon dioxide that the climate would go back to normal in 100 years or 200 years. What we're showing here is that's not right. It's essentially an irreversible change that will last for more than a thousand years, " Solomon says.

This is because the oceans are currently soaking up a lot of the planet's excess heat — and a lot of the carbon dioxide put into the air. The carbon dioxide and heat will eventually start coming out of the ocean. And that will take place for many hundreds of years.

Solomon is a scientist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Her new study looked at the consequences of this long-term effect in terms of sea level rise and drought.

If we continue with business as usual for even a few more decades, she says, those emissions could be enough to create permanent dust-bowl conditions in the U.S. Southwest and around the Mediterranean.

"The sea level rise is a much slower thing, so it will take a long time to happen, but we will lock into it, based on the peak level of [carbon dioxide] we reach in this century, " Solomon says.

Source: www.npr.org
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Popular Q&A
Will global warming stop naturally?

While we do not fully understand the mechanisms that have caused the past several thousands of years of warming, we do believe that man has contributed to the situation.
Even if the process does reverse itself over the next few years or decades, it does not mean we should not try to find legitimate ways to reduce our use and dependance on fossil fuels.

Average Global Temperatures are Below 1940 Levels. Has "Global Warming" Stopped? | Yahoo Answers

I wish we didn't have to wait another ten years to prove our point, but I fear that we will. Hopefully it won't be too late to figure out ways to combat the issues that extremely cold weather in the winter causes, shorter growing seasons and anything else that occurs during an ice age.

when will global warming stop? | Yahoo Answers

it is predicted to stop by 2050 but is possible to go on more

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