Clear water with only a hint of blue, the sun dancing off the surface of a lake, light reflecting back on all who approach. This is the North Pole now.
After reading that the North Pole has turned into a lake, it seemed like everything else I saw today was about some cataclysmic event. Next, I read this cheery article: Ice-free Arctic in two years. An Arctic expert, Prof Peter Wadhams, now projects that the Arctic will be melty slush and all the summer ice will disappear by 2015. While hard to believe, after seeing the picture of a melted north pole, this seemed plausible and holds a thread of terror for me.
Then, that thread turned into a whole damn sweater—the planet overheating, the oceans boiling, the atmosphere filling with steam, and the earth dying. This little scenario is what happened to our nearby neighbor Venus, and according to new research this maybe what’s in store for Earth. As the sun gets brighter and warmer our planet will enter a danger zone where runaway greenhouse effects take over. The Good news? This will not happen for at least 1.5 billion years, and it is unlikely that we mere mortals can cause this event without the help of a hotter sun.
Santa’s workshop may be screwed and the Arctic may disappear, but don’t worry, the oceans won’t boil quite yet.