A Warming Bias Observed Over The Past 66 Million Years May Return, Paleoclimate Study Finds

A warming bias was observed over the past 66 million years that may come back if the ice sheets vanish. It might return if global warming keeps increasing at the current rate which are ominous signs for the planet.

In recent years the prolonged wildfires, drought conditions, floods are the consequences of rising global temperature. The addition of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere is one of the major reasons behind global warming. A new Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) study on extreme climate events in Earth’s ancient history suggests that today’s planet may become more volatile as it continues to warm.

A Warming Bias Observed Over The Past 66 Million Years May Return, A Paleoclimate Study Finds

Image: MIT News

In one of the studies of Science Advances the paleoclimate record of the last 66 million years was examined. Surprisingly the scientists found out a “Warming bias” which means that there were far more extreme warming events in the Cenozoic era than today, lasting more than thousands of years. According to the researchers “multiplier effect” could be a reason for this warming bias.

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Around 5 million years ago when ice sheets started forming in the Northern Hemisphere this warming bias gradually vanished. Although the reason behind this is still unclear but with growing ice recedes the multiplier effect may return and the reason would be global warming.

The Northern Hemisphere’s ice sheets are shrinking, and could potentially disappear as a long-term consequence of human actions

Says the study’s lead author Constantin Arnscheidt, a graduate student in MIT’s Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences.

Apparently, over the last 66 million years, the multiplier effect enhanced the average warming on earth as the naturally occurring, biological and chemical processes further added to the rising temperature.

Researchers also observed changes in the earth’s orbit associated with past warming events but scientists have always wondered about the reason behind it.

Climate warms and cools in synchrony with orbital changes, but the orbital cycles themselves would predict only modest changes in climate.

Daniel Rothman, professor of geophysics at MIT, and co-founder and co-director of MIT’s Lorenz Center says;

But if we consider a multiplicative model, then modest warming, paired with this multiplier effect, can result in extreme events that tend to occur at the same time as these orbital changes. Humans are forcing the system in a new way.

Arnscheidt adds.

The study shows global warming could give rise to many natural disasters for which we aren’t ready yet. This study also got the required support from MIT’s school of science.

Via: MIT News

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