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[edit] "Vital Signs": Monitoring the Earth's Life Enabling Systems

 

How Satellite Imagery Is Transforming Earth Science, National & Global Security


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New methods, new analytical approaches to data collected from new observation platforms...


“High-resolution earth imagery sources, beyond historic US/NASA/NOAA/ESA research from space, represent rich new troves of information...” says David Johnston of Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment. Johnson and his co-authors embrace satellite imagery “as a legitimate data source that can supplement and even supplant traditional methods.”

The rapidly growing abundance and sophistication of satellite imagery and remote sensing data is about to change (the scientific fields of earth science)... thanks to a profusion of startup companies, including Planet, DigitalGlobe, Skybox Imaging (later purchased by Google and renamed Terra Bella), Urthecast, and LAND INFO Worldwide Mapping.


https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Micro-satellites

https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Earth_Imaging-New_Space

https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/New_Space


NASA is also part of this trend. In 2019, NASA plans to launch a mission called GEDI (the Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation) using lidar, a laser-based remote sensing technology...

From the International Space Station, GEDI will enable scientists to determine the height and structure of forests in any given location and precisely map above ground biomass and carbon storage...


https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/NASA_EarthSciences,_Challenges_Public_to_Join_In

https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Virtual_Earth


The technology will prove useful for monitoring commitments made by nations under REDD (the program to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation) as well as under the Paris climate accord and the Convention on Biological Diversity...


https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Category:INDC


OCO-2

Earth Right Now

Earth Science Vital Signs


https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Category:Environmental_Security


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Rising Threats to National and Global Security

US Retreats from Global Stage, Moves Backwards Under Current White House


The 'Trump Doctrine', a Legacy in the Making


Climate News


Time to Act as the US President says No to the Global Community and No to the International Climate Agreement


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June 2017 / Climate change poses a unique threat to national security, military and intelligence experts say


Better Climate Observation Needed

Former NOAA Chief Scientist Warns of Threats to Science

Scientists Fear Climate Data Gap as Trump Aims at Satellites


18 NASA Earth Science Missions in Spacehttps://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/4558


NASA earth observation fleet as of April 2017.jpg


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2017 / Updates


Via Scientific American

Ageing Satellites Put Crucial Sea Ice Climate Record at Risk


Track Earth Science Missions, the Politics of Earth Science from Space, and Global/National Security


@ Earth and Space, Politics


https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Earth_and_Space,_Politics


Trump Administration Federal Budget Undercuts NASA Earth Science

Vital Security Programs Cut / OCO-3 Mission to Study CO2 in Atmosphere Eliminated

The budget targets the agency’s work on environmental science, cutting funding for Earth science research grants. The cuts would go further by eliminating several missions that are in development, including PACE (Plankton, Aerosol, Cloud, ocean Ecosystem), which is intended to monitor and provide baseline data of the Earth’s ocean and their health; the Orbiting Carbon Observatory 3, or OCO-3, an instrument to precisely monitor the carbon dioxide in our atmosphere, continuing the unique work of OCO-2; and the Climate Absolute Radiance and Refractivity Observatory, or CLARREO, pathfinder, which is to use a solar spectrometer to produce highly accurate climate projections.

https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Earth_and_Space,_Politics
https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Climate_News
https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Earth_Right_Now
https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Look_at_how_thin_our_atmosphere_is


Baseline Data and the Damage of Interruptions in Baseline Data


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shifting_baseline


@NASA Dr. David Crisp: "You can manage only what you can measure"


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New Definitions of National Security


"New Definitions of National Security"

A Project of GreenPolicy360 and Strategic Demands

New Definitions of National Security.png


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Space 'Macroscope', Earth Science

Yale Environment 360 / by Richard Conniff / June 2017


Google, Earth Observations, Earth Science

https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Global_Fishing_Watch

https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Global_Forest_Watch


https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Virtual_Earth


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*The Critical Importance of "EarthScience360" from Space

GreenPolicy360: The election of Donald Trump as US president delivers immediate crisis and a turning point. The president-elect's statements that climate change is a 'hoax' and environmental policies and programs, including NASA 'Earth Sciences', are impediments that need to be ended now assures tumult and a new level of threat to national and global security. Announced administration appointees, as of November 2016, and recent Congressional threats to deeply cut environmental protection and NASA 'Earth Science' budgets are warning signs of coming showdowns over the direction of the nation and the nation's priorities.

NASA scientists responsible for vital programs have been reluctant to speak publicly since the election but one anonymous NASA scientist is among the first to write online about the value of earth science research from space.

Anon: "We are the largest combined organization of scientists and engineers in the world dedicated to space-based observations of Earth, the Solar System, and the Universe. A huge part of our mission is to design and fabricate Earth-viewing satellites that track long-term changes in topography and climate. These satellites ensure that we have the most complete set of data available to not only predict how humanity's impacts will affect the Earth, but also understand how we can prepare and protect those most vulnerable to climate change and rising sea levels. As an example of our impact on the daily lives of people around the world, one of the satellites I previously worked on, Global Precipitation Measurement, is currently in Earth orbit tracking extreme weather events. Its data allows meteorologists to improve their forecasts of where hurricanes will strike and how intense they will be, as well as to identify the areas that are most prone to floods and landslides, so that we can give advanced warnings to those affected. This is just one of dozens of major Earth-observing satellites that NASA manages everyday.
"Today, we were shocked to hear of Trump's plan to scrap NASA's climate change research as part of a crack down on "politicized science". Among the scientific community, climate change is no more "politicized science" than the theory of gravity is. While his crackdown would mean that thousands of scientists and engineers at NASA Goddard would lose their livelihoods, it represents an even greater loss for the world. Without data continuity in our Earth observations, we will be blind to the ravages of climate change: to the deluges and droughts that might devastate crops, to the extreme weather events that destroy communities as the Earth continues to warm. We will not be able to develop the solutions that can prevent Earth's temperatures from rising to catastrophic levels. I urge you to implore your Congressional Representatives to not allow Trump's plan to happen. We cannot sit on the sidelines over the next four years: our future on this planet is at stake."


Follow the Action (of anti-science forces) as the US Congress Looks to Block Earth Science

One Case Study of the Mentality -- H.R/637 / 115th Congress "Stopping EPA Overreach Act of 2017"


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Under Trump, Will NASA’s Space Science Include Planet Earth?

-- By Andrew C. Revkin / November 28, 2016 / Dot Earth


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December 14, 2016

Speaking directly to threats to the value of earth science and earth science research from space, Governor Brown addressed the American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall Meeting in California. The AGU annual gathering is the largest Earth and space science meeting in the world.

The AGU is an international scientific society that describes itself as "dedicated to promoting discovery in Earth and space science for the benefit of humanity."


Jerry Brown:

"We got the scientists. We got the lawyers. And we're ready to fight. We're ready to defend. And California is no stranger to this fight...

"California is the future. We are pioneering space...

"Now some people say they're going to turn off the satellites that are monitoring the climate... low-earth phenomena, the LANDSAT and all the various measuring satellites that we have...

"Well, I remember back in 1978 I proposed a LANDSAT satellite for California. They called me 'Governor Moonbeam' because of that. I didn't get that moniker for nothing.

"And if Trump turns off the satellites, California will launch its own (d-mn) satellites!"


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Another in a Series of Satellites Launched to Monitor Planet Change

Current NASA Earth Science Missions -- https://eospso.gsfc.nasa.gov/current-missions

https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/File:EarthRightNow_Earth_Science_satellite_fleet_circa_2015_m.jpg


The A-Train -- https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/File:The_A-Train.jpg


EarthRightNow Earth Science satellite fleet circa 2015 m.jpg


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Earth Science, Ocean Science

Studying Sea-Level Rise from Space


Jason-3 Successfully Launched into Orbit --- Follow Jason Online
http://www.nasa.gov/press-release/jason-3-launches-to-monitor-global-sea-level-rise


Vital Signs
Earth Science, Vital Signs
NASA Climate: Vital Signs of the Planet


Earth Right Now / NASA


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I am OCO-2 -- 'Reporting Home'


Visit the Orbiting Carbon Observatory


Climate deniers blame global warming on nature. NASA data begs to differ



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Visit NASA's Earth Science News

"Vital Signs of the Planet"

Critical Missions to Monitor Earth's Systems from Space -- http://climate.nasa.gov/

https://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Category:Planet_Citizen


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Earth Research and Science from Space











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NASA/NOAA Earth Observing Satellite Updates

How satellites are used to monitor climate change

Satellites in operation (2016) that are adding to scientists’ understanding of climate change

http://www.carbonbrief.org/interactive-satellites-used-monitor-climate-change

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Jason-3 Mission -- Jason-3 -- Launched Jan 17, 2016

Ocean circulation patterns, global and regional changes in sea level, and climate implications of a warming world


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"Watch 25 years of Arctic Sea Ice disappear"

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Earth Observations

"Thin Blue Layer"

https://www.pinterest.com/stratdem/

http://strategicdemands.com/another-view-of-thin-blue/


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http://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/New_Definitions_of_National_Security

http://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Category:Environmental_Security



Latest from the Atmospheric Science Data Center (ASDC) at NASA Langley Research Center

NASA Earth science data in the areas of radiation budget, clouds, aerosols, and tropospheric chemistry

https://eosweb.larc.nasa.gov/ --- https://eosweb.larc.nasa.gov/projects-supported


April 2015


A Successful Era in Climate Science

Calipso - Ten Years in Space (and Flying with the 'A-Train')

Since its launch in 2006, CALIPSO has orbited the Earth tirelessly, using its lasers to take more than 5.7 billion lidar (light detection and ranging) measurements probing the vertical structure and properties of clouds and other particles — such as dust, sea salt, ash and soot — in the air.

For atmospheric scientists, the ability to regularly and accurately examine clouds and particles at different heights was something new. Gathering that data over such a long time period has contributed to a scientific bonanza.

Also, scientists are able to combine CALIPSO’s measurements with those of other Earth-observing satellites circling the globe in a cooperative path called the A-Train constellation. CALIPSO and CloudSat, a satellite containing a cloud-profiling radar, launched together on a Delta II rocket, now fly in formation with satellites named Aqua, Aura, Global Change Observation Mission-Water (GCOM-W) and Orbiting Carbon Observatory (OCO)-2.

Combining measurements from these A-Train satellites offers a clearer view of what’s happening in the atmosphere.

“CALIPSO, in complement with the other instruments flying in the A-Train, has provided observations in areas that had never been observed before,” said Pierre Tabary, program manager for atmosphere, meteorology and climate for CNES, the French space agency.

He said scientists have gained knowledge about clouds, and their impact on incoming solar radiation, as well as on infrared radiation coming from the Earth’s surface, known as the greenhouse effect.

“There were no other instruments providing such observations before,” Tabary said. “All those data have been used to improve our understanding of how climate works.”

More than 1,600 scientific and technical reports and published research papers have used CALIPSO data. The data are widely cited in reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change", Tabary said, "a clear demonstration of what CALIPSO has brought to climate science."


Read More about the 'A-Train'

A convoy of "A-Train" satellites has emerged as one of the most powerful tools scientists have for understanding our planet's changing climate...

https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/a-train/a-train.html

https://www.nasa.gov/content/a-train



From Above We See Our Planet High Definition Video, from NASA

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March 2015

One of the many critical NASA earth science missions from space reports:

http://www.jsg.utexas.edu/news/2015/03/east-antarctica-melting-could-be-explained-by-oceanic-gateways

http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ngeo2388.html

http://www.ig.utexas.edu/research/projects/icecap/

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/icebridge/

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2015/03/16/the-melting-of-antarctica-was-already-really-bad-it-just-got-worse/

http://thespacereporter.com/2015/03/scientists-discover-that-the-melting-of-antarctica-is-even-worse-than-previously-thought/

Sneak Peek at DSCOVR

DSCOVR is launched and on its way!

February 12, 2015 The DSCOVR satellite with its EPIC cam, PlasMag & NISTAR instrument package is on the way... a million mile journey, scheduled to light up, be tested and begin delivering data to Earth in August, including near-real-time imaging of Earth provided online – We will be delivering a stream of amazing imagery of our planet as NASA/NOAA begin uploading EPICs pictures of us!

It's been some time since December 7, 1972 when the only picture ever snapped by a human of the whole earth was captured -- our iconic "Blue Marble" -- Engineers that they are, NASA named the image -- AS17-148-22727

As we have been recalling the history, we haven't had returned to us a 'whole earth' image since 1972. Today, Feb 10, the Associated Press reports Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Florida, pointing out from Washington that there hasn't been a full, sunlit picture of the Earth since Apollo 17 in 1972 - NASA's last manned moon-landing mission. Subsequent images have been stitched together, the Senator explained, for composite shots. The Senator has an exceptional point of view as he was an astronaut -- In January 1986, Nelson spent six days orbiting Earth as a payload specialist aboard space shuttle Columbia. His NASA bio adds "The experience gave him a new perspective on the Earth’s fragile environment and a greater appreciation of the importance of our nation’s space exploration program."


The DSCOVR satellite launches into deep orbit with multiple missions -- to monitor space weather and, due to the satellite's orbital distance from Earth (1 mil miles), DSCOVR will be sending back daily images of the 'whole earth' via its EPIC image-taking system and via its NISTAR system measuring earth's earth's temperature, our "radiation balance" ("albedo").


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ISS mission to monitor #planethome

ISS -- RapidScat


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[[You can manage only what you can measure Dr David Crisp, OCO-2, June 2014 m.jpg


Time to measure earth soil moisture content -- SMAP

January 2015

#Earth360, scientific leap forward with the soon-to-launch Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) platform"

Scheduled to launch Jan 29th to "measure the moisture in Earth's soils with unprecedented accuracy and resolution.

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SMAP will measure moisture in Earth's soil with greater accuracy and higher resolution than any preceding mission


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Existential -- Monitoring "vital signs", over time a baseline of planet earth


Global Warming / NASA OCO Satellite Sends Back Most Detailed CO2 View Ever

Initial round of CO2 data is made available...

A first full set of CO2 data available in March 2015 for scientists and public to download and explore.


More on the history-making OCO-2 / Orbiting Carbon Observatory

According to JPL scientists: "Where OCO-2 really excels is the sheer amount of data being collected within a day, about one million measurements across a narrow swath... For fluorescence, this enables us, for the first time, to look at features on the five- to 10-kilometer scale on a daily basis." SIF can be measured even through moderately thick clouds, so it will be especially useful in understanding regions like the Amazon where cloud cover thwarts most spaceborne observations."

The changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide that OCO-2 seeks to measure are so small that the mission must take unusual precautions to ensure the instrument is free of errors. For that reason, the spacecraft was designed so that it can make an extra maneuver. In addition to gathering a straight line of data like a lawnmower swath, the instrument can point at a single target on the ground for a total of seven minutes as it passes overhead. That requires the spacecraft to turn sideways and make a half cartwheel to keep the target in its sights.

The targets OCO-2 uses are stations in the Total Carbon Column Observing Network (TCCON), a collaborative effort of multiple international institutions. TCCON has been collecting carbon dioxide data for about five years, and its measurements are fully calibrated and extremely accurate. At the same time that OCO-2 targets a TCCON site, a ground-based instrument at the site makes the same measurement. The extent to which the two measurements agree indicates how well calibrated the OCO-2 sensors are.

Additional maps released recently showed the results of these targeting maneuvers over two TCCON sites in California and one in Australia. "Early results are very promising," said Paul Wennberg, a professor at Caltech and head of the TCCON network. "Over the next few months, the team will refine the OCO-2 data, and we anticipate that these comparisons will continue to improve."

More about the OCO-2 mission, making history as it reveals the extent of atmospheric CO2


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Tracking ocean currents, 'best-ever data

November 2014

From the GOCE mission

Scientists produce "the most accurate space view yet of global ocean currents and the speed they move..."

Ocean_currents_from_GOCE_20141125-jpg.jpg


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New NASA ERA

Sept 08, 2014 - NASA opens a new era in its exploration of our home planet with the launch of the first in a series of Earth science instruments to the International Space Station, Earth-observing instruments to be mounted on the exterior of the #ISS. ISS-RapidScat will monitor ocean winds for climate research, weather predictions and hurricane monitoring. The second instrument is the Cloud-Aerosol Transport System (CATS), a laser instrument that will measure clouds and the location and distribution of pollution, dust, smoke, and other particulates in the atmosphere. Look closer at the array of instruments #RapidScat #EarthRightNow


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Ice impacts of Climate Change -- Arctic/Antarctic

Antarctic 2016


The Antarctic: Big Melt Accelerates

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The Antarctic: Big Melt Accelerates [1] [2] Antarctic Ice Sheet Expands, Why? [3]



The Arctic Ice Is Melting: Why?


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Permafrost Loss, Potential Impacts, Time to Measure


2016

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Scientists estimate that five times as much carbon might be stored in frozen Arctic soils — permafrost — as has been emitted by all human activities since 1850. This worries people who study global warming. While emissions from permafrost currently account for less than 1 percent of global methane emissions, some researchers think this could change in dramatic ways as the world warms and that carbon-rich frozen soil breaks down.

Permafrost.jpg

The map above, based on data provided by the National Snow and Ice Data Center, shows the extent of Arctic permafrost. Any rock or soil remaining at or below 0 degrees Celsius (32 degrees Fahrenheit) for two or more years is considered permafrost.

Continuous permafrost, which occurs in the coldest areas, refers to areas where frozen soil underlies more than 90 percent of the surface. Discontinuous permafrost occurs in slightly warmer areas, where frozen soils underlie 50 to 90 percent of the surface, while certain features such as rivers and south-facing slopes may be ice-free. In areas with sporadic permafrost, frozen soils underlie 10 to 50 percent of the surface. In areas with isolated permafrost, frozen soils underlie less than 10 percent of the surface, usually only occurring in depressions or north-facing slopes.

http://nsidc.org/data/GGD318

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=87794&eocn=home&eoci=iotd_title


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November 2015

As Earth Warms, NASA Targets 'Other Half' of Carbon, Climate Equation

As Earth Warms, NASA Targets 'Other Half' of Carbon, Climate Equation 797x448.jpg


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Permafrost Threatened

http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=4400

Using statistically modeled maps drawn from satellite data and other sources, U.S. Geological Survey scientists have projected that the near-surface permafrost that presently underlies 38 percent of boreal and arctic Alaska would be reduced by 16 to 24 percent by the end of the 21st century under widely accepted climate scenarios. Permafrost declines are more likely in central Alaska than northern Alaska.

Northern latitude tundra and boreal forests are experiencing an accelerated warming trend that is greater than in other parts of the world. This warming trend degrades permafrost, defined as ground that stays below freezing for at least two consecutive years. Some of the adverse impacts of melting permafrost are changing pathways of ground and surface water, interruptions of regional transportation, and the release to the atmosphere of previously stored carbon.

“A warming climate is affecting the Arctic in the most complex ways,” said Virginia Burkett, USGS Associate Director for Climate and Land Use Change. “Understanding the current distribution of permafrost and estimating where it is likely to disappear are key factors in predicting the future responses of northern ecosystems to climate change.”


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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tundra

A severe threat to tundra is global warming, which causes permafrost to melt. The melting of the permafrost in a given area on human time scales (decades or centuries) could radically change which species can survive there.

Another concern is that about one third of the world's soil-bound carbon is in taiga and tundra areas. When the permafrost melts, it releases carbon in the form of carbon dioxide and methane, both of which are greenhouse gases. The effect has been observed in Alaska. In the 1970s the tundra was a carbon sink, but today, it is a carbon source. Methane is produced when vegetation decays in lakes and wetlands.

The amount of greenhouse gases which will be released under projected scenarios for global warming have not been reliably quantified by scientific studies, although a few studies were reported to be underway in 2011. It is uncertain whether the impact of increased greenhouse gases from this source will be minimal or massive.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/17/science/earth/warming-arctic-permafrost-fuels-climate-change-worries.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Methanogenesis -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_gas


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A self-reinforcing positive feedback loop is akin to a "vicious circle": It accelerates the impacts of anthropogenic climate disruption (ACD). An example would be methane releases in the Arctic. Massive amounts of methane are currently locked in the permafrost, which is now melting rapidly. As the permafrost melts, methane - a greenhouse gas 100 times more potent than carbon dioxide on a short timescale - is released into the atmosphere, warming it further, which in turn causes more permafrost to melt, and so on...

Extinction Dialogs


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Predicted rate of temperature change in Arctic

Arctic temperatures are expected to increase at roughly twice the global rate. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will in their fifth report establish scenarios for the future, where the temperature in the Arctic will rise between 1.5 and 2.5°C by 2040 and with 2 to 7.5°C by 2100. Estimates vary on how many tons of greenhouse gases are emitted from thawed permafrost soils. One estimate suggests that 110-231 billion tons of CO2 equivalents (about half from carbon dioxide and the other half from methane) will be emitted by 2040, and 850-1400 billion tons by 2100. This corresponds to an average annual emission rate of 4-8 billion tons of CO2 equivalents in the period 2011-2040 and annually 10-16 billion tons of CO2 equivalents in the period 2011-2100 as a result of thawing permafrost. For comparison, the anthropogenic emission of all greenhouse gases in 2010 is approximately 48 billion tons of CO2 equivalents. Release of greenhouse gases from thawed permafrost to the atmosphere may increase global warming.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Permafrost#Carbon_cycle_in_permafrost


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Additional References re: Permafrost Science


Oct 2015 / Via Berkeley Lab -- A Simpler Way to Estimate the Feedback Between Permafrost Carbon and Climate

Simplified, data-constrained approach to estimate the permafrost carbon–climate feedback

Via University of Cambridge -- Analysis of the effects of melting permafrost in the Arctic points to $43 trillion in extra economic damage by the end of the next century, on top of the more than the $300 trillion economic damage already predicted


http://eusoils.jrc.ec.europa.eu/library/maps/Circumpolar/download/20.pdf

The intensity and extent of permafrost in the northern circumpolar region is commonly divided into four broad zones: continuous, discontinuous, sporadic and isolated.


Sleeping Giant Stirring in the Arctic -- https://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/earth20130610.html#.VvwD7MdwI_4

Alaska's Stirring Permafrost -- http://landsat.gsfc.nasa.gov/pdf_archive/cape_halkett_4web.pdf


As the Arctic Ice Retreats



Circum-Arctic_Map_of_Permafrost_and_Ground_Ice_Conditions.png



Much Ado About Methane (2012 / RealClimate.org ... methane-climate background and projections)

http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2012/01/much-ado-about-methane/



Watching the Ice Melt

Doubling-of-antarctic-ice-loss-revealed-by-european-satellite

Melting / New assessments of impacts of global warming come from Europe's Cryosat spacecraft.

The CryoSat is part of the Living Planet Programme [4] / [5] [6] / [7] of the European Space Agency / ESA

Cooperative earth monitoring science between US-Europe ...

More data re ice melt-GRACE/US-NASA / [8] GRACE


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Earth Observing System satellites -- first-gen earth monitoring from space / European space agency

Earth-observing satellites for earth system monitoring include:

The European Space Agency "Living Planet Programme" managed by Earth Observation Programmes - [9]

  • GOCE – Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer - launched on March 17, 2009 - [10]
  • SMOS – Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity satellite - studying ocean salinity and soil moisture; launched in 2 November 2009 - [11]
  • CryoSat is designed to map the Earth's ice cover. CryoSat-1 was lost in 2005. CryoSat-2 was launched 8 April 2010 - [12]
  • Swarm – is a trio of satellites to map the Earth's magnetism. The SWARM constellation was launched successfully on 22 November 2013 - [13]
  • Aeolus – Atmospheric Dynamics Mission will use an innovative laser to measure winds. Due for launch in 2015 - [14]
  • EarthCARE – Earth Clouds Aerosols and Radiation Explorer will examine the formation and effects of clouds. Due for launch in 2016 - [15]
  • BIOMASS is designed to calculate the amount of carbon stored in the world's forests, and to monitor for any changes over the course of its five-year mission. Due to launch in 2020 - [16]


The European Space Agency's mission:

To benefit citizens "asking for a better quality of life on earth... for greater security and economic wealth... to pursue dreams, to increase knowledge... for younger people to be attracted to the pursuit of science and technology... ESA's purpose shall be to provide for, and to promote, for exclusively peaceful purposes, cooperation in space research and technology and space applications, with a view to their being used for scientific purposes..."


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New Space, "democratization of space", start-up ventures, #EarthScience with low-cost, microSats and open data

New Space, Monitoring the Earth by Satellite ---- PlanetAPI


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Polar cloud 2 m.jpg


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"It's All Connected": Small to Large, Beginning with the "Tiny Little Ones"

The Oceans, 70% of the Earth's Surface - Monitored from Space
Prochlorococcus blue-green.tiny ones.png


Ocean Food Chain -- Ocean Ecosystems / #OceanScience

Phytoplankton... Diatoms... Oxygen Creators, CO2 Digesters... Zooplankton, Food-of-the-Seas


Phytoplankton.jpg


Plankton swirl Jan 2015.jpg


Plankton Swirl -- Climate Dance

Plankton Phytoplankton--'Climate Dance'.jpg


Phytoplankton Oxygen Factories in the Southern Ocean


Whole Earth One Connected System Astro-Gerst 2014.png


NASA Earth Observatory

Phytoplankton are essential ecosystems of the seas. They are floating, drifting, plant-like organisms that harness the energy of the Sun, mix it with carbon dioxide that they take up from the atmosphere, and turn it into carbohydrates and oxygen.

Scientific estimates speak of approximately half the oxygen in the Earth's atmosphere being the result of plankton photosynthesis and phytoplankton are critical to the marine food web, being the primary producers of food in the oceans, from phytoplankton to zooplankton to fish and shellfish to whales.

Like plants and trees on land, "phytoplankton give us a lot more than food". Whether the current science estimates that 50 or 80 percent of the oxygen in our atmosphere has been produced by phytoplankton, the health of the blue-green ocean life is essential for sustainable ocean ecosystems. The tiniest of living organisms exert an outsized influence on the planet.


sepacific_vir_2016013.jpg


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Phytoplankton rapidly disappearing

Loss of mini marine plants at base of food web threatens sea’s ecology

A rapid loss of phytoplankton threatens to turn the western Indian Ocean into an “ecological desert,” a new study warns. The research reveals that phytoplankton populations in the region fell an alarming 30 percent over the last 16 years.

A decline in ocean mixing due to warming surface waters is to blame for that phytoplankton plummet, researchers propose online January 19 in Geophysical Research Letters. The mixing of the ocean’s layers ferries phytoplankton nutrients from the ocean’s dark depths up into the sunlit layers that the mini plants inhabit.

The loss of these microbes, which form the foundation of the ocean food web, may undermine the region’s ecosystem, warns study coauthor Raghu Murtugudde, an oceanographer at the University of Maryland in College Park.

“If you reduce the bottom of the food chain, it’s going to cascade...”


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Blue-Green in the Oceans & Connection to Life on Earth

"A single kind of blue-green algae in the ocean produces the oxygen in one of every five breaths we take"
~ from "The World Is Blue: How Our Fate and the Ocean’s Are One" by Sylvia Earle / National Geographic


Tiny Blue-Green

http://www.tinybluegreen.com

http://www.greenpolicy360.net/w/Microbiomes_at_Risk


Phytoplankton - the foundation of the oceanic food chain m.jpg


Phytoplankton decline NASA study Sept2015.png


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Planet Citizen | #PlanetCitizen


GreenPolicy360 | #Earth360 | #EarthImaging | #EarthMonitoring


GP360 | #EarthObservations | #EarthScience | #NewSpace


#EarthPOV | Earth Point of View


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