Local weather tipping factors “Might fall like dominoes” – with that?

Guest contribution by Eric Worrall

Given the complete lack of problems so far, climate scientists seem to be reinforcing the “woo woo” factor in forecasted climate disasters. But they don’t add a fixed timescale and refuse to label their warnings as “predictions.”

Scientists warn that climate tipping points could collapse like dominoes

The analysis shows a considerable risk of cascade events even with a warming of 2 ° C with serious long-term effects

Damian Carrington
Environment Editor @dpcarrington
Fri 4 Jun 2021 02:34 AEST

Ice sheets and ocean currents that are threatened by climatic tipping points can destabilize each other when the world warms, which, according to a risk analysis, leads to a domino effect with serious consequences for humanity.

Tipping points occur when global warming pushes temperatures above a critical threshold, resulting in accelerated and irreversible effects. It is believed that some large ice sheets in Antarctica have already passed their tipping points, which means that sea levels will rise sharply in the centuries to come.

The new research examined the interactions between ice sheets in West Antarctica, Greenland, the warm Atlantic Gulf Stream, and the Amazon rainforest. The scientists performed 3m Computer simulations and found domino effects in a third of them, even if the temperature rise was below 2 ° C, the upper limit of the Paris Agreement.

“We offer a risk analysis, not a prediction, but our results still give cause for concern, ”said Prof. Ricarda Winkelmann from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) in Germany. “[Our findings] could mean that we have less time to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and still prevent tipping processes. “

“The study suggests that below 2 ° C of global warming – that is, in the target range of the Paris Agreement – there could still be a significant risk of triggering cascading climatic tipping points,” said Lenton. “What the new study doesn’t do is unzip the timescale over which tipping points could change and cascades could unfold – instead, it focuses on the possible consequences. The results should be viewed as ‘commitments’ we may soon make to potentially irreversible changes and cascades, and leave as a grim legacy for future generations. “

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/jun/03/climate-tipping-points-could-topple-like-dominoes-warn-scientists

The abstract of the study;

Interacting tilting elements increase the risk of climatic domino effects in the event of global warming

Nico Wunderling1,2,3, Jonathan F. Donges1,4, Jürgen Kurths1,5, and Ricarda Winkelmann

Received: March 26, 2020 – Discussion started: April 03, 2020 – Revised: March 15, 2021 – Accepted: April 07, 2021 – Published: June 03, 2021

As global warming progresses, the risk increases that one or more tipping elements in the climate system will exceed a critical threshold, which has serious consequences for the global climate, ecosystems and human society. While the underlying processes are pretty well understood, It is unclear how their interactions could affect the overall stability of the Earth’s climate system. This cannot yet be fully analyzed with the most modern earth system models due to computational limitations as well as some missing and insecure process representations of certain tilting elements. Here we explicitly examine the effects of known physical interactions between the ice sheets of Greenland and West Antarctica, the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) and the Amazon rainforest using a conceptual network approach. In equilibrium experiments, we analyze the risk that domino effects will be triggered by each of the individual tipping elements in global warming. In these experiments we propagate the uncertainties in critical temperature thresholds, interaction strengths and interaction structure over large ensembles of simulations in a Monte Carlo approach. Overall, we find that the interactions tend to destabilize the network of tipping elements. In addition, our analysis shows the qualitative role of each of the four tipping elements within the network and shows that the polar ice sheets on Greenland and West Antarctica are often the initiators of tipping cascades, while the AMOC acts as the facilitator of transmission cascades. This indicates that the ice sheets, which are already threatening to exceed their temperature thresholds in the Paris area of ​​1.5 to 2 ° C, are of particular importance for the stability of the entire climate system.

Read more: https://esd.copernicus.org/articles/12/601/2021/

Imagine someone designing a new bridge and the architect admits that due to “missing and uncertain process representations of certain tipping elements” he cannot calculate the stability of the bridge or predict the point in time when predicted events should occur. Would you take this analysis seriously?

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