By Ed Caryl
Pierre and I have both written about the effects of soot on Arctic and sub-Arctic ice and glaciers, read here Glaciers – The Dark Side and Half Of Arctic Warming Caused By Soot. Scientists are recognising that CO2 is becoming less of a factor and that black carbon soot instead is being recognised increasingly as the a driver of warming in the Arctic. Time to go back and revamp the models – again.
Researchers from the Arctic Council, representing the eight countries that border the Arctic, are now seriously studying the subject. See the Associated Press article here. The photo and caption from the article reads (emphasis added).
This undated handout photo provided by NOAA-STAD, Soot Transport and Deposition Study, shows Trish Quinn of NOAA in a first snow pit. An international research team is in the land of snow and ice in search of soot. Though the Arctic is often pictured as a vast white wasteland, that can be deceiving. And carbon deposited there as a result of activities elsewhere can have a long-term impact on climate (AP Photo/NOAA-STAD).
‘The Arctic serves as the air conditioner of the planet,’ explained Patricia Quinn of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, one of the research participants. Heat from other parts of the Earth moves to the Arctic in the circulating air and ocean water, and at least some of that warmth can radiate into space.”
At the same time, some of the incoming heat from the sun that tends to be absorbed in other locations is reflected by the ice and snow, allowing the polar regions to serve as cooling agents for the planet.”
Of course they need to insert the obligatory nod to CO2.
Cutting carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases is the backbone of any effort to combat warming, both globally and within the Arctic, Quinn said.”
The group has not published yet, as the research will not end until the end of May, and to have any hope of getting their paper or papers past “peer review” they need to get CO2 into the mix. But this study is a few steps in the right direction.