the changing arctic

“Daunting as the future Arctic looks to be, it may in fact be much worse. What we think we know about the future of the region may be grossly underestimated because scientists are uncomfortable talking about or putting pen to predictions that are not backed by 95 percent certainty.” — from The End & Beginning of the Arctic.

This is precisely what’s concerned me since (before, but pointedly, since) the collapse of the Canadian ice shelf mentioned in this article. I understand the politics of science well enough to understand why scientists are reluctant to make draconian estimations, but when their predictions had previously imagined shelves like that taking decades or centuries to collapse, and instead it happened _inside an hour_–a blink of an eye in human terms, nevermind _geologic_ terms–it is clear that a conservative nature of prediction does the future no favors.

I knew a lot of what’s in the article, because personal obsession, but this really puts it all on the line. And it’s too late to stop. At this point the very very best we can do is mitigate it.