Hothouse Earth Scenario Threatens To Make The Planet Uninhabitable

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He adds that it may be hard or even impossible to prevent the entire row of dominoes from tumbling.

The Earth is at risk of falling into an irreversible greenhouse state due to global warming, which would make several regions of the planet uninhabitable for humans, an worldwide study revealed on Tuesday.

Currently, the global average temperature is slightly one degree higher than that of the pre-industrial era and increases 0.17 degrees each decade.

The study led by Will Steffen from the Australian National University (ANU) warned that this situation could result in temperatures rising to approximately five degrees over pre-industrial levels and sea level rising up by 10-60 metres in the long term, reports Efe news.

About 200 countries agreed in 2015 to limit temperature rise to "well below" 2 deg C above pre-industrial levels, a threshold believed to be a tipping point for the climate.

This cascade 'may tip the entire Earth system into a new mode of operation, ' said co-author Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.

Planet Earth is inching towards crossing the Rubicon by passing a tipping point and entering an irresistible "Hothouse" state.

'Hothouse Earth is likely to be uncontrollable and unsafe to many, ' said the article by scientists at University of Copenhagen, Australian National University and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany.

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Scientists warn that the new conclusions show that the planet is at risk to enter "Hothouse Earth" conditions, where the global average temperature in the long-term will stabilize at 4-to-5 degrees Celsius higher than pre-industrial temperatures with sea levels 10-to-60 meters higher than they now are.

Melting polar ice caps would lead to dramatically higher sea levels, flooding coastal land that is home to hundreds of millions of people.

The study authors 'collated previously published ideas and theories to present a narrative on how the threshold change would work, ' he said.

But that challenge will become exponentially more hard if the earth itself gets into the act, the researchers said. The changes could be forest and land management, better soil management for agriculture, fertilizing the ocean waters to stimulate uptake of carbon dioxide, and carbon capture and storage in addition to reducing fossil-fuel emissions, according to their figures.

"Our study indicates that human-caused global warming of 2 degrees Celsius may trigger other Earth System processes, often called feedbacks, that can trigger further warming - even if we stop emitting greenhouse gases", he said.

The potential feedbacks include permafrost thaw, a loss of methane hydrates from the ocean's floor, dieback of the Amazon rainforest and a loss of Arctic summer sea ice.

Commenting on the research, some experts said uncontrolled warming is still uncertain but not implausible.

If the floods, fires, heat waves, and droughts we have experienced in the past few years have anything to do with it, we are already experiencing the early changes in our climate system, and they will get worse.

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