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The Cryosphere, world map The Cryosphere, world map
Snow and the various forms of ice - the cryosphere - play different roles within the climate system. The two continental ice sheets of Antarctica and Greenland actively influence the global climate over time scales of millennia to millions of years, but may also have more rapid effects on, for example, sea level. Snow and sea ice, with their large areas but relatively small volumes, are connected to key interactions and feedbacks at global scales...
01 Jun 2007 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Estimated total reactive nitrogen deposition from the atmosphere (wet and dry) in 1860, early 1990s, and projected for 2050 Estimated total reactive nitrogen deposition from the atmosphere (wet and dry) in 1860, early 1990s, and projected for 2050
Atmospheric deposition currently accounts for roughly 12% of the reactive nitrogen entering terrestrial and coastal marine ecosystems globally, although in some regions, atmospheric deposition accounts for a higher percentage (about 33% in the United States). (Note: the projection was included in the original study and is not based on MA scenarios.)
30 Nov 2007 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, Emmanuelle Bournay, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Characteristic time and space scales related to ecosystems and their services Characteristic time and space scales related to ecosystems and their services
The time scale of change refers to the time required for the effects of a perturbation of a process to be expressed. Inertia refers to the delay or slowness in the response of a system to factors altering their rate of change, including continuation of change in the system after the cause of that change has been removed.
30 Nov 2007 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, Emmanuelle Bournay, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture and land use Greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture and land use
Changes in land use have negatively affected the net ability of ecosystems to sequester carbon from the atmosphere. For instance, the carbon rich grasslands and forests in temperate zones have been replaced by crops with much lower capacity to sequester carbon.
03 Jan 2008 - by IAASTD/Ketill Berger, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Historical trends in carbon dioxide concentrations and temperature Historical trends in carbon dioxide concentrations and temperature
The more recent history, from the middle ages and up until now, show increasing temperatures, rising as the world emerged from the Little Ice Age (LIA), around 1850. With the industrial era, human activities have at the same time increased the level of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere, primarily through the burning of fossil fuels. Carbon dioxide is one of the main greenhouse gases, and scientists have been able to connect human activities ...
31 Jul 2008 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Temperature increases in the Antarctic due to climate change, 2090 (NCAR-CCM3, SRES A2 experiment) Temperature increases in the Antarctic due to climate change, 2090 (NCAR-CCM3, SRES A2 experiment)
Climate change, due to increased concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, has not lead as clear changes in the Antarctic as in the Arctic. Some of the ice shelves of the Antarctic peninsula have split up and started moving more rapidly, but the analyses of the Antarctic ice sheet are inconclusive. The projected climate situation in 2090 are presented in this figure, the temperatures are annual values from the NCAR-CCM3 model, ensembl...
31 Jul 2008 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Projected temperature increases in the Arctic due to climate change, 2090 (NCAR-CCM3, SRES A2 experiment) Projected temperature increases in the Arctic due to climate change, 2090 (NCAR-CCM3, SRES A2 experiment)
Climate change, due to increased concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, has lead to increased temperatures and large scale changes in the Arctic. The Arctic sea ice is decreasing, permafrost thawing and the glaciers and ice sheets are shrinking. The projected climate situation in 2090 are presented in this figure, the temperatures are annual values from the NCAR-CCM3 model, ensemble averages 1-5 for the SRES A2 experiment. The ice ...
31 Jul 2008 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Carbon storage in terrestrial ecosystems Carbon storage in terrestrial ecosystems
Terrestrial ecosystems store about 2100 Gt C in living organisms, litter and soil organic matter, which is almost three times that currently present in the atmosphere.
27 May 2009 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Ocean carbon cycle Ocean carbon cycle
Without the contribution of oceans and coastal ecosystems to global biological carbon sequestration today’s CO2 concentration in the atmosphere would be much larger than it is. But the uptake capacity of oceans and coasts is both finite and vulnerable. Minimisation of pressures, restoration and sustainable use are management options that can help these ecosystems maintain their important carbon management function.
27 May 2009 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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The Arctic Ocean The Arctic Ocean
The Arctic Ocean experiences much less exchange with the atmosphere than other oceans; momentum exchange (wind drag), heat exchange and freshwater exchange are limited due to the sea ice cover.
01 Oct 2009 - by Laura Margueritte
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Arctic Soil Organic Carbon Content Arctic Soil Organic Carbon Content
A new assessment has estimated that there are 1,650 gigatonnes of carbon stored in the northern circumpolar permafrost region4, more than twice the amount of carbon in the atmosphere.
27 Oct 2009 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Uptake of Carbon Dioxide from the Atmosphere Uptake of Carbon Dioxide from the Atmosphere
Atmosphere-ocean exchanges of carbon.
27 Oct 2009 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Greenhouse gas emissions scenarios and surface temperature projections Greenhouse gas emissions scenarios and surface temperature projections
Climate change manifests itself primarily through a gradual increase in the average temperatures of the earth’s surface, alterations in precipitation patterns, changes in the intensity and/or frequency of extreme climatic events, a slow but significant reduction in the cryosphere (including glaciers) and a rise in sea levels. Available scientific evidence associates the phenomenon of climate change with increased concentrations of anthropogenic g...
22 Nov 2010 - by Nieves López Izquierdo, Associate Consultant UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Greenhouse effect Greenhouse effect
Human activities are causing greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere to increase. This graphic explains how solar energy is absorbed by the earth's surface, causing the earth to warm and to emit infrared radiation. The greenhouse gases then trap the infrared radiation, thus warming the atmosphere.
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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PCDD (dioxin) in the atmosphere and deposition, 2003 PCDD (dioxin) in the atmosphere and deposition, 2003
No data.
28 Mar 2006 - by Bounford.com and UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Industrial areas and seasonal zones of oxygen depleted waters Industrial areas and seasonal zones of oxygen depleted waters
This graphic illustrates the strong link between areas with high densities of industrial activity and zones of seasonally oxygen-depleted waters. There is a strong link between areas with high densities of industrial activity and zones of seasonal oxygen-depleted waters. In recent years there has been an increasing focus on treating and reducing municipal and industrial waste, and on reducing nitrogen levels in agricultural runoff. However, less...
26 Jan 2009 - by Phillipe Rekacewicz, (Le Monde diplomatique) February 2008
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Oceans Carbon Fluxes Oceans Carbon Fluxes
An important role played by the ocean is the storage and exchange of CO2 with the atmosphere, and its diffusion toward deeper layers. At high latitudes, dense waters sink, transferring carbon to the deep ocean. Warming of the ocean surface inhibits this sinking process and therefore reduces the efficiency of CO2 transport and storage. Furthermore, as water warms up, the solubility of CO2 declines, therefore less gas can be stored in the sea water...
06 Oct 2009 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Blue Carbon Sinks Blue Carbon Sinks
The carbon captured by living organisms in oceans is stored in the form of sediments from mangroves, salt marshes and seagrasses. Benefiting from the excellent conditions available to support plant growth, vegetated coastal habitats rank amongst the most productive habitats in the world, comparable in production to the most productive agricultural crops. Blue carbon sinks are strongly autotrophic, which means that these ecosystems fix CO2 as orga...
06 Oct 2009 - by Riccardo Pravettoni, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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World ODS Banks by Sector World ODS Banks by Sector
‘Banks’ are the total amount of substances contained in existing equipment, chemical stockpiles, foams and other products not yet released to the atmosphere or destroyed in destruction facilities.
01 Oct 2009 - by Emmanuelle Bournay, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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