The topics of Global Warming and Climate Change have been consistently featured in the news in recent years, and the weather in many parts of the world has been very strange as well.
With this being the third winter in a row that the UK has had abnormally low temperatures and well above average amounts of snowfall, several questions do arise.
Firstly, is this just a case of three bad winters in a row and nothing more than that, or could there be more behind the pattern, possibly the beginning of a mini ice age.
Secondly, should we suddenly be faced with a scenario like a mini ice age, have our Governments made any plans for how to deal with this, and if so, what is the likelihood that we could all survive the change?
Scientists have proved that the earth’s climate does cycle, and also that the poles have changed location multiple times over the millennium.
Global Warming is a major concern right now, and as well as parts of the world getting warmer, there are theories that if enough of the polar ice melts, this could affect the flow of the Gulf Stream that takes warm waters from the Gulf Of Mexico across the North Atlantic and keeps Northern Europe warmer than it would be otherwise for it’s latitude.
There are other theories linking with this in recent months that suggest the BP oil spill in the Gulf is affecting the flow of the Gulf Stream, which while not substantiated, is a scary thought.
One thing is certain, three years ago the winter in the UK was colder than usual. Last year it was colder still and we had more snow than normal. This winter we had snow in November, even more in December, and the coldest temperatures for the last 120 years.
The weather in the USA has also been changing, and so far in the eastern parts of Australia, the summer has been extremely wet whereas in recent years it has been exceptionally dry, causing horrendous bush fires.
So while we hope that nothing bad happens, at least not in our lifetime, we do know that such things as mini ice ages have happened in the past, as recently as the 1600’s in fact.
If a mini ice age did occur now, and lasted for the next 200 years, could we cope, and have our governments made plans for how to cope with an environmental disaster like this?
I know it is only a movie, bit in theory a massive climate change like was depicted in The Day After Tomorrow happened in weeks not gradually over a number of years. That is one thing that I really find scary, since if a pattern was forming over some years, countries would have time to put the infrastructure in place to deal with this, but if this took place over just weeks or even months, there would be no time for that, and therefore we would hope that there have been high level discussions about this already.
When this last happened in the 1600’s, millions of people died, but the population of Northern Europe was far less dense than it is now, and somehow people managed to survive, however given the density of population today, should much of Europe and the USA be covered in snow and ice, or for it to just be too cold for crops to grow, how would the populations of these countries be fed.
Ideally some disaster planning contingencies have been made and plans have been laid for growing crops under huge domes, and for raising livestock indoors, but no matter how good these plans, it is hard to believe that current population levels could be maintained.
Do these plans maybe involve immense irrigation of the world’s desert regions and turning them into crop producing regions? Maybe there will be a mass shift in population centers, as people relocate from the Northern States of the USA and countries in Northern Europe to zones closer to the Equator.
Hopefully these scenarios will never happen, but in the event that anything did, what are your thoughts on how mankind would cope.