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Climate Feedback Loops: A Glimpse Into The Climate Change Problem

By Jasmine Biju

The climate change problem is an actively exacerbating environmental threat that is furtherly being outlined by new climate models. Particularly, scientists from Oregon State University have proposed novel climate feedback loops that point toward the dire need for the implementation of new policies and methods in alleviating global warming. The amplification of feedback loops furtherly draws attention to combatting the accentuation of key influences that are threatening the healthy state of the environment.

Researchers have delineated 41 feedback loops in association with the climate that proposes a change in perception of the course of climate change. A feedback loop is a cyclical process by which the outputs determine the future course of change. In other words, in a feedback loop, a certain outcome results in further changes — either amplifying or alleviating the given change. In the climate context of feedback loops, 27 were amplifying warming, 7 dampened warming, and 7 were uncertain in their influence. The results predominantly exacerbated the climate change problem.

The study described numerous threatening feedback loops that entailed the destruction of various aspects of the environment. For instance, one pointed towards permafrost feedback in which warming temperatures result in glacial thawing. This proposition outlines dire implications such as increased greenhouse emissions, increased sea levels, and threats toward habitats. Additionally, another feedback loop regarding wetland and forests describe the potentiality of worsening environmental fires as well as the deteriorating health of plant species.

The research conducted demonstrates the necessity for the information provided by these climate feedback loops to be integrated into climate models. The climate feedback loops propose essential insight into the course of global warming, and thus it is imperative to take it into account to create a more accurate depiction of the current state of the climate. In order to achieve carbon neutrality and a state of environmental equilibrium, it is important to address the threats proposed by the climate feedback loops.



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