A recent investigation suggests that global warming started long before previously thought and that Earth has been manifesting signs of harm for almost 180 years. The findings suggest greater damages for the planet if greenhouse gasses are not reduced.
The recent study was published on Wednesday in the journal Nature, showing the results of the investigation led by Nerilie Abram who is a paleoclimatology expert at the Australian National University. Abram’s study suggests Earth is more susceptible to greenhouse gasses than previously thought and that man-made global warming has been around for a very long time.
Previous records in climate change estimate the Earth started to react to man-made global warning around the late 1880’s. The vast majority of studies on the matter have been based on that information. Nonetheless, Abram’s research is putting in doubt previous findings and ensuring the problem dates decades back.
The team of researchers was based on computer estimates and four years of data such as tree rings, ice cores, coral evidence, ocean sediment and cave stalagmites. The investigation team wanted to question when climate change started, so they based their initial study on previous research and estimated the drifts around the ends of the 1800’s, but their results came as a surprise.
“We questioned the result, we asked our research methods, we questioned everything, but that was the product that stuck. The effects of climate change started to be seen about 180 years ago” said Abram’s to The Huffington Post in Australia.
Ancient global warming supported by natural evidence
Paleoclimatologist Nerilie Abram wanted to understand the bigger picture of climate change, when it first started and how humans have been damaging the environment, so along with 25 scientists she embarked on a four-year investigation.
Half of Abram’s teammates are scientists from the Past Global Change 2000 year Consortium, according to The Washington Post, the researchers are a group that wants to dig back into our planet’s past to understand it. The team uses paleoclimate reconstructions with advanced computer software’s to recreate previous environments based on evidence.
It is no secret that global warming started along with the industrial era and the emission of gasses and burning of fossil that caused the earth to warm. That’s why the research team studied the progression of Earth’s response to the industrial warmth and moved on to ground evidence.
Researchers first started with tropical oceans by looking for ancient corals in the sea, these living creatures just like trees, hold a vast amount of information on its skeleton. So the team had to look for largely grown corals that have been there for hundreds of years.
As Abram explains to the Huffington Post, corals put down a new layer of their skeleton each year, and it changes depending on the ocean’s chemistry, and it’s changed. After finding old corals they studied the most antique part of their frame’s and removed samples.
The ocean also provided researchers with many other clues, such as shell creatures that live in the bottom of the sea and absorbs chemicals in the water. With this information, researchers could determine the changes throughout the years on the ocean.
“It seems like sand and mud, but these sediments contain the organisms and the chemicals they absorbed from the ocean surface while they were alive,” said Abrams to the Huffington Post in Australia.
The investigation continued by removing ice cores in the Antartic and cave systems to determine sediment changes over the years. After analyzing the results, the research team concluded man-made climate change started as early as the 1830’s.
The research team put together an explainable video in which their findings were reflected on the Earth’s warm caused by human hands. The results suggest Earth was sensitive before the start of the industrial age and to the first starts of greenhouse gasses being emitted. Which means the world could be reaching it’s boiling point according to researchers.
Colleagues from the same are of expertise are claiming Abram’s research doesn’t take into account a cooling effect the Earth experienced during the early 19th-century after a series of volcanic eruptions in Indonesia.
According to Michael Mann, an atmospheric science professor at Penn University interviewed by The Post, the warming effect Abram’s team found was just a response of the Earth to the eruptions in Indonesia.
The Australian team ensured they studied those possibilities, but it still doesn’t explain their ground findings and the effects the Earth suffered. Although more investigations will be made on the subject, the research is still a live proof of the harming effects global warming causes on Earth and ensures the need to reduce greenhouse effects.