The release of huge quantities of previously stored “multiyear/deep layer” carbon deposite and equivalent greenhouse gases (CO2/CH4/N2O, from soil and water) can act like a trigger to boot the earth systems. This boot begins initially with a transition phase depending on the rate of emissions and in further development creates several large scale carbon excursions (see PETM). After each tipping point (loss of sea ice albedo or loss of carbon sinks) the situation accelerates. At the end of a climatic shift, the temperature setup of the entire planet will have changed – so far until a new equilibrium energy budget is reached.
Today we are already in the process to trigger a large scale climate change because of the quantities of CO2 equivalent emissions released and what is projected under business as usual scenarios. The outcome – severity of earth climate changes depend on our actions today, we can still modulate the temperature curve.
In between the atmosphere and what we release, there is the ocean which acts like a buffer or think a battery which first soaks up most of released carbon. The ocean carbon content and water temperature determines the ocean state. To much ocean carbon intake leads to ocean acidification – resulting decrease in pH will have negative consequences, primarily for oceanic calcifying organisms. Ocean oxygen depletion affects ocean and land life profoundly. Of particular concern is the ocean’s phytoplankton situation as it is responsible for roughly 50% of the atmosphere’s oxygen content. Warmer waters increase storm intensity/precipitation and create coral bleaching, thus destroys the world’s coral reef’s, a ocean ecosystem “the rainforest of the ocean” and contains major food web’s.
A climate shift creates stress on the environment, which in turn leads to the extinction of species which can not adapt in time. Food basket of the world are all prone to weather extremes, our food and water security is paramount. Today we are still able to modulate the climate shift, which primarily relates to the quantities of CO2 in the atmosphere. That is why we need to address all things which increase or decrease the CO2 content in earth atmosphere, to reduce heat trapping gases. If we do not do this, there will be no “security” measure capable to sustain our ordered Society.
The concept of our today’s “security” is inadequate to deal with the fast climate shift we initiated. Our security system is developed to function within the realms of a balanced climate state – a situation with an equilibrium energy budget. Security depends on a balanced climate state to function.