A new study has found that Global Warming is more rapidly affecting lakes than previously thought.
There’s more bad news when it comes to climate change — and this time it involves the world’s lakes.
A new study has found that global warming is resulting in rapidly increasing temperatures in lakes worldwide, an alarming find that means freshwater supplies and ecosystems are being threatened by climate change, according to an Economic Times report.
The study, conducted by NASA and the National Science Foundation, is the largest study of its kind, using satellite temperature data and long-term ground measurements to examine 235 lakes.
The result were stunning: there was an increase of 0.34 degrees Celsius on average each decade for lakes worldwide, which would have massive effects on drinking water and the habitat for animals and fish, said Professor Sapna Sharma from York University in Toronto, who led the study and was quoted in the report.
The 235 lakes the study examined represents half the world’s freshwater supply.
The 0.34 degree increase is greater than the warming rate for both the ocean and the atmosphere. That can mean only one thing: more algal blooms, which can suck up oxygen and water. The study suggests that such blooms will increase 20 percent over the next century, and the kind of blooms that are toxic to wildlife would jump 5 percent.
It would also result in a 4 percent increase in methane emissions. That’s concerning because methane is 25 times more powerful than carbon dioxide.
But rapid changes in temperature like this are more than just bad in terms of creating algal blooms or resulting in methane releases. A quick change in temperature can dramatically alter the survival rate of life forms in a lake, causing some species to suddenly disappear from the Earth. That can upset the balance of an ecosystem, causing further havoc in the wildlife kingdom — which will certainly have ripple effects for mankind.
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