Possible cataclysm due to melting ice

James Hansen and other scientists say we have 10 years to act, or else.

Harry Fuller Executive editor, CNET News.com
Harry Fuller escaped from television work to be executive editor at CNET News.com.
Harry Fuller
Map from 1999 article showing warming and cooling trends Goddard Institute

We have 10 years, folks. And then it's man the lifeboats, or head for the hills. That's the conclusion of James Hansen and five other scientists. They've just published a paper with the Royal Society in England. It says melting ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctic could soon reach a point of no return. The team even says the recent reports from the United Nations' global warming conferences are too conservative in their projections of what could happen.

The paper urges quick and decisive action, including attempts to scrub greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. Hansen is outspoken and a favorite target of global warming disbelievers. In all fairness, Hansen's been at this climate change thing a long time. Back in 1999 he co-wrote an article on changing temperature patterns around the world. At that time his map showed the U.S. seemed to be cooling temporarily. He didn't try to jiggle the data.

Believe Hansen and his cohort, or diss them, we will soon see who's right. Scientists are actively tracking the ice sheets in Antarctic and those on Greenland where changes will be closely measured.