Yes, We Should Be Talking About Greenland

There are many important and urgent reasons we should be focused on Greenland.

1. Greenland is melting.

2. Greenland’s melting will increase sea levels and threaten coastal cities around the world.

3. Greenland’s melting is releasing large amounts of fresh water into the ocean which could alter the rate of the flow of the Global Ocean Conveyor, which has a significant impact on climate and marine ecosystems – including fisheries.

4. Greenland’s melting is emitting the potent greenhouse gas methane into the atmosphere. As the melting continues to accelerate, extremely large amounts of methane will be released into the atmosphere with the potential to greatly exacerbate the climate crisis.

5. Greenland’s melting means less ice to reflect sunlight, and that means the arctic will warm even faster than it is now.

6. Geeenland’s melting and the concomitant accelerated warming of the arctic will release even more of the potent greenhouse gas methane as permafrost melts throughout the arctic, accelerating global warming.

7. Greenland’s melting will exacerbate arctic sea ice loss creating habitat loss for animals dependent on the ice and increasing erosion of arctic coastlines.

One of the least important reasons to be focused on Greenland is the fact that Trump wants to buy Greenland. In addition to Greenland not being for sale, it should also be noted that Trump’s denial of the climate crisis and inaction to address it is insuring that Greenland will continue to melt and do so at rates previously not imagined possible. There might eventually be more habitable land on Greenland for a period of time, but Greenland’s melting means climate chaos and is disastrous for the earth.

Trump wanting to buy Greenland is not the reason to be talking about Greenland, but perhaps since his absurd idea is bringing Greenland into the news a bit more, it is an opportunity to focus on and be concerned about Greenland for the reason that really matters – avoiding climate chaos.

You can also click here to read this commentary at the Oklahoma Observer.
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About Mark Y. A. Davies

Mark Davies is the Wimberly Professor of Social and Ecological Ethics and Director of the World House Institute for Social and Ecological Responsibility at Oklahoma City University. He is the Executive Director of the Leadership, Education, and Development (LEaD) Hub North America of the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church and an Oklahoma Humanities State Scholar. Mark has published in the areas of Boston personalism, process philosophy and ethics, and ecological ethics. Dr. Davies serves on the United Methodist University Senate, which is “an elected body of professionals in higher education created by the General Conference to determine which schools, colleges, universities, and theological schools meet the criteria for listing as institutions affiliated with The United Methodist Church.” He and his wife Kristin live in Edmond, OK in the United States, and they have two daughters. The views expressed by the author in this blog do not necessarily represent the views of Oklahoma City University or the United Methodist Church.
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