James Anderson, a Harvard University professor of atmospheric chemistry, notes that we only have five years to save ourselves from climate change before we hit irreversible feedbacks. Professor Anderson is known for determining the effect of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) on the ozone layer.
"Can we lose 75-80 percent of permanent ice and recover? The answer is no."
The answer is no in part because of what scientists call feedbacks, some of the ways the earth responds to warming. Among those feedbacks is the release of methane currently trapped in permafrost and under the sea, which will exacerbate warming. Another is the pending collapse of the Greenland ice sheet, which Anderson said will raise sea level by 7 meters (about 23 feet).
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