Kids Crying With Santa

December 22, 2011 by staff 

Kids Crying With SantaKids Crying With Santa, These are dark days, and today is one of the darkest of them all.  In just a few hours, at 5:30 a.m. Thursday, the North Pole will have reached the limit of its tilt away from the sun, marking the arrival of the solstice that brings with it the winter months.

However, the subsequent lengthening days will not be of much help to Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus and their army of frenetic little elves living at the pole. Nor to humanity at large, I fear.

Unhappily, the Claus family and all its limited liability corporate holdings are in as much danger as the polar bears and Eskimos of sinking under the slush.

Their world is collapsing, or rather, melting.

As for poor Superman’s Fortress of Solitude, I doubt whether even the Man of Steel could get insurance for it these days.

I love newspapers, but I rarely read much of anything about the plight of the North Pole.

Perhaps that is just because the news about the cryosphere is so depressing. The cryosphere is the Greek-based scientific name for that portion of the Earth covered by solid-form water, or ice, chiefly to be found at the two poles at each end of our planet, and at various locations around the globe in

the form of glaciers, sea ice and what have you.

Everywhere, this substance is in retreat, in some cases catastrophically so.

But don’t just take my word for it. The cryosphere is being extensively monitored by many scientific entities, not the least of which is the Department of Arctic Scientific Research at the University of Illinois.

The university’s researchers and scientists have actively monitored the ongoing changes occurring in the Arctic and just this past September observed the lowest sea ice minimum since their record-keeping began. September is generally the warmest Arctic month.

That observation actually triggered a rather good, although rare for today’s trivia-mired media, report from the Los Angeles Times, which noted the astounding shrinkage and disappearance of sea ice at both Earth’s poles. The LA Times story reported that if the melting of the North Pole wasn’t alarming

enough, yet another threat in the form of increased methane gas releases from the formerly frozen oceans surrounding the Great White North is taking shape.

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