Arctic Sea Ice

This here map from the NASA shows that despite cold and snowy winters in North America the north pole ice cap didn’t grow as much as it usually does in January.

This image shows the average Arctic sea ice concentration for January 2011, based on observations from the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer for EOS (AMSR-E) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite. Blue indicates open water; white indicates high sea ice concentrations; and turquoise indicates loosely packed sea ice. The yellow line shows the average sea ice extent for January from 1979 through 2000.

On a lighter (warmer) note, this here astronaut photograph from the NASA shows that as it gets hotter, crop-circle-like islands pop up for peeps to vacation. If you have the money, if you have the will, the bottom four islands/fish have not begun construction.

At the southern end of Bahrain Island, at the furthest point from the cities of the kingdom, a new complex of 14 artificial islands has risen out of the sea. Designed for residential living and tourism, and aimed at a cosmopolitan clientele, the Durrat Al Bahrain includes 21 square kilometers (8 square miles) of new surface area for more than 1,000 residences, luxury hotels, and shopping malls. The complex has been designed to include: The Islands (six “atolls” leading off five fish-shaped “petals”), The Crescent, Hotel Island, and Durrat Marina in the north.

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CHOCOLATE SHORTAGE

Annoyed/disgusted with the fact that you just can’t stop eating your leftover funsize Snickers from Halloween? Don’t be. Popsci reports the most disturbing news of our generation: we’re going to run out of chocolate in the next 20 years:

Chocolate consumption is increasing faster than cocoa production, according to the Cocoa Research Association, and that means prohibitively expensive chocolate is in our future.

John Mason, executive director and founder of the Ghana-based Nature Conservation Research Council, says in 20 years, chocolate will be like caviar: “It will become so rare and so expensive that the average Joe just won’t be able to afford it.”

Never in my life have I wanted to surpass the level of “average Joe,” but boy, I do now. What am I going to eat while chatting on my iphone 16? What other food constitutes a viable replacement for sex? Am I going to have to start taking real anti-depressants instead of just buying a box of Russel-Stover and calling it a night? Can’t wait to bake my grandchildren a revolting batch of carob-chip cookies.

Well, along with fuel, fresh air, clean water, and cassette tapes, add chocolate to the list of commodities that will soon be enjoyed as occasional treats.

 

adios, delicious

The Most Polluted City in the World

Pictures from Cherepovets (lit: “city of skulls”), Russia. (via gizmodo)