Any nuclear war would bring us back to an ice age climate

Any nuclear war would bring us back to an ice age climate

Illustration of what a nuclear winter might look like

Illustration of what a nuclear winter might look like – FLASHING

MADRID, July 7. (EUROPA PRESS) –

Any type of conflict with nuclear weapons, even on a regional scale, would release soot and smoke into the upper atmosphere which it would block the sun and cause a worldwide crop failure.

During the first month after the nuclear explosion, average global temperatures would drop by around 7 degrees Celsius, a bigger temperature change than during the last ice agereveals a study conducted by Louisiana State University (LSU).

It doesn’t matter who is bombing who. It could be India and Pakistan or NATO and Russia. Once the smoke is released into the upper atmosphere, it spreads globally and affects everyone,” said it’s a statement Cheryl Harrison, assistant professor in the Department of Oceanography and Coastal Sciences at LSU, lead author of the research, published in AGU Advances.

Ocean temperatures would drop rapidly and not return to their pre-war state even after the smoke cleared. As the planet cools the sea ice extends over 9 million square kilometers and is 2 meters deep in certain basins that block the main portsports, including the port of Tianjin in Beijing, Copenhagen and St. Petersburg. Sea ice would spread to normally ice-free coastal regions, blocking navigation in the northern hemisphere, making it difficult to ship food and supplies to some cities like Shanghai, where ships are not prepared to deal with sea ice.

The sudden drop in light and temperatures in the oceans, especially from the Arctic to the North Atlantic and North Pacific oceans, would kill algae, which are the basis of the marine food web, essentially creating ocean starvation. This would stop most fishing and aquaculture activities.

Researchers simulated what would happen to Earth systems if the United States and Russia used 4,400 100-kiloton nuclear weapons to bomb cities and industrial areas, resulting in fires that spewed 150 teragrams, or more than 150 billion kilograms, of sunlight-absorbing black carbon smoke into the upper atmosphere. They also simulated what would happen if India and Pakistan detonated around 500 100-kiloton nuclear weapons, which would release 5 to 47 teragrams, or 5 to 10.3 billion kilograms, of smoke and soot into the upper atmosphere.

“La guerra nuclear tiene consecuencias nefastas para todos. Los líderes mundiales han usado nuestros estudios previamente como un impulso para poner end a la carrera armamentista nuclear in the decade of 1980, y hace cinco años para aprobar un tratado en las Naciones Unidas para prohibir las nuclear weapons. We hope this new study will encourage more countries to ratify the ban treaty.said co-author Alan Robock, professor emeritus in the Department of Environmental Science at Rutgers University.


This study shows the global interdependence of Earth systems, especially in the face of disturbances, whether caused by volcanic eruptions, massive forest fires or wars.

“The current war between Ukraine and Russia and how it has affected gas prices really shows us how fragile our global economy is. and our supply chains in the face of what can appear as regional conflicts and disruptions”said Harrison.

Volcanic eruptions also produce clouds of particles in the upper atmosphere. Throughout history, these eruptions have had similar negative impacts on the planet and civilization.

“We can prevent a nuclear war, but volcanic eruptions will certainly happen again. We can’t do anything about it, so it’s important when we talk about resilience and the design of our society that we think about what we need to do to prepare for these unavoidable climate impacts,” Harrison said.However, we can and must do everything possible to prevent a nuclear war. The effects are likely to be globally catastrophic.“.

Oceans take longer to recover than land. In the larger US-Russia scenario, ocean recovery will likely take decades at the surface and hundreds of years at depth, while Arctic sea ice changes will likely last thousands of years. and constitute in fact a “little nuclear ice age”. Marine ecosystems would be greatly altered both by the initial disturbance and by the new state of the ocean, which would lead to long-term global impacts on ecosystem services such as fisheries, write the authors.

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