The demands on science, as today’s crisis underlines, are unrelenting. Once this crisis passes, scientists will still be faced with a far bigger challenge: Trying to sustain life and lifestyles without destroying the planet. Another advance in that do-or-die challenge has been published.
An American research institute, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, has found that about twice as much carbon sinks into the ocean each year than had been previously estimated.
This means we will have to review the role we imagine oceans play in regulating climate. Researchers say this finding may lead to more accurate climate models that could help shape the global climate policy. Anything that helps us better understand the relationship between our changing seas and climate change must be welcomed.
However, that welcome must be tempered by our continued mistreatment — pollution and overfishing, especially — of the world’s oceans. Science may show us the way but only we can modify our destructive behaviour.