Today, Felix and his friends had traveled back in time. They were now traveling around the Arctic Ocean on board the Chinese icebreaker ship, Xue Long. They were in the year 2017. The Mysticals were accompanying a group of researchers.
It was cold, it was very cold but Felix’s resolve was steely. He wanted to see how brown carbon was contributing to global warming, especially in the icy Arctic region.
“Why are we here?” said Scorch.
“The Arctic is warming faster than the rest of the Earth, causing it to melt,” started Felix, “Black carbon refers to the snooty particles released from diesel engines, coal burning, and so on. These particles are the second largest contributor to global warming and their impact on the Arctic has been well-studied.
But scientists are yet to study brown carbon particles which are released on the burning of trees and vegetation, and to a lesser extent, fossil fuels. It’s a less dense substance. Earlier, scientists believed it caused only 3% of the warming but they then found out that the damage was more extensive.”
“Oh, I see,” said Scorch.
“Felix, the quantity of these particles in the atmosphere must have also risen, hasn’t it?” said Verum.
“How so?” quizzed Orak.
“Wildfires,” replied Felix, “In the past 10 years, the world has seen raging wildfires in the United States (US), Australia, Serbia, Portugal, India, Brazil, and more. These wildfires release a lot of brown particles into the air. The smoke negatively affects human health, and the carbon emissions from these fires are dangerous for the environment.”
“Aha! That’s how they are leading to the melting of ice in the Arctic,” said Orak.
“And the scary bit is that scientists claim wildfires will increase by up to 50% by 2050,” added Felix, “And so will the melting of ice in the Arctic.”