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If Only We'd Signed Kyoto...

First it was global warming on Earth. Then came Mars. Now it appears that our reckless disregard for nature is spreading deeper into the solar system, with climate changes occuring on Jupiter:

New Storm on Jupiter Hints at Climate Change

Neptune and Uranus are next. And then? Once the Oort cloud starts to be affected, we can expect a huge influx of angry comets buzzing our planet if not smashing right into it. But let's at least be thankful that the wave of destruction we've started is heading in the right direction. Can you imagine the devastation if the sun itself were to start heating up? (We must take what comfort we can in the knowledge that some people are taking seriously the idea of keeping the solar system green.)

Jupiter.jpg
Latest victim of human greed and hubris?

On a somehwat less rabidly sarcastic note, the discovery of the new storm system on Jupiter is quite exciting:

"Red Spot Jr." as it is being called, formed after three white oval-shaped storms—two of which were at least 90 years old—merged between 1998 and 2000.

A similar merger took place centuries ago and formed the bigger and legendary Great Red Spot, a storm twice as big as Earth and almost 300 years old.

I would take issue with that "almost." My understanding is that the original storm was first "spotted" (thanks, I'll be here all week) by the astronomer Cassini in the 17th century. A quick Wikipedia search confirms that I am at least not alone in that opinion. Cassini first observed the red spot somewhere around 1665, meaning that it is at least 340 years old. Probably quite a bit older, seeing as it's unlikely that he just happened upon it a day or two after it formed.

All of which is to say that these things don't come around every day; we're lucky to have the chance to watch this unfold.

Via GeekPress


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Comments

I lol'd. It is easy to overestimate the percentage of global warming that is anthropogenic.

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