33 Global Warming News Articles
for July of 2016
Click on the links below to get the full story from its source
7-30-16 Forget corn. The future of biofuel is algae.
Forget corn. The future of biofuel is algae.
When they hear "biofuel," people tend to assume you're talking about corn. That makes sense, given that corn is anticipated to provide 80 percent of this year's ethanol production — much more, say, than algae — until we consider a few numbers. By all accounts, microalgae is less land-intensive than corn production, and although it can pull double duty, providing high-quality feed for fish farms, it doesn't compete with food crops. Furthermore, even by the largely pro-corn Renewable Fuel Association's water-consumption standards, corn ethanol is a thirsty fuel: Drinking 2.8 gallons of water for every gallon of fuel refined, corn is often outclassed in efficiency by algae-based fuels. Algae biofuel frontrunner Algenol, for example, converts plentiful saltwater into biofuel with yields nearly 17 times higher than those of corn, while producing 1.4 gallons of fresh water per every gallon of fuel produced. But simple consumption comparisons between corn and aquatic fuels are often apples-to-oranges affairs at best. Much like the RFA's figure, which ignores that growing an ethanol-gallon's worth of corn costs 1,145 gallons of water, these facile metrics often miss something fundamental: Corn biofuel production consumes land, fertilizers, and water, whereas algae biofuel production can filter water, recycle runoff, and ameliorate emissions.
7-29-16 Debate needed on 1.5C temperature target
Debate needed on 1.5C temperature target
Scientists are calling for a "thoughtful debate" about the wisdom of attempts to keep a global rise in temperatures under 1.5C. At the Paris climate summit last December, governments agreed that they would "pursue efforts" to keep warming below this figure. But a new study shows the limit will be breached over land, even if emissions of warming gases ceased immediately. But as recorded temperatures this year have edged above 1C, scientists believe we are already "dancing" with the 1.5 degree target. This new study suggests that it will "almost certainly be surpassed", at least over land, based on the amount of CO2 already in the atmosphere. (Webmaster's comment: Attempts so far to stop global warming are too little and too late!)
7-29-16 Heat wave forecast for entire U.S.
Heat wave forecast for entire U.S.
For the first time on record, every square inch of the U.S. is forecast to experience above average temperatures for the next three months, according to a new report by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center. Warmer-than-normal temperatures for August, September, and October are particularly likely in the Northeast, South, and Western states—as well as Alaska. Dan Collins, a meteorologist with the climate center, attributes the heat wave to unusually warm ocean temperatures, which will keep the atmosphere hotter than normal over much of the country into early fall. This year is on track to be Earth’s hottest year since record keeping began in the late 19th century.
7-29-16 Hottest. Year. Ever.
Hottest. Year. Ever.
Just halfway through 2016, sweltering June temperatures all but guaranteed that this year will surpass 2015 as the hottest ever recorded, according to NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). “2016 has really blown that out of the water,” NASA’s Gavin Schmidt tells Scientific American. Last month, the world was 1.62 degrees hotter than the average June in the 20th century. It was the 14th consecutive month of record heat for the planet—the longest streak of record-breaking temperatures since people began keeping records in 1881. The Earth’s average global temperature for the first six months of 2016 was also 2.4 degrees warmer than it was in the late 19th century. A powerful El Niño was partially responsible for recent increases, but NASA says that rising concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are fueling a long-term warming trend. “We are in a neighborhood beyond anything we had seen before early 2015,” says NOAA’s Deke Arndt. “We’ve left the 20th century far behind. This is a big deal.” (Webmaster's comment: Like I've said. We've reached the tipping point. It's all going to be uphill from here.)
7-29-16 Temperature records being set worldwide
Temperature records being set worldwide
The Middle East had the hottest temperatures ever recorded in the Eastern Hemisphere last week. In Mitribah, Kuwait, the thermometer soared to 129.2 degrees, while in Basra, Iraq, it hit 129.0 degrees. (Webmaster's comment: At 140 degrees people die!)
7-27-16 Was climate change to blame for Europe's deadly heat wave?
Was climate change to blame for Europe's deadly heat wave?
In 2003, climate change increased the risk of heat-related deaths by 70 percent in Paris and by 20 percent in London. Climate change is directly responsible for more than 500 deaths in London and Paris during the heat wave that swept Europe in 2003, according to a recent study by the University of Oxford. In the three months from June to August 2003, searing temperatures — the hottest recorded in Europe since 1540 — caused upwards of 70,000 deaths across the continent. At its height in Paris, a city largely equipped without air conditioning (and where most of the elderly population lives alone), temperatures exceeded 110 degrees Fahrenheit. As a result of funeral homes becoming so overwhelmed with the bodies of casualties, public squares were turned into makeshift mortuaries, according to reports. The heat wave was ultimately one of the 10 deadliest natural disasters to strike Europe within the last century. Almost 15,000 people died in France alone. Researchers at the University of Oxford's Environmental Change Institute found that anthropogenic climate change increased the risk of heat-related deaths by 70 percent in Paris and by 20 percent in London during the heat wave. Of the 315 deaths that occurred in Greater London, 64 were caused by climate change, they found. In Central Paris, 506 out of 735 deaths were related to global warming. Their study, published in Environmental Research Letters, is the first to estimate the number of premature deaths directly resulting from climate change during a severe heat wave.
7-27-16 Increasing ocean acidity could impact fish spawning
Increasing ocean acidity could impact fish spawning
A new study suggests that the increasing acidification of the oceans is likely to interfere with the ability of fish to reproduce. Researchers found that elevated levels of CO2, which make the waters more acidic, saw significantly lower levels of spawning. However, other mating behaviours of the same species were unaffected by the souring of the oceans. The scientists say the changes are "subtle but ecologically important". Dominant males build nests and provide defence, while satellite males aid the dominants in return for a share of the eggs. "Sneaker" males hover around the nests and try and take advantage when the dominants are distracted. The scientists found that many mating behaviours were unaffected but that dominant male spawning with females was reduced by almost two thirds in areas of high CO2. The researchers argue that the increased CO2 may be impacting the abilities of the dominant males to make rapid decisions.
7-26-16 Sea ice algae drive the Arctic food web
Sea ice algae drive the Arctic food web
As happens every summer, sea ice in the Arctic is shrinking as temperatures warm. But this year is a particularly warm year, and there is less sea ice than there usually is. Scientists say Earth is on track to matchor perhaps even exceed the record low extent of summertime sea ice seen in September 2012. The disappearing sea ice is a symptom of a warming planet, and it is also a problem for organisms associated with the ice, such as algae that live in the brine-filled channels within sea ice. “These algae are adapted to grow under very low light conditions,” says Doreen Kohlbach of the Alfred Wegener Institute in Bremerhaven, Germany. These algae, along with algal species that live in the open ocean, form the base of the Arctic food web. And they are an important food source even for species that don’t live under the ice, a new study shows. This indicates that climate change will not only affect organisms with a close connection to the sea ice, Kohlbach says, but it will also subsequently affect the pelagic, or open-ocean, system.
7-26-16 Sri Lanka prime minister: Mangroves curb climate threat
Sri Lanka prime minister: Mangroves curb climate threat
Sri Lanka's prime minister has said mangroves' ability to swiftly absorb carbon make the forests vital in the fight against climate change. His comments come on a day marking the first anniversary of a project to protect all of the nation's mangroves. As well as storing carbon, the forests provide habitat for fish and protect communities from tsunamis and cyclones. Also on Tuesday - World Mangrove Day - Sri Lanka's president will open the world's first mangrove museum. The museum will act as a hub for conservation training for adults, and educating children about the value of mangroves. It is estimated that 20,000 pupils will visit the museum in the first year. The Sri Lankan government has also included mangrove forest conservation into its national curriculum.
7-23-16 The dangerous link between air pollution and mental illness
The dangerous link between air pollution and mental illness
A growing body of research connects poor air quality to a host of mental and physical illnesses among all age groups. Even low levels of air pollution may put children at higher risk for developing a mental illness, according to a recent study out of Sweden — the first of its kind to examine the effects of poor air quality on such a young cohort. Standards set by the European Union and the World Health Organization, for example, cap yearly mean nitrogen dioxide levels — a chemical produced by motor vehicle exhaust and part of the pollutant cocktail that creates smog — at around 40 µg/m3 (micrograms per cubic meter). In Sweden, researchers noted a 9 percent increase in child mental illness for every 10 microgram-per-cubic-meter increase of nitrogen dioxide released into the air. Their findings, published in the journal BMJ Open, show that incremental hikes in air pollution can still negatively affect mental health. "The severe impact of child and adolescent mental health problems on society, together with the plausible and preventable association of exposure to air pollution, deserves special attention," the authors write.
7-22-16 Sanders turns the heat up to make Clinton a real climate champ
Sanders turns the heat up to make Clinton a real climate champ
The Democrats' platform will be tougher on climate change than Hillary Clinton might like, a welcome outcome of Bernie Sanders' popularity. Hillary Clinton’s tilt at the US presidency is poised to turn a deeper shade of green after pressure from her former rival. Democrats gathering at their national convention in Philadelphia on Monday are set to approve a platform that calls climate change “the defining challenge of our time”. A non-binding road map for the party’s elected officials, it proposes strong limits on the fossil fuel industry and sets a target for the US to be completely powered by renewable energy by mid-century. This goes further than Clinton’s current pledges and thankfully a lot further than Barack Obama’s re-election campaign four years ago, which had a domestic energy approach that prioritised gas and oil alongside renewables. Why the shift? In short, the significant popularity of Bernie Sanders, Clinton’s main challenger in the Democrat primaries, who early on called on Clinton to support a national carbon tax and a fracking ban.
7-22-16 Drought 'shuts down Amazon carbon sink'
Drought 'shuts down Amazon carbon sink'
The vast tropical forests of Amazonia account for almost one-fifth of the world's terrestrial vegetation carbon stock. A recent drought shut down the Amazon Basin's carbon sink by killing trees and slowing trees' growth rates, a study has shown. The term carbon sink refers to the ability of a natural zone to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere. In the first basin-wide study of the impacts of the 2010 drought, data showed trees' mortality rate went up while growth rates declined. The Amazon Basin is a key player in the Earth's carbon cycle, holding 17% of the terrestrial vegetation carbon stock. (Webmaster's comment: We've hit the global warming tipping point. The positive feedback has begun!)
7-20-16 June 2016 'hottest worldwide in modern history'
June 2016 'hottest worldwide in modern history'
June 2016 was the hottest June worldwide in modern history - marking the 14th month in a row that global temperature records have been broken. Climate experts say it reveals we are now close to dangerous levels of climate change.
7-20-16 One part of Antarctica has been cooling since 1998 – here’s why
One part of Antarctica has been cooling since 1998 – here’s why
The once fast-warming Antarctic Peninsula has cooled over the past 18 years thanks to shifting winds – but global warming will soon override their effect. The Antarctic Peninsula had been warming since at least the 1950s, when the first weather stations were set up. But a shift in prevailing winds has resulted in it cooling since 1998 — although this region is still warmer than it was when observations began. “What we are seeing is natural climatic variability overriding global warming,” says John Turner at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), who led the study. The peninsula has cooled by roughly 0.5 °C per decade, which is similar to the rate at which it warmed in the preceding five decades. This cooling will be temporary. Even if the winds don’t change again soon, global warming will overwhelm their effect in the coming decades. Nor does this slight cooling of the air above one part of Antarctica mean we can worry less about the main threat from the continent: sea level rise. That’s because the accelerating loss of ice from Antarctica is driven almost entirely by the warming seas around the continent. (Webmaster's comment: The global warming deniers have been estatic about the cooling. Their ignorance leaves them grasping at straws.)
7-20-16 UK’s £1 billion cut to carbon storage could cost £30 billion
UK’s £1 billion cut to carbon storage could cost £30 billion
The government cancelled its support for carbon capture and storage technology last year, without which, the costs of meeting its climate targets will skyrocket. Cancelling a £1 billion competition to develop technology to capture and store carbon emissions could push up the costs of meeting climate targets to an extra £30 billion, Whitehall’s spending watchdog has warned. The Treasury made the decision last year to ditch the competition for “carbon capture and storage” (CCS) technology, which would capture the emissions from fossil fuel power stations or heavy industry and store them permanently underground. The move will delay deployment of CCS, an initially costly technology which is expected to fall in price after the first projects are up and running, until after 2030 and could make long-term carbon cuts more expensive, the National Audit Office said. Without the technology a more expensive mix of low carbon technologies will be needed to cut the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 in line with legally-binding targets to tackle climate change.
7-20-16 Scots offshore wind 'pretty much dead', former minister claims
Scots offshore wind 'pretty much dead', former minister claims
Scottish ministers will have to reconsider their consent for four major offshore wind projects. A former energy minister has claimed "offshore wind in Scotland is pretty much dead" after a legal challenge against four major projects. A judge upheld RSPB Scotland's challenge to consent for turbines in the Firth of Forth and Firth of Tay. Brian Wilson said the charity now "hold all the cards" over the schemes, which were to include hundreds of turbines. The Scottish government said it remained "committed" to renewable energy but wanted to study the ruling. And Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse said Mr Wilson's comments were "irresponsible, incorrect and ill-informed". The four projects - Inch Cape, Neart na Gaoithe and Seagreen Alpha and Bravo - were approved by Scottish ministers in October 2014, and could power more than 1.4 million homes. (Webmaster's comment: It's no wonder the CO2 levels keep going up even faster. Conservatives have blocked every effort to reduce them by using green ways of producing energy that would compete with coal, oil and gas and the MONEY they get from us using them.)
7-19-16 Hottest June ever recorded worldwide - NOAA
Hottest June ever recorded worldwide - NOAA
Last month was the hottest June ever recorded worldwide, and the 14th straight month that global heat records were broken, scientists say. The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) says global sea temperatures were fractionally higher than for June last year while land temperatures tied. Its global temperature records date back 137 years, to 1880. Most scientists attribute the increases to greenhouse gas emissions. They also say climate change is at least partially to blame for a number of environmental disasters around the world. The combined average temperature over global land and ocean surfaces for June was 0.9C above the 20th Century average of 15.5C, the NOAA said in its monthly report. Last year was the hottest on record, beating 2014, which had previously held the title. (Webmaster's comment: 2016 is set to be the warmest year on record!)
7-19-16 Humans decimating the diversity of life should worry us all
Humans decimating the diversity of life should worry us all
A global limit set for safe biodiversity loss may be a blunt tool, but we still need to worry about breaching it far and wide says Georgina Mace. As Earth’s population grows, so too does our use of the land, converted from its natural, prehuman state to farms, roads, quarries and more with an inevitable loss of species. At what point does this threaten the sustainability of society? Scientists have speculated about this for decades, but finally it is possible to start answering that question. A major study published last week shed much needed light on how we are doing. The outcome should worry us all. It analysed more than 2 million records on around 39,000 species. Researchers were able to work out changes at the local scale as a result of human impact, and relate them to a revised planetary biosphere boundary proposed last year. It turns out that 10 per cent of native species have gone from over 58 per cent of all land.
7-19-16 Do more now to deliver on climate promises, world leaders told
Do more now to deliver on climate promises, world leaders told
The Elders, a group of prominent dignitaries, have issued a statement calling on governments to stop backtracking on the Paris summit's commitments. World leaders are not doing enough to deliver on the commitments they signed up to in Paris in December, a group of former leaders known as the Elders warned in a statement released yesterday. The group, which was founded by Nelson Mandela and whose members include the UN special envoy on climate change, Mary Robinson, points out that many nations are still making investment decisions that run counter to the Paris agreement. In particular, the G20 group of countries spends around $440 billion subsidising fossil fuels – nearly four times as much as is spent on renewable energy – despite promises to end such subsidies. “This is simply not good enough,” the Elders say. They call for urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including ending fossil fuel subsidies and spending that money on low-carbon alternatives. All countries should also either put a price on carbon, or raise it if they have set one already.
7-15-16 How is the unpredicatable weather affecting our wildlife
How is the unpredicatable weather affecting our wildlife
The UK’s weather has always been predictably unpredictable, with extremes thankfully very rare. But how do our butterflies and birds cope with this and what could a warming climate mean for them?
7-15-16 The ozone hole: Healing at last
The ozone hole: Healing at last
The hole in Earth’s protective ozone layer—once a defining issue of the environmental movement—is finally starting to shrink, new research reveals. Despite fierce opposition from the chemical industry, a 1987 international treaty known as the Montreal Protocol led to the phasing out of CFCs and several other ozone-depleting gases. The strategy worked.
7-15-16 Penguins in peril
Penguins in peril
Though Adélie penguins have survived Antarctica’s unforgiving environment for nearly 45,000 years, new research suggests human-induced climate change could wipe out half the species by century’s end. The penguins build nests out of rocks on ice-free land along the coast in the summer to keep their eggs and chicks—which lack waterproof feathers—dry. Now, warming triggered by climate change could make much of the Adélies’ habitat too warm and wet for breeding, biologists at the University of Delaware predict. Their study—which used satellite images, ground observations, and 30 years of climate data—also indicates that changing sea temperatures will limit the availability of fish that provide penguins with the bulk of their nutrition. As a result, 50 percent of the resilient bird’s colonies could disappear by 2099. “It is only in recent decades that we know Adélie penguins’ population declines are associated with warming,” study author Megan Cimino tells LiveScience?.com, “which suggests that many regions of Antarctica have warmed too much.”
7-15-16 What Theresa May’s new cabinet really means for climate change
What Theresa May’s new cabinet really means for climate change
There is no mention of climate change in the UK’s cabinet reshuffle, but new ministers may herald a positive change from David Cameron’s poor climate record. Blink and you may have missed it, but the UK’s new cabinet under Prime Minister Theresa May has just lost a department for climate change. On the surface that may look like a bad thing, but other cabinet changes make for more positive news for the UK’s efforts to limit global warming. It might not seem like the most important question after all the turmoil and trouble caused by the country’s Brexit vote, but climate change remains by far the most important issue facing the UK and the world. It is already affecting people’s lives and the economy, and things are going to get much worse. Much, much worse if we don’t do more.
7-14-16 Saving the ozone layer is warming the planet but it can be fixed
Saving the ozone layer is warming the planet but it can be fixed
We saved the ozone layer, but in doing so unleashed more global warming with the 1987 agreement to replace CFCs with HFCs. Now, we’re set to fix the problem. It belongs to the law of unintended consequences. Back in the 1980s, when the hole in the ozone layer was the world’s number-one environmental problem, few people worried about global warming. So when nations signed the Montreal Protocol in 1987 – which aimed to save the ozone layer by banning ozone-eating chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) from use in aerosols, refrigerators and air-conditioning units – few questioned the idea that ozone-friendly hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) would make a great substitute. But although HFCs did not destroy the ozone layer, they were potent greenhouse gases. After almost 30 years, and with the manufacture of HFCs rising globally by 7 per cent each year, that mistake is about to be put right.
7-14-16 Government axes climate department
Government axes climate department
The government has axed the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) in a major departmental shake-up. The brief will be folded into an expanded Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy under Greg Clark. Ed Miliband, the former energy and climate secretary under Labour, called the move "plain stupid". It comes at a time when campaigners are urging the government to ratify the Paris climate change deal.
7-12-16 Climate change may not be all bad for UK’s economy, report says
Climate change may not be all bad for UK’s economy, report says
A government advisory body has called for urgent action to prepare for climate change risks, but has also highlighted opportunities. Urgent action is needed to deal with the already significant risks of flooding and heatwaves caused by the changing climate, UK government advisers have warned. Other risks from global warming that urgently need to be tackled include water shortages for homes, agriculture, energy and industry and effects on domestic and inter-national food production and trade. A new assessment of the risks climate change poses to the UK has also highlighted that rising temperatures could harm wildlife and natural systems such as fisheries and bring new pests and diseases. But there are also opportunities, including a potential boost to UK agriculture and forestry from warmer weather and a longer growing season, if water shortages and soil quality can be managed. And British businesses may be able to take advantage of an increase in global demand in goods and services which help people adapt to climate change, such as engineering and insurance, the report said.
7-11-16 The weird world of giant batteries
The weird world of giant batteries
Many of the ways we generate power today, like coal and nuclear, can't be switched on or off easily. Simply based on how they work, it takes awhile to get the necessary heat going to generate the steam and run the turbines. So we produce too much power at night and not enough during peak-usage times in the afternoon. Plus, power is hard to store in massive quantities — we use it as we make it — so we rely on specially designed "peaker" plants, usually run off natural gas, to fill in the gaps. Gigantic batteries could solve this problem. They'd charge up when electricity is cheap and demand is low, then release extra power when demand is high. That would smooth everything out: Electricity prices would be less erratic, we'd use electricity more efficiently, and we'd burn less fossil fuels. Green power sources like wind and solar can also be intermittent and unpredictable: You don't know when the wind will blow or clouds will roll in, and of course there's day and night to contend with. So if we're going to use green power on a society-wide basis, energy storage will have to be society-wide too.
7-8-16 Phytoplankton’s response to climate change has its ups and downs
Phytoplankton’s response to climate change has its ups and downs
Initial shell-making gains adjusting to more acidic water later erased, 4-year experiment shows. Armor-plated marine microbes surprised scientists a few years ago by recovering their shell-building prowess in levels of ocean acidification expected under future climate change. But those gains were short-lived, new research shows. For four years, marine ecologist Lothar Schlüter and colleagues steeped Emiliania huxleyi phytoplankton in seawater acidified by carbon dioxide. After an initial drop in shell calcification — a process that helps sequester CO2 from the atmosphere — the microbes mostly restored their calcification activities within a year, the researchers had reported.
7-8-16 Mini ‘wind farm’ could capture energy from microbes in motion
Mini ‘wind farm’ could capture energy from microbes in motion
Chaotic swirling becomes synchronized swimming to rotate turbines, simulation shows. Computer simulations show how the motion of swimming bacteria could be harnessed to generate power using a device like a wind farm — but on a microscopic scale. Fluid filled with lively, churning bacteria could one day become a small-scale power source. New computer simulations indicate that a miniature wind farm?like device could harvest the energy of chaotically swirling bacteria. That energy could be used to power micromachines or pump fluids through tiny channels. In the simulations, bacteria tended to spontaneously swim in an orderly fashion around an array of cylindrical turbines. These turbines then rotated steadily like windmills in a breeze, scientists report July 8 in Science Advances.
7-7-16 Biggest ever die-off of ocean forests triggered by warming seas
Biggest ever die-off of ocean forests triggered by warming seas
Kelp forests crucial to marine life are disappearing fast in Australia as rapidly warming oceans transform the ecosystems. Help the kelp. Rising sea temperatures have already wiped out 100 kilometres of kelp forest along the south coast of Western Australia – and this unprecedented loss looks set to worsen. The Indian Ocean off Western Australia experienced record summer temperatures between 2011 and 2013 caused by a double whammy of global warming and a La Niña weather phase. At their peak, in 2011, sea surface temperatures reached more than 6 °C above average in some areas. By the end of the heatwave, declines in kelp cover were observed along more than 500 kilometres of the south coast, with complete extinction in the northernmost 100 kilometres. This rate of kelp loss is the most rapid and extensive ever documented in the world, says Thomas Wernberg at the University of Western Australia in Perth, who led the survey.
7-7-16 Have conservatives noticed their favorite climate talking point has been obliterated?
Have conservatives noticed their favorite climate talking point has been obliterated?
Conservatives have long been searching for a reason to do nothing about climate change. For some, this means outright denial of an overwhelming scientific consensus. But that's a bit too kooky for the more cosmopolitan brand of conservative. You can't espouse conspiracy derp and be taken seriously in high society. Several years ago, it seemed like that crowd had a perfect argument to justify inaction on climate: the global warming "pause." Measurements of global atmospheric temperatures were not quite increasing on the exact path predicted by climate models. Climate science was "troubled," wrote Will Wilkinson. The "warming plateau is...effectively killing the rationale for green policies that limit growth," wrote Walter Russell Mead — hence seeming to justify a policy of "focusing first on areas where the problems in our common life are more immediate," as Ross Douthat put it two years ago. But lo and behold, two years later warming has surged back with a vengeance. First 2014 was measured as the hottest year on record by a slight margin, then 2015 broke that record by a bit more, and now 2016 is set to obliterate the record again, this time by a huge margin. Meanwhile, the negative effects predicted by climate science keep piling up. Coral bleaching has reached epidemic proportions. The Arctic just had its warmest winter on record, and there's a good chance this year will break 2012's record low for sea ice extent. The ocean level has increased 36.5 millimeters since April 2011. Extreme drought and extreme precipitation are happening all over the place.
7-7-16 Climate change is spreading Lyme disease
Climate change is spreading Lyme disease
Immature deer ticks are called questing nymphs. They now inhabit a wide swath of North American forests, but they didn't always. During early summer, their quest is for blood. The season now starts earlier and lasts longer than it did in the past, which is good for the ticks. But it's bad for humans, because these ticks carry the bacteria, viruses, and parasites that cause Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, deer tick encephalitis, and babesiosis. As we worry about the ability of some species to run from climate change and escape extinction, ticks, mosquitoes, kissing bugs, and the parasites they carry may thrive under climate change. Where will these crawling and flying disease carriers move? And who will be at risk for what were once called tropical diseases? The consequences of climate change will vary dramatically across the globe and are difficult to predict. The yellow fever mosquito (which also carries dengue, Zika, and chikungunya viruses), for instance, is predicted to spread rapidly in some areas, including eastern North America and large parts of southeast Asia, and become less common in others areas, like much of Australia.
7-5-16 Renewable energy: UK expected to miss 2020 targets
Renewable energy: UK expected to miss 2020 targets
The UK is almost certain to miss its EU 2020 targets for renewable energy, the National Grid has said. The firm has produced UK future energy scenarios covering four different approaches in policy. Even in the most environmentally minded scenario, the UK is projected to fail in its target of producing 15% of total energy from renewables. The government no longer claims the 2020 target will be hit but a spokesman said the UK was making good progress. The National Grid also says the UK will not achieve its own independently set long-term CO2 reduction plans unless tougher policies are imposed very soon.
7-5-16 Warming unlikely to limit chances of UK soggy summers
Warming unlikely to limit chances of UK soggy summers
The UK is likely to continue to have soggy summers regardless of global warming according to a new study. Soggy summers in Europe and the UK are heavily influenced by the track of Atlantic storms. Scientists say that greenhouse gases will cause a general rise in summer temperatures, over the course of this century. But they argue, it is random shifts in Atlantic storm tracks that determine whether our summers are hot and sunny or cool and wet.