User: flenvcenter Topic: Air and Climate-Independent
Category: Climate Change :: Climate Change Impacts
Last updated: May 04 2016 08:34 IST RSS 2.0
 
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Water Scarcity Could Shrink Economies By Mid-Century: World Bank 4.5.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
By Sebastien Malo NEW YORK (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Economies across large swathes of the globe could shrink dramatically by mid-century as fresh water grows scarce due to climate change, the World Bank reported on Tuesday. The Middle East could be hardest hit, with its gross domestic product slipping as much as 14 percent by 2050 unless measures are taken to reallocate water significantly, the Washington-based institution said in a report. Such measures include efficiency efforts and investment in technologies such as desalination and water recycling, it said. Global warming can cause extreme floods and droughts and can mean snowfall is replaced by rain, with higher evaporation rates, experts say. It also can reduce mountain snow pack that provides water, and the melting of inland glaciers can deplete the source of runoff, they say. Also, a rise in sea level can lead to saltwater contaminating groundwater. "When we look at any of the major impacts of climate change, they one way or the other come ...
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Jerry Brown Welcomes Rick Scott To California With Climate Change Burn 2.5.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) hit back at criticism over his state's minimum wage increase from Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) on Monday, telling Scott to "stop the silly political stunts" and instead focus on his state's struggle with climate change.  In April, Scott's administration released a radio ad urging California businesses to consider moving to Florida to avoid the state's new wage floor, which will reach $15 an hour by 2022. Scott then announced he would travel to California himself and personally court businesses in the state.  On my way to tell CA businesses why FL has the best business climate. #FLvsCA — Rick Scott (@FLGovScott) May 1, 2016 In a letter responding to Scott, Brown highlighted a 2015 report focusing on the effects of global warming in the southeastern U.S., including Florida.  Brown is one of the country's leading environmental advocates, and has made fighting climate change the cornerstone of his political legacy. Last year, he signed historic legislation that mandates half ...
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How New England Students Are Taking Fossil Fuel Divestment a Step Further 29.4.2016 Truthout - All Articles
As student organizers, we can stigmatize the fossil fuel industry by mobilizing students. But making changes on campus is not enough; we need to participate in local fights against fossil fuel companies to strengthen our campaigns. Wesleyan students at a recent teach-in. (Photo: WNV / Kati Young) In the past few weeks students across the country have been demanding that their schools stop profiting from oil, coal and gas companies. As student organizers in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut, we believe that we can stigmatize the fossil fuel industry by mobilizing students around issues of climate change. But making changes on campus is not enough; we know that we need to participate in local fights against fossil fuel companies to strengthen our largely symbolic campaigns. The fight in our own backyard is Spectra Energy's project to expand its "Algonquin" pipeline , which carries fracked gas from Appalachia to Boston. Spectra is constructing about 35 new miles of piping and expanding the ...
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Will the Paris Climate Agreement Deliver? 29.4.2016 Truthout.com
The Paris Agreement A historic event took place on Earth Day 2016. It was a decisive moment for the planet. On Friday, April 22, around 60 heads of state gathered at the United Nations in New York for the signing of the Paris Climate Agreement. About 175 governments took the first step of signing onto the deal, and according to the White House at least 34 countries representing 49 percent of greenhouse gas emissions have formally ratified the Paris Agreement. It was "the largest ever single-day turnout for a signing ceremony," indicating "strong international commitment to deliver on the promises." I was at COP21 in Paris when negotiators finally agreed the Paris Agreement, the first legally binding global climate deal. The agreement is the culmination of 21 years of international negotiation and United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process: a massive global political mobilization in response to the looming threat of catastrophic climate change. It scales up ambition from the ...
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Will the Paris Climate Agreement Deliver? 29.4.2016 Commondreams.org Views
Bianca Jagger

A historic event took place on Earth Day 2016. It was a decisive moment for the planet. On Friday, April 22nd around 60 heads of state gathered at the United Nations in New York for the signing of the Paris Climate Agreement. 175 governments took the first step of signing onto the deal and according to the White House at least 34 countries, representing 49% of greenhouse gas emissions have formally ratified the Paris Agreement.

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The Climate Post: Study Says Half a Degree Matters 28.4.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Last week more than 150 nations signed the Paris Agreement, pledging to hold the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Now, the first comprehensive analysis of the impacts of that half centigrade difference has been published in the journal Earth System Dynamics . The scientists found the additional 0.5 degrees Celsius would lead to longer heatwaves--"the difference between events at the upper limit of present-day natural variability and a new climate regime "--as well as more severe droughts and, in the tropics, decreased crop yield and the potential demise of all coral reefs. The extra 0.5 degrees Celsius could also mean that global sea levels rise 10 centimeters more by 2100. "We found significant differences for all the impacts we considered," says the study's lead author Carl Schleussner, a scientific advisor at Climate Analytics in Germany. The researchers ...
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Will the Paris Climate Agreement Deliver? 28.4.2016 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
Anything above 1.5 degrees Celsius is a death sentence for us and for the planet. Credit: 350.org THE PARIS AGREEMENT A historic event took place on Earth Day 2016. It was a decisive moment for the planet. On Friday, April 22nd around 60 heads of state gathered at the United Nations in New York for the signing of the Paris Climate Agreement. 175 governments took the first step of signing onto the deal and according to the White House at least 34 countries, representing 49% of greenhouse gas emissions have formally ratified the Paris Agreement. It was 'the largest ever single-day turn-out for a signing ceremony,' indicating 'strong international commitment to deliver on the promises. I was at COP21 in Paris when negotiators finally agreed the Paris Agreement, the first legally binding global climate deal: the culmination of 21 years of international negotiation and United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process: a massive global political mobilization in response to the looming ...
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Water and Climate Change 27.4.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Aerial view of Jaguari Reservoir which is part of Brazil's Cantareira system (the largest system of public water supplies in Latin America) which provides fifty percent of Sao Paulo's drinking water. Photo © Scott Warren. Representatives of the more than 150 countries meeting in New York on April 22 for the symbolic signing of the Paris Agreement on climate change can justly celebrate a historic moment. Phasing out global greenhouse gas emissions this century and holding global average warming to "well-below" 2°C signal an epochal shift, most obviously towards renewable energy. And as the possibility grows that the agreement will come legally into force before the initial target date of 2020[1], a new opportunity is emerging. We can harness the power of Paris--notably the impetus it gives to climate change adaptation--to help tackle a related challenge: the water crisis. Water is one of the chief ways we will experience the more frequent and dangerous extremes of climate change--through heavier downpours ...
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The ohia tree is in trouble 25.4.2016 Climate Change News - ENN
The ʻohiʻa is Hawaii’s iconic tree, a keystone species that maintains healthy watersheds and provides habitat for numerous endangered birds. But a virulent fungal disease, possibly related to a warmer, drier climate, is now felling the island’s cherished `ohi`a forests.Hawaii’s isolation, 2,390 miles from the North American mainland, has given the island chain a unique array of species found nowhere else, including the ʻohiʻa lehua, an evergreen in the myrtle family with delicate pom-pom-shaped flowers composed of clusters of showy stamens in a range of hues from red and orange to pale yellow. In 2010, homeowners on the Big Island of Hawaii began reporting that ʻohiʻa in their upland rainforest were dying without apparent cause. Researchers named the mysterious condition “Rapid ʻOhiʻa Death” (ROD). On Google Earth, you can see the telltale brown streaks in the Puna forest reserve, Hawaii's largest remaining upland rainforest located on the slope of Kilauea volcano, where many ʻohiʻa lehua (Metrosideros ...
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"Nestlé Is Trying to Break Us": A Pennsylvania Town Fights Predatory Water Extraction 25.4.2016 Truthout - All Articles
Kunkeltown, Pennsylvania. (Photo: Shaun Mullins) Residents of Kunkeltown, Pennsylvania, are fighting Nestlé's attempts to construct a water extraction facility in their town -- and community members are winning. The bottling plant is another example of the beverage corporation's attempt to profit from a public good and global water scarcity. Help Truthout keep publishing stories like this: They can't be found in corporate media! Click here to make a tax-deductible donation today. Donna Diehl, a 55-year-old school bus driver from Kunkeltown, Pennsylvania, a small historic town located on the edge of the Poconos, wanted to do three things this year: drive the bus, paint her bathroom and learn to crochet. Instead, Diehl, along with dozens of her neighbors, is spending her time trying to stop the largest food and beverage corporation in the world from taking her community's water, putting it in bottles and selling it for a massive profit. Kunkeltown, Pennsylvania. (Photo: Shaun Mullins) Nestlé Waters, the ...
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Climate: Africa’s Human Existence Is at Severe Risk 22.4.2016 CommonDreams.org Headlines
Baher Kamal, IPS News

“Africa’s human existence and development is under threat from the adverse impacts of climate change – its population, ecosystems and unique biodiversity will all be the major victims of global climate change.”

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Enjoying the Weather? Just Wait a Few Years. 21.4.2016 CommonDreams.org Headlines
Nika Knight, staff writer

New research shows that most Americans prefer the warmer winters they've been experiencing in recent decades as a result of climate change, particularly since the milder winter temperatures haven't been accompanied by more scorching summers.

That's about to change, scientists say.

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As Dems Debate Fossil Fuels, New Report Shows Fracking Worse Than Thought 15.4.2016 CommonDreams.org Headlines
Nika Knight, staff writer

On the same day that the Democratic presidential contenders debated fracking on the national stage, a new, exhaustive, and damning report on the subject was published by Environment America.

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The Climate Post: Climate-Change-Related Precipitation Extremes Hard to Predict 14.4.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Scientists have warned that severe drought and precipitation are among the risks of greenhouse-gas-induced climate change, but a study published in the journal Nature finds that extremely warm temperatures do not always translate into record wet and dry extremes. Highlighting the complexities in predicting the effects of planetary warming on precipitation, lead author Fredrik Ljungqvist of Stockholm University said that more dramatic wet-dry weather extremes had occurred in centuries cooler than the 20th century. "Several other centuries show stronger and more widespread extremes," he said. "We can't say it's more extreme now." In this first hemispheric-scale, centuries-long water availability assessment , the researchers statistically analyzed evidence for changes in precipitation and drought, compiling hundreds of precipitation records across the Northern Hemisphere from historical accounts as well as archives on such things as tree-rings and lake sediments. They detected a pattern of alternating ...
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Climate Change Alters Genes of a Mustard Plant 14.4.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
California got a bit more rain and snow this year thanks to El Niño, but is still suffering the effects of many years of drought. This drought is one example of the many extreme events, including storms and fires, that are increasing in frequency as the global climate continues to change. Not only does the drought in California affect the lives of millions of people, but it also has major impacts on many other living things. While some species are declining or going extinct as a result of climatic changes, others may be able to adapt. Understanding how they do so is profoundly important for conservation. Furthermore, examining how climate change alters species gives us the opportunity to increase our understanding of the process of evolution, particularly when we can catch them in the act of evolving. In an article my collaborators and I recently published in the journal Molecular Ecology , we examined how a drought that occurred in southern California between 1997 and 2004 influenced genetic changes in ...
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A Shareholder Proposal On Sea Level Rise: NextEra Energy Says 'No.' Will Investors Agree? 14.4.2016 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
NextEra Energy, Inc. is the fifth largest electric utility in the United States. The Company provides my electricity reliably and affordably along with 4. 8 million other ratepayers through its principal business, Florida Power and Light (1). FPL is the largest electric utility in Florida, a state especially vulnerable to impacts of sea level rise. According to a July 2015 report by the Miami Herald, "Florida has more private property at risk from flooding linked to climate change than any other state, an amount that could double in the next four decades, according to a new report by the Risky Business Project. By 2030, $69 billion in coastal property in Florida could flood at high tide that is not at risk today, the report found. That amount is projected to climb to $152 billion by 2050." (2) Recently my wife and I filed a shareholder proposal requesting the Company to report annually to shareholders on the risks to markets, operations and infrastructure from sea level rise. Despite opposition by ...
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The Climate Change in Our Veins 14.4.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
"At night I could hear the blood in my veins, It was just as black and whispering as the rain, On the streets of Philadelphia." Bruce Springsteen, 'Streets of Philadelphia', 1994 My father was diagnosed with cancer at the end of the year 2000 and his doctors gave him just 12 months to live. They put him on chemotherapy in a bid to extend his life but in February 2002, he succumbed in something of a flurry, at home, in my arms. Bruce Springsteen's "Streets of Philadelphia" had been a big hit in Australia and it made a big impression on me; Tom Hanks' star performance in the movie, Philadelphia, too. When my dad was battling his cancer, I'd listen to the song over and over, striving to make sense of it, grappling to understand what it must be like to hear your blood in your veins, knowing that it was at once giving you life while simultaneously carrying the disease that would kill you. I imagined a terrible, desperate despair. I'm starting to feel again like I did during my father's illness. I'm listening ...
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Climate Change This Week: Seas Rising 6 Feet By 2100, Xeroxing Solar Panels, and More! 13.4.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Source: Bloomberg New Energy Finance/UNEP Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2016. OO Seven Charts Show How Renewable Investment Broke Records In 2015 OO Europe: The Shifting Renewables Landscape - Takeaways: Wind and solar power has benefited from decades of engineering and financing improvements; In sunnier European locations, onshore wind and solar are the cheapest source of electricity; Battery technology needs to improve for wind and solar to compete with nuclear and gas; Burning trees as biomass is coming under increased European scrutiny. <> OO Nearly 40% of US Electricity Could Come From Rooftop Solar OO New Consumer Preferences For Clean Energy Are Now Impossible to Ignore, say utility executives. OO A Big US Utility Starts Integrating Clean Energy Credit Sigtryggur Ari at Reuters OO America's Big Data Centers Are Going Green - upping energy efficiency through switching to LED lighting, and especially creating far more efficient cooling strategies. OO DOE Agrees To Involvement In Clean ...
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Climate Change Is Literally Causing Earth's Poles To Shift 12.4.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
The position of Earth's axis has dramatically shifted, likely because of melting ice sheets (fueled by climate change) and natural changes in water storage on land, according to a new study in the  journal Science Advances . Erik Ivins , senior research scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and co-author of the study published on Friday, told The Huffington Post that the movement of water on Earth's surface affects the planet's distribution of mass -- and its axis -- much like adding weight to a spinning top. "If you considered a spinning top, and then placed a piece of chewing gum on the top, it would start spinning around a new axis," Ivins said in an email. "On the Earth, since water can be transported in and out of the oceans to the land -- affecting global mean sea-levels -- this also changes the moments of inertia, in exact analogy to the piece of chewing gum on a spinning top." The shifting axis adds to the effects of climate change on our stressed-out planet: Global temperatures are  ...
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A Plan to Tackle a Changing Climate 12.4.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
When the rains came to Senegal's capital and largest city, Dakar, in 2009, the people in Cite de Soleil were up to their chests in water. Even today you can still see the water marks on the walls. People who live there today still talk of the stench, the diarrhea, and the chest ailments suffered by the children. Travel along the coast and the impact of increased erosion on tourism spots is all too evident. Go inland and you see people having to cope with significant droughts and shorter growing seasons. It's all too evident that people, particularly poor people, are already suffering the effects of weather-induced stresses. And looking forward, the climate models suggest that this will only get worse with more extreme rainfall likely in Dakar, stronger coastal erosion, reduced fishing opportunities, and more extreme drought conditions inland. Senegal is trying to tackle these issues, often with the help of the World Bank. One project is putting in place infrastructure to help manage the floods. It seems ...
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