User: flenvcenter Topic: Air and Climate-Independent
Category: Climate Change :: Climate Change Impacts
Last updated: Feb 09 2016 06:32 IST RSS 2.0
 
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How Morocco Is Harnessing Solar Power To Achieve Energy Independence 9.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Morocco is on the way to dramatically cutting  its dependence on imported oil after successfully launching Noor 1 -- the first phase of what will eventually become the world's largest concentrated solar plant.  The country has historically relied almost entirely on imports from abroad for its energy. Now it has found a way to transform its abundance of sunlight into an economic asset.  When the project is completed in 2018, it's expected to reduce Morocco's fossil fuel reliance by two and a half million tons of oil  and provide enough leftover energy to export to Europe. Morocco's King Mohammed VI inaugurated the first installment of the new thermodynamic project on Thursday in the desert city of Ouarzazate, flanked by famous guests like French Energy Minister Ségolène Royal and balloonist Bertrand Piccard .  Five hundred thousand curved mirrors now line the Moroccan desert in rows, spanning a surface area that is visible from space . The project is funded by the World Bank, African Development Bank, ...
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There's No 'Big Fix' For Water Crises 9.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
SAN FRANCISCO – January 27 was the 100th anniversary of Hatfield’s flood. You may have missed the occasion unless you were with Cynthia Barnett . Barnett, an environmental journalist, has written three books about water and last week she was in Corte Madera, California discussing her most recent book, " Rain: A Natural and Cultural History ," which was nominated for the National Book award. In "Rain," Barnett writes about Californian Charles Hatfield. Hatfield was a “rainmaker” – someone who persuaded the public that he could conjure precipitation with a mix of special chemicals. In 1915 Hatfield convinced the San Diego City Council to pay him $10,000 if he could bring enough water to San Diego by year's end to fill Morena Reservoir. “He built his derrick, he climbed it, he was cooking up all these chemicals in a pan and right away it began to rain and rain and rain and flood,” said Barnett. “This is in January 1916. The reservoir filled, it overtopped and then the dam broke.” The flood wiped out houses, ...
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The World Is Getting Warmer -- But Here's What We Can Do Now to Prepare 9.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
This is the second installment of a five-part WorldPost series on the world beyond 2050. The series is adapted from the Nierenberg Prize Lecture by Lord Martin Rees in La Jolla, Calif. Part one is available here . Part three will be published next week. The world will gradually get warmer. In contrast to population issues -- the subject of last week's "Beyond 2050" essay -- climate change is certainly not under-discussed. But it's still unclear how much the warming due to carbon dioxide itself is amplified by associated changes in water vapor and clouds. The fifth Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report presents a spread of projections. But despite the uncertainty, there are two messages that most scientists would agree on: 1. Regional disruptions to weather patterns within the next 20-30 years will aggravate pressures on food and water and engender migration. 2. Under a "business as usual" scenario we can't rule out really catastrophic warming arriving later in the century and tipping points ...
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Regrowing Rain Forests May Help Curb Climate Change More Than We Thought 6.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Scientists have long promoted rain forest preservation as a way to mitigate climate change, but now it turns out that regrowing forests is just as important. Newly grown tropical forests can capture harmful carbon from the atmosphere at a rate up to 11 times faster than older forests, according to a study published in the journal Nature on Wednesday. The study includes a map of Latin America (pictured below) that shows the regions with the greatest potential for carbon capture. "It is about reducing carbon loss by reducing deforestation, and increasing carbon uptake by allowing young forests to regrow," Dr. Lourens Poorter, professor of functional ecology at Wageningen University in the Netherlands and lead author of the study, told The Huffington Post. "It is time to appreciate and value the role that these secondary forests can play in highly fragmented human-modified landscapes." The researchers examined the biomass recovery of young "secondary" tropical forests, which are less than 100 years old , ...
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The Most Important Water Stories of 2015 5.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
By Peter Gleick, Brett Walton, J. Carl Ganter Water was a Top Risk on the 2015 Global Agenda In early 2015, participants at the World Economic Forum, a who's who of the political and business elite, ranked water crises as the top global risk . Water was also a key factor in the adoption by the United Nations General Assembly of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a blueprint for international development over the next 15 years. Ensuring safe drinking water and sanitation for all by 2030 is one of six water goals for the SDGs . In December at the UN climate change conference in Paris, world leaders acknowledged the instrumental role that water will play in a warming planet . Water security was included in the response plans of most nations and was at the core of numerous debates and side agreements. Extreme Hydrologic Events -- Floods and Droughts -- Dominated the News The year 2015 saw more than its fair share of extreme hydrologic events, both ruinous floods and severe drought. In the United ...
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New Climate & Security Film: The Age of Consequences 5.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
A documentary is taking a new twist on climate change: THE AGE OF CONSEQUENCES , to be released in late 2016, investigates the impacts of climate change, resource scarcity, migration, and conflict through the lens of US national security and global stability. Through unflinching and eye-opening analysis, distinguished admirals, generals, and Pentagon insiders take us beyond the headlines of the European refugee crisis, the conflict in Syria, the social unrest of the Arab Spring, the rise of radicalized groups like ISIS, and lay bare how climate change interacts with societal tensions, sparking conflict. Whether a long-term vulnerability or sudden shock, the film unpacks how water and food shortages, extreme weather, drought, and sea-level rise function as accelerants of instability and catalysts for conflict. Left unchecked, these threats and risks will continue to grow in scale and frequency, with grave implications for peace and security in the 21st century. The production company, PF Pictures, has a ...
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The Climate Post: Climate Change Implicated in a Specific Extreme Weather Event 4.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Scientists have warned that even a few degrees rise in global temperatures can lead to increasingly severe storms . Now an international team of climate scientists has linked man-made climate change to historic flooding that hit the south of England in the winter of 2013-2014. It's the first time a peer-reviewed research paper has connected climate change to a specific flooding event. In an article published in Nature Climate Change, the team said that their climate model simulations showed that anthropogenic warming not only increased the amount of moisture the atmosphere can hold but also caused a small but significant increase in the number of January days with westerly flow, both of which increased extreme precipitation. The authors explained that climate change "amplified" the violent storms that led to the area's wettest January in more than a century and that it has likely increased the number of properties at risk and raised the costs of a flooding event. Based on more than 130,000 simulations of ...
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Naomi Klein: Climate Change "Not Just About Things Getting Hotter" 4.2.2016 Truthout - All Articles
A salt truck drives through Times Square in New York City during the blizzard that took place on January 23, 2016. (Photo: blvdone / Shutterstock.com ) A week and a half ago, just as a blizzard was barreling up the East Coast, I traveled to my hometown, Canandaigua, NY, and before a standing-room-only audience of more than 400 at Finger Lakes Community College, had a conversation with author and climate activist Naomi Klein. Our talk was part of the George M. Ewing Forum, named in honor of the late editor and publisher of our local newspaper. He was a worldly and informed man, dedicated to good talk and a lively exchange of ideas. The forum brings to town a variety of speakers each year, some of them from the area, others not. The Finger Lakes region is a beautiful part of the country. As has often been said, it runs on water, and as I grew up, there was an increasing realization that what we have is an invaluable natural resource we could be in danger of losing. Over the years, the threats have grown ...
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Talking With Naomi Klein: Climate Change "Not Just About Things Getting Hotter... It's About Things Getting Meaner" 4.2.2016 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
A week and a half ago, just as a blizzard was barreling up the East Coast, I traveled to my hometown, Canandaigua, NY, and before a standing-room-only audience of more than 400 at Finger Lakes Community College, had a conversation with author and climate activist Naomi Klein. Our talk was part of the George M. Ewing Forum, named in honor of the late editor and publisher of our local newspaper. He was a worldly and informed man, dedicated to good talk and a lively exchange of ideas. The forum brings to town a variety of speakers each year, some of them from the area, others not. The Finger Lakes region is a beautiful part of the country. As has often been said, it runs on water, and as I grew up, there was an increasing realization that what we have is an invaluable natural resource we could be in danger of losing. Over the years, the threats have grown ever more complex with greater hazards revealed as pollution and development have encroached on the landscape. As a result, much of our audience was ...
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We Can Expect More Outbreaks Like Zika As The Climate Changes 4.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
The factors leading to the current Zika outbreak won't be clear for some time, but environmental health experts say there's a good chance such infectious diseases will become more common as the global climate warms. Mosquitoes, the blood-sucking insects responsible for transmitting Zika virus in Brazil and more than 20 other countries and territories in the Americas, are responsive to changing weather conditions, and experts warn they may increase in numbers as temperatures rise and as changes in precipitation levels create more standing pools of water -- mosquitoes' favorite breeding ground. More of the insects that host the virus could mean a higher chance of being infected.  It's too soon to say whether the Zika outbreak, which is causing babies to be born with smaller heads and brains that aren't fully developed, is driven by a changing climate. But it's certainly the kind of health consequence scientists have anticipated seeing more of as global temperatures rise .   "If I were a gambler and I ...
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Naomi Klein: Climate Change “Not Just About Things Getting Hotter… It’s About Things Getting Meaner” 4.2.2016 Commondreams.org Views
Michael Winship

A week and a half ago, just as a blizzard was barreling up the East Coast, I traveled to my hometown, Canandaigua, NY, and before a standing-room-only audience of more than 400 at Finger Lakes Community College, had a conversation with author and climate activist Naomi Klein.

Our talk was part of the George M. Ewing Forum, named in honor of the late editor and publisher of our local newspaper. He was a worldly and informed man, dedicated to good talk and a lively exchange of ideas. The forum brings to town a variety of speakers each year, some of them from the area, others not.

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'Sea Secrets' Explored 3.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
With a discussion of El-Nino, climate change, Nor'easters and hurricanes, the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami launched its 2016 lecture series "Sea Secrets." The timing couldn't have been more striking ... within 48 hours, Jonas, the "snowzilla" of a storm, would slam the Atlantic Coast with record snow, paralyzing the nation's capital for days and damaging coastlines with high-tide waves. The deadly blizzard of 2016 would break records, strand motorists, put homes in peril and affect 50 million people. "While so many of us are fascinated by the unpredictability of our atmosphere, by the mysteries of our seas and by the powerful interaction of the two, science gives us clues to their secrets but not always all the answers," explained Dean Roni Avissar, Ph.D., as he opened the series. Building on Rosenstiel's global leadership in education and research, the "Sea Secrets" lecture series creates a unique opportunity to bridge the academic and the practical. And ...
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World Wetlands Day: US Wetland Forests are a National Conservation Priority 3.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
World Wetlands Day marks the day in 1971 when international governments and nongovernmental organizations who were concerned with conserving Earth's wetlands came together and signed a global conservation treaty. It was the first global intergovernmental environmental treaty in the modern era. This international treaty, signed by 18 countries 45 years ago, set the stage for the largest intergovernmental agreement on the environment to date -- The Paris Agreement -- signed this past December by 195 countries committing to take action on global climate change. As we celebrate World Wetlands Day this year in the wake of the historic Paris Agreement, it is appropriate to acknowledge the critical role that our wetland forests here at home play in the fight against climate change. In light of recent increased periods of drought, impending threats of sea level rise and the increasing frequency and intensity of storms, keeping wetland forests standing strong along our coasts is one of the smartest investments we ...
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Climate Change This Week: The New Coal, Hot Water, Clean Energy Justice, and More! 3.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Today, the Earth got a little hotter, and a little more crowded. When we harm forests, we harm ourselves. Unique Giraffe Beetle, another biodiversity wonder, is threatened as Madagascar's forests continue to be destroyed. Wikipedia OO International Embargo On Exports Of Precious Woods Extended - by the international regulating CITES committee, even as the country fails to enforce the current one that allows the continued destruction of dwindling, threatened forests. Humanity Continues to Eat Forests Source Mongabay.com OO Global Deforestation Is Speeding Up - over 60% between 1990-2010, according to a new analysis of satellite imagery, countering a previous global UN FAO study, which looked at land use changes, not tree cover loss. Ultimately, even with the best-case slowdown scenario: deforestation is still happening at an unsustainable pace; every year, there is much less primary forest, more species, many unnamed, become endangered or go extinct, and destroyed forests emit more planet-warming carbon ...
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On the News With Thom Hartmann: We Need to Address Our Plastic Problem Now, and More 2.2.2016 Truthout - All Articles
In today's On the News segment: Ending plastic waste would also have the added benefit of slowing climate change; Denmark has set another world record for wind power; snow absorbs a high level of pollution from the air; and more. TRANSCRIPT: Thom Hartmann here - on the best of the rest of Science and Green news ... You need to know this. People on the East Coast may have finally dug out from last month's blizzard, but the Republicans' selective ignorance on climate science is just getting warmed up. So we should get used to saying these next words: Snow in winter does not disprove global warming. In fact, extreme weather like blizzards is actually made worse because of our changing climate. Warmer oceans actually contribute to record-breaking snowfall from winter storms. In an interview with the ThinkProgress blog, one of our nation's top climate scientists explained that when you mix excess moisture in the atmosphere with "a cold Arctic outbreak, you get huge amounts of energy and moisture, and monster ...
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Here's How Enormous The Methane Blowout Is In California 2.2.2016 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
LOS ANGELES -- The “invisible tsunami” of natural gas that has been spewing from a broken well in the backyard of an affluent Los Angeles suburb has caused illness and  losses to businesses , and driven thousands from their homes. With their lives turned upside down for more than three months, residents continue to wait for the gas company to stop the leak once and for all. The rotten-smelling air in and around the Porter Ranch community will begin to clear when the well is permanently sealed. And Southern California Gas Company, which operates the Aliso Canyon gas storage facility where the leak originated, says it expects to have the leak stopped this month. But the effect that the natural gas’s main component -- methane -- has had on the atmosphere doesn’t simply vanish when the well ceases operation. The well has released more than 91,000 metric tons of methane gas into the air , according to Environmental Defense Fund, but the exact toll it has taken on the environment isn’t immediately clear. In ...
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Conservatives Want To Fix the Climate - They Just Don't Know It Yet 2.2.2016 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Donald Trump may not like it, but addressing climate change is an issue that fits perfectly within Republican ideology. Let me tell you why. First, acting on Climate Change is a religious no-brainer. American conservatives are strongly religious, with a highly influential Christian base . Organized religions (and most secular moral codes) agree on the essential human imperative to lend a hand to people in dire straits. Climate change is creating conditions of utmost economic, social and physical distress, disproportionately affecting the most vulnerable people around the world - small subsistence farmers earning a dollar or two per day, dependent on the weather to eke out a living. In a twisted turn of fate, the parts of the globe feeling the strongest effects of climate change, and forecast to bear the brunt of future climate extremes, are areas with the fewest resources available to prepare themselves for what is coming. We live in a global community, linked more tightly and comprehensively than ever ...
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Iowa Progressives Weigh Clinton vs Sanders as One of Whitest U.S. States Kicks Off Presidential Race 1.2.2016 Democracy Now!
The road to the White House begins in Iowa today with the opening contest of the 2016 presidential campaign. Polls show tight races on both sides. Republican front-runner Donald Trump holds a small lead over Texas Senator Ted Cruz. In the Democratic race, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has rallied to close what was once a 40-point deficit behind Hillary Clinton. Iowa is one of the whitest states in the country. But as the first to vote on presidential hopefuls, the Iowa caucus plays an outsize role in the election cycle. Presidential campaigning now starts a year before the opening Iowa contest—that's nearly two years before the actual Election Day in November 2016. Voters have been treated to months of visits from candidates and more than $150 million in political advertising. We are joined from Des Moines, Iowa, by Ed Fallon, host of the radio show "Fallon Forum" and former member of the Iowa General Assembly; he is backing Bernie Sanders in the race. We are also joined by Wayne Ford, co-founder and ...
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Lake disappears as Bolivia dries up. 1.2.2016 The Earth Times Online Newspaper - Environment News
The world's water problems do not simply include the Aral Sea and this Bolivian lake. Whole states and nations are suffering from droughts that goes unnoticed internationally. If we can alleviate the suffering of people and renovate some of the environmental conditions, then these neglected regions could achieve some of their former glory. In this case, ancient civilisations thrived in these high, inhospitable mountains, while we fail to maintain even a potable supply of water.
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Climate-Displaced Persons Deserve a Dignified Transition; Here's How to Make It Happen 31.1.2016 Truthout.com
Flooding in Natore, Bangladesh, September 29, 2015. An estimated 200 million people or more could be at risk of displacement from climate change by 2050, with 26 million from Bangladesh alone. (Photo: Sohel Parvez Haque / Shutterstock.com ) Undoubtedly, the recent Paris climate agreement achieved at COP 21 deserves recognition as the world's first multilateral accord to curb climate change. But weeks after the historic negotiations, it's time to address something the final document failed to: the tens of millions of climate refugees expected to arrive at our collective doorsteps by 2050. Governments such as China and Mozambique have already started displacing certain populations in anticipation of climate changes. But many vulnerable countries, such as Bangladesh, whose people will most likely need to move lack the resources to relocate entire populations to a new region or nation. Bangladesh is being ravaged by flooding, cyclones, storm surges, salination, erosion, rising seas and more. Of the country's ...
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