Climate Change News
By Alex Renton – Newsweek – July 2, 2014
In the great halls of La Boqueria, Barcelona’s central market, tourists, foodies and cooks gather every day to marvel at the fresh food, like pilgrims at the site of a miracle. The chief shrines are the fish counters, where thousands of sea creatures making up dozens of species gleam pink and gray on mounds of ice. But to many ocean scientists this is not a display of the ocean’s bounty but a museum—by the end of this century, many of these animals may be history due to man’s reckless abuse of the planet. As we keep dumping greenhouse gases into the air, the oceans keep sucking them up, making the waters deadly to their inhabitants. For full article, click here.
By Gayathri Vaidyanathan – E & E Publishing, LLC – June 26, 2014
Natural gas fields globally may be leaking enough methane, a potent greenhouse gas, to make the fuel as polluting as coal for the climate over the next few decades, according to a pair of studies published last week. An even worse finding for the United States in terms of greenhouse gases is that some of its oil and gas fields are emitting more methane than the industry does, on average, in the rest of the world, the research suggests. For full story, click here.
By David G. Savage – Los Angeles Times – June 23, 2014
The Supreme Court in a split decision Monday upheld most of the Obama administration’s environmental rules designed to limit greenhouse gases from power plants. For full story, click here.
By Jonathan Fahey – ABC News – June 24, 2014
Climate change is likely to exact enormous costs on U.S. regional economies in the form of lost property, reduced industrial output and more deaths, according to a report backed by a trio of men with vast business experience. The report, released Tuesday, is designed to convince businesses to factor in the cost of climate change in their long-term decisions and to push for reductions in emissions blamed for heating the planet. For full story, click here.
By Juan Pablo Saavedra – Maine News – June 24, 2014
After tracking emperor penguins, scientists have revealed that climate change has adversely affected the ability of species to return to the same spot each year to breed. The scientists were able to track the penguin's every move by studying their trail feces they left behind while migrating. Michelle LaRue, a research fellow at the Polar Geospatial Center at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, was the first to notice changing habits of emperor penguins when she found an abandoned breeding ground. She said emperor penguins are the only species in the world surviving on the very white ice. For full story, click here.
By W. R. Berghuijs, R. A. Woods, & M. Hrachowitz – Nature Climate Change – May 18, 2014
In a warming climate, precipitation is less likely to occur as snowfall. A shift from a snow- towards a rain-dominated regime is currently assumed not to influence the mean streamflow significantly Contradicting the current paradigm, we argue that mean streamflow is likely to reduce for catchments that experience significant reductions in the fraction of precipitation falling as snow. With more than one-sixth of the Earth’s population depending on meltwater for their water supply and ecosystems that can be sensitive to streamflow alterations, the socio-economic consequences of a reduction in streamflow can be substantial. By applying the Budyko water balance framework to catchments located throughout the contiguous United States we demonstrate that a higher fraction of precipitation falling as snow is associated with higher mean streamflow, compared to catchments with marginal or no snowfall. Furthermore, we show that the fraction of each year’s precipitation falling as snowfall has a significant influence on the annual streamflow within individual catchments. This study is limited to introducing these observations; process-based understanding at the catchment scale is not yet provided. Given the importance of streamflow for society, further studies are required to respond to the consequences of a temperature-induced precipitation shift from snow to rain. For full article, click here.
Water Resources Adaptation to Climate Change Workgroup – April 10, 2014
The report: "Next Steps for Managing Freshwater Resources in a Changing Climate", summarizes recommendations for implementing the National Action Plan: Priorities for Managing Freshwater Resources in a Changing Climate. The report was developed by the Water Resources Adaptation to Climate Change Workgroup that supports the Advisory Committee on Water Information - a national federal advisory committee made up of representatives of a diverse set of stakeholders and federal agencies. The Workgroup organized five subgroups based on the major recommendation topics in the National Action Plan: data and information for decision-making; vulnerability assessment; water use efficiency and conservation; integrated water resource management; and capacity building in training and outreach. The report is the result of discussions that took place at a two-day meeting of the Workgroup members in February 2014. To read the report, click here.
By Seth Borenstein – Associated Press – June 4, 2014
The United States is warming fastest at two of its corners, in the Northeast and the Southwest, an analysis of federal temperature records shows. Northeastern states — led by Maine and Vermont — have gotten the hottest in the last 30 years in annual temperature, gaining 2.5 degrees on average. But Southwestern states have heated up the most in the hottest months: The average New Mexico summer is 3.4 degrees warmer now than in 1984; in Texas, the dog days are 2.8 degrees hotter. For full story, click here.
Contact: Prof. Merritt Turetsky – Guelph Now – May 4, 2014
A surprising recent rise in atmospheric methane likely stems from wetland emissions, suggesting that much more of the potent greenhouse gas will be pumped into the atmosphere as northern wetlands continue to thaw and tropical ones to warm, according to a new international study led by a University of Guelph researcher. The study supports calls for improved monitoring of wetlands and human changes to those ecosystems – a timely topic as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) prepares to examine land use impacts on greenhouse gas emissions, says Prof. Merritt Turetsky, Department of Integrative Biology. For full story, click here.