Angry Waters: The Human Hothouse vs the Imperative to Preserve Life

Luthiel — the water through stone.  — Luthiel’s Song

“If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.” –Loren Eiseley

*   *   *   *

Dear Friends,

Today I will be chatting with Caroline Casey at KPFA Radio, Berkley, FM 94.1 on the Visionary Activist Show at 5 PM Eastern, 2 PM West Coast on the issue of climate change, how it impacts the world’s waters and related geophysical systems, and on the broader impact to the Earth’s life supports.

I invite you to listen or to check out the program here.

As a prelude to the discussion with Caroline, I’d like to also provide these thoughts on the issue of how human movement toward a hothouse state is greatly bestirring the world’s waters:

Water is at the center of the climate change crisis. Too much water in the form of persistent rains, or rains that come all at once — with seasonal rains falling in the span of a month, a week, or even a day. Too much water in the form of sea level rise that has already driven 100,000 people away from their Indus River Delta farms due to salt table rise and flooding. Too much water for my home town of Hampton Roads which sees 77,000 properties in flood prone areas now uninsurable except by FEMA. Too much water for Miami which now imposes a fee (essentially an addition to property tax) to pay for increasingly powerful and elaborate pumps to keep the water out of roads, yards, and basements.

Unitarian Church Norfolk

(Unitarian Church of Norfolk, VA. A place my wife and I attended while living in the region some years back. Due to rising sea levels, the Church now regularly floods at high tide. Image source: Campaign to Move the Church to Higher Ground.)

*   *   *   *    *

Too little water in the form of an ongoing, now decadal, Southwestern US drought. Too little water for the clear cut and rapidly warming Amazon Rainforest and regions south like Sao Paulo. Far too little water for poor Syria which saw a 7 year drought before destabilization. Perhaps too little water for India and Southeast Asia this year as a combined human warmed ocean, strong PDO, and El Nino threaten to weaken or shut down the annual monsoon.

Too much increase in the flows of water from land to air, called the hydrological cycle in science, that increases the rate of evaporation, making droughts more suddenly intense, and increases the intensity of downpours — which is a brutal blow to vegetation and our ability to capture and use water for human efforts. And all that extra water in the airs and atmosphere thickens the lower zones, likely leading to strange changes like the advent of towering, bullying, blocking high pressure systems (Stu Ostro) or contributing to the powerful wind flows from south to north, from tropics to the Arctic (Jennifer Francis).

Angry Waters Calving Glacier Front

(Glacier calving into dark waters. For reference, the glacier front here is hundreds of feet in height. Image source: Norwegian Polar Institute.)

Changes in the way the Earth holds and manages water also arise. The great ice sheets, for so long dormant in their eons old rumbling, have been awakened by heat and are surging toward the oceans in a great melt that has now doubled in size for each of the past five years since the late 1990s. Great flows that have backed up some of the great ocean currents, causing water to slosh up on coastlines, and painting an expanding pall of fresh water over the Southern Ocean. A lid that risks the locking in of oxygen and a shutting down of the life generation process that has made our oceans so vital for so long.

If we were to translate our scientific knowledge into the language of the ancients, we would say now that water — a spirit that is able to hold the greatest heat of any of the elements — has been made angry by our excess and it is now moving about in our world with an increasing fury.

low-oxygen-ocean-zones

(Expanding low oxygen ocean zones is a real killer — first reducing ocean productivity and then becoming a haven for deadly hydrogen sulfide producing bacteria. A low oxygen ocean can rapidly shift into a deadly state known as a Canfield Ocean. Image source: Oxygen Minimum Zones.)

In the far north, water is forming into lens like lakes in the tundra. These heat trapping engines accelerate the permafrost melt and unlock ancient methane, breathing it into the air and contributing to human warming. In some cases, perhaps, rivers upon the tundra have tunneled down through new-found cracks and encountered ancient water-methane. A frozen fire water under high pressure that when warmed appears to have blown up into large eruptive holes. The tundra blow holes we have seen so much controversy over in the news.

Water in the air, in the oceans, in the ice, in and upon the ground is what makes Earth so bountiful and life-rich. But we are adding heat to that water and so we our changing our relationship with both it and the Earth…

*   *   *   *   *

To these points, Caroline asks:

“What must we die to lest we die from?”

Certainly a notion well worth considering at this rather late hour.

Hat tips to:

Eleggua for facilitating this interview!

Kevin Jones for deep and clear thoughts

Leave a comment

156 Comments

  1. eleggua

     /  March 19, 2015

    Thanks for the hat tip, Robert, and as always, thank you so much for all of the great work that you are doing. Feel blessed here to be able help in any way.

    Gentle reminder to my fellow readers and posters: Robert’s work here is an unpaid labor of love.
    Please, if you are able, donate any amount via the link on the right hand side of the page, via the box with Raven.
    Robert never asks for donations. This entreaty comes from me. Thanks to all, and blessings to all.

    Reply
  2. Kevin Jones

     /  March 19, 2015

    “If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.”
    Loren Eiseley
    Great, Robert. I’ll be listening.

    Reply
  3. Leif Knutsen

     /  March 19, 2015

    The difference between desert and bounty is not water but (rational) man.

    Reply
  4. Good summary of the earth’s disrupted hydrologic cycle. Posted this on Reddit:
    http://www.reddit.com/r/collapse/comments/2zly2f/angry_waters_the_human_hothouse_vs_the_imperative/

    Reply
  5. Caroline

     /  March 19, 2015

    Thanks for all you do Robert! Looking forward to hearing you live today . . . . .
    In the meantime:
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/mar/19/arctic-sea-ice-extent-hits-record-low-for-winter-maximum

    Reply
    • Thanks, Caroline. You rocked it😉

      As for the record low extent… We are into two weeks of daily record lows. Slight bounce-back, but a downturn just below the 2006 line in recent days. This is a bad place for melt season start.

      Reply
  6. Andy in San Diego

     /  March 19, 2015

    Will your radio appearance be downloadable or streamable?

    Reply
    • eleggua

       /  March 19, 2015

      Both are available, Andy.
      You can listen ‘live’ via the “listen online” link next to the headphone icon on the upper left side of this page:
      http://www.kpfa.org/

      After the show ends, it will be available on the KPFA archive page for today, found here:
      http://www.kpfa.org/archive/date/2015/03/19
      One can choose to listen to it via the page or download to you computer in mp3 format, or “Play this clip in your Computer’s media player”.

      Reply
    • eleggua

       /  March 19, 2015

      Both are available, Andy.
      You can listen ‘live’ via the “listen online” link next to the headphone icon on the upper left side of this page:
      http://www.kpfa.org/

      Reply
    • eleggua

       /  March 19, 2015

      After the show ends, it will be available on the KPFA archive page for today, found here:
      http://www.kpfa.org/archive/date/2015/03/19

      One can choose to listen to it via the page or download to you computer in mp3 format, or “Play this clip in your Computer’s media player”.

      Reply
      • Andy in San Diego

         /  March 20, 2015

        thanks eleggua, and thanks for setting this up!

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        You’re welcome, Andy. Robert and Caroline deserve all the credit; great show!

        Reply
  7. eleggua

     /  March 19, 2015

    Odd visitors found off Oregon Coast
    Unusual warm currents may spell trouble for salmon, steelhead, other ocean dwellers
    Mar. 18, 2015
    http://www.mailtribune.com/article/20150318/NEWS/150319593/
    Over the past five months, Bill Thompson has found a dozen warm-water species of copepods — tiny, energy-rich organisms at the base of the marine food chain — during his biweekly surveys off the Oregon Coast.

    The senior scientist for the National Marine Fisheries Service at Newport said finding the out-of-place species is like looking out your window and seeing parrots and macaws instead of robins and finches.

    “These are tropical species that never get this far north — never,” he said….

    Now an unusual blob of warm water that formed off the Gulf of Alaska and another in the eastern Pacific have merged and inundated the West Coast of the United States and the coast of British Columbia. The warm water has less upwelling and fewer copepods.

    “What it means is there is not much out there to eat, and that can’t be good for anybody — salmon included,” Thompson said. “The whole food chain, I would guess, is going to be impacted. The base in the food chain is very low in numbers and very low in mass.”

    Reply
    • climatehawk1

       /  March 20, 2015

      Thanks, tweet scheduled.

      Reply
    • eric smith

       /  March 20, 2015

      I will never forget Lovelock. He is a genius beyond genius and his writings deserve far more analysis than is granted. He stated that Gaia has distinct steady states – cold, midling and hot that are imposed upon it and it makes do with.
      But SHE LIKES IT COLD BECAUSE THE OCEANS CAN PRODUCE LIFE IN ABUNDANCE.
      This is the key fact that we are dealing with here.

      Reply
  8. Mark from New England

     /  March 19, 2015

    Caroline is pretty funny… but waiting for you Robert!

    Reply
  9. eleggua

     /  March 19, 2015

    “Stop or prevent as much harm as possible.”

    Go, Robert, go!!!

    Reply
  10. Apneaman

     /  March 19, 2015

    Does anyone have a link/info regarding the Miami pumping fee’s Robert mentioned?

    Reply
  11. eleggua

     /  March 19, 2015

    “Climate change is a wealth-destroying thing.” – Robert Scribbler

    “Climate change gets you in the end no matter where you are.” – Robert Scribbler

    Reply
  12. eleggua

     /  March 19, 2015

    “You can act; you are powerful by yourself and moreso with others, and there is time to make things better.” – Robert Scribbler

    Reply
  13. Great Interview.
    Thanks.

    Reply
  14. Dana Lundin

     /  March 19, 2015

    Great interview Robert! I want to get your books now.

    Reply
  15. Mark from New England

     /  March 19, 2015

    Well done Robert. You’re talking style reminds me of Richard Heinberg.

    Reply
    • I’ve read Heinberg’s books and blogs, but I haven’t heard him speak. He’s definitely someone I pay attention to.

      Reply
      • Mark from New England

         /  March 19, 2015

        I’ve seen him speak a few times, and he comes across like you; caring, concerned, smart and somewhat soft-spoken.

        Reply
      • Well, I can definitely vouch for the concerned bit. I’ll have to see if I can catch Heinberg at a talk sometime, Mark.

        Reply
  16. eleggua

     /  March 19, 2015

    Echoing beckjeremy and Mark. Fantastic. Hopefully lots more appearances to come in many other venues.
    You spoke so well and so clear; extremely cogent, same as in print, Robert. Your ability to synthesize and distill massive amounts of crucial info into digestible morsels for the masses is phenomenal; amazing, really. Hope you had as much fun there doing the program as it was here, listening to it.
    I know that Caroline Casey enjoyed it and was very impressed, too.

    Here’s the link to the archived show, for anyone and everyone that wasn’t able to tune in ‘live’:
    http://www.kpfa.org/archive/id/112229
    Options available to “Click to Play”, “Download this clip (mp3, 10.28 megabytes)” or “Play this clip in your Computer’s media player.”

    Reply
    • Thanks, Eleggua. You made this happen!

      Glad to hear there’s been such a positive response. Spent some time prepping and listening to get Caroline’s style down.

      Critical issues. I keep thinking of more I could have said.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        You’re welcome, Robert. You and Caroline deserve all the credit.

        I’m sure you’re going to have many more opportunities to speak. You hit your stride about a minute in and kept it going throughout the program.
        When other folks with shows – hosts and producers – hear your appearance there, no doubt many will want to book you. Your total command of the facts and ability to present and clarify are outstanding; super impressive. Critical that your voice reaches many more people asap!
        I know that Caroline hopes to have you on her show again.

        If any readers/posters have access to program producers and/or hosts, please forward them the link to the archive and the link to this blog, along with the recommendation of having Robert on their programs. Thanks!

        Reply
  17. Kevin Jones

     /  March 19, 2015

    Great job, Robert. You are a good man. Thank you!

    Reply
  18. Hope to listen to Robert tomorrow, while experiencing a smoggy eclipse.

    From Great White Con –

    On August 24th 2014 a large storm off Russia sent a significant ocean swell straight towards the edge of the sea ice in the Beaufort Sea, which is centre left in this video. Watch carefully to discover what happened next.

    Reply
    • Time to move that out… Invested in geo-engineering as well.

      Reply
      • Leif Knutsen

         /  March 20, 2015

        The only geo-engineering effort that has a chance in hell of succeeding is the Green Awakening Economy. anything else is worse than pi**ing in the wind.

        Reply
        • Have to agree with this one. I just find it interesting that those who invest in ff tend to also invest in dangerous additional meddling with RF. My opinion on atmospheric carbon capture is that it will be needed. Much can be managed with land use.

      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        …Bill McKibben, who leads the fast-growing Go Fossil Free campaign, said: “The Gates Foundation has worked so hard to grapple with global poverty. But at the same time they’re investing in the same companies that drive climate change, which endless studies now show is one of the key factors behind … global poverty. The developing world deserves better than this kind of tunnel vision.”

        He said: “The great industrial fortune of the 20th century, the Rockefeller oil legacy, has begun aggressively divesting from fossil fuel, arguing explicitly that climate change undermines its philanthropy for a better world. It’s time for the great technological fortune of the 21st century to do likewise.”…?

        Reply
  19. Reblogged this on jpratt27.

    Reply
  20. james cole

     /  March 20, 2015

    Found the program! Technical difficulty at the start. The Koch brothers maybe.

    Reply
  21. Leif Knutsen

     /  March 20, 2015

    Not any job, only Green Jobs can start to move the economies of the world out of the morass. As long as capitalism has the ability to profit from polluting the commons, (the very foundation of violence IMO), every “Black” job just digs the hole deeper. Only green jobs ADD VALUE to the economy and start to rejuvenate Planetary life support systems as well as the economy via distributed green energy from the renewable sector. Only GREEN JOBS bring cash & enlightenment to the the populations of the world.

    For crying out loud, there is no controversy. There is no debate.There is no rational basis for denier beliefs. They are simply wrong – and when the media frame such idiocy as one side of a debate, they are not only legitimizing ignorance and demagoguery, they are threatening the lives of children.

    Here’s the thing about reality: it doesn’t care what your opinion is. It doesn’t care what your ideology is. Any attempt to do so courts catastrophe by aiding and abetting very dangerous fools..

    Reply
    • james cole

       /  March 20, 2015

      A Green Job is just as good as an oil field job. Why do even workers make this distinction? As if a 40K a year job working on Wind Generators is worse than a 40K job driving frack fluid to rigs in North Dakota! A paycheck is a paycheck! Green jobs in Europe that I witness when I am in Scandinavia are every bit as good as an oil rig job. It’s more brainwashing by media that makes people think they need a fossil fuel expansion to create jobs, as if the Wind Farms on the coasts of Sweden, Germany and Denmark do NOT provide very good jobs in factories and out in the field setting them up and maintaining.

      Reply
  22. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    Amazon rainforest and Great Barrier Reef need better care, say scientists
    Research published in journal Science shows local protection of three world heritage sites is too weak and leaves them at risk of ‘unfolding diaster’
    19 March 2015
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/mar/19/amazon-rainforest-and-great-barrier-reef-need-better-care-say-scientists
    The world’s most prized ecosystems, such as the Amazon rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef, require stronger local management to reduce the enormous global threat posed by climate change, according to an international team of scientists.

    In a paper published in the journal Science, the researchers warned that localised pressures such as deforestation, nutrient pollution and poor water quality could exacerbate climate-driven challenges such as heatwaves and ocean acidification.

    A study of three Unesco world heritage sites – the Amazon, the Great Barrier Reef and the Doñana wetlands in Spain – found that “stewardship is at risk of failing”, putting the ecosystems at greater risk of collapse due to climate change impacts….

    “These ecosystems are of value to the whole world, not only to the countries that have jurisdiction over them,” he said.

    “It may be necessary for other countries to bring pressure to bear on these ‘host’ countries or to offer them assistance, to ensure that these iconic ecosystems are protected for the benefit of all of humanity.”

    Reply
  23. Good talk, Robert. It was good to hear your voice.
    Thanks for mentioning the sense of the sacred. There is much too little of it in this world.
    Me, I hold the sky and nature’s creatures most sacred.

    Ps:
    I urge caution though when using analogies or metaphors. You said something like, “If I want to fly to (wherever), I have to pollute the skies with tons of pollution.”
    You seem to equate your ‘want’ with a ‘have to’. It’s something to consider.
    I am always on the look out for these sort FF examples. Many abound, sadly. It’s trap of culture that many fall into but it’s also a culturalized propaganda caveat of absolution that can be very unproductive.
    Later,🙂

    Reply
    • Caroline cast a wide net, so I ended up having to ad lib quite a bit. I found this both fun and mentally stimulating. But I may have not been able to elucidate on some points as much as was ideal. That’s the benefit and the risk of the unique, free-flowing style of this particular program.

      The more refined point is that so much of modern civ puts you in a position of making bad choices. No public transport? Housing too expensive in town near my job? Then I end up incentivized to purchase a gas-guzzling vehicle. Want to go on a trip to the West Coast or have business travel arrangements there? No high speed rail? No aircraft that run on biofuels or other renewables? Then the only option for fast transport is a high carbon one.

      In this way, many of us are held captive to carbon consumption and emission. We need to break out of that pattern.

      Of course you can decide to opt out. And some of us do. But that’s not the point. The point is that if you want to participate in much of advanced civilization, then you participate in a destructive activity. This needs to change.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        The point is that if you want to participate in much of advanced civilization, then you participate in a destructive activity. This needs to change.

        And now!!!

        Reply
  24. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    Wet Wipes Box Says Flush. New York’s Sewer System Says Don’t. MARCH 13, 2015
    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/15/nyregion/the-wet-wipes-box-says-flush-but-the-new-york-city-sewer-system-says-dont.html?_r=0
    …The city has spent more than $18 million in the past five years on wipe-related equipment problems, officials said. The volume of materials extracted from screening machines at the city’s wastewater treatment plants has more than doubled since 2008, an increase attributed largely to the wipes….

    …city officials are tackling the problem in various ways. A City Council bill, which has the backing of the administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio, was introduced last month to prohibit advertising certain moist wipes as flushable. The environmental department has begun work on a public awareness campaign concerning the importance of proper wipe disposal: throwing them in the trash….

    Reply
  25. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    How wet wipes are destroying the planet: From clogging up our sewers to creating floods of noxious waste and even triggering outbreaks of serious allergies 19 March 2015
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3003415/How-wet-wipes-destroying-planet-clogging-sewers-creating-floods-noxious-waste-triggering-outbreaks-allergies.html
    Years into the future, if historians look back at our convenience-obsessed era and pick one single product to sum up all of its follies, they will surely choose the disposable wet wipe…

    Last year, a sewer pipe under Shepherd’s Bush, West London, became jammed by a blockage of fat and rubbish, known as a ‘fatberg’, that was the length of a Boeing 747. Thames Water said wet wipes were a major cause — because of the way they clog together with fat, grease and oil…

    …wipes are not simply a dampened form of paper towel. They are usually made from a combination of plastics, wood pulp and cotton.
    The material is hard to break down and can float about our sewers and seas for years. Buying supposedly ‘flushable’ wet wipes make no difference, says Thames Water.

    The sensible answer may seem simply to throw used ones into the bin. But even in landfill they create problems, due to the combination of alcohol, preservatives, fragrances, cleaning and moisturising agents with which they are impregnated.
    The antibacterial alcohol also kills the bacteria and enzymes which we rely on to break down solid waste in landfill sites — and in septic tanks, too.
    Don’t think that composting them is a good idea, either. The synthetic fibres won’t break down, while the chemicals and preservatives will pollute your plants and kill off the soil’s ecology.

    But it is the effects on humans that should worry us most.
    A number of scientific papers have linked chemicals in wet wipes with serious outbreaks of skin allergy problems, most notably dermatitis and eczema. Numerous cases of skin rashes have been reported, most often on babies’ skin and also on their parents’ hands.
    One of the key culprits is a preservative chemical — the substance methylisothiazolinone (or MI, for short)….

    …perhaps the best answer is to jettison our convenience-driven neuroses about everyday dirt and germs. As study after study has shown, the safest and most effective answer to dangerous dirt is simple soap and water.

    Reply
  26. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    24 Things You Should Not Flush Down The Toilet October 29, 2012
    http://thegoodhuman.com/2012/10/29/things-you-should-not-flush-down-the-toilet/

    Reply
    • Andy in San Diego

       /  March 20, 2015

      I would add #25 – The Planet.

      Reply
      • Not an issue with flushing, but apparently toothpaste companies have been putting plastic nodules into toothpaste… Can’t be healthy for people or the environment.

        Reply
  27. Anna

     /  March 20, 2015

    I enjoyed listening to the interview, Robert. Thank you for all that you do.

    Reply
  28. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    Hmmm….interesting Washington Post op-ed piece by George Schultz:
    A Reagan approach to climate change March 13, 2015
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/a-reagan-model-on-climate-change/2015/03/13/4f4182e2-c6a8-11e4-b2a1-bed1aaea2816_story.html
    …Temperatures vary. You may have read about a global “stall” in temperature increase over the past decade, despite carbon dioxide levels rising at about 0.5 percent each year. Here again, though, trends tell the bigger story. Since humans started to produce more CO2 in the late 1800s, we know that overall land and ocean temperatures have increased about 1 degree Celsius, and in Antarctica, teams examining the world’s oldest ice cores recently released their findings of 800,000 years of climate history….

    These are simple and clear observations, so I conclude that the globe is warming and that carbon dioxide has something to do with that fact. Those who say otherwise will wind up being mugged by reality….

    Decent perspectives, though a primary function seems to be setting up Jeb as a good, green guy and as more of a Reaganite than a Bushmaster.

    Reply
    • Because Regan was so good for climate policy? What mythology! Reagan gutted support for renewables, rolled back CAFE standards, attacked the EPA, took solar panels off the White House and killed response to climate change in its infancy. And this is, somehow, an example to be admired?

      In any case, even if Jeb had a notion to do half of what Obama is doing now on climate, the Republican Party would not go along with it. They’re still living in this make believe land where climate change isn’t real or it isn’t harmful. And they support everything oil,gas, and coal to the detriment of renewables.

      Jeb and his party represent nothing more than a great leap into the abyss.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        Indeed. The streets of San Francisco are filled with the ragged, poor, disabled, dejected and rejected that were cast there by Ronnie’s heartless policies.

        Neocons trying to reframe Jeb as a Reaganite rather than a Bushmaster. Jeb’s just another snake, like the rest of the cabal:
        http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2015-02-22/wolfowitz-jeb-bush-foreign-policy-adviser-plays-up-reagan-influence

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        A deadly venomous snake:

        This snake is capable of multiple-bite strikes and the injection of large amounts of venom. Even the bite of a juvenile specimen can be fatal.

        Reply
      • climatehawk1

         /  March 22, 2015

        And don’t forget Reagan claiming that trees are the leading source of air pollution. A real asshole and champion science denier. That said, if anointing him some kind of enviro is what some Republicans need to get out of the hold they are digging for themselves and the rest of our world, I’m happy to play along and hold my nose (and gorge).

        Reply
      • climatehawk1

         /  March 22, 2015

        Oops, sorry, first “hold” should of course be “hole.” Senior moment–looked right at it, but still didn’t register until I hit “Post Comment.”

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 22, 2015

        Ronald Reagan quotes:

        “Facts are stupid things.”
        (misquote of John Adams, “Facts are stubborn things.”)

        “Trees cause more pollution than automobiles do.”

        “A tree is a tree. How many more do you have to look at?”
        (opposing expansion of Redwood National Park as governor of California)

        “I have flown twice over Mt St. Helens out on our west coast. I’m not a scientist and I don’t know the figures, but I have a suspicion that that one little mountain has probably released more sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere of the world than has been released in the last ten years of automobile driving or things of that kind that people are so concerned about.”
        (Actually, Mount St. Helens, at its peak activity, emitted about 2,000 tons of sulfur dioxide per day, compared with 81,000 tons per day by cars.)

        “The American Petroleum Institute filed suit against the EPA [and] charged that the agency was suppressing a scientific study for fear it might be misinterpreted…
        The suppressed study reveals that 80 percent of air pollution comes not from chimneys and auto exhaust pipes, but from plants and trees.”

        (There is no scientific data to support this assertion.)

        Reply
  29. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    Taiwan Further Restricts Water Amid Record Drought

    Total rainfall between October and February was the lowest since record-keeping began in 1947, according to Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau. It forecasts a “high probability” for drier weather in the coming quarter, the water agency said. ………………………….. Charles Kao, chairman of Taoyuan-based Inotera Memories Inc. and president of Nanya Technology Corp, Taiwan’s biggest memory-chipmakers, said by phone that companies will be “in trouble” if Shihmen Reservoir becomes completely dry.

    “It’s estimated that the reservoir has about a 40-day of water supply left,” Kao said. At present, companies can use auxiliary water in plants to compensate for a 10% supply cut, he said.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-03-19/taiwan-may-implement-3rd-phase-water-ration-april-amid-drought

    Reply
    • That’s tough when you find an island in a drought spiral. There aren’t too many option for supplementing water supply. They’re going to have to go to rationing if this keeps up. Expect desalination as well. Let’s hope they at least run the plants on renewables.

      Reply
    • climatehawk1

       /  March 22, 2015

      Thanks, tweet scheduled.

      Reply
  30. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    In a typical year, California gets almost a fifth of its energy from dams on its rivers and streams. But the last several years have been anything but typical: the ongoing drought has shrunk the state’s reservoirs and cut the amount of hydro power the state can generate by about a third.

    And since our consumption of energy hasn’t dropped to make up the shortfall, says a report released this week by the Pacific Institute, California has stepped up its consumption of power from plants that burn expensive, carbon-polluting natural gas to fill the gap left by the drought.

    As a result, says the report, ratepayers are shelling out almost half a billion additional dollars per year, and emissions of carbon dioxide and other pollutants from California power plants have risen significantly.

    http://www.kcet.org/news/redefine/rewire/hydroelectric/the-drought-is-boosting-californias-natural-gas-use.html

    Reply
    • Yes. All the more reason to keep the solar and wind build out going.

      Reply
      • climatehawk1

         /  March 22, 2015

        Absolutely. Note that U.S. hydropower, while emissions-free, uses 18 gallons of water per kilowatt-hour of electricity generated, due to reservoir evaporation. By far the biggest water hog among energy sources, while wind and solar use 0.

        Reply
  31. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    Accelerated Glacier Melt on Snow Dome, Mt. Olympus, Washington, USA due to Deposition of Black Carbon and Mineral Dust from Wildfire

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2014JD022676/full

    Reply
  32. Tom

     /  March 20, 2015

    Good job on the interview Robert – honest and straightforward. Thanks too to eleggua for the assistance in coordinating this and for all the other info provided.

    Reply
  33. Kevin Jones

     /  March 20, 2015

    Colorado Bob. I’ve been observing a south facing snowbank sublimate more than melt. Astonishing, the difference between the dirty (dark) and cleaner parts. Looks like a cancer.

    Reply
    • Mark from New England

       /  March 20, 2015

      Yes Kevin. The old snowbanks look like the Greenland ice sheet in summer. I figure it’ll be mid-April before its all gone in our area.

      Reply
  34. Kevin Jones

     /  March 20, 2015

    Another big drop in Northern Hemisphere Sea Ice Area reported by Cryosphere Today for 3/19. Lowest anomaly since beginning of last November.

    Reply
    • The ice is breaking up in a lot of regions. And the boundary zones near the Barents and in the Bering aren’t advancing very fast despite a switch to cooler weather and northerly winds. Baffin Bay taking a hit from warming and a powerful storm at the ice edge.

      Reply
  35. Kevin Jones

     /  March 20, 2015

    39F at Narsasuaq, Greenland past hour….

    Reply
    • Mark from New England

       /  March 20, 2015

      And it’s 16 F in south-central NH as I type this.

      Reply
    • Andy in San Diego

       /  March 20, 2015

      It’s too bad NSIDC has the Greenland melt index offline for calibration until April. It will be interesting once it’s back live and the first part of the 2015 is there as well.

      Reply
    • Big warm air pulse over that region now.

      Reply
  36. Andy in San Diego

     /  March 20, 2015
    Reply
    • Nice policy. Now let’s get it replicated.

      Reply
    • eleggua

       /  March 20, 2015

      Atlanta should adopt that policy immediately.
      Older piece, still relevant:
      Welcome to the Thunder Dome
      Atlanta’s Urban Heat Alters Weather Patterns

      http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/1999/essd26apr99_1/

      Reply
      • Apneaman

         /  March 20, 2015

        Oh yes. More times that I care to remember, I have been stuck or crawling for hours in the greater Atlanta traffic mire in the brutal Georgia summer. Once on 285 in August it was 97F with high humidity and my A/C was broken. The heat from the asphalt was so bad I had to roll up the window. It took over 2 hrs to get 12 miles. I was seriously passing out. That was my first summer there. Was not easy on a 6′ 230lb Canadian white boy whose ancestors were the Vikings. One blackout during a high heat and humidity day and we will see Europe 2003 or Russia 2010 death tolls or higher. It is unavoidable.

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        With a few steps, cities can drastically reduce heat-related deaths
        Georgia Tech study suggests ways to reduce deadly effects of heat
        August 27, 2014
        http://www.news.gatech.edu/2014/08/27/few-steps-cities-can-drastically-reduce-heat-related-deaths
        …The number of heat-related deaths is projected to more than double by 2050. A new study from Georgia Institute of Technology shows these deaths can be drastically reduced – and in some cases nearly eliminated – if city leaders and urban planners adapt a few basic strategies.
        The study focused on Atlanta, Philadelphia and Phoenix and found on average that the projected increase in heat-related deaths would be reduced by nearly 60 percent if cities plant more trees and increase green space; decrease impervious surface areas such as parking lots; and increase the reflectivity of roads and rooftops. If these methods were implemented in Atlanta, the city would see no increase in heat-related deaths over time…..

        Reply
  37. Andy in San Diego

     /  March 20, 2015

    Here is a jet stream anomaly and it’s effect in 2 clear images. First we see the jet stream.

    Reply
    • Andy in San Diego

       /  March 20, 2015

      And then we look at the temperature anomaly, you can see the anomaly track from Australia to Antarctica and how nicely it lines up with the jet stream.

      Reply
      • Andy in San Diego

         /  March 20, 2015

        And further, you can see the temp anomaly pull the cold off of Antarctica up into the pacific, and again it aligns with the jet stream track.

        Reply
    • Looks like the Southern Hemisphere polar cell is getting ripped apart.

      Reply
  38. Kevin Jones

     /  March 20, 2015

    Am I ‘ballpark’, anyone? Comparing ClimateReanalyzer Baseline with GISS earlier one it appears one could add about .3C to ClimateReanalyzer to match GISS. If so, March is Really cooking.

    Reply
    • Kevin Jones

       /  March 20, 2015

      Rechecked GISS. Sure looks like one could add .2C+ (global surface temperatures)

      Reply
    • Yes, if you add about 0.25 C to the Reanalyzer measure, you end up with ballpark NASA. Add about 0.4 C and you get the difference between now and the 1880s.

      And you are absolutely right. March so far is very hot. The GISS record is +0.89 C back in 2002. We might get in that ballpark or worse.

      Reply
  39. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  March 20, 2015

      The Climate Change Elevator Pitch
      Climate change videographer Peter Sinclair, whom I’ve done a number of interviews with, interviewed scientists in San Francisco in December 2014 at the annual American Geophysical Union’s annual meeting. Climate scientist John Cook, who asked the actual questions during the interviews, had the brilliant idea to ask each of them one last question:

      “Ok, you’re getting on an elevator with someone, and they say, “So you’re a climate scientist–what’s all this about climate change and global warming? You’ve got 10 floors. Go.”

      The Elevator Pitch series has been pretty well received. Al Gore’s Climate Reality group uploaded some of these to their facebook page where Glaciologist Eric Rignot’s piece got more than a quarter million views. Here are the Climate Change Elevator Pitches that have been released so far:

      NASA glaciologist Eric Rignot
      Penn State glacier expert Richard Alley
      Texas Tech’s Katherine Hayhoe
      Ken Caldeira, Carnegie Institution for Science
      Simon Donner, University of British Columbia

      Another interesting collection of short videos by climate scientists has just been released by morethanscientists.org. Featured are hurricane scientist Kerry Emanuel, Texas Tech’s Katherine Hayhoe, and more than 100 others. The videos offer a unique glimpse into the real life stories, personal views and feelings of the experts on climate change, emphasizing not the science itself, but why it matters–and what it will mean for our children and grandchildren. “I’m very excited about this new campaign. Too few people have seen the lighter and more personal side of climate scientists,” said climate scientist Michael E. Mann, director of Penn State’s Earth System Science Center and advisory board member of More Than Scientists. “Many of us are science nerds. But we are ordinary people too, and like anyone else, we care about our children and grandchildren, and the health of the world we leave behind for them. So I’m very excited about this new campaign and the promise it holds for communicating that message to the public.”

      Jeff Masters

      http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=2939

      Reply
  40. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    Massive amounts of fresh water, glacial melt pouring into Gulf of Alaska
    Date:
    March 19, 2015
    Source:
    Oregon State University
    Summary:
    Incessant mountain rain, snow and melting glaciers in a comparatively small region of land that hugs the southern Alaska coast and empties fresh water into the Gulf of Alaska would create the sixth largest coastal river in the world if it emerged as a single stream, a recent study shows. Freshwater runoff of this magnitude may play important ecological roles

    Link

    Reply
  41. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    Guardian climate change petition reaches 100k signatures

    Actor Tilda Swinton and chef Yotam Ottolenghi are among 100,000 people who have supported the campaign calling for the Wellcome Trust and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to divest from fossil fuels

    Link

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  March 20, 2015

      Why Red-Colored Snow on the Rockies Is a Major Warning Sign That the West Is Drying Up
      The era of cheap and plentiful water in the West is over and that’s bad news for our sprawling cities, agriculture and ecosystems.
      By Chip Ward
      September 15, 2009

      Link

      Reply
    • Kevin Jones

       /  March 20, 2015

      Out own little Aral Sea. “….smell of rotten eggs..” Hydrogen sulfide. A ‘model’ of a Canfield Ocean?

      Reply
  42. Robert In New Orleans

     /  March 20, 2015

    Reply
    • Greg

       /  March 20, 2015

      Silent Running is one of the best little known sci-fi eco-distopian movies ever. I’ve thought about a weekend of binging on this, Soylent Green, Logan’s Run, Brazil to name but a few.

      Reply
      • rustj2015

         /  March 20, 2015

        Joan Baez wrote the song prior to 1971. What happened to that consciousness in the interim?
        But Greg, unless you’re sufficiently cynical and can absorb “entertainment” such as Brazil without reaction, I wouldn’t suggest that film. My thought is that Brazil illustrates a time-honored practice of recording “interviews” such as those illustrated. Of course, we’re all watching pieces of torture and snuff films of the earth…and we go on.

        Reply
    • eleggua

       /  March 20, 2015

      The genius of the director, Douglas Trumball, also responsible for the special effects in Blade Runner.

      “A new life awaits you in the off-world colonies!”

      Reply
  43. (Reuters) – Almost one in 10 of Europe’s wild bee species is at risk of extinction because of threats from the spread of farms and pesticides among other factors, a first assessment of the continent’s bee populations showed on Thursday.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/03/19/us-environment-bees-idUSKBN0MF2C820150319

    Reply
  44. Greg

     /  March 20, 2015

    Robert, your interview was extraordinary. Finesse is the word that comes to mind as it required quite a bit of it to dance with your interviewer and get your message across. You made it look easy. I particularly liked your use of the metaphor of our confrontation with a climate serial killer. Amen. I’m in your old industry in NoVa doing the unsustainable commute from C’ville with a crash pad to boot. Listening to your interview on the headphones while addressing the myopic take on what currently qualifies as the security concerns of my customers and feeling like I was briefly bathing in a paradise of sanity listening to you —thank you. You must, simply must get your voice, not just words, out there more. You have the “IT” factor and I’ve heard no one that could have pulled that particular interview off as you did, including Hansen.

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  March 20, 2015

      ” Finesse is the word that comes to mind as it required quite a bit of it to dance with your interviewer and get your message across.”

      Amen

      Reply
    • Thank you for the amazing compliments, Greg. I am floored that you mention me with Hansen. He is really one of my heroes in all this.

      I will do my best. Another radio interview — this one at ECO SHOCK set up for April. I’m really looking forward to that one as well. In the end, I suppose I would need a booking agent to really get rolling on speaking engagements. Maybe now is the time to send out a few feelers?

      I would be more than willing to do a security issues talk as it relates to climate change. My opinion is that this is the major threat we should be looking at — a threat multiplier through its destabilizing and destructive influences. With ISIS we are just dealing with symptoms — not the root issue. If we are truly concerned about stability, then we should be concerned about a stable climate. If you think this would be helpful to your customers, please let me know.

      As for the unsustainable commute… I think we are in dire need of better choices in this regard. Too many captive consumers whose work and life demand unsustainable activity. We need viable options out. It is our responsibility to provide you with those options.

      Warmest regards to you, Greg and thank you for your continuing, salient contributions here.

      Reply
  45. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    Students Occupy Swarthmore College Demanding Fossil Fuel Divestment March 19, 2015
    http://ecowatch.com/2015/03/19/sit-in-swarthmore-college-fossil-fuel-divestment/
    Early this morning, Swarthmore Mountain Justice launched a sit-in for fossil fuel divestment at Swarthmore College. Students at this Quaker college in Pennsylvania helped launch the campus divestment movement, which is now active at hundreds of universities across North America, Europe and Australia. The 37 students and six alumni are asking the Swarthmore Board Investment Committee chair Chris Niemczewski and board chair Gil Kemp to “return to the negotiating table and agree to end the college’s investments in a rogue industry that violates Swarthmore’s Quaker values and recklessly imperils a just and sustainable future for our generation,” …

    Reply
    • With graduation time approaching, I hope we see some strong displays of rejections of FF, etc. from graduates at the ceremonies, and some rebellious valedictoria. Maybe something akin to draft card burnings but with a few diplomas.
      These young minds have to wake up sooner or later and swing into action. Time is running out.

      Reply
  46. Eric Thurston

     /  March 20, 2015

    I don’t know if any of you follow the Archdruid Report but JMG has a good piece on why people have trouble with believing what scientists say. It is something that definitely relates to the whole climate change problem with multiple layers of disbelief and denial.

    http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com/2015/03/the-view-from-outside_18.html

    Reply
  47. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    <bBrown proposes $1 billion in California drought spending Mar. 20, 2015
    http://www.mailtribune.com/article/20150320/NEWS/150329966
    As California copes with a fourth straight year of drought, Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders on Thursday proposed legislation to accelerate more than $1 billion in water spending and urged residents to do their part to conserve…..

    It could take more than year for some of the projects to produce a noticeable increase in water supplies. …

    The reality is, Agri-Biz are responsible for the most use and misuse of water in California.
    Not certain of the exact numbers, but off the top of the head, it’s something like
    80% agri-biz, 7% other industries, 13% residential consumers.
    The 13% should do their part, too; the brunt of cost and conservation should be borne by the private, profiting sector.

    Reply
    • rustj2015

       /  March 20, 2015

      Oh, yes, this will stop those trees from sucking up our water:
      Welcome to Piedmont Stumps
      March 19, 2015 by Nathan J. Winograd
      http://www.nathanwinograd.com/?author=3

      Reply
    • Less meat industry would be helpful. Very water intensive.

      It takes fully 1,800 gallons of water to produce one pound of beef. So about 50-100 times more water intensive than almonds or avocados.

      Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        Definitely. This stinking mess is a big culprit:

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        The Coalinga Cowschwitz
        https://dawnofanewera.wordpress.com/tag/huge-cow-feedlot/
        <emHalfway between LA and San Francisco, there exists a hell on Earth.
        Cockroaches infest the town and an overwhelming putrid scent taints the air.
        Across the highway, a hundred thousand cows await their deaths in confined filth….

        Reply
      • Mark from New England

         /  March 20, 2015

        Robert,

        And I *hate to admit it*, but perhaps giving up almonds and avocados would also help? Two of my favorite foods…

        Reply
        • I’d go for reducing the meat farms first. You can get far more avacados and almonds by unit of water volume.

      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        A lot of almond trees uprooted last year to conserve water:
        <b?US California Drought: California almond farmers face tough choices February 26, 2014
        http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/world/us-california-drought-california-almond-farmers-face-tough-choices/story-fnkfnuyz-1226838218337
        …There are no figures yet available to show an exact number of orchards being removed, but the economic stakes and risks facing growers are clear. Almonds and other nuts are among the most high-value crops in the Central Valley — the biggest producer of such crops in the country. In 2012, California’s almond crop had an annual value of $5 billion. This year farmers say the dry conditions are forcing them to make difficult decisions….

        Reply
      • eleggua

         /  March 20, 2015

        And this year:
        Drought causing tension between residents and almond farmers March 10, 2015
        http://abc30.com/news/drought-causing-tension-between-residents-and-almond-farmers/553344/
        The drought is causing tensions between residential water users and almond farmers. The almond trees were planted about a year ago, and get plenty of water from a new well. Some neighbors who’ve seen wells go dry and have cut back on water use say it’s not fair….

        Green doesn’t think such a moratorium is a good idea because almonds are the Valleys biggest crop, but he notes under state law drinking water is the highest use for water, and competition for water between plants and people is likely to intensify.

        Ag is the number one economic driver but like I said people do come first but there may be some push and shove in the very near future especially if the drought continues. And Mitchell says going without water, being unable to cook, bathe or flush a toilet becomes a threat to public health, a higher priority he thinks, than almonds.

        Mitchell explained, “Everyone is pumping out of this aquifer and if this goes dry everyone, everyone will be suffering as a result, simply for the opportunity for some to cash in on this craze of almonds.”

        Reply
  48. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    Welcome to Global Warming’s Terrifying New Era

    More than just being a round number, the 30-year streak has deeper significance. In climatology, a continuous 30-year stretch of data is traditionally what’s used to define what’s “normal” for a given location. In a very real way, we can now say that for our given location—the planet Earth—global warming is now “normal.” Forget debating—our climate has officially changed.

    This 30-year streak should change the way we think and talk about this issue. We’ve entered a new era in which global warming is a defining characteristic and a fundamental driver of what it means to be an inhabitant of planet Earth. We should treat it that way. For those who care about the climate, that may mean de-emphasizing statistics and science and beginning to talk more confidently about the moral implications of continuing on our current path.

    Link

    Be sure to check out the before and after images –

    What #CyclonePam did to a small island in Vanuatu: MT @SamBolitho: Before/after pics from pilot William Dyer
    12:50 PM – 19 Mar 2015

    Reply
    • Greg

       /  March 20, 2015

      Wow. Welcome to the new age, the new age…
      https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CAaOsAOUsAAttwr.jpg:small

      Reply
    • Watch out. El Nino starting to heat up surface waters in the Central Pacific. That Kelvin Wave is starting to look a bit grim.

      Reply
      • Mark from New England

         /  March 20, 2015

        Looking forward to your next post on this El Nino and how it plays out.

        Do you subscribe to the notion of a ‘Modoki’ brand of El Nino? I read your last post on the topic, but it wasn’t clear if you were endorsing the claims of the Japanese climate scientists putting forth this idea, which I hadn’t heard of until that post.

        Reply
        • This looks like a Central Pacific event thus far. One that has been very, very long in coming. I don’t have enough observations out yet to give an informed opinion on the Modoki models showing a mid ocean El Nino prevalence coincident with climate change. But it is pertinent enough to mention in relation to what’s happening now. And I will say it is on my radar thanks to Timothy Chase’s contributions.

          In the current context, we are seeing a strengthening mid-ocean event. If it gets into the moderate-strong range, that would potentially have a bad outcome for the Indian Monsoon later this year.

  49. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    DEP worker sent home after sharing climate-change views Tallahassee Democrat , March 20, 2015
    http://www.tallahassee.com/story/burlewblog/2015/03/19/dep-disciplines-worker-who-shared-opinion-on-pipeline-climate-change/25018655/?from=global&sessionKey=&autologin=
    Students gathered this morning at the Capitol to ask for an investigation into whether an unwritten gag order exists barring state employees from discussing climate change or global warming.

    The protesters, who wore duct tape over their mouths with “climate change” written across it, dropped off petitions with more than 43,000 signatures calling for an investigation by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection Office of Inspector General. They also filed an open-records request for all communications between the Governor’s Office and DEP with the words “climate change” or “global warming” to see if there’s proof such a ban exists….

    Reply
  50. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    Thousands attend climate change protest in London 7 March 2015
    http://www.itv.com/news/update/2015-03-07/thousands-attend-climate-change-protest-in-london/

    More than 5,000 protesters have gathered outside Parliament in London calling on politicians to take tougher action on climate change.

    Crowds of environmental activists cheered as a host of speakers including Vivienne Westwood, who appeared via video link, and Green Party MP Caroline Lucas attacked the Government and accused it of not taking action.

    Reply
  51. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    Quebec City protest aims to pressure leaders on climate change March 15, 2015
    http://montreal.ctvnews.ca/quebec-city-protest-aims-to-pressure-leaders-on-climate-change-1.2280775

    Representatives from environmental organizations, unions, student groups and First Nations Sunday announced plans for a rally to demand action to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
    The groups say Canada and other countries need to respect targets for cutting emissions, and they say projects such the ones going on in Alberta’s tar sands are incompatible with meeting those targets.
    They want the governments of Quebec, Ontario, Alberta and New Brunswick to oppose the expansion of the tar sands and the transport of oil by pipeline and by train.

    Dubbed the “Act on climate” march, the groups want the march, set for April 11 in Quebec City, will remind leaders that Canadians want them to do more to protect the planet.
    The date was chosen because it is days before a First Ministers’ Conference, a meeting that will bring together all the provinces’ premiers.

    Reply
  52. eleggua

     /  March 20, 2015

    Climate Change Activists Protest At Sen. Daines’ Office Mar 13, 2015
    http://mtpr.org/post/climate-change-activists-protest-sen-daines-office
    About 80 climate change activists rallied in Missoula this morning.
    Led by Jeff Smith of the group 350Missoula, they gathered in front of Senator Steve Daines’ office here. There were there to, they said, “protest the senator’s denial of climate change science and his support for fossil fuel projects like coal exports, the Otter Creek Coal Mine, and the Keystone XL pipeline.”

    Several activists entered Daines’ office and refused to leave. They say the Senator has refused to engage in a meaningful dialogue to address the imminent dangers of human-caused climate change, and therefore they were engaging in an act of civil disobedience.

    After about three and a half hours police came and cited 14 of the activists for criminal trespass. The activists then left. Senator Daines’ office issued a statement, saying that he, “appreciates Montanans taking time to share their views with him and his staff. Some are looking for ways to sensationalize and drive media attention to causes that are important to them. We always welcome Montanans to engage in thoughtful and respectful conversations with us.”

    Reply
  53. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    Ocean temps up to 7 degrees warmer than average

    An unusually warm winter in Alaska failed to chill ocean waters. Then this winter’s El Niño is keeping tropical ocean temperatures high. Combine these and scientists are recording ocean temperatures up to 7 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than average off the coasts of Oregon and Washington.

    “This is a situation with how the climate is going, or the weather is going, that we just haven’t really seen before and don’t know where it’s headed,” says National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration fisheries biologist Chris Harvey.
    Link

    The effects already appear to be rippling up and down the food chain. When the ocean is warmer, it is less nutrient rich.

    The humble copepod is a good illustration of this phenomenon. Copepods are small, crab-like organisms that swim in the upper part of the water column. They’re basically fish food for young salmon, sardines and other species.

    But the difference between cold-water copepods and warm-water copepods is like the difference between a bacon-double cheeseburger with all the fixin’s and a celery stick

    Reply
  54. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    “This Year We Will Have Hunger:” Fears of Food Shortages in Southern Africa After Floods

    In mid-January, higher-than-average rainfall unleashed catastrophic flooding across southern Africa. More than one million people were affected, the majority of whom are in Mozambique and Malawi. The floods left 500,000 people homeless and in-need of shelter, clean water, food, and other basic supplies. Concern Worldwide was one of the first organizations to respond and has been traveling by helicopter, boat, and truck for the past month to deliver food and relief items, but the work is far from over.

    Link

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  March 20, 2015

      And on the other side of the jet –
      South Africa’s Worst Drought Since 1992 Prompts Corn Imports

      (Bloomberg) — South Africa is importing corn for the first time in 11 months as the worst drought since 1992 destroyed crops in the continent’s biggest producer, the largest local grain farmers’ organization said.

      Link

      Reply
  55. Colorado Bob

     /  March 20, 2015

    International study raises questions about cause of global ice ages
    Date:
    March 20, 2015
    Source:
    Dartmouth College
    Summary:
    A new international study casts doubt on the leading theory of what causes ice ages around the world — changes in the way the Earth orbits the sun. The researchers found that glacier movement in the Southern Hemisphere is influenced primarily by sea surface temperature and atmospheric carbon dioxide rather than changes in the Earth’s orbit, which are thought to drive the advance and retreat of ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere.

    Link

    Reply

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