Wet Bulb Near 35 C — Heatwave Mass Casualties Strike India Amidst Never-Before-Seen High Temperatures

Never-before-seen high temperatures and high humidity are resulting in thousands of heat injuries and hundreds of heat deaths across India. In some places, wet bulb readings appear to be approaching 35 C — a level of latent heat never endured by humans before fossil fuel burning forced global temperatures to rapidly warm. A reading widely-recognized as the limit of human physical endurance and one whose more frequent excession would commit the human race to enduring an increasing number of episodes of killing heat. A boundary that scientists like Dr. James Hansen warned would be exceeded if a human-forced warming of the world was not halted.

*****

And it is in this newly dangerous climate context that temperatures near 125 degrees Fahrenheit settled in over India’s border region with Pakistan yesterday. A blistering wave of crippling heat hitting never-before-seen readings over that highly-populated nation. In Phalodi, India, the mercury rocketed to 123.8 degrees Fahrenheit (51 degrees Celsius). This reading exceeded India’s previous all-time record high for any location which stood at 123.1 degrees Fahrenheit (50.6 degrees Celsius) set on May 25, 1886. Across the border in Pakistan, temperatures crossed “critical” thresholds this week, hitting 124.7 degrees Fahrenheit (51.5 degrees Celsius) Thursday in the city of Jacobabad as officials in that state issued health warnings to the public.

image

(Temperatures rocketed to 123-125 F along India’s border with Pakistan on Thursday. These are the hottest temperatures ever recorded for this region of the world. Image source: Earth Nullschool.)

Closer to the coast, temperatures rose as high as 107 degrees Fahrenheit (42 C). In the city of Surat, hospitals were strained by an influx of people suffering from heat injuries. People afflicted with giddiness, unconsciousness, dehydration, a bloody nose, abdominal pain, chest pain, and other heat related injuries flooded local health care facilities with emergency calls. As of Thursday, SMIMER hospital had reported 1,226 calls related to heat casualties since the start of May.

Local Surat weather services reported periods when temperatures spiked to 38-42 C and humidity — supplied by moisture flooding off the heating Arabian Sea — remained near 65 percent. These are wet bulb readings in the range of 32 to 34.4 C — a combination of heat and humidity that is very dangerous to anyone exposed for even brief periods.

340 Heat Deaths in Dehli

Across India, the story of heat casualties was much the same. Though no official national estimate of heat related injuries or deaths has yet been given, the current heatwave and related drought is far worse than that experienced during 2015 when 2500 people lost their lives in the excessive heat. But it’s reasonable to assume that heat injuries across India now number in the tens of thousands with tragic heat deaths likely now numbering in the hundreds to thousands.

In the capital city of Delhi, reports were coming in that the homeless population — swelled by farmers who lost their livelihoods due to a crippling three-year-drought — was suffering hundreds of heat-related deaths. As of Thursday, official estimates identified 340 total heat deaths among this increasingly vulnerable population.

Severe Drought and Record Heat — Conditions Consistent with Human-Caused Climate Change

Heat building into extreme record ranges and mounting heat casualties come as India suffers what is likely its worst drought on record. Last month, international water monitors identified 330 million people suffering from water shortages across India. As a result, the government has been forced to resort to extreme measures — posting guards at dwindling reservoirs, sending water trains to provide people in hard-hit regions with a life-saving ration of water, and planning to divert water from the greatly shrunken Ganges to aid parched regions.

Extreme heat of this kind, wet bulb temperatures approaching 35 C, heatwave mass casualties, and a never-before-seen drought are all conditions related to a human-forced warming of the globe. Though El Nino, during the 20th Century, brought with it a cyclical heat, a potential monsoonal weakening, and an increased risk of drought, the severity of the crisis now afflicting India is too great to be pinned on El Nino alone. India has now suffered three years of delayed monsoons — delays which began before the current El Nino took hold. Water levels in the Himalayas are low due to a decadal warming that has forced snow packs to retreat which has, in its turn, left India’s rivers increasingly vulnerable to drying. And global temperatures hitting in the range of 1.3 C above 1880s levels are absolutely adding intensity to the current heatwave and dryness.

Links:

Wet Bulb at 35 C

Heatwave Mass Casualties Strike India in 2015

Heatwave Injuries Mount in Surat

Earth Nullschool

India Shatters All-Time Hottest Temperature Record on Thursday

India Temperature Records

Hat Tip to DT Lange

Hat Tip to Colorado Bob

 

 

 

 

 

Leave a comment

408 Comments

  1. Spike

     /  May 20, 2016

    I’m pretty sure the figures are under reported. People may be found dead and the cause not be appreciated, or develop complications which are put down as the prime cause of death. Many will be the very poor who nobody in authority bothers about too much. Even so I saw a report last year suggesting substantial increases in heat deaths in India over a decade.

    http://www.indiaspend.com/cover-story/61-rise-in-heat-stroke-deaths-over-decade-60404#

    Reply
  2. Loni

     /  May 20, 2016

    It’s tough to see the innocents pay the price.

    I don’t wish tragedy on anyone, but those fires close to the tars sands in Canada seemed almost atoning, perhaps if these extreme heat events took place within the ‘belt way’ we might see Mr. Inhofe as for his snowball back.

    Reply
  3. Loni

     /  May 20, 2016

    ‘ask for his snowball back’.

    Reply
  4. Those numbers are just staggering.. both the temperatures and the deaths.
    I get that a plane crash is a tragedy, but does anyone else think all the attention yesterday’s crash is getting…along with the media, and Trump ready to jump on it being “terrorists” before the facts are in…is just a bit crazy..when so many are dying of the heat in India?

    Already, 340 dead in India from this heat wave…but I don’t see cable news covering this terrible event. I just don’t get it.

    Reply
    • Bill H

       /  May 20, 2016

      Suzanne, Very few climate related disasters make it into the MSM unless they are in rich countries – an example being Ft McMurray. When Pacific islands like Fiji, on the other hand, are devastated by Class 5 cyclones there’s scarcely a mention. Typhoon Hayaan in the Philippines eventually forced its way into the MSM, but only when thousands of people died. If a million lose “merely” their homes and livelihood, well,… move along, nothing to see here.

      Reply
    • Ryan in New England

       /  May 21, 2016

      Absolutely, Suzanne, the situation is completely nuts. The main story every day on the mainstream news outlets should be the topics and issues reported on here by Robert. Every day it seems new records and devastating and unprecedented events are occurring somewhere on the globe due to anthropogenic climate change. The general public is completely unaware of the planetary emergency we are in the midst of.

      Reply
  5. George W. Hayduke

     /  May 20, 2016

    This headline made the hair on the back of my neck stand up. By the time I got to the end it sounded like some of the dystopian I’ve read but no, it’s coming true…

    Reply
  6. Skip

     /  May 20, 2016

    And then added to the deaths of those people, there are dying animals as well, I am sure,
    Also you don’t have to die to have your health compromised.
    And then there is the whole ‘quality of life’ drain: If a person or animal can’t get out of that heat, that must be pretty tough to deal with.
    And water shortages too? Yiyiyi.

    Reply
    • eric smith

       /  May 20, 2016

      I heard that ALL plants at about 121 degrees F. Thoughts anyone?

      Reply
      • eric smith

         /  May 20, 2016

        All plants DIE at 121. Sorry.

        Reply
      • wili

         /  May 20, 2016

        Certainly SOME plants die at that temperature. But I’m pretty sure there are desert plants that regularly survive temperatures higher than that.

        Reply
      • wili

         /  May 20, 2016

        This paper on cactuses claims that half of those hardy plants die at 52 C (125.6F), and essentially all die at 59 C (138.2). So I’m guessing the latter temperature would be closer to the upper limit for all plants. For most food-bearing plants, your limit may be closer. And of course this isn’t taking into account dryness, wind, sun, or other stress factors.

        https://www.eeb.ucla.edu/Faculty/Nobel/Reprints/105%20Smith%20et%20al%201984%20Ecology.pdf

        Reply
  7. Robert in New Orleans

     /  May 20, 2016

    Very few people here the good ole US of A know about what is going on in Asian sub continent and even fewer give a rats ass about it. The issue will only hit home when it is too dangerous to go their favorite beach on the Gulf Coast or Florida during the summer.

    Reply
    • Skip

       /  May 20, 2016

      Actually the media in the states seems to more or less disregard the rest of the world it is in someone’s political interest that they do so. I expect that many have no clue about the Beast there in Canada, or how extraordinary it is, nor what it portends.

      Reply
      • wili

         /  May 20, 2016

        Indeed, even as tens of thousands of people were dying of GW-juiced European heat wave of 2013, there was very little coverage in the US press, and still very few Americans even know that it happened.

        Reply
  8. – 18:10 UTC
    I posted a couple of interesting links on Robert’s previous Fort Mac past you might want to check out.

    Reply
  9. News | May 20, 2016
    Study helps explain sea ice differences at Earth’s poles

    From NASA

    Why has the sea ice cover surrounding Antarctica been increasing slightly, in sharp contrast to the drastic loss of sea ice occurring in the Arctic Ocean? A new NASA-led study finds the geology of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean are responsible.

    A NASA/NOAA/university team led by Son Nghiem of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, used satellite radar, sea surface temperature, land form and bathymetry (ocean depth) data to study the physical processes and properties affecting Antarctic sea ice. They found that two persistent geological factors — the topography of Antarctica and the depth of the ocean surrounding it — are influencing winds and ocean currents, respectively, to drive the formation and evolution of Antarctica’s sea ice cover and help sustain it.
    http://climate.nasa.gov/news/2445/

    Reply
  10. Skip

     /  May 20, 2016

    “Psychology and global warming: what stops us from preventing the coming disaster”

    This is a pretty good, not hard to grasp analysis of how GW denial operates.

    Reply
    • I think he also states that Walmart something like China’s eighth largest trading partner.

      Stores like this are wall to wall ‘MADE IN CHINA’. And mostly produced via coal often shipped to them so cheap non-essential goods can be shipped back to the US and distributed via diesel — even as clouds of aerosol pollution from China drifts across the Pacific in one horrendous cycle.
      OUT

      Reply
    • Mulga Mumblebrain

       /  May 21, 2016

      I understand PERFECTLY why I and other non-psychotic persons comprehend our plight and wish to reverse our self-destruction, and Rightwingers do not. It is entirely a matter of ideology, ie of psychology, of the manner in which the Rightwing ‘mind’ operates. I began to comprehend that process as a child, although I must say, the Right have evolved quickly over the years, into more and more poisonous and destructive forms.

      Reply
  11. Reply
    • climatehawk1

       /  May 20, 2016

      Plus, the Oklahoma legislature has taken a run lately at ending tax credit incentive for wind power–in an extremely windy state that could easily be a national leader.

      Reply
  12. Eric Fisher Verified account ‏@ericfisher 5h5 hours ago Boston, MA

    Big plume of wildfire smoke from Canada making the skies milky today.

    Reply
    • Scott Bachmeier ‏@CIMSS_Satellite 3h3 hours ago

      Larger-scale view of Canadian wildfire smoke over Northeast US, Maritime Provinces, Atlantic

      Reply
    • – This has been a common sight due the buildup of aerosols for quite a while. It’s good to see others make a connection.

      Jeremy Reiner Verified account ‏@jreineron7 3h3 hours ago

      Milky sunshine today….smoke plume (wildfire) drifting in from Canada.

      Reply
      • om Purdy ‏@TomPurdyWI 1h1 hour ago

        Full bright solar halo in southern Wisconsin right now.
        Filtered by Canadian wildfire smoke.

        Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 20, 2016

      Yes! we’re seeing that high milky haze here in central Newfoundland today, which gives the sunlight a kind of brassy tone, something like the light during an eclipse. From time to time, there’s a whiff of—something on the wind, and you think, Fire? Forest fire has a distinctive organic, and not unpleasant (at first) scent, as the thin peat itself burns to the bedrock.

      Fort Mac is clear across the continent. Next stop for this smoke on a strong sou’westerly: Greenland.

      Reply
  13. dnem

     /  May 20, 2016

    This post strikes me with a different kind of dread. As a kid who rooted for every snow storm to be a blizzard and who donned a football helmet and went out into Gloria’s eyewall when it passed over my house in 1985, I still get a certain thrill and charge from extreme storms. Obviously I don’t cheer the destruction, but a huge storm is a thing of awe and beauty. A 35 deg C wet bulb temperature is an abomination. The thought of being trapped in that with no AC, no cool basement, no respite at all makes me feel queasy and claustrophobic.

    Reply
  14. utoutback

     /  May 20, 2016

    As predicted in William deBuys excellent book, A Great Aridness:Climate Change and the Future of the American Southwest, water will become an ever increasing problem. Lake Mead is now at it’s lowest level since 1937, when it was being filled.
    Perhaps Americans will “give a rat’s ass” when the climate story hits home.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2016/05/19/lake-mead-declines-lowest-level-history/84628000/

    Reply
    • Robert in New Orleans

       /  May 20, 2016

      A Great Aridness is a very good book and should be required reading by every high school student west of the Mississippi River. I read it myself a few years ago and was simultaneously enlightened and depressed at the same time. I was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah and have traveled extensively in the desert southwest and I see another epic crisis in the making. And by the time that the local populations come to grip with their predicament, there will be no answers or solutions other then to emigrate out of the area in mass.

      http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2012/01/17/392184/review-a-great-aridness-climate-change-and-the-future-of-the-american-southwest/

      Reply
    • climatehawk1

       /  May 20, 2016

      Scheduling tweet on the Lake Mead item, thanks.

      Reply
      • Lake Mead declines to lowest level in history

        “Human-caused climate warming will drive larger and larger flow reductions as long as emissions of greenhouse gases continue,” said Jonathan Overpeck, co-director of the University of Arizona’s Institute of the Environment.

        “The river is over-allocated even before climate change is factored in,” Overpeck said in an email. He said he thinks the negotiations will probably “focus on how to reduce the over-allocation, but will eventually have to focus on sharing the pain as climate change continues to reduce the flows.”

        http://www.desertsun.com/story/news/environment/2016/05/19/lake-mead-declines-new-record-low/84597120/

        Reply
  15. – There’s quite a bit of info here:

    American Geophysical Union.
    – blogs.agu.org/fromaglaciersperspective/2016/05/20/clephane-bay-ice-cap

    May 20, 2016
    Clephane Bay Ice Cap, Baffin Island Being Erased from Map

    The southern part of the Cumberland Peninsula on Baffin Island features many small ice caps. Here we examine the disappearance of two and the separation of two others from 1995 to 2014. Way (2015) noted that on the next peninsula to the west, Terra Nivea and Grinnell Ice Cap had lost 20% of their area in the last three decades. The retreat and disappearance of ice caps in the area have led to a INSTAAR project at UColorado-Boulder examining vegetation that had been buried and is now being exposed. Gardner et al 2011 and Sharp et al (2011) both note that the first decade of the 21st century had the warmest temperatures of the last 50 years, the period of record. They identified that the mass loss had doubled in the last decade versus the previous four for Baffin Island. This is causing ice caps like Dexterity and those around Clephane Bay to melt away

    -2013 Landsat image no retained snowpack.

    Reply
  16. Robert in New Orleans

     /  May 20, 2016

    Does anybody know what the highest wet bulb temperature ever recorded in the continental USA was and when it occured?

    Reply
  17. jyyh

     /  May 20, 2016

    Ah, the new normal touching India.

    Reply
  18. donesoverydone

     /  May 20, 2016

    Reblogged this on things I've read or intend to.

    Reply
  19. wili

     /  May 20, 2016

    Recall that last year a location in Iraq reached 33.5 wbt in August.

    So now, already in May this year we are seeing wbt readings up to 34.4.

    I don’t like where that projection takes us.

    “A heat wave in Iraq in August 2015 saw temperatures of 48.6°C (119.5°F) and a dew point of 29.5°C (85.1°F) in Bandar-e Mahshahr, Iran and Samawah. This implied a wet bulb temperature of 33.5°C (92.5°F).[13] The government “urged residents to stay out of the sun and drink plenty of water”

    https://weather.com/news/news/iraq-iran-heat-middle-east-125-degrees

    Reply
  20. wili

     /  May 20, 2016

    So I guess we’re about to start seeing WBT’s above the deadly 35 C .

    When I first heard a few years ago that the earth could start seeing these kinds of unprecedented and lethal combinations of temperature and humidity, I really though that this was a very remote and unlikely thing to see on this planet, certainly not something that would occur anywhere for many decades to centuries into the future.

    But here we are on the threshold of seeing these deadly temps, probably for the first time on the planet since before modern humans evolve, if not much much longer.

    And it’s only 2016.

    One wonders and shudders at what the future, even the near-term future, has in store.

    Reply
  21. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2016

    Keep an eye on the snow pack in the high mountains , the Pakistani MET office said these high readings are penetrating way up slope. Glacial outburst flooding, is serious possibility.

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  May 20, 2016

      Here’s a baseline shot –

      Terra/MODIS
      2016/141
      05/20/2016
      05:40 UTC

      Reply
    • – Yeah, I was wondering what was happening at higher elevations.

      Reply
    • – Here’s a May 7 link:
      The well being of many countries and their populations are tied to this area.

      Climate Change Watch: Avalanches and rainfall cause devastation in Gilgit-Baltistan

      Recently heavy rainfall and stormy weather in the northern areas has triggered landslides and avalanches in different areas of Gilgit-Baltistan, specifically in Nagar, Skardu and Ghizer.

      Avalanches and landslides greatly affected the downstream population in the Karakorum, Himalaya and Hindu Kush (HKH) regions. The heavy downpour was caused by fresh westerly wave.

      The northern mountainous region of Pakistan… Spanning an area over 4.2 million sq km, the (HKH) region is especially diverse in ecological terms. It has the largest area covered by glaciers and permafrost outside the polar region, and is therefore often referred to as the “Third Pole” and the “Water Tower of Asia” as it stores a large volume of water, particularly in the form of snow and ice.

      The impacts of climate change on the world’s fresh water supply is a burning issue in the world, especially in the HKH region. There are 1.2 billion people (approx) living in downstream, extending from Pakistan to China and Nepal. Recent increases in the area’s population has put further stress on fresh water supply.

      – dailypakistan.com.pk/opinion/blog/snow-avalanches-

      Reply
  22. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2016

    Siberia remains under thick cloud cover, but the finger prints of the fires are showing up –

    SNPP/VIIRS
    2016/141
    05/20/2016
    03:10 UTC

    Smoke from Russian wildfires over the Pacific Ocean

    Reply
  23. Bill H

     /  May 20, 2016

    We should remember that 35 degrees is the limit for people with a fully operational set of sweat glands. As people age their ability to lose heat through sweating falls off. I recall that by the age of eighty the mechanism has more or less stopped functioning.

    No doubt the “skeptics” will come out with the canard: “more people die from cold than from heat” on the basis that in colder countries there is an increase in mortality in the winter months. This, however, is largely down to the fact that respiratory viruses are far more active in winter, and they carry off a great many immuno-compromised people. Cold temperatures are, in themselves, largely incidental.

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  May 20, 2016

      Bill H –
      When the Russian heatwave was getting started the first deaths were drunken Russian men who couldn’t swim and were drowning. That was in the first news stories. Later when you could cut the air in Moscow with a knife, that angle dropped off the presses.

      Excellent point by the way about that cold weather hobby horse.

      Reply
    • Reply
  24. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2016

    Demystifying Climate: And It’s All Free
    By: Dr. Ricky Rood , 11:48 PM GMT on May 19, 2016

    Ever now and then I need an easy blog. This is one of them.

    First, some time ago, I mentioned that I was collaborating with Andrew Gettelman on a book. It’s out! It’s free! That is, the electronic version is free. The title is Demystifying Climate Models: A Users Guide to Earth Systems Models. There is a real paper book that you can buy, and I am sure that Springer would appreciate the business.

    Link

    Reply
  25. climatehawk1

     /  May 20, 2016

    Tweet scheduled.

    Reply
  26. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2016

    ‘Half a million flee homes’ as Sri Lanka grapples with deadly floods, landslides

    Severe flooding in Sri Lanka has forced half a million people to flee their homes across the island nation, officials say, as the death toll from days of torrential rain and landslides rose to more than 60.

    Link

    Reply
  27. – Off the charts in the Arctic:

    Zack Labe ‏@ZLabe 3h3 hours ago

    Probably an image best representing this year’s #Arctic climate… off the charts (2m freezing degree day anomalies)

    Reply
  28. Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 21, 2016

      They’re talking about a negative AMO maybe kicking in? I get a tick mark for knowing that’s the circulation in the Atlantic, but for a gold star—what does that mean in terms of our weather over the next wee while….?

      Reply
  29. Colorado Bob

     /  May 20, 2016

    Arctic Sea Ice Goes Far Beyond Record Low Extent for May
    By: Bob Henson , 4:01 PM GMT on May 20, 2016

    Link

    Reply
    • June

       /  May 21, 2016

      There was a link in Bob Henson’s post to Robert’s Fort McMurray post.

      Reply
  30. Griffin

     /  May 21, 2016

    Interesting bloom just to the southwest of Iceland has shown up today. Sure is a big one.
    https://lance.modaps.eosdis.nasa.gov/imagery/subsets/?subset=Arctic_r01c02.2016141.terra

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  May 21, 2016

      Watch it and let us know.

      Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 21, 2016

      Ah, as if right on cue! NASA is in our neighbourhood now with the NAAMES project. They will be flying out of St John’s, Newfoundland periodically over the next few years, studying the phytoplankton blooms in the NW Atlantic in the context of climate change.

      http://www.nasa.gov/content/2016-earth-expeditions-naames

      At the same time, just across the way in Greenland, NASA is carrying out the big OMG project. It’s interesting to note that these two big multi-year projects on climate change in the NH right are happening at this very strategic location in the NW Atlantic.

      I’m no conspiracy theorist, not at all, but it does amuse me to wonder if it’s more than a coincidence that Canada and Denmark (Greenland) will have NASA parked on our soil for the next five years or so, while NASA’s eyes and ears are focused on the Labrador Sea and NW Atlantic at the very time the Arctic is expected to become navigable in summer. One does need to know who will be taking advantage of the new Arctic Ocean/NW Passage-Labrador Sea shipping route!

      Seriously now—the very good thing about NAAMES from the Newfoundland perspective is that NASA’s presence alone will help to raise awareness of climate change. Right on.
      😀

      Reply
      • Griffin

         /  May 21, 2016

        Wow! Thank you for the link Cate, that is really interesting.

        Reply
  31. Colorado Bob

     /  May 21, 2016

    We need song here.

    Reply
  32. Colorado Bob

     /  May 21, 2016

    This is pretty cool; –

    We never saw this

    The Animals – The House of the Rising Sun Mafia III

    Reply
  33. Colorado Bob

     /  May 21, 2016

    Eric Burton is 70 years old.

    Reply
  34. Colorado Bob

     /  May 21, 2016

    One more ,
    Blind Faith – Blind Faith (1969) (Full Album)

    Reply
  35. Colorado Bob

     /  May 21, 2016

    Can’t find my way home.

    Reply
  36. Greg

     /  May 21, 2016

    “The day the moon blew up” Robert, for a break, here is an interview by Bill Gate with Neal Stephenson about his most recent novel, Seveneves, in which the moon blows up and Earth has two years to deal with humanity’s demise from moon debris. Some rich science fiction when you have some time (ha!). Bill eats a burger in his model X by the way – all filmed in virtual reality. How ironic.
    https://www.gatesnotes.com/Books/Seveneves

    Reply
  37. wili

     /  May 21, 2016

    Jesus cried. He wept and died.
    I guess he went up to heaven.
    I been downtown such a long long time
    I’ll never make it home by 7…

    Won’t you come and take me home…
    I’ve been too long at the fair…

    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    We’ve all been to freakin’ long at the fair.

    Just lookin’ for someone to take us back to our true home…

    Lord, I just can’t stand it…any more.

    Reply
  38. redskylite

     /  May 21, 2016

    The heatwave deaths are not all by heat-stroke, sadly life is becoming to hard and not worth living for too many. Farmers as mentioned in the moving narrative by Robert in particular.

    “The Indian Express newspaper reported that more than 400 farmers in the Marathwada region of Maharashtra alone had taken their own lives this year.”

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/india-heatwave-farmers-suicide-killing-themselves-51-record-temperature-climate-change-global-a7039841.html

    Reply
  39. – SE Asia – Thailand – Severe Drought

    Drought has take toll on Kwan Phayao and its fish stocks

    Kwan Phayao, the biggest fresh-water lake in the North, is fast drying up with many fish getting killed due to the extreme hot weather.

    Mr Vivat Prarom, director of the fishery research and development centre in Kwan Phayao, said that the water in the lake, reputed to be the 4th biggest of the country, has substantially depleted exposing some of the lake bottom which eventually cracked

    Reply
  40. Reply
  41. – Fort McMurray Fire:
    They can’t seem to wait to get back into the oil.

    Canadian wildfire finally contained, but heavy smoke delays oil production
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/05/20/canadian-wildfire-finally-contained-but-heavy-smoke-delays-oil-p/?utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter&utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_term=Autofeed#link_time=1463782000

    Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 21, 2016

      Oil is a national addiction in Canada.

      OTTAWA—A new report suggests Canada ranks 14th among 16 peer countries when it comes to environmental performance, with only the United States and Australia doing worse.
      The report by the Conference Board of Canada on Thursday gives Canada a “D” grade based on nine indicators covering climate change, air pollution, and freshwater management.
      On climate change, the agency says with 20.7 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent per capita, Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions are among the highest of the peer countries, with only the U.S. and Australia faring worse.
      “These results show that Canada needs to encourage more sustainable consumption. Protecting the environment from damage is not a problem for tomorrow but a challenge for today,” said Louis Theriault, the Conference Board’s vice-president for public policy.

      https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2016/04/21/canada-gets-a-d-on-environmental-report-card.html

      Reply
      • – Remember, Toronto, CAN is just a bridge crossing away from Detroit, USA motor city. They tied the auto-industry ‘knot’ decades ago when large grotesque gas guzzling/emitting cars were all the rage. Then there was all of wide expanse of conquered land to drive across.
        And when the Tar Sands scam became lucrative — we can see what happened.
        OUT

        Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 22, 2016

        Exactly, dt.

        The bold new climate change plan for Ontario leaked by the Globe and Mail a week or so ago hasn’t hit national attention here yet—$7 billion for renewables over four years, with all houses to move to electric heat ASAP(76% currently on gas).

        The newspaper report predicts huge resistance from the combined economic power houses of the auto and oil industries in southern Ontario.

        Reply
  42. – I came across this Copernicus BIOMASS BURNING AEROSOLS site that I don’t remember seeing much of. Though I think Robert may have linked to it.
    When I look at the sky these years of days — I say to myself, “All is aerosol”. (Wet or dry — wet and dry.)

    Copernicus May 20-21, 2016

    Reply
      • Global Dust Aerosols

        Reply
      • – I had a feeling that something sulfate or sulfuric was abundant besides the obvious black carbon. Glad to see it is being monitored.

        Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 21, 2016

        dt, thanks for those images. Another hazy morning here out on the Rock, with brassy sunshine, very unusual for May here, and more like a late July or August morning. What are those sulphate aerosols?

        Reply
      • – Cate, I’m glad you asked. Here’s a copy/paste description of some of the attributes of sulfate aerosols.

        -washington.edu/…/1969e
        An aerosol is a suspension of very fine particles of a solid, or of droplets of a liquid, in a gaseous medium. Fog, smoke, and volcanic dust are naturally occurring examples of aerosols. Sulfates are salts that contain a charged group of sulfur and oxygen atoms: SO , the basic constituent of sulfuric acid.

        ###
        – nasa.gov/centers/langley/news/factsheets/Aerosols

        Human-Made Aerosol [sulfate]

        While a large fraction of human-made aerosols come in the form of smoke from burning tropical forests, the major component comes in the form of sulfate aerosols created by the burning of coal and oil. The concentration of human-made sulfate aerosols in the atmosphere has grown rapidly since the start of the industrial revolution. At current production levels, human-made sulfate aerosols are thought to outweigh the naturally produced sulfate aerosols. The concentration of aerosols is highest in the northern hemisphere where industrial activity is centered….

        The sulfate aerosols also enter clouds where they cause the number of cloud droplets to increase but make the droplet sizes smaller. The net effect is to make the clouds reflect more sunlight than they would without the presence of the sulfate aerosols. Pollution from the stacks of ships at sea has been seen to modify the low-lying clouds above them. These changes in the cloud droplets, due to the sulfate aerosols from the ships, have been seen in pictures from weather satellites as a track through a layer of clouds. In addition to making the clouds more reflective, it is also believed that the additional aerosols cause polluted clouds to last longer and reflect more sunlight than non-polluted clouds.

        – Small soot and sulfate aerosols are seen in these microscope slides. Trapped in the atmosphere, these tiny particles can have an important effect on climate. Credit: Mihály Pósfai, Arizona State University

        Reply
      • – During the dry season, smoke covers wide swaths of the Amazon. Isolated towers of cumulus clouds poke through the dense layer of smoke in this photograph taken from an airplane in 2005. Credit: Ilan Koren, Weismann Instutute

        Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 21, 2016

        dt, thanks for the info on sulfate aerosols. So they actually work to help reflect sunlight? So is this why some studies suggest that if we cut emissions sharply, we might drop the aerosols so quickly (as happened in a limited way with the 9/11 planes) that solar heating could temporarily increase? Bit of a damned if you do or don’t scenario, although it doesn’t seem like something that we’d have to worry about right yet.

        We can smell smoke today, very faintly and intermittently. I’m hoping it’s Fort Mac and other known fires, and not something that’s popped up nearby. Wicked hot here now. 27C in my backyard. We don’t get much hotter than this in the dog days.

        Reply
      • – Besides the give and take of aerosols reflecting/refracting sunlight, etc. it is the sheer scale of the amount of corrosive sulfate and nitrogen/nitric compounds in the atmosphere that concerns me.

        Reply
      • g. orwell

         /  May 22, 2016

        To Cate: re.: “…So is this why some studies suggest that if we cut emissions sharply, we might drop the aerosols so quickly (as happened in a limited way with the 9/11 planes) that solar heating could temporarily increase?”-can’t give citations now, but, my ‘impression’ is that decrease of aerosols wouldn’t lead to temporary, but instead, essentially long term temp. increase.

        Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 22, 2016

        I’m thinking acid rain now, among other kinds of nasty rain, and all its unpleasant outcomes. What we’ve done to the rain—to the “breeze with some smoke in its eye”—was probably the first environmental issue of my generation. This is the classic statement, as fresh today as 50 years ago.

        Reply
  43. Erik Sayle

     /  May 21, 2016

    Fascinating image of worlds shipping routes. Hypnotic. I think ships should be solar powered. They could easily put solar panels on containers or tow a light boat with solar panels. Imagine the carbon footprint of buying things produced far away. Ships, Trucks, Trains etc.

    http://www.vox.com/2016/4/25/11503152/shipping-routes-map

    Reply
  44. wili

     /  May 21, 2016

    http://www.reuters.com/video/2016/05/20 … =368574166

    Pakistan digs mass graves as heat wave looms

    Reply
  45. redskylite

     /  May 21, 2016

    Health !, health of the oceans, planet and health of inhabitants (including homo sapiens), the consequences of climate change are all about health. So I was somewhat reassured to see that The American College of Physicians have issued a position statement emphasizing that climate change poses a catastrophic risk to human health. Who is going to be busier than physicians in the near future ? Politicians ? I don’t think so. Great article in the medical journal “Medscape”, totally ignore the two ignorant feedback comments by the predictable despicable deniers.

    “Physicians Must Respond to Climate Change: An Interview With ACP President Damle”

    To read this article and question and answer session; google/search engine the above text (“Physicians Must Respond to Climate Change: An Interview With ACP President Damle”) and select the Medscape returned news item in the results.

    The American College of Physicians (ACP) recently released a position statement emphasizing that climate change poses a catastrophic risk to human health, including more respiratory and heat-related illness, vector-borne diseases, malnutrition, and behavioral health problems, and stating that physicians have a crucial role to play in fighting it. In support of that position, the College released a toolkit to help physicians both advocate for effective climate change adaptation and mitigation policies and educate their communities. Medscape spoke with Nitin Damle, MD, MS, current ACP president, about the toolkit. Dr Damle is a practicing internist and senior/managing partner at South County Internal Medicine in Wakefield, Rhode Island, and a clinical associate professor of medicine at Alpert Medical School, Brown University. He also spoke about changes that he has initiated in his own practice to address this serious public health issue.
    Medscape: Why should the ACP take on climate change? Some physicians have suggested, given how busy they are with a huge array of clinical issues, that this is not an issue that they can or should tackle. Why do physicians need to take this on?

    Reply
  46. Ryan in New England

     /  May 21, 2016

    Does everybody remember how crazy 2015 was in regards to the rapidly changing environment? Last year already seems like the good ol’ days compared to the total insanity we are experiencing this year. It’s difficult to even keep up with all of the news, and each report or study seems to be dealing with a record setting/unprecedented event. The worst fears of climate scientists from the 80s are all becoming a reality. The Arctic ice cap is currently melting away. The far North is experiencing outrageous fires that didn’t exist decades ago. The forests of the West are being decimated by pine beetles that used to be kept in check by cold temperatures. The glaciers and snowpack are disappearing from mountain regions, a valuable source of freshwater that is vital for agriculture and necessary for communities that have traditionally depended on meltwater from glaciers/snowpack. The world’s corals are dying from extreme bleaching events. Wet bulb temperatures are now approaching 35C. Droughts are becoming severe enough to have profound ramifications for the social fabric of various countries around the world. The oceans are becoming too acidic for the sea life that builds calcium carbonate shells. The Greenland ice sheet is rapidly melting, creating a cool pool in the North Atlantic, with implications for the Gulf Stream and storm creation. Antarctica melt is accelerating and contributing to sea level rise. The sea levels are rising far faster than anybody expected. The strongest storms the world can create have become even stronger. Heatwaves have become more intense. Precipitation has become more intense resulting in unprecedented floods. Mosquito and tick born diseases are spreading to new latitudes.

    Everything that was predicted to happen back in the 1980s has become a reality, along with many unexpected changes. It makes my head want to explode when deniers claim AGW isn’t real. It is, and it’s happening all around us, just open your eyes!

    Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 21, 2016

      Ryan that’s a great litany of grievances to take to court—and I say court, because this is a criminal matter in my view. Here’s the thing: not only did scientists know and predict correctly that climate change would happen and how, in all the ways you have listed, we are now discovering proof that BIg Oil also knew—and pretty much threw all its resources into suppressing or respinning the truth.

      In this decades-long crime of wreaking deliberate harm upon people, other species, habitats, etc, Big Oil has committed a criminal atrocity against the entire biosphere. We must make our governments hold these evil corporations to account immediately.

      Our governments must demand that they make amends in good faith by abandoning FF entirely and putting all their huge resources into renewables on the tightest time schedule possible—on a war-footing type of schedule.

      As you so eloquently demonstrate, we are in a battle for our lives now.

      Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 21, 2016

        PS “Big Oil” is my personal shorthand for fossil fuel interests, so in my mind includes Big Coal, Big Gas, Little Fracking, etc.😀

        Reply
      • Genomik

         /  May 22, 2016

        Actually seems on the surface to be a good stregy. Criminal prosecution and reparations are to build a solar industry asap. They can run part of the solar industry, that should incentivize them.

        Reply
      • Mulga Mumblebrain

         /  May 22, 2016

        Cate, ‘court’ is the word. The Big Denialists from fossil fuels, Rightwing politics, the MSM and other backwaters of human perfidy. MUST face trials for crimes against humanity through environmental destruction one day. I thought that model laws were being drawn up for this purpose some years ago, awaiting enactment in one jurisdiction or another, some day. The thought of condign punishment might induce a few of these to ‘rat out’ their accomplices, aiding the process of revealing, then destroying, this vast criminal enterprise.

        Reply
    • Ryan….I completely agree. My “gut” has been in overdrive since last year. Bad, bad vibes for the past few years…but something even worse this year…can’t even articulate it.

      Reply
      • I am with you on the gut feeling, Suzanne. It was bad last year and has only become more intense.

        Reply
      • Mulga Mumblebrain

         /  May 22, 2016

        I got that feeling, just a little, when I heard of the ‘greenhouse effect’ decades ago, in high-school science, and thought of how the powers that be would react. But I must say they have FAR exceeded even my foreboding over the subsequent decades. Now the feeling is part unsurprise, much sadness, a great deal of inevitability fulfilled and an awful burden of rage.

        Reply
  47. Ryan in New England

     /  May 21, 2016

    Robert, you’re doing an amazing job staying on top of all of the rapidly developing events around the world. Truly a superb job. It’s been hard for me to keep up with at all. Between your posts and all the wonderful comments and links, I’m overwhelmed with information. Thank you so much for providing us with this valuable resource!

    And thank you to all the fellow Scribblers who help to make this place what it is🙂

    Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 21, 2016

      And Ryan, echoing you, and thanking you for remembering to say exactly what I’m sure many of Scribblers feel about this great work Robert is doing.

      Reply
  48. Abel Adamski

     /  May 21, 2016

    A bit of a heads up on Graphene (2 dimensional carbon) – a possible valuable byproduct of Atmospheric CO2 Extraction rather than fuel or CO2 storage.
    http://www.techtimes.com/articles/160013/20160521/graphene-makes-thin-rubber-stronger-and-stretchier.htm

    Graphene is arguably one of the most versatile materials in the world. Previous studies have shown that this carbon-based component can be used to make better water filtration systems, alternatives to batteries, touchscreens on mobile phones and even bionic devices that will be better absorbed by the human body.

    Now, scientists at the University of Manchester in the UK have found that graphene can also be used to improve the strength and elasticity of rubber.

    Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  May 21, 2016

      http://www.techtimes.com/articles/150905/20160418/scientists-create-graphene-based-sensor-that-detects-air-pollution-in-your-home.htm

      A graphene-based sensor that can incredibly detect harmful air pollution at home, has been developed by scientists from the University of Southampton and the Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (JAIST).

      Supposedly, the commercially available environmental sensors today, can detect chemical gases only with concentrations of parts per million (ppm). It cannot detect low concentrations of parts per billion (ppb).

      However, the newly innovated graphene sensor comes equipped with the advanced capability of detecting low concentrations of ppb.

      This capability enables it to detect each and every CO2 molecule, as well as volatile organic compound (VOC) gas molecules that are individually present within the interiors of varied buildings and houses. These molecules are even found on household goods and furniture.

      “In contrast to the commercially available environmental monitoring tools, this extreme sensing technology enables us to realize significant miniaturization, resulting in weight and cost reduction in addition to the remarkable improvement in the detection limit from the ppm levels to the ppb levels.” said Mizuta.

      Reply
  49. Abel Adamski

     /  May 21, 2016

    And for something OT, but fascinating
    http://www.businessinsider.com.au/what-is-blue-and-how-do-we-see-color-2015-2
    No one could see the colour blue until modern times

    Until relatively recently in human history, “blue” didn’t exist.

    As the delightful Radiolab episode “Colours” describes, ancient languages didn’t have a word for blue — not Greek, not Chinese, not Japanese, not Hebrew. And without a word for the colour, there’s evidence that they may not have seen it at all.
    How we realised blue was missing

    In the Odyssey, Homer famously describes the “wine-dark sea.” But why “wine-dark” and not deep blue or green?

    A researcher named Jules Davidoff traveled to Namibia to investigate this, where he conducted an experiment with the Himba tribe, who speak a language that has no word for blue or distinction between blue and green.
    When shown a circle with 11 green squares and one blue, they couldn’t pick out which one was different from the others — or those who could see a difference took much longer and made more mistakes than would make sense to us, who can clearly spot the blue square.

    But the Himba have more words for types of green than we do in English.

    So before blue became a common concept, maybe humans saw it. But it seems they didn’t know they were seeing it.

    If you see something yet can’t see it, does it exist? Did colours come into existence over time? Not technically, but our ability to notice them may have…

    For more fascinating information about colours, including information on how some “super-seeing” women may see colours in the sky that most of us have never dreamed of, check out the full Radiolab episode.

    Reply
    • Actually, I am been told this is mostly an urban legend.

      Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 21, 2016

      More on what “wine-dark” might possibly mean (remembering that Homer was, according to tradition , blind, so his testimony vis a vis colours might be suspect….😉

      http://www.nytimes.com/1983/12/20/science/homer-s-sea-wine-dark.html

      Reply
    • – Here’s something I’ve been holding onto for a while that tells us quite a bit about our biases and failings. It’s a ‘RadioLab’ episode.

      Why is the blue sky white?

      “… Tim pays a visit to the New York Public Library, where a book of German philosophy from the late 19th Century helps reveal a pattern: across all cultures, words for colors appear in stages. And blue always comes last. Jules Davidoff, professor of neuropsychology at the University of London, helps us make sense of the way different people see different colors in the same place. Then Guy Deutscher tells us how he experimented on his daughter Alma when she was just starting to learn the colors of the world around, and above, her.” [He left ‘blue’ out of their common color vocabulary.]

      Near the end of the piece:

      The young daughter repeatedly says, “sky is ‘white’.
      Maybe her young eyes have never seen the sky colored the blue.
      But all the while has seen other things that are blue.
      While dear biased Dad likely has seen a blue sky in his youth but now assumes sky is always blue.
      So daughter gives accurate description of the sky she actually sees.

      But the piece doesn’t consider this aspect — my mind boggles at this.
      Very interesting language and perception acquisition though.

      http://www.radiolab.org/story/211213-sky-isnt-blue/?utm_source=local&utm_medium=treatment&utm_campaign=daMost&utm_content=damostviewed

      Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 21, 2016

        As a painter, I was taught to use three hues of blue for sky: the greenish cerulean for the area closest to the horizon (washing out to pinky white or Naples yellow if desired), cobalt for the sky at about 45 degrees, and the glorious depths of purplish ultramarine for the zenith, for the “long delirious burning blue” that John Geillespie Magee describes in his great sonnet, High Flight. There would be some dispute about the sky here today, with its veils of aerosols, white to milky blue, as if bled of its natural colour.

        Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  May 22, 2016

      Actually I was a tad suspect myself, sapphires and turquoise have been gemstones for a long time, and Stonehenge mark 1 was built with Blue rocks that had to be moved a great distance, so the color blue definitely had significance in the neolithic

      Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 23, 2016

        Interesting thread, Abel. You’ve got me reading up on the history of indigo, which was prized as a dye in ancient Greece and Rome. Perhaps the comparative lack of “blue” references in historical times might simply be a function of the fact that it was a very hard colour to produce with natural dyes, much like purple. In paint, likewise, the pigments for blue, such as lapis lazuli for ultramarine, were rare and expensive until the Industrial Revolution. Could be another reason why “blue” appeared to come late to the colour party.

        Reply
      • Jeremy in Wales/Cymru

         /  May 24, 2016

        It not that ancient peoples did not see blue they just had a more fluid way of describing colour and that was based on the quality of a hue rather than its wavelength. Welsh/Cymraeg certainly had a historically different way of describing colour that can be identified in place names but the pressure of a larger more dominant culture has led to the current anglo viewpoint on colour being accepted. The following from wikipedia expresses in clearer language what has happened:
        “The Welsh word glas is usually translated as “blue”; however, it can also refer, variously, to the color of the sea, of grass, or of silver. The word gwyrdd (a borrowing from Latin viridis) is the standard translation for “green”. In traditional Welsh (and related languages), glas could refer to certain shades of green and grey as well as blue, and llwyd could refer to various shades of grey and brown; however, modern Welsh is tending toward the 11-color Western scheme, restricting glas to blue and using gwyrdd for green, llwyd for grey and brown for brown.”
        Llwyd in Welsh was anglicised to Lloyd and since it now means grey it seems appropriate that Lloyds is known for banking and insurance!

        Reply
  50. Abel Adamski

     /  May 21, 2016

    Nature never ceases to amaze, to sleep IMO indicates an awareness or intelligence

    http://www.inquisitr.com/3118703/do-trees-sleep-birch-trees-recorded-resting-branches-at-night-for-the-first-time/

    For the first time, scientists from Austria, Finland, and Hungary have observed physical changes in trees that correspond to the sleeping patterns in humans, leading to the question: do trees sleep?

    and that other article I posted previously where trees in the forest share their nutrients and electrons between themselves

    Reply
  51. JPL

     /  May 21, 2016

    Because science…

    Portland school board bans climate change-denying materials

    Nice work, Portland!

    Reply
    • Yes, indeed!

      ‘The resolution passed Tuesday evening calls for the school district to get rid of textbooks or other materials that cast doubt on whether climate change is occurring and that the activity of human beings is responsible. The resolution also directs the superintendent and staff to develop an implementation plan for “curriculum and educational opportunities that address climate change and climate justice in all Portland Public Schools.

      Bill Bigelow, a former PPS teacher and current curriculum editor of Rethinking Schools, a magazine devoted to education issues, worked with 350PDX and other environmental groups to present the resolution.

      “A lot of the text materials are kind of thick with the language of doubt, and obviously the science says otherwise,” Bigelow says, accusing the publishing industry to bowing to pressure from fossil fuels companies. “We don’t want kids in Portland learning material courtesy of the fossil fuel industry.”
      – portlandtribune.com/sl/307848-185832-portland-school-board-bans-

      Reply
  52. Eric Thurston

     /  May 21, 2016

    This is a bit OT but I think it relates to the issues of geo-engineering and unintended consequences. I find it rather chilling.

    http://grist.org/article/you-better-learn-about-this-new-technology-before-it-transforms-the-world/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter&utm_campaign=weekly-static

    Reply
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  56. Trees near center of frame are bending toward the sucking force of the firestorm.
    That thick black is likely due to the enormous amount of rapidly combusted biomass (and terpenes, etc.)

    Reply
  57. June

     /  May 21, 2016

    JAXA/IJIS arctic sea ice extent for May 20th: 10,989,954 square km

    From commenter Magma at Neven’s ASIF:
    Earliest date for IJIS sea ice extent to drop below 11,000,000 km2

    1. May 20, 2016
    2. May 29, 2015
    3. June 3, 2011

    Average date
    2003-2015: June 9
    2000s: June 15
    1990s: June 24
    1980s: July 3

    http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,230.2300.html

    Reply
  58. Reply
  59. – USA California
    Oil industry money flowing into Silicon Valley state Senate race

    A coalition of oil companies, including Chevron, Valero and Tesoro, this month contributed $339,000 to fund TV ads and website work for Assemblywoman Nora Campos, D-San Jose, who is challenging state Sen. Jim Beall, D-San Jose, for the 15th District seat. The industry group, which calls itself the Coalition to Restore California’s Middle Class, is seeking to oust Beall.

    In response, San Francisco billionaire financier and environmental philanthropist Tom Steyer on Thursday donated $500,000 to fund efforts to support Beall. Radio ads will begin Monday.

    http://www.mercurynews.com/science/ci_29918520/oil-industry-money-flowing-into-san-jose-state

    Reply
    • – Colorado – Fracking

      Reply
    • ‘California – Oil industry money flowing into Silicon Valley state Senate race”
      This, after seditious and ruthless Republicans packed the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

      Reply
  60. Cate

     /  May 21, 2016

    Meanwhile, back at Fort Mac: the post-apocalyptic phase continues as bears, possibly “emboldened” and feeling “entitled”, roam the streets in search of food.

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/black-bears-fort-mac-1.3593045

    Reply
  61. – Via climatehawk1
    Straight to the heart of the matter.

    Reply
    • Thanks, DT! I met at least a couple of these folks Wednesday at a climate seminar at Dartmouth sponsored by NextGen NH. Nice to see them doing some additional outreach. Awareness is definitely growing around here, though as always, too slowly.

      Reply
      • – Good, ch1.
        I suppose we should sort of ‘date stamp’ Keeling Curve CO2 readings on all birth certificates at time of birth.
        Gad!

        Reply
      • Kevin Jones

         /  May 22, 2016

        Yeah, dt. In 2-3 years some of us will be turning +100. (1950 = ~ 312ppm)

        Reply
    • Hi DT, Kevin-
      Yes, when I was born, it was about 315 ppm. Yes just a few years to turning 100. Perhaps during the next El Nino year? Or sooner?

      Reply
  62. Colorado Bob

     /  May 21, 2016

    Indian media reported 16 deaths in Rajasthan, where nearly 17,000 villages were facing water shortages.

    Heatstroke has claimed 109 lives in southern Andhra Pradesh state, where pre-monsoon showers have broken the hot spell, a state government statement said.

    The intense heat wave in western Gujarat state has claimed 17 lives this month, with temperatures touching 118 F.

    http://www.pressherald.com/2016/05/21/indias-extreme-heat-a-mortal-threat/

    Reply
  63. Colorado Bob

     /  May 22, 2016

    Record-Breaking Heat Grips India Amid Rash of Farmer Suicides

    One agricultural region, Marathwada, located in the Indian state of Maharashtra, saw some 400 suicides through mid-May this year, according to a report published on Tuesday in The Indian Express newspaper. Over the past 16 months, 1,548 distressed farmers have been reported dead from suicide in the region, the paper said.

    http://abcnews.go.com/International/record-breaking-heat-grips-india-amid-rash-farmer/story?id=39263639

    Reply
  64. Colorado Bob

     /  May 22, 2016

    Sorry but the Daily Mail put this up first –

    Why sea ice in Antarctica has INCREASED while the Arctic melts: Nasa study reveals how climate change has affected the poles

    Nasa combined data on sea temperature, land form and ocean depth
    Found geology and Southern Ocean are responsible for the difference
    These influence the strength and direction of winds and ocean currents
    Winds drive formation of Antarctica’s sea ice cover and help sustain it

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3601710/Why-sea-ice-Antarctica-INCREASED-Arctic-melts-Nasa-study-reveals-climate-change-affected-poles.html#ixzz49L98dxCe

    Reply
    • Cute. They print a (presumably) factual article while emphasizing the denier meme with capital letters in the headline. My dim recollection from learning about newspapers as a cub reporter several eons ago is that about half the readers only read the headline …

      Reply
    • – A very detailed set of maps — will keep it handy.
      That tight area between Antarctica and Cape Horn is most intriguing in that it is also where surface winds are most energetic.

      – worldatlas.com/aatlas/infopag
      ‘Cape Horn, the southernmost tip of South America, remain a maritime legend to this day, as sailing around this remote point and then through the Drake Passage was (and is) one of the most challenging nautical routes on the planet. ‘

      Shortening sail: Cape Horn.

      – Garthsnaid off Cape Horn photo by Alexander Harper Turner, ~1920
      – pinterest.com

      Reply
  65. Colorado Bob

     /  May 22, 2016

    Beaufort final update

    This isn’t a final update as such, because I will certainly be mentioning events in the Beaufort Sea in upcoming ASI updates. But it is the last in a series of blog posts I have written (one, two and three) about this unprecedented event that started over 6 weeks ago and has led to a heavily cracked ice pack and a huge amount of open water on the American side of the Arctic.

    The event has received some attention on other blogs and in the mainstream media. Just yesterday this image was posted on NASA’s Visible Earth website, comparing this year to 2015 and 2014 (mind you, the Beaufort Sea opened up early last year as well):

    http://neven1.typepad.com/blog/2016/05/beaufort-final-update.html?cid=6a0133f03a1e37970b01b7c86063c4970b#comment-form

    Reply
  66. Colorado Bob

     /  May 22, 2016

    Pan–ice-sheet glacier terminus change in East Antarctica reveals sensitivity of Wilkes Land to sea-ice changes

    Abstract

    The dynamics of ocean-terminating outlet glaciers are an important component of ice-sheet mass balance. Using satellite imagery for the past 40 years, we compile an approximately decadal record of outlet-glacier terminus position change around the entire East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) marine margin. We find that most outlet glaciers retreated during the period 1974–1990, before switching to advance in every drainage basin during the two most recent periods, 1990–2000 and 2000–2012. The only exception to this trend was in Wilkes Land, where the majority of glaciers (74%) retreated between 2000 and 2012. We hypothesize that this anomalous retreat is linked to a reduction in sea ice and associated impacts on ocean stratification, which increases the incursion of warm deep water toward glacier termini. Because Wilkes Land overlies a large marine basin, it raises the possibility of a future sea level contribution from this sector of East Antarctica.

    This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution license, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

    http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/2/5/e1501350

    Reply
  67. Colorado Bob

     /  May 22, 2016

    The legacy of “An Inconvenient Truth,” explained by 16 really smart people

    How profoundly did An Inconvenient Truth reshape the public understanding of climate change? The short answer: a lot. To mark the movie’s 10-year anniversary, Grist asked leading policymakers, advocates, and personalities to reflect on the film’s impact and legacy.

    Link

    Reply
  68. Andy in SD

     /  May 22, 2016

    Fires in northwestern Australia

    Reply
  69. Jay M

     /  May 22, 2016

    RE: antarctic seafloor source of ice mass fragility
    build your villa on Vinson Massif, 16000 alt and cross your fingers

    Reply
  70. – USA – Eastern Kansas:

    Reply
  71. – Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting:
    May 21, 2016

    Warming Far Outpacing Climate Action as UN Negotiators Meet in Bonn

    BONN–The opening of the United Nation’s annual mid-year climate conference in Bonn Germany offered up dramatically contrasting messages this week: national leaders and political negotiators congratulated themselves, proudly celebrating the “historic Paris Agreement,” while environmentalists warned somberly that the Earth is far worse off than most people realize, with the political will for climate action still falling far behind the fearfully rapid pace of warming.
    http://pulitzercenter.org/reporting/warming-far-outpacing-climate-action-un-negotiators-meet-bonn

    Reply
  72. – New York Times front page photo: “Beating the Heat” in India but the dead are also beating the heat but you wouldn’t know that here. A ‘stunning’ photo yet the brutal conditions are hopefully to be found elsewhere.
    Above the fold: the photo is surrounded by political Welfare, NRA/Trump, Israel/Gaza type pieces. Opioid use the USA is the bigger story yet no mention of the reasons so many Americans reject their present reality for an opioid fog.

    Reply
  73. redskylite

     /  May 22, 2016

    Another forest ablaze in far eastern Russia –

    This is the unnerving scene on a highway linking the city of Chita with Khabarovsk and Vladivostok in the Far East of Russia. Seasonal fires are raging, posing an acute threat to motorists.

    Eyewitness Valeria told local Zab TV: ‘Cars were stopping. The oncoming traffic was not visible at all. We tried to drive very slowly. Then we saw a fuel truck. It rushed through this hell at full speed, with the knowledge that any spark can destroy it.

    ‘The driver obviously feared for his life. It was like hell. A terrible feeling. It was very scary. We saw three forest patrol vehicles. They just stood there and the fire epicentres were right behind them. But they could not do anything. No one helped them.’

    http://siberiantimes.com/other/others/news/n0682-beware-smoke-forest-fires-pose-terrifying-traffic-hazard-in-siberia/

    Reply
  74. Spike

     /  May 22, 2016

    This will make Europe’s position very difficult – already we have far too many countries with active extreme right parties threatening our social cohesion, feeding on the current situation re refugees.

    “Climate change will significantly worsen the living conditions in the Middle East and in North Africa,” says Professor Jos Lelieveld, one of the lead authors of the research.

    “In future, the climate in large parts of the Middle East and North Africa could change in such a manner that the very existence of its inhabitants is in jeopardy.”

    Days of 46C will occur five times more often than was the case at the turn of this century. By 2050, the number of summer days with peak temperatures – perhaps up to 50C – will double to about 80 days per year. Meanwhile the barometer is unlikely to drop below 30 degrees at night.

    Plus 40C days will become the norm rather than the exception.

    http://www.middleeasteye.net/columns/soaring-temperatures-make-much-middle-east-north-africa-unlivable-755427127

    Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  May 22, 2016
      Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  May 22, 2016

      http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2016/may/22/africans-face-famine-after-crops-fail

      50 million Africans face hunger after crops fail again

      UN fears that food aid will not arrive in time to help people of ravaged countries

      The severest El Niño in 30 years was expected to tail off in the next month as hot equatorial waters in the Pacific returned to normal temperatures, but its effects would be felt for many more months, said the World Food Programme. Stephen O’Brien, the UN’s humanitarian chief, said: “The collective impact of the El Niño phenomenon has created one of the world’s biggest disasters for millions of people, yet this crisis is receiving little attention.

      “The numbers are staggering. One million children in eastern and southern Africa alone are severely acutely malnourished, and across southern Africa 32 million people need assistance and that figure is likely to increase.” The UN predicts that food will start running out on a large scale by July, with the crisis peaking between December and next April.

      Reply
    • Re Europe’s ‘position’:

      Reply
      • Mblanc

         /  May 25, 2016

        Have you read the article DT. I mean, the Daily Caller as a source, with contributions from a DC intern?

        I’ve unwittingly posted some pretty dodgy links here myself, so I know its dead easy to do. You post so much good stuff that I can’t help feeling this slipped through the net.

        Reply
      • Mulga Mumblebrain

         /  May 26, 2016

        What about methane emissions, Svein?

        Reply
  75. Abel Adamski

     /  May 22, 2016

    The Republicans are on top of it all, they got the i’s dotted and the t’s crossed.

    http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/may/21/texas-republican-party-gay-grammar-wording

    Texas Republican party inadvertently suggests most Texans are gay

    Grammar trouble in state party’s platform appears to say ‘homosexual behavior’ is ‘shared by majority of Texans’

    Reply
  76. Abel Adamski

     /  May 22, 2016

    http://www.thesundayleader.lk/2016/05/22/not-just-climate-change-and-global-warming/

    From Sri Lanka

    To common a pattern worldwide, the Repubs even want to trash the EPA in the US and The OZ LNP seek to reduce environmental laws and regulations

    Reply
  77. Via my dear wife:
    (I don’t recall a link to this WU.)

    Arctic Sea Ice Goes Far Beyond Record Low Extent for May

    By: Bob Henson , 4:01 PM GMT on May 20, 2016


    On Thursday, the fire covered some 1.2 million acres–twice the size of Rhode Island–and was beginning to extend into Saskatchewan. As noted by blogger Robert Scribbler, this fire already has spanned more area than all of Alberta’s fires in 2015 combined. Soot from the Fort McMurray fire, and from major wildfires burning across parts of Siberia, could exacerbate the loss of sea ice by falling atop the ice and darkening the surface, thus increasing its ability to absorb sunlight.

    https://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/arctic-sea-ice-goes-far-beyond-record-low-extent-for-may

    Reply
  78. NA – 7 day outlook — A bit of latitudinal reach to the north in places.

    Reply
  79. – High Country News:

    Past and present fauna
    Writers bear witness to the “Age of Loneliness,” in the midst of a mass extinction.

    Some environmentalists and scientists have begun calling our current epoch the “Anthropocene” to acknowledge the gross changes humans have induced in global ecosystems. But the biologist and author Edward O. Wilson has proposed an alternative name: “Eremocene,” or the Age of Loneliness, a name that alludes to the fact that we are in the midst of a sixth mass extinction, one for which humans are primarily responsible. The impending loss of so many of our fellow creatures means that humanity faces what can best be described as a kind of “species loneliness.” Regardless of what we call this new epoch, there are witnesses emerging — writers attuned to their environment — who are keenly aware of the implications of species loss, and who vow to bear witness to the songs of past beings and savor the life that remains.

    http://www.hcn.org/issues/48.8/past-and-present-fauna?utm_campaign=trueAnthem:+Trending+Content&utm_content=5741e73604d3017de94d22e6&utm_medium=trueAnthem&utm_source=twitter

    Reply
    • Edward O. Wilson writes eloquently and with passion on how humans have exacted such a toll on the planet. The events now unfolding I don’t believe can be halted. The time to act was 50 years ago around the time of the fist Earth Day in 1970. Nothing much was done and now, here we are. The population has almost doubled and carbon pollution continues it’s escalating relentless rise, with govts unwilling to do what’s needed to give a decent long term outcome. We scream, nobody in position of power does anything. The climate talks sound good, but again don’t really do much good. Sorry my outlook isn’t as good as Wilson’s, but we’ll all see soon as the planet continues to warm perhaps to another mass extinction taking humans along with it.

      Reply
      • Mulga Mumblebrain

         /  May 26, 2016

        John Allen, it could explain the ‘Silence of the Universe’. Intelligence, if I can use that term in relation to Homo destructans, may indeed be more dangerous than we imagined, if there is a wide range of psyches among the ‘intelligent’ species, encompassing types that we label ‘psychopaths’. Whenever I read another ranting denialist diatribe in a local Murdoch rag, our predicament seems eminently understandable.

        Reply
  80. – USA – Colorado River – Glen Canyon Dam

    Unplugging the Colorado River
    Could the end be near for one of the West’s biggest dams?
    May, 20.

    Climate change is fundamentally altering the environment, making the West hotter and drier. There is less water to store, and few remaining good sites for new dams.

    Many of the West’s big dams, meanwhile, have proved far less efficient and effective than their champions had hoped. They have altered ecosystems and disrupted fisheries. They have left taxpayers saddled with debt.

    And in what is perhaps the most egregious failure for a system intended to conserve water, many of the reservoirs created by these dams lose hundreds of billions of gallons of precious water each year to evaporation and, sometimes, to leakage underground. These losses increasingly undercut the longstanding benefits of damming big rivers like the Colorado, and may now be making the West’s water crisis worse.
    http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/05/22/opinion/unplugging-the-colorado-river.html

    Reply
  81. Brian Brettschneider ‏@Climatologist49 2h2 hours ago

    Highest temps in Alaska in 2016 through May 20th. #akwx (corrected for typo)

    Reply
  82. – “In our society, language can be everything.”

    – I’m sure glad they’re paying attention to something, in the past, I’ve tried to argue.
    Individual deliberate actions by humans at the root of so much that confronts us.
    The acceptance of gross misstatements like the ones this article are speaking of undoubtedly made it very easy for climate denials to set in.
    – And we keep adding more cars/trucks with more distractions into a finite landscape.

    ‘It’s No Accident: Advocates Want to Speak of Car ‘Crashes’ Instead’

    That is the position of a growing number of safety advocates, including grass-roots groups, federal officials and state and local leaders across the country. They are campaigning to change a 100-year-old mentality that they say trivializes the single most common cause of traffic incidents: human error.

    “When you use the word ‘accident,’ it’s like, ‘God made it happen,’ ” Mark Rosekind, the head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said at a driver safety conference this month at the Harvard School of Public Health.

    “In our society,” he added, “language can be everything.”

    Almost all crashes stem from driver behavior like drinking, distracted driving and other risky activity. About 6 percent are caused by vehicle malfunctions, weather and other factors.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/23/science/its-no-accident-advocates-want-to-speak-of-car-crashes-instead.html?smid=tw-nytimesscience&smtyp=cur&_r=0

    Reply
    • wili

       /  May 23, 2016

      And it’s more than even that. Cars and trucks and car/trucks are lethal weapons. When you are driving one around at anything more than about 5 mph, you essentially doing the same thing as walking around with a loaded shotgun pointed at everyone’s mid driff with your finger on the trigger…if you happen to pull the trigger because you are suddenly shocked or pushed or distracted or you trip…can we really call that an ‘accident.’ Most people wouldn’t.

      Reply
      • Yeah wili, and it all shows how much that willfully dangerous behavior can be somehow socially tolerable and/or acceptable.
        Not to mention how many are dependent on climate disrupting fossil fuels — all the way from air pollution to GHG.

        Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 23, 2016

      When I went to live in the UK, I noticed right away that car accidents were always called “crashes” in news reports. It sounded more shocking than “accident”, so I put it down to either the necessity to save headline space or the British press’s habit of sensationalism. Never thought of it this way, that that one word can minimise our ability to blame human error. Makes sense.

      Reply
      • Mblanc

         /  May 25, 2016

        Here in the UK we have a special type of crime, called causing death by dangerous driving, as opposed to say, manslaughter or murder, which are normally used when causing the death of another person.

        Its widely regarded as the best way to kill someone, because of the lesser sentence one can expect. Is there a similar double-think in the US?

        Reply
  83. – A bit more here:
    (Recklessness in one’s community leads to being reckless with the climate.)

    Preliminary estimates by the nonprofit National Safety Council show deadly crashes rose by nearly 8 percent in 2015 over the previous year, killing about 38,000 people.

    Dr. Rosekind has added his voice to a growing chorus of advocates who say that the persistence of crashes — driving is the most dangerous activity for most people — can be explained in part by widespread apathy toward the issue. Changing semantics is meant to shake people, particularly policy makers, out of the implicit nobody’s-fault attitude that the word “accident” conveys, they said.

    … accident is simply the wrong word. “I’m betting it’s one of the most commonly used words that is used inappropriately,”.

    Reply
  84. Cate

     /  May 23, 2016

    Starlings have arrived in Tuktoyaktuk.

    Well, okay, a starling. Just one. So far.

    This is the first, but knowing starlings, I reckon it’s unlikely to be the last.

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/north/european-starling-sighting-tuktoyaktuk-1.3590399

    Reply
  85. Ryan in New England

     /  May 23, 2016

    bill McKibben on why the attempt by shareholders to get Exxon-Mobil to reduce emissions is a waste of time, and why divestment is the only sane strategy. As always, McKibben has a great perspective on the topic.

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/20/exxon-shareholders-climate-change-reform-divest

    Reply
    • Mulga Mumblebrain

       /  May 26, 2016

      Ryan, the simple fact is that fossil fuel ‘assets’ as entered in the accounts of the extractive, refining and utilising corporations, and their banks, and the various investors in these ‘assets’, represent tens of trillions of US dollars. Reducing their value to near enough to zero, as decarbonisation requires, would crash ‘Free Market’ capitalism, unless undertaken on a time-scale of decades that is incompatible with averting a climate destabilisation Holocaust. So, any and all attempts to use ‘Market mechanisms’ or work with the ‘men in suits’ MUST fail. There is going to be a crash of Free Market capitalism one way or another. Either one where humanity survives, or one where it does not.

      Reply
  86. Ryan in New England

     /  May 23, 2016

    Some good news on the renewable energy front, Portugal ran for four days on just renewables.

    Portugal kept its lights on with renewable energy alone for four consecutive days last week in a clean energy milestone revealed by data analysis of national energy network figures.

    Electricity consumption in the country was fully covered by solar, wind and hydro power in an extraordinary 107-hour run that lasted from 6.45am on Saturday 7 May until 5.45pm the following Wednesday, the analysis says.

    News of the zero emissions landmark comes just days after Germany announced that clean energy had powered almost all its electricity needs on Sunday 15 May, with power prices turning negative at several times in the day – effectively paying consumers to use it.

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/18/portugal-runs-for-four-days-straight-on-renewable-energy-alone

    Reply
  87. Greg

     /  May 23, 2016

    Robert, in case it was missed,a shoutout from Jeff Masters in his new piece ‘Arctic Sea Ice Goes Far Beyond Record Low Extent for May’, “As noted by blogger Robert Scribbler…”
    https://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/arctic-sea-ice-goes-far-beyond-record-low-extent-for-may

    Reply
  88. Greg

     /  May 23, 2016

    The Fort McMurray wildfire remains out of control. It is estimated to cover 522,892 hectares, including 741 hectares in Saskatchewan. There are 17 additional fires in Alberta.

    There are 1,880 firefighters, 104 helicopters, 295 pieces of heavy equipment and 29 air tankers currently battling the fires (all 18).

    Oil sands companies losing up to $50 million a day as fires rage: analysts
    (cRRKampen, I know your reaction already . . . . )

    Reply
  89. – Up north – AK:
    But still there is still so much RED-ORANGE-BROWN warmth in coastal AK, and up and around the top.

    Brian Brettschneider ‏@Climatologist49 3h3 hours ago

    The 6-10 day outlook from CPC has some blue in Alaska for the first time since March 14th! #akwx

    Reply
  90. – Coal Dust in Cascadia – Marine and terrestrial – Many aspects to consider.

    Coal Dust Threatens Cascadia’s Water and Wildlife
    A look at the science.

    On the West Coast, proposed coal terminal developments would potentially threaten some of the North America’s most iconic and sensitive bodies of water, including the Fraser River, the Salish Sea, the Columbia River, and San Francisco Bay.

    … based on earlier research, that “surfactants,” the chemical adhesives commonly used to reduce coal dust escaping from trains, can actually boost the ability of coal pollutants to enter the environment. The Washington State Department of Natural Resources raises similar concerns about surfactants.

    … coal may pose a less severe chemical hazard in the marine environment than in the terrestrial one. They note that coal has “well documented” physical effects similar to other suspended or deposited sediments. It abrades, smothers, dims light, and clogs both breathing and feeding organs.

    Coal’s chemical impacts are also cause for concern. One study in Canada found that coal in the water can be a source of acidity, salinity, trace metals, hydrocarbons, chemical oxygen demand, and potentially macronutrients. In fact, Washington’s Department of Natural Resources says that materials in coal can react with seawater to produce “localized ocean acidification.”
    http://www.sightline.org/2016/05/12/coal-dust-threatens-cascadias-water-and-wildlife/

    Reply
    • – Below: I have seen this same sort of thing in Santa Barbara, Ca due to power blowers blasting soot covered traffic dust up onto the undersides of leaves and branches — where it adheres. All other locations show the black on topside surfaces. Power blowers have to go — never to seen again.

      – Coal on plants

      ‘In South Africa, for example, a 2004 study found that coal dust from the Richards Bay Coal Terminal harms local mangrove trees and related ecosystems by impairing the trees’ ability to photosynthesize. The researchers noted: “…[coal] dust on the undersurface of leaves is not removed by wind, rain, or even physical washing. The undersurface of the leaves, as well as the rough surfaces of twigs, branches, and trunk, tend to accumulate dust and appear black.’

      Reply
  91. – There’s some revealing info and photos here;

    These Aerial Photos Explain Why Europe Has Such a Lower Carbon Footprint Than the U.S.

    The average European has about half the carbon footprint of the average American, but that isn’t necessarily because the average German is trying to be greener than someone in Montana. In part, it’s a function of sprawl; American suburbs have a hefty footprint largely because of long communities and oversized houses.

    In a new series of aerial photos, commissioned by Yale 360, photographer Alex MacLean flew over Europe to document land use patterns, along with the continent’s transformation to renewable energy.

    http://pulitzercenter.org/reporting/these-aerial-photos-explain-why-europe-has-such-lower-carbon-footprint-us?utm_content=bufferb74bc&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

    Reply
  92. Reply
  93. Ryan in New England

     /  May 23, 2016

    East Antarctica, the part of Antarctica that many assume is less vulnerable to warming, is melting faster than expected. And a particular glacier is more susceptible to melt than previously suspected, and can significantly raise sea levels once a critical threshold is reached.

    “The evidence coming together is painting a picture of East Antarctica being much more vulnerable to a warming environment than we thought,” said Martin Siegert, co-director of the Grantham Institute at Imperial College London. “This is something we should worry about.

    “Totten Glacier is losing ice now, and the warm ocean water that is causing this loss has the potential to also push the glacier back to an unstable place.”

    http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/antarctic_glacier_melt_could_raise_sea_levels_by_3_meters_20160521

    Reply
  94. Ryan in New England

     /  May 23, 2016

    Jeff Masters has a good piece (with charts/graphs) on the record low Arctic sea ice. The part I enjoyed the most was this…

    On Thursday, the fire covered some 1.2 million acres–twice the size of Rhode Island–and was beginning to extend into Saskatchewan. As noted by blogger Robert Scribbler, this fire already has spanned more area than all of Alberta’s fires in 2015 combined. Soot from the Fort McMurray fire, and from major wildfires burning across parts of Siberia, could exacerbate the loss of sea ice by falling atop the ice and darkening the surface, thus increasing its ability to absorb sunlight.

    I’ve always said Robert does great reporting/writing, but knowing you’re blog is read (and linked to) by pillars of the meteorological/scientific community is a compliment far greater than any I could hope to provide.

    Robert, you do important work and have a far reaching impact that touches every corner of the globe. Keep it up, buddy!🙂

    https://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/arctic-sea-ice-goes-far-beyond-record-low-extent-for-may

    Reply
    • Ryan in New England

       /  May 23, 2016

      Oh no, I just noticed the Masters blog was already mentioned and linked to! Sorry everybody. I’ve been really busy and haven’t had the time to stay caught up with all of the comments and links. The amount of information provided here, both by Robert and all the wonderful comments, is hard to keep up when you’re like me and read every comment and click on every link.

      Reply
  95. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    Permafrost thaw dumps climate-warming soil into Arctic Ocean: study

    That’s according to a new study from the University of Alberta which uncovered a 39 per cent increase in dissolved soil flowing from the Mackenzie River into the Arctic Ocean………. “We know that that thaw depth is deepening at many places throughout the Arctic, and we also know that the prevalence of these slumps is increasing in magnitude as well,” said the study’s lead author Suzanne Tank from the University of Alberta in a May 13 news release.

    Tank said “we have good evidence here to say that changes in climate and permafrost degradation” are responsible for the increased flow of carbon found in the topmost layer of soil, which is rich in organic matter thanks to plant growth.

    Usually this carbon is locked up in permafrost, but with permafrost thaw accelerating, more of this carbon getting unearthed.

    http://www.nunatsiaqonline.ca/stories/article/65674permafrost_thaw_dumps_climate-warming_soil_into_arctic_ocean_mackenz/

    Reply
    • – Good find – it makes sense. It’s also another observable trail of our altering of our eco-sphere. One that we will regret.

      Reply
  96. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    Here’s how Notley NDP cuts to pine beetle budget helped FUEL Fort McMurray fire

    In Alberta, it’s estimated that the mountain pine beetle will kill 40% to 70% of the pine tree population in the Grande Prairie to Slave Lake region will die as a result of the infestation in that region. As we know, the NDP cut the wildfire budget by $15 million, but here’s what else was cut – the budget to keep the pine beetle population under control. NDP MLA Eric Rosendahl confirmed that $2 million was taken from that project.

    The NDP are responsible for significant cuts to the wildfire budget, even though they were fully aware that they were an issue, especially since they partially blamed overspending by $300 million on wildfires last year for not being able to balance the budget.

    http://www.therebel.media/here_s_how_notley_ndp_cuts_to_pine_beetle_budget_added_fuel_for_the_fire

    Reply
  97. Abel Adamski

     /  May 23, 2016

    Anyone surprised. ?
    http://www.politico.com/story/2016/05/donald-trump-climate-change-golf-course-223436

    The billionaire, who called global warming a hoax, warns of its dire effects in his company’s application to build a sea wall.

    Donald Trump says he is “not a big believer in global warming.” He has called it “a total hoax,” “bullshit” and “pseudoscience.”

    But he is also trying to build a sea wall designed to protect one of his golf courses from “global warming and its effects.”

    The New York billionaire is applying for permission to erect a coastal protection works to prevent erosion at his seaside golf resort, Trump International Golf Links & Hotel Ireland, in County Clare.

    A permit application for the wall, filed by Trump International Golf Links Ireland and reviewed by POLITICO, explicitly cites global warming and its consequences — increased erosion due to rising sea levels and extreme weather this century — as a chief justification for building the structure.

    Reply
  98. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    India braces for more heat after temperatures break records

    The number of heat waves had nearly doubled in the 10 years to 2010 from earlier decades, the meteorological office said. The number in the last six years had also risen from prior to the year 2000, but identifying clear trends requires more data.

    http://in.reuters.com/article/india-heatwave-temperature-monsoon-rain-idINKCN0YE1CB

    Reply
    • Spike

       /  May 23, 2016

      More evidence of the developing Early Anthropocene Climatic Optimum. Mid-Anthropocene Thermal Maximum here we come.

      Reply
  99. Abel Adamski

     /  May 23, 2016

    http://www.vox.com/2016/5/23/11742006/game-of-thrones-season-6-episode-5-white-walkers-climate-change

    Interesting, Game of Thrones is actually about Climate Change and our response

    Reply
  100. – Madness — Total and complete madness planned at Tokyo Olympics — the so called ‘sporting’ event dominated by corporate logo $$$ and millisecond athleticism.

    – show stopper
    A man-made meteor shower launched by satellite could open the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo

    Japanese research company ALE is bidding to create an artificial meteor shower for the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Tokyo in 2020. The project, Sky Canvas, goes beyond your average fireworks display: It involves launching a satellite into space “loaded with about 500 to 1,000 ‘source particles’ that become ingredients for a shooting star,” the company explains.

    The company, which is aiming to launch its first satellite in the second half of 2017, outlines how the project works:

    When the satellite stabilizes in orbit, we will discharge the particles using a specially designed device on board. The particles will travel about one-thirds of the way around the Earth and enter the atmosphere. It will then begin plasma emission and become a shooting star.
    http://qz.com/689794/a-man-made-meteor-shower-launched-by-satellite-could-open-the-2020-olympic-games-in-tokyo/?utm_source=YPL

    Reply
    • Mulga Mumblebrain

       /  May 26, 2016

      dt, it sounds like ‘The Day of the Triffids’. I, if God spares me, for one, will not be watching. In any case, Fukushima might blow again before 2020. I mean TEPCO have no idea what is going on, so I won’t be surprised any way.

      Reply
  101. – Royal Society Publishing;
    0523

    Increasing western US forest wildfire activity: sensitivity to changes in the timing of spring

    Abstract

    Prior work shows western US forest wildfire activity increased abruptly in the mid-1980s. Large forest wildfires and areas burned in them have continued to increase over recent decades, with most of the increase in lightning-ignited fires. Northern US Rockies forests dominated early increases in wildfire activity, and still contributed 50% of the increase in large fires over the last decade. However, the percentage growth in wildfire activity in Pacific northwestern and southwestern US forests has rapidly increased over the last two decades. Wildfire numbers and burned area are also increasing in non-forest vegetation types. Wildfire activity appears strongly associated with warming and earlier spring snowmelt…
    http://rstb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/371/1696/20150178

    Reply
    • – ‘The Royal Society was founded in 1660 to promote the new experimental philosophy of that time, embodying the principles of Sir Francis Bacon. Henry Oldenburg was appointed as the first secretary to the Society and he was also the first editor of the Society’s journal Philosophical Transactions. The first issue of Philosophical Transactions appeared in March 1665 and featured Oldenburg’s correspondence with leading European scientists. In its formative years Isaac Newton had seventeen papers published in the journal…’

      Reply
  102. – From Dahr Jamail’s latest article – words I and others here have spoken: “Changes that normally occur over a matter of centuries are transpiring over decades.”

    Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Concentration Has Passed the Point of No Return
    Monday, 23 May 2016


    “Changes that normally occur over a matter of centuries are transpiring over decades,” according to the report. “The Nisqually Glacier, for example, one of Rainier’s 28 named glaciers, has been disappearing since 1983. It’s currently at a historic minimum and still shrinking – more than 3 feet every 10 days.”

    Paul Kennard, a National Park Service geomorphologist, said of the rapidity of the decline of the glaciers, “If you look at it on a graph, it’s like a Ping-Pong ball just fell off the edge of the table.”

    And things have only sped up since then, both in terms of hotter temperatures as well as loss of ice on the Pacific Northwest iconic mountain.
    http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/36133-atmospheric-carbon-dioxide-concentration-has-passed-the-point-of-no-return

    Reply

    • And with the amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide increasing, temperatures are increasing right alongside it, and with higher temperatures comes a lowering of the oxygen content of most of the global oceans before 2040.

      Yes, that is as scary as it sounds. According to a recent press release from the National Center for Atmospheric Research, a reduction in the amount of dissolved oxygen in the oceans due to ACD is already happening, and will become widespread before 2040.

      Matthew Long, the lead author of the study that this press release is based on, stated, bluntly:

      Loss of oxygen in the ocean is one of the serious side effects of a warming atmosphere, and a major threat to marine life. Since oxygen concentrations in the ocean naturally vary depending on variations in winds and temperature at the surface, it’s been challenging to attribute any deoxygenation to climate change. This new study tells us when we can expect the impact from climate change to overwhelm the natural variability.

      The press release added, “Scientists know that a warming climate can be expected to gradually sap the ocean of oxygen.” This is literally making it harder for fish to breathe, as well as exacerbating the effects of ACD and ocean acidification.

      Reply
    • June

       /  May 23, 2016

      This is something that is almost never mentioned in the MSM, so most people just don’t get it. Thus the endlessley repeated meme that ‘the climate has always changed, it’s no big deal.’ They seem to have no appreciation that the current rate of change leaves no time for the adaptation that changes on a geological time frame allow. It’s so maddening.

      Reply
      • June

         /  May 23, 2016

        Oops…meant to reply regarding Dahr Jamail’s article.

        Reply
      • Mulga Mumblebrain

         /  May 26, 2016

        June, I feel no regret that the morons are destroying themselves, but I get very angry when I contemplate how their malignant, ignorant, imbecility is wiping out the rest of us and most life on the planet.

        Reply
    • – And something relating to Bob’s permafrost silt link:

      Positive feedback loops have been wreaking havoc in the Arctic as well.

      Arctic Ocean acidification is being sped up by erosion and river runoff in Siberia. As the permafrost is thawing there, coastlines across Russia are falling into the ocean, along with rivers dumping massive amounts of carbon into the ocean, which is all combining to ramp up the acidification, which is bad news for all things living in the once-pristine waters of the Arctic.

      In Austria, the glaciers are melting so fast, they have retreated an average of 72 feet during last year alone, which is more than twice the rate of the previous year, according to a recent survey.

      Reply
    • Scheduling tweet on this too, thanks.

      Reply
    • Tom

       /  May 24, 2016

      but, but, . . . technology!

      Reply
  103. NWS Seattle ‏@NWSSeattle 32m32 minutes ago

    More than half of flood-related deaths occur in vehicles. How? Check out this video:

    Reply
  104. June

     /  May 23, 2016

    Support for Lovelock’s Gaia hypothesis. Microbes help keep planet’s temperature stable.

    “Science pierces riddle of why clouds form”

    “…When the sun shines brightly they get to work, and the gas they produce then makes aerosols that seed clouds which reflect sunlight and damp down the planetary temperatures again.”

    http://climatenewsnetwork.net/science-pierces-riddle-clouds-form/

    Reply
  105. Reply
  106. -ncdc.noaa.gov/news/evaluating-tropical-cyclone-exposure-and-vulnerability

    Evaluating Tropical Cyclone Exposure & Vulnerability

    Over the past few decades, the locations where tropical cyclones reach their maximum intensity have been shifting toward the poles. For the western North Pacific Ocean in particular, this shift has also affected the region’s exposure to the impacts of tropical cyclones, according to a new paper published in the Journal of Climate titled “Past and Projected Changes in Western North Pacific Tropical Cyclone Exposure (link is external).”

    Reply
  107. – Oceans — Not really a surprise here but it is significant:

    Swarms of Octopus Are Taking Over the Oceans

    Something strange is happening to the oceans. As coral reefs wither and fisheries collapse, octopuses are multiplying like mad. As soon as they perceive weakness, they will amass an army and invade the land, too.

    Okay, that last statement is probably pure paranoia. But it is a bit unsettling that cephalopods—squids, octopuses, cuttlefish—are booming, and scientists don’t know why. An analysis published today in Current Biology indicates that numerous species across the world’s oceans have increased in numbers since the 1950s.

    “The consistency was the biggest surprise,” said lead study author Zoë Doubleday of the University of Adelaide. “Cephalopods are notoriously variable, and population abundance can fluctuate wildly, both within and among species.”

    http://gizmodo.com/swarms-of-octopus-are-taking-over-the-world-s-oceans-1777790453

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  May 23, 2016

      Squids on the rise as oceans change

      “Our analyses showed that cephalopod abundance has increased since the 1950s, a result that was remarkably consistent across three distinct groups,” says lead author Dr Zoë Doubleday, Research Fellow in the Environment Institute and School of Biological Sciences.

      “Cephalopods are often called ‘weeds of the sea’ as they have a unique set of biological traits, including rapid growth, short lifespans and flexible development. These allow them to adapt to changing environmental conditions (such as temperature) more quickly than many other marine species, which suggests that they may be benefiting from a changing ocean environment.”

      The Eureka Press Release

      Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 23, 2016

      Cephalopods are wicked smart.

      It’s a trap! 😉

      Reply
      • Hmm, I was betting on the corvids, but OK, I can live with cephalopods as our successors. One evolution factoid I enjoy is that octopuses have eyes that are better designed than humans’.

        Reply
      • Abel Adamski

         /  May 24, 2016

        I knew it has all been a conspiracy by aliens manipulating our easily duped politicians and military industrial complex.

        We are doomed I tells yah.

        But seriously they are interesting critters and extremely smart.
        http://www.inquisitr.com/2331741/you-might-not-believe-it-but-octopuses-are-aliens-reveals-new-dna-study/

        A new DNA study has revealed that octopuses are so weird that they may be categorized as ‘aliens’.

        Researchers from the University of California conducted their study on a two-spot California octopus, discovering the probable reasons behind octopuses’ evolved central nervous systems and their fantastic ability to deceptively camouflage.

        The late British zoologist Martin Wells was the first to describe the sea-inhabiting creatures as “aliens,” primarily because octopuses’ protein-coding structures are much more evolved than even humans.

        But now the first full cephalopod genome sequence shows that octopuses (not to be confused with octopi) are extremely different from any other animal – with their genome showing a staggering level of complexity. The new DNA study, published in the scientific journal Nature, has identified the presence of more than 33,000 protein-coding genes in octopuses, significantly more than humans.

        And that is not all. According to Irish Examiner, scientists also confirmed that the DNA of an octopus is highly rearranged– like cards shuffled and reshuffled in a pack – containing several “jumping genes” that can leap around the genome.

        Humans have often found themselves astounded by octopuses’ abilities to carry out functions which would be deemed impossible for most animals – now we know why it is so easy for an octopus to open a jar of jam!

        The octopus appears to be utterly different from all other animals, even other molluscs, with its eight prehensile arms, its large brain and its clever problem-solving abilities. Martin Wells said the octopus is an alien. In this sense, then, our paper describes the first sequenced genome from an alien.”

        Reply
      • Hilary

         /  May 24, 2016

        Off topic for this post I know but just a story from our local national aquarium to amuse you all:
        http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/apr/13/the-great-escape-inky-the-octopus-legs-it-to-freedom-from-new-zealand-aquarium

        Reply
  108. Cate

     /  May 23, 2016

    And here’s yet another little back-pages by-the-by nugget on the Fort Mac fire: the fire burned a radioactive waste site.

    I’ll say that again: a nuclear waste site was burned over.

    But no problems, chin up, smile! It’s all safe and sound, nothing for us to worry our pretty little heads about.

    http://www.euronews.com/2016/05/18/the-nuclear-waste-site-at-the-heart-of-canadas-wildfires/

    Reply
    • There is effectively no problem. Those «nuclear waste» are soil contaminated by uranium ore. They are buried under one foot of clay. Fire would have no impact.

      Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 24, 2016

        Good to know. Thank you, Yvan.

        I noted this mainly because it wasn’t noted anywhere else. I like to watch what makes it to the main TV news broadcasts and websites and what doesn’t. I think it’s important to understand who controls what news gets foregrounded and why. This story was ignored in favour of other Fort Mac stories, and I just found that a bit strange given that radioactive waste is an issue in itself for many people.

        Reply
  109. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    The Climate Feedback site is up a running –

    A Scientific Reference to Reliable Information on Climate Change


    What if online coverage could be peer-reviewed?


    Using the Hypothesis annotation platform, our community of scientists go through a variety of online media articles and provide ‘feedback’ on the scientific accuracy of the information presented. Readers can view these annotations directly alongside the original texts and see exactly where the article’s information is consistent — or inconsistent — with scientific thinking and state-of-the-art knowledge in the field.

    Reply
  110. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    Abel Adamski

    That Trump story really blew up today. I hope those Irish officials turn him down , again.

    Reply
  111. Arctic sea ice melt “like a train wreck” says US scientist

    Snowmelt has started at the earliest date yet in 73 years, according to the US government’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

    “It looks like late June or early July right now,” said David Douglas, research biologist with the US Geological Survey.

    http://www.climatechangenews.com/2016/05/23/arctic-sea-ice-melt-like-a-train-wreck-says-us-scientist/

    Reply
  112. U.S. Leads Globe in Oil Production for Third Year

    May 23rd, 2016

    The U.S. led the world last year in producing both oil and gas, federal government estimates published Monday show, even as the country committed to cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

    The U.S. was the globe’s leading producer of crude oil for the third year in a row in 2015. Government estimates show that crude oil production has continued to grow across the country, from nearly 8 million barrels of oil per day in 2008 to about 15 million in 2015. The U.S. produced about 14 million barrels per day in 2014.
    http://www.climatecentral.org/news/us-leads-globe-oil-production-for-third-year-20368

    Reply
    • Wharf Rat

       /  May 24, 2016

      “Government estimates show that crude oil production has continued to grow across the country, from nearly 8 million barrels of oil per day in 2008 to about 15 million in 2015. ”

      Not even close…

      Thu Mar 31, 2016 2:20pm EDT
      U.S. Jan. crude output falls 56,000 bpd to 9.179 million bpd: EIA
      http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-oil-eia-monthly-idUSKCN0WX2GY

      The all-time peak monthly US oil production took place in November 1970, when output averaged 10.044 million barrels per day

      Reply
  113. – Some bits from Circle of Blue:

    WaterNews

    Alaska Senators Worry about Canadian Mines
    Alaska’s congressional delegation sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry to note its concern about gold and copper mines proposed in British Columbia. The representatives Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, and Rep. Don Young — worry that mine pollution will tarnish streams that flow into Southeast Alaska, home to some of the world’s richest salmon runs.

    Southeastern Senators Concerned about Rivers Too
    Senators from Alabama and Florida sent a letter to the Senate Republican leadership to ask for help. The senators — Marco Rubio and Bill Nelson of Florida and Jeff Sessions and Richard Shelby of Alabama — want the longstanding problem of water allocation in river basins shared with Georgia to be resolved.
    The best way to do this, the senators argue, is by interstate compact, like so many of the western states.

    Early Snowmelt in American West
    Except for Colorado and southern Wyoming, mountain peaks are quickly losing their white caps, according to the National Water and Climate Center. Snowpack in the Cascades and the northern Rockies is about half of normal for this time of year. Why? Temperatures in this region over the last 60 days have been between 2 degrees and 8 degrees Fahrenheit hotter than usual.
    http://www.circleofblue.org/2016/federal-water-tap/federal-water-tap-may-23-u-s-senators-worry-local-water-problems/

    Reply
  114. Reply
  115. Reply
  116. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    I’ve been looking at Trump’s secret wall . He’s going to need it . It;s facing directly into teeth of the North Atlantic.

    https://www.google.com/maps/place/Trump+International+Golf+Links+%26+Hotel+Ireland/@52.747293,-11.7254986,7z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x79bc7df71e1ffc46!8m2!3d52.747293!4d-9.5017972

    Reply
    • redskylite

       /  May 24, 2016

      But at least Trump’s professionals acknowledge climate change . . .

      Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump hasn’t had to answer many questions about his position on climate change yet. But in a handful of colorful tweets over the last few years, Trump has made it clear that he rejects the conclusions of climate science, opting for descriptors like “hoax” and “bullshit.”

      ………

      “If the predictions of an increase in sea level rise as a result of global warming prove correct, however, it is likely that there will be a corresponding increase in coastal erosion rates not just in Doughmore Bay but around much of the coastline of Ireland.”

      http://arstechnica.com/science/2016/05/trump-owned-golf-course-cites-sea-level-rise-in-seawall-permit/

      Reply
  117. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    But it didn’t dump radioactive water into the North Pacific forever. Or spew it over Northern Europe. It just failed. How many deaths ? Zero? Let’s look at the Russians on the roof of the reactor –

    Chernobyl Uncensored – Documentary

    Reply
  118. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    Not one person has ever died when a wind mill , or a solar plant has ever failed. Or that years of expensive ongoing clean-up has ever happen .

    EVER.

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  May 23, 2016

      People believe that nuclear will save us. But if we drop the ball, It’s billions of dollars. And thousands of people. Just trying to keep our finger in
      dike we should have never built.

      And all of that is “dead money”.

      Everyone believes the “left” killed nuclear power in the US. But that’s not true, Wall Street wouldn’t buy their bonds.

      Reply
    • Hmm, well not quite true. To the best of my knowledge, no member of the public has been killed by a wind turbine failure, but there was at least one European who died when the wind turbine he was working on malfunctioned.

      Reply
  119. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    We have 4 melting reactors our of our control.

    Reply
  120. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    Hell in a bucket.

    Reply
  121. Ryan in New England

     /  May 23, 2016

    As everyone here already knows, the denier’s arguments are all BS and ignore the data or misrepresent it. A recent study confirms this.

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2016/may/23/climate-denial-arguments-fail-a-blind-test

    Reply
  122. Ryan in New England

     /  May 23, 2016

    If we continue to burn all fossil fuels and don’t take action, the world will warm 10C in the coming centuries according to a new study.

    The planet would warm by searing 10C if all fossil fuels are burned, according to a new study, leaving some regions uninhabitable and wreaking profound damage on human health, food supplies and the global economy.
    The Arctic, already warming fast today, would heat up even more – 20C by 2300 – the new research into the extreme scenario found.
    “I think it is really important to know what would happen if we don’t take any action to mitigate climate change,” said Katarzyna Tokarska, at the University of Victoria in Canada and who led the new research. “Even though we have the Paris climate change agreement, so far there hasn’t been any action. [This research] is a warning message.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/23/world-could-warm-by-massive-10c-if-all-fossil-fuels-are-burned

    Reply
    • Anything much over 4 degrees C will kill us and most of life we know on the planets surface. 10′ C equates to a new start for Mother Nature.

      Reply
  123. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    The night of the Chernobyl disaster , 2 women showed up at my door. I cast them away.
    The worst choice I ever made.

    Reply
  124. Shawn Redmond

     /  May 23, 2016

    What’s the aqua marine colour in the normally steely blue north Atlantic east of Greenland and to the south of Iceland? I’ve been looking back in the archives of arctic.io and can’t seem to find anything similar. Is this fresh water? Tremendous amount if it is.

    Reply
  125. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    Let’s us be clear

    Reply
    • Shawn Redmond

       /  May 23, 2016

      The table is set and I believe I see the waiter coming now. That was fast, it should still be good and hot!

      Reply
  126. Colorado Bob

     /  May 23, 2016

    In The Mood

    Reply
  127. Colorado Bob

     /  May 24, 2016

    It goes on forever

    Moonlight Serenade
    \

    Reply
  128. Wharf Rat

     /  May 24, 2016

    Temperatures Could Rise Far More Than Previously Thought If Fossil Fuel Reserves Burned

    http://www.desmog.ca/2016/05/23/temperatures-could-rise-far-more-previously-thought-if-fossil-fuels-burned

    Reply
    • As bad as these estimates are, these are still primarily CO2 based estimates.

      If global average temperatures increase by 10 degrees C and the Arctic warms by 20 degrees C, do we really expect that the methane hydrates would stay mostly intact?

      In this study, they calculate 8 degrees C from CO2, but only 2 degrees C of temperature rise from all of the other greenhouse gases.

      I don’t think they included really large amounts of methane. According to the modeling by the IMPACTS group of national labs and universities in 2012, long before we get to those levels of warming whole ocean basins would be anoxic and their ability to oxidize methane into CO2 would be exhausted. Much of the methane from the shallower hydrates would be escaping directly into the atmosphere at that point. Published estimates of the total methane hydrate inventory vary widely, from about .004 trillion tons of carbon as methane to over 70 trillion tons of carbon as methane, with consensus estimates of 5-20 trillion tons. Methane hydrate deposits that are thinly distributed and uneconomic to exploit would still add to globa d

      According to numerous authorities on atmospheric chemistry including Isaksen, release of large amounts of methane would result in massive atmospheric chemistry changes, multiplying the lifetime and so the greenhouse forcing of methane, as well as injecting water vapor from methane oxidation into the stratosphere, and greatly increasing low altitude ozone.

      http://www.atmos.washington.edu/academics/classes/2011Q2/558/IsaksenGB2011.pdf

      These sound like straightforward CO2 based estimates, that neglect the oceanic and atmospheric chemistry effects of massive methane release.

      And heating from any source will increase water vapor – the strongest greenhouse gas – by something like 7% per degree of global heating.

      If we ever get to that stage, we’re talking End Permian sorts of conditions, I think, only increased because the sun is maybe 2-3% hotter now than it was during the End Permian. We’re coming out of a series of ice ages, so methane hydrate inventories may be at an all time high. And the planet has likely never seen rates of CO2 increase like this before, and our release is both unnaturally fast and unnaturally unidirectional.

      As bad as these estimates are, I don’t think they are bad enough to be realistic, if we burn all the fossil fuels. The estimates also are based on 5 trillion tons of carbon in the fossil fuels – but there could also be at least 5 additional trillion tons of carbon in the methane hydrates, not counting the strong positive feedback from atmospheric chemistry effects of massive methane hydrate release.

      Reply
      • Oh, sorry, about the middle of the post:

        Methane hydrates that are thinly distributed and uneconomic to exploit would still add to oceanic anoxia and acidification, and limit the ability of ocean basins to oxidize methane.

        Reply
      • The researchers themselves say that 5 trillion tons of carbon in the fossil fuels is a low estimate:

        “Researchers used the lower boundary of estimates of known fossil fuels, Tokarska said in an interview with DeSmog Canada.

        “The (amount of untapped fossil fuels) could be much higher as we didn’t consider unconventional sources, and then the warming would be much higher,” Tokarska said.”

        They didn’t include unconventional fossil fuels like tar sands and oil shales. They didn’t include the methane hydrates and the direct forcing from the subsequent methane. And they didn’t include secondary atmospheric and oceanic chemistry effects from the probable huge methane release.

        This is not a worst case estimate, and the researchers themselves admit that. At least in terms of fossil fuel estimates, this is a very conservative estimate.

        Reply
  129. redskylite

     /  May 24, 2016

    A detailed report of some of the specific problems that tribes are facing under Climate Change.

    Indigenous populations in the U.S. are at increased vulnerability to the impacts of climate change on human health for a myriad of reasons.

    . . . . . . . . .

    “We have been experiencing an increasingly dangerous situation with sea level rise and intensified storms,” Quinault President Fawn Sharp said in a statement posted to the U.S. climate resilience and toolkit website. “Our people must be protected. We will take whatever measures are necessary to see that they are.”

    http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2016/05/23/extreme-heat-week-combats-climate-change-resilience-strategies-tribes-164561

    Reply
  130. Does anyone have any updates on methane levels/indications of methane hydrates destabilizing with all this heat?

    Re: methane hydrates: I had no idea this was going on . . . . .

    “The Icy Fire Beneath Norway’s Seabed
    Trapped by deep ocean pressure and cold temperatures along continental shelves, methane hydrates could be an energy windfall or a looming disaster. Norway is spending millions to discover whether this ice-like form of natural gas will prove boon or bane.”

    https://www.newsdeeply.com/arctic/articles/2016/03/25/the-icy-fire-beneath-norways-seabed

    Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 24, 2016

      Caroline, there are a few discussions on methane (seeps, hydrates, etc) over at the ASIF—Arctic Sea Ice Forum, although a lot of the talk there goes right over my head frankly.😉

      In general, methane hydrates, “clathrate guns”, and so on seems to be a bit of an elephant in the climate change room. When I asked over at ASIF what would be the implications for climate, weather, the biosphere, etc, of a “blue ocean” in the Arctic, the issue of methane hydrates was near the top of the list—but if you google it, you end up running around in doomsday scenario circles—not helpful.

      I thought this 2013 Guardian article does clear up some points:

      http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2013/aug/05/7-facts-need-to-know-arctic-methane-time-bomb

      Reply
      • Thanks Cate. Glad I’m not the only one who has a hard time comprehending the ASIF! I get frustrated with my lack of comprehension related to the science of the posts but also I feel that it is absurd to get caught up in exactly WHEN the arctic will be ice free. Is that a debate really worth focusing on at this point? Seems to be the case there much of the time.

        I agree about methane clathrates being the elephant in the room . . . keeps me awake at night. Wondering how we will know when/if significant (i.e. clathrate gun officially fired) hydrate destabilization occurs.

        Just got back from the boreal forest (what is left of it) in n. Wisconsin. Very eery. Dying trees, high/dry winds, extreme fire conditions and diminished spring bird songs. Reality is starting to sink in that things will never be the same (even though I’ve felt this for decades) . . . . hard to know how to be around my teen daughter. I feel so sad much of the time and try to put on a brave face; feigning “it will all be OK” is all but impossible when it is NOT going to be OK.

        We as homo sapiens are in unchartered territory climate wise and emotion wise. How can anyone can fully integrate the emotional reality of what we are facing related to loss of species/ecosystems/diversity . . . life . . . .? This is a new realm of grief never before experienced by humans.

        Reply
      • The science blog Real Climate has some good articles on methane, Cate. If you Google the terms you usually use and then add site:realclimate.org after the terms, you should be able to find them easily.

        Reply
      • Griffin

         /  May 24, 2016

        All I can say is that you sounded like you just wrote out my own thoughts Caroline.

        Reply
      • Ryan in New England

         /  May 24, 2016

        Caroline, I know exactly how you feel (except for having a daughter). When I was last in Colorado I nearly wept at the vast expanse of forest turned dead and gray by warmer temps and beetle infestation. It was everywhere I went. Hours of driving and we could never find pristine forest. Completely heartbreaking and overwhelming when confronted by the scale of destruction.

        Reply
    • There seem to be indications that methane plumes off Svalbard and along the Oregon / Washington coast are increasing along the shallow end of the methane hydrate stability zone. There are some indications that is happening along the Atlantic east coast of the U.S.

      http://www.washington.edu/news/2015/10/14/bubble-plumes-off-washington-oregon-suggest-warmer-ocean-may-be-releasing-frozen-methane/

      These releases are relatively small, hard to distinguish from the background, and appear to be orderly. Modeling from the IMPACTS group of national labs and universities anticipated that we will see plumes along the shallow end of the hydrate stability zone, as that zone migrates into deeper water as temperatures increase.

      On the other hand, ocean acidification is proceeding more rapidly than anticipated, and some of the deep upwelling water is very acidic indeed. Due to rapid oxidation of methane into CO2 by currently healthy bacterial communities, methane would I think show up mainly as CO2, first, and as anomalous amounts of acidity from deep upwelling water, I think. This acidification could also come from CO2 increases in the atmosphere and decay of organic material along the continental shelves, and most of it probably does come from these sources – so far.

      Another possible indication of deep methane release, in my opinnion – anomalous algae blooms. These are happening along many continental shelves and seem especially apparent in the Arctic. You can hunt for these using the NASA worldview web portal, using the chlorophyll A data product.

      Reply
      • Thanks for this information Leland.

        Reply
        • Overall, the state of play has been similar to what we’ve seen for the past few years:

          1. We get reports of various disturbing hotspots.
          2. There is no observed massive release that would be indicative of a clathrate gun type event.
          3. The mainstream science remains doubtful that such large events will occur in shorter timescales.
          4. The larger risk appears to be that total carbon cycle feedbacks could hit between 10 and 35 percent of the human emission by the end of this Century. This is still a bad emission rate similar to natural system emissions that lead to past hothouse events. Something that would have serious consequences on top of the human carbon spike if it continued for centuries to millennia.

          It’s worth noting that the rate of methane accumulation in the Earth atmosphere has slowed somewhat during 2015-2016. So we’re not seeing an escalating ramp of atmospheric methane accumulation at this time.

      • What you say, Robert, mirrors my general reading of the situation.
        Thanks for it.
        DT

        Reply
      • Cate

         /  May 24, 2016

        Thanks for the perspectives, guys. I think we can maybe not worry too much about the methane bombs yet?

        Caroline, for what it’s worth, I share your sadness. It is almost unbearable, and certainly inexpressible., to see what Is happening to our beautiful planet in all its amazing diversity, and to think what may happen to all the peoples of the world, individually and collectively, the wealth and beauty of human cultures, our arts, our technological advances, our shared histories and achievements. .

        I find it impossible to think through the prospects of losing all this without an overwhelming sense of despair. But I think it’s important to back off from that big view and to take this very personally, in terms of our own children—your daughter, my son. When they were little–and even now that they’re grown, we felt we would fight like tigresses to protect them. You know that feeling—mother anger! Nothing is more powerful or more fearful. That’s what we have to summon up now, only this time we have to enlist everyone on the planet in order to win the battle.

        Reply
      • Hi Robert, Caroline, Cate and DT-

        We should be finding out how much of the anomalous acidification we are seeing is due to oxidation of methane, and how much is due to CO2 from decay of organic material and increases in atmospheric CO2. Isotope ratio studies might tell us, as would likely mass balance studies and modeling of all the affected species like bicarbonate, sulfate, and nitrates.

        We should not be satisfied with our current lack of knowledge about the size of the global methane hydrate inventory. There is a class of hydrates – high salt hydrates – that are at the triple point of gas/solid/liquid system and those are likely much less stable than more conventional hydrates, and there may be as much as 0.1 trillion tons of those, by a very rough estimate. Governments should spend the money, and get the relevant information from the oil corporations, to find out what is going on.

        Our current state of ignorance is very alarming, and we should not be satisfied with it.

        Reply
  131. Zack Labe ‏@ZLabe 4h4 hours ago

    Nearly vertical swath of convection in the center of CONUS over the last 24-hours (MAX radar reflectivity composite)

    Reply
  132. FILE UNDER: ASPHALT/TARMAC – THAT BLACK HEAT ABSORBING SEMI STABLE BITUMEN PASTE WE CARPET OUR CAR CRAZY WORLD WITH.

    Caught on camera: A dangerous, melting road in Gujarat
    -Published on May 22, 2016

    Pedestrians in Gujarat’s Valsad had a nasty surprise waiting for them on Saturday. As they got onto this road, shoes and slippers stuck to the melting tar. Dismay written large on their faces, they struggled to free their shoes. Some retreated altogether, others gingerly braved the crossing.

    Reply
    • Days past: NA – California – La Brea Tar Pits

      Animals Trapped in the La Brea Tar Pits
      -sdgateswriter.com/2015/08/07/mammoths-maniacs-and-money

      Reply
      • Animals Trapped in the La Brea Tar Pits Would Take Months to Sink
        New research shows that animals trapped in the tar would linger for months on end

        Once stuck in a tar seep, animals would eventually sink into the earth. But that’s not the only reason they were deadly, says Earth, describing new research. Once ensnared, animals would linger on the surface for months—often 17 to 20 weeks. Stuck there, they were tempting bait to roaming scavengers.

        Dire wolves, which roamed the western U.S. until 11,000 years ago, were often tricked by what seemed like an easy meal, says the Page Museum, which works with fossils from the tar pits. More than 4,000 dire wolves have been pulled from the pits, the museum says: “Most were probably trapped while attempting to feed on other animals stuck in the asphalt.”

        http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/animals-trapped-in-the-la-brea-tar-pits-would-take-months-to-sink-6006035/?no-ist

        Reply
      • “linger for months on end’

        Reply
      • David Lange ‏@DavidLange2 19 Feb 2013

        PHOTO: #Asphalt sealant degrading Santa Barbara parking lot

        Reply
      • Above photo: May 6, 2012.

        Reply
      • Wharf Rat

         /  May 24, 2016

        The Dire Wolf collects his due
        while the boys sing round the fire

        Reply
  133. Reply
  134. According to the news today, the heatwave in India continues, and no doubt so will heat-related deaths. I can’t help thinking back to a story on a report finding the Middle East may be too hot for people to keep living there by the end of this century. http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/persian-gulf-heat-1.3290285

    When I read recent stories on temperature records I wonder if they’re being a little too conservative with that projection! Seems more likely that we will have mass waves of emigration from the tropic zones a lot sooner. And considering the way Europe and Australia are reacting to a few thousand migrants from Syria and North Africa, what will be the reaction of the global north to billions of climate refugees trying to flee the tropics? And then what will be the long term prognosis for survival of the human race?

    Reply
    • Mblanc

       /  May 25, 2016

      A few thousand migrants? I thought the figure was 5 million displaced from Syria, although most of them are in adjacent countries.

      The general point about the potential for climate induced mass population movements is entirely correct though. The reaction in more northerly countries will not be pretty, particularly if those countries are being destroyed internally, by neo-liberal austerity madness, as is happening in Europe.

      Reply
  135. Josh

     /  May 24, 2016

    “North Yorkshire council backs first UK fracking tests for five years

    Council approves shale gas tests in village of Kirby Misperton despite receiving 4,375 objections to the plans

    Fracking is set to take place in Britain for the first time in five years after councillors approved tests in North Yorkshire, sweeping aside thousands of objections from residents and campaigners.

    Tests for shale gas can now take place in the village of Kirby Misperton, in the Ryedale district, after councillors gave the green light to UK firm Third Energy.

    The decision was greeted with boos, jeers and honking horns from crowds of anti-fracking campaigners outside County Hall in Northallerton, where residents raised fears of catastrophic seismic activity, health problems and pollution during a rancorous two-day hearing.”

    . . .

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/24/anti-fracking-activists-declare-war-north-yorkshire-ruling-kirby-misperton

    Reply
    • Josh

       /  May 24, 2016

      .. and from a related article, I thought this was notable:

      “The Conservative councillor added: “I’m totally against nuclear power stations and if we’ve got the resources under the ground – we’ve got coal there, we’ve got gas there, we’re bringing it round the world to try and run this country with all these things that we’re importing. And we’ve got it on our doorstep. But it’s just how we do it.
      Advertisement

      ‘I’m not an expert, I’m not a professor. The number of professors that were talking – we get one saying yes, and one saying no.'”

      http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/24/anti-fracking-activists-declare-war-north-yorkshire-ruling-kirby-misperton

      Reply
      • Mblanc

         /  May 25, 2016

        Sad news, although it has taken 5 years since the last attempt was stopped because of small earthquakes.

        The fear is that this will open the floodgates for more sites, but I think that will be fought every step of the way, and we look to the next government to put a stop to further development.

        Reply
    • Mulga Mumblebrain

       /  May 26, 2016

      But Josh, there may have been 4700 objections from Leftists, Commos and trouble-makers, but there were about 50 in favour, from ‘risk-takers’ and ‘entrepreneurs’. You can bet, too, that the names of all 4700 ‘Luddites’ have been filed somewhere, ‘for future reference’. The explosion is coming. When the parasite elite’s hatred and contempt for the proles is SO blatant, even the most thoroughly brainwashed are going to wake up.

      Reply
      • Josh

         /  May 27, 2016

        I try to take comfort in the hope that anthropogenic climate change will become undeniable to the general public, along with the urgency of action that may accompany that.

        But I hope that happens sooner rather than later.

        At present climate protest is viewed with suspicion (by some). But if everybody sees the danger, this may change.

        Reply
  136. dnem

     /  May 24, 2016

    Score one for BAU. VietJet Airlines orders 100 Boeing 737 passenger jets. This is the kind of sunk cost into long-lived FF infrastructure that we should be avoiding. At least they have bikini-clad flight attendants, though😉

    http://www.geekwire.com/2016/boeing-seals-deal-11-3-billion-sale-737-max-jets-vietjet-airlines/

    Reply
  137. Abel Adamski

     /  May 24, 2016

    Unfortunately very few will read it, being in the religion sector of the ABC in Oz, now it is being run effectively by the IPA and Murdochs News Ltd even fewer people pay attention to it as it is literally now a waste of time, no longer the source for news and current affairs and sharp interviews.

    http://www.abc.net.au/religion/articles/2016/05/24/4468424.htm

    Good well written article from the religious perspective

    Reply
    • Scheduling tweet on this, thanks.

      Reply
    • Cate

       /  May 24, 2016

      Abel, thanks for that link, which I followed through and came across this interesting Oz initiative: a multi-faith member-based association of people interested in looking the implications of climate change for faith and moral/social justice issues. An array of resources for anyone seeking a focus on morality and faith in the midst of this crisis.

      http://www.arrcc.org.au/

      Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  May 25, 2016

      Also a very interesting quote in that article.
      Perspective, our indigenous aborigines history goes back over 40,000 years at least. their dream time legends have been analysed and record the slr at the end of the ice age etc etc and are actually a fairly accurate verbal record of the lands history over that time with cave paintings going back over 30,000 years.

      “A young Aboriginal man from the Northern Territory captured this well recently when he told a meeting of Indigenous people:

      “We’ve got a calendar that never been changed in 60,000 years. You can predict everything off this calendar. It tells you when the dugongs are fat, when the turtle are fat, when to go look for magpie geese. It was all perfectly done so that we could survive off our land. But now we have to freestyle it.”

      And Denialists bleat about climate always changes, MWP, LIA etc etc

      Reply
  138. Reply
  139. – Emissions – Shipping & Aviation – Something I’ve repeatedly alluded to;

    Reply
  140. FYI: The Society of Environmental Journalists [and RS type bloggers] has a section devoted to climate change.

    Climate Change: A Guide
    to the Information and Disinformation

    http://www.sej.org/initiatives/climate-change/overview

    Reply
    • EJToday: Top Headlines

      EJToday is SEJ’s selection of new and outstanding stories on environmental topics in print and on the air, updated every weekday. SEJ also offers a free e-mailed digest of the day’s EJToday postings, called SEJ-beat. SEJ members are subscribed automatically, but may opt out here. Non-members may subscribe here. EJToday is also available via RSS feed. Please see Editorial Guidelines for EJToday content.

      “The Zika Virus Spread Is Our Own Fault, WHO Chief Says”

      “The Zika epidemic and the birth defects it’s causing are both the fault of governments that abandoned programs to control mosquitoes and to provide even the most basic family planning assistance to young women, the head of the World Health Organization said Monday.”

      “Climate Change Takes Center Stage At Exxon, Chevron Annual Meetings”

      “Exxon Mobil Corp and Chevron Corp will face their toughest-ever push by shareholders concerned about a warming world at annual meetings on Wednesday, as the Paris accord to tackle climate change ratchets up investor pressure on two of the world’s largest oil companies.”

      http://www.sej.org/headlines/list/Climate%20Change/*/*

      Reply
  141. “… it is criminal to sit passively by and do nothing with the information that seven million people die…

    – A hard truth that underlies the urgency of fossil fuel, and other related activities, with one result being climate change. Also see Short Lived Climate Pollutants.

    Inaction on air pollution, ecological ruin homicidal: UNEP chief

    By OLIVE BURROWS, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 24 – United Nations Environment Programme Executive Director Achim Steiner has compared failure to address the causes of air pollution and environmental degradation in general, to the premeditated killing of one by another.

    While he admits that the comparison may not be technically accurate, he says it is criminal to sit passively by and do nothing with the information that seven million people die annually as a result of air pollution in a worsening situation given a World Health Organisation report that global air pollution levels increased by eight percent between 2008 and 2013.
    https://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/2016/05/inaction-air-pollution-ecological-ruin-homicidal-unep-chief/

    Reply
    • ‘Exhaust fumes, for example, are responsible for 30 percent of particulate emissions in European cities and up to 50 percent in other countries.’

      Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  May 25, 2016

      DT
      I have this bad habit of following the link jungle trail .
      Another excellent article (same author)
      https://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/2014/06/charcoal-trade-poses-greater-risks-than-poaching/

      Charcoal trade poses greater risks than poaching

      NAIROBI, Kenya, June 24 – A report by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Interpol shows that trade in charcoal is a greater security threat than poaching.

      The report, titled The Environmental Crime Crisis, established a direct link between the illegal charcoal trade and terrorism whereas it was unable to establish a direct link between poaching and terrorism despite the presence of what UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner said was anecdotal evidence.

      The magnitude of the illegal charcoal trade, the report’s Editor in Chief Christian Nellemann said, was especially disconcerting at a value of $1.9 billion in Africa annually.

      Much funding terrorist groups

      You mentioned some time ago re the cessation of the charcoal tfade in England, it is postulated that it was the Black Plague that saved the forests of Europe.
      Charcoal burning and to a lesser degree Coal were the foundations of civilisation, civilisation and cities were founded on pottery fired in charcoal fueled kilns, which morphed into metal ore smelters, thus bronze age, then as air injection by initially manual bellows raised the temperatures , then came the iron age, then came coal as an even more dense fuel.

      The progression of one step at a time tells the story, now time for the next step

      Reply
  142. Tim McGill ‏@WGNWeatherGuy 1h1 hour ago

    Magnificent supercell thunderstorm in Kansas amazes tornado chasers

    Reply
  143. 0524

    Reply
    • – “the continuous nature of exposure and the number of people affected”.

      Air pollution exposure may raise heart disease risk
      Study found exposure linked to poorer blood sugar, cholesterol measures

      Cardiovascular and lipid disorders are the leading cause of death in the United States, according to the Society’s Endocrine Facts and Figures Report

      “While air pollution is linked with relatively small changes in cardiometabolic risk factors, the continuous nature of exposure and the number of people affected gives us cause for concern…”.
      https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/05/160524144659.htm

      Reply
      • Mark from OZ

         /  May 25, 2016

        Great links dt! Always! Many thanks to all!

        Made me reflect that not THAT long ago (100-140 years) human waste was swirling ankle deep through the city streets of growing cities like Melbourne (and others) and that ‘something’ had to be done as Typhoid and other diseases similarly took heavy tolls on the people before collective action was initiated. Public water /sewerage works made huge gains here as it was the right thing to do (and was way past due).

        What’s so different about the air we breath that we continue to degrade the O2 systems that permit us life?
        And, ‘complementing’ land based transport’s pollution, the container ship and cruise ships are enormous contributors and seem to operate with impunity as they are ‘out of sight’.

        Seems to me we’re ‘hip’ deep in atmospheric waste yet analogous alarm, outrage and action are only relatively small voices. Perhaps the stunning mortality experienced previously amongst our ancestors is the required catalyst for real action.

        http://phys.org/news/2016-05-nanostructured-filters-shipping-pollution.html

        (article on tech for reducing maritime pollution) Numbers still ghastly!)

        Reply
      • MFO — “‘hip’ deep in atmospheric waste”. That’s us alright.🙂

        Reply
  144. Colorado Bob

     /  May 24, 2016

    200,000 year old soil found at mysterious crater, a ‘gate to the subterranean world’

    Many Yakutian people are said to be scared to approach the Batagaika Crater – also known as the Batagaika Megaslump: believing in the upper, middle and under worlds, they see this as a doorway to the last of these.

    The fearsome noises are probably just the thuds of falling soil at a landmark that is a one kilometre-long gash up to 100 metres (328 feet) deep in the Siberian taiga.

    Batagaika started to form in 1960s after a chunk of forest was cleared: the land sunk, and has continued to do so, evidently speeded by recent warmer temperatures melting the permafrost, so unbinding the layers on the surface and below. Major flooding in 2008 increased the size of the depression which grows at up to 15 metres per year.

    http://siberiantimes.com/science/casestudy/news/n0678-200000-year-old-soil-found-at-mysterious-crater-a-gate-to-the-subterranean-world/

    Reply
  145. Reply
  146. Reply
  147. Colorado Bob

     /  May 24, 2016

    Earliest Snowmelt on Record Observed in Arctic

    Snow is melting in Barrow, Alaska, earlier than it ever has since scientists at NOAA’s Barrow Observatory began recording it.

    Staff at the observatory reported snowmelt occurred May 13, the earliest snowmelt date in 73 years of record-keeping, beating the previous mark set in 2002 by a full 10 days.

    https://www.wunderground.com/news/arctic-circle-earliest-snowmelt-ever

    Reply
  148. Exxon Mobil faces ‘change or die’ moment on climate

    A significant group of shareholders are seeking to force Exxon Mobil to acknowledge the growing threat from climate change at the company’s AGM on Wednesday.

    The company says that the shareholder resolutions are unnecessary, while the investigations by several states are “politically motivated.”

    Broad coalition

    For around a quarter of a century, a varied collection of climate activists and institutions concerned about rising temperatures have attempted to get Exxon Mobil to move forward on the issue of climate change.

    This year, they believe the coalition attempting to force change on the issue, is the strongest ever assembled. Investors with at least $8tn under management have indicated they will support greater recognition of the climate change issue.

    At the AGM here in Dallas, the company faces resolutions including one to appoint a board member who has a high degree of climate expertise.
    http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-36332076

    Reply
  149. – USA – Water – “Last year, the reservoir reached a low point of about 1,075 feet, but not until late June. ”

    As Lake Mead dwindles, can an interstate water war be far behind?

    … Lake Mead, the main reservoir holding Colorado River water for California, Arizona and Nevada, has reached its lowest point since it began filling behind Hoover Dam in 1935. As of midnight Sunday, the lake reached 1,074.37 feet above sea level. It’s expected to keep falling until mid-summer, reaching 1,070 feet before seasonal agricultural demand falls off and it begins to fill again. Last year, the reservoir reached a low point of about 1,075 feet, but not until late June.

    The long-term prospects for Colorado River supply are dire. Demand for its water among the seven states of the river basin–chiefly California and Arizona–hopelessly outstrips the supply, and has been almost since the seven states in its basin worked out an allocation deal in 1922. That interstate compact, brokered by then-Commerce Secretary Herbert Hoover, was based on an estimate of river flows that was flagrantly inflated and never has been met. Since then, the recognition of claims from Mexico and Southwestern Indian tribes has only increased demand. Climate change and drought are making the crisis worse.
    http://www.latimes.com/business/hiltzik/la-fi-lake-mead-water-20160523-snap-story.html

    Reply
    • – USA Reservoirs – Current Levels vs Capacities

      Reply
      • – vox.com/2016/5/23/11736340/lake-mead-water-drought-southwest
        Dean Farrell)
        The size of the circles is proportional to the capacity of the reservoir.

        Reply
      • – California snowpack and Lower Colorado Region rivers.
        image can be downloaded ant viewed larger.

        Reply
      • – NWSBayArea Verified account ‏@NWSBayArea May 15

        2nd graphic expands on #drought awareness – Sierra Nevada snow water content & Lake Mead elevation now 1075 feet.

        Reply
  150. – Wildfire safety tip: If possible: “Jump into the black.” It has already burned.

    Dave Zaniboni ‏@SBCFireInfo May 2 Santa Barbara, CA
    Gaviota grass fire

    Reply
  151. At this rate a full centimeter comes along pretty quickly:

    Reply
  152. Wharf Rat

     /  May 25, 2016

    It’s still 5/24 where I am, so Happy Birthday, Bob. We don’t need a weatherman to know the wind is blowing differently than it was when you wrote this.

    Reply
  153. Air Traffic – Atlantic

    Reply
  154. redskylite

     /  May 25, 2016

    Middle Classes subsidizing the rich, time to end subsidies and adapt to the times, at least stop new development in flood prone areas . . . . .

    The system is hard to justify, with middle-class taxpayers living inland having to subsidise mostly upper-income owners of coastal homes.

    “Government-provided insurance made sure that premiums were low enough to sustain ongoing development and a massive relocation of population to regions which, we now know, are borderline inhabitable,”

    “Lloyd’s, one of the world’s biggest insurance companies, says the US government must stop providing insurance subsidies to homeowners building on flood plains and in coastal areas exposed to mounting risks related to climate change.

    According to a report in London’s Financial Times, Lloyd’s says the US government’s National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which subsidises insurance cover for householders in regions vulnerable to floods and storms, encourages irresponsible house building.”

    http://climatenewsnetwork.net/insurance-aid-props-up-climate-risk-homes/

    Reply
  155. redskylite

     /  May 25, 2016

    Buffy Sainte Marie strong at nearly 75 . . . Interview by vancitybuzz

    You shared your song, “Carry It On,” freely over social networks in support of those helping to raise awareness about climate change. Tell us more about the song’s message.

    Regardless of the blisters of any one moment, we shouldn’t despair. Regardless of being “only here by the skin of our teeth” at any moment, we need to hang on to our link with Life and apply positive action every way we can.

    Life is beautiful if you’ve got the sense to take care of your source of perfection. Mother Nature: She’s the daughter of God and the source of all protection. Look right now and you can see She’s only here by the skin of Her teeth as it is, so take heart and take care of your link with life.

    What are your thoughts on the pledges put forth at the Paris Climate Change Conference to reduce domestic emissions?

    Don’t let this current crop of bozos get away with their banking scams and the political misdirection that keeps big exploiters in power. Just because a group of bullies wants to own all available natural resources doesn’t mean they should. Their conclusions are self-serving and ridiculous. We need to act as a counter-balance every day. Non-violent action and alternative conflict resolution are more important than ever as we take to the streets, the media and the Internet.

    Reply
  156. Ryan in New England

     /  May 25, 2016

    And again we find that Exxon-Mobil knew about climate change and the consequences before the general public. And again, we learn that they chose to ignore the science in favor of sophisticated marketing and propaganda to ensure their power and influence persists into the future.

    My father, James F Black, PhD, started working for Standard Oil (part of which later became Esso and then Exxon) during the second world war. He had a distinguished career over 40 years, garnering dozens of patents through his wide-ranging research.

    In 1977, he briefed some of Exxon’s top executives about the risks of burning fossil fuels. A year later, in recapping his presentation in an internal company memo, he wrote: “Present thinking holds that man has a time window of five to ten years before the need for hard decisions regarding changes in energy strategies might become critical.”

    By the end of that 10-year window, however, company executives had started ignoring science, cancelling research projects and investing in “spin”. They poured millions of dollars into advocacy groups and public relations campaigns designed to cast doubt on the scientific realities of climate change. As Exxon entered this period, my father would lament: “A company is in trouble when it falls into the hands of the accountants.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/25/exxon-climate-change-greenhouse-gasses

    Reply
  157. Ryan in New England

     /  May 25, 2016

    And here’s even more about Exxon-Mobil and their efforts to sabotage any efforts to reduce CO2 emissions.

    ExxonMobil moved to squash a well-established congressional lecture series on climate science just nine days after the presidential inauguration of George W Bush, a former oil executive, the Guardian has learned.

    Exxon’s intervention on the briefings, revealed here for the first time, adds to evidence the oil company was acutely aware of the state of climate science and its implications for government policy and the energy industry – despite Exxon’s public protestations for decades about the uncertainties of global warming science.

    Indeed, the company moved swiftly during the earliest days of the Bush administration to block public debate on global warming and delay domestic and international regulations to cut greenhouse gas emissions, according to former officials of the US Global Change Research Program, or USGCRP.

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/may/25/exxonmobil-climate-change-scientists-congress-george-w-bush

    Reply
  158. Ryan in New England

     /  May 25, 2016

    And rushing to defend poor Exxon-Mobil from attorney-general investigations are, wait for it, Republicans on the House Science Committee!

    “It is remarkable that a do-nothing Congress that has refused to take any action on climate change is now attempting to disrupt this important investigation into potential corporate malfeasance,” New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s spokesman Eric Soufer said in a statement.

    “The irony of this letter is breathtaking, as its signatories appear to be part of a multi-pronged media campaign funded by the fossil fuel industry aimed at suppressing the free exchange of ideas among scientists, academics, and responsible law enforcement. New York will continue to work with and collaborate with its colleagues across the country, and those with expertise in this area, to protect its citizens from fraud,” said Soufer.

    http://insideclimatenews.org/news/19052016/house-republicans-assail-climate-fraud-investigations-exxon-lamar-smith

    Reply
    • My father warned Exxon about climate change in the 1970s. They didn’t listen
      Claudia Black-Kalinsky

      Perhaps 2015 wouldn’t have broken all temperature records had they acted then – but it’s not too late to do something now

      As the daughter of one of the Exxon scientists who first told senior management about greenhouse gases in the 1970s, I find it ironic that the reason for these investigations is the company’s failure to follow the same hard-numbers approach that made Exxon so successful in the first place.

      My father, James F Black, PhD, started working for Standard Oil (part of which later became Esso and then Exxon) during the second world war. He had a distinguished career over 40 years, garnering dozens of patents through his wide-ranging research.

      In 1977, he briefed some of Exxon’s top executives about the risks of burning fossil fuels. A year later, in recapping his presentation in an internal company memo, he wrote: “Present thinking holds that man has a time window of five to ten years before the need for hard decisions regarding changes in energy strategies might become critical.”
      http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/25/exxon-climate-change-greenhouse-gasses?CMP=twt_gu

      Reply
      • – Blip! I repeated Ryan’s earlier post. I saw it — but it must not have registered in my wee brain. Blip!

        Reply
  159. How Megafires Are Remaking American Forests

    Supersize fires are burning up bird habitat, killing trees, and turning forests into open range. Climate change will only make it worse.
    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015/08/150809-wildfires-forest-fires-climate-change-science/

    Reply
  160. June

     /  May 25, 2016

    A post by Ross Gelbspan looking at the big picture of the international cooperation that will be needed to combat climate change, with a plan for moving forward. Ross has written two great books on global warming, “The Heat is On” and “Boiling Point”. He also has a website http://www.heatisonline.org

    “Taking Five to Think Big on Global Warming”

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ross-gelbspan/taking-five-to-think-big_b_10108724.html

    Reply
  161. Colorado Bob

     /  May 25, 2016

    Extreme warnings issued that Lake Baikal could ‘drain dry like the Aral Sea’

    Newspaper Izvestia this week was blunt in assessing the eco-damage threat to Baikal, a natural reservoir which contains around 20% of the world’s unfrozen freshwater.

    ‘Baikal might share the destiny of the Aral Sea,’ it stated. ‘Construction of three hydro power stations on the Selenga River and its tributaries can cause the unique lake to dry out.’

    The 25 million year old lake – a UNESCO world heritage site – is ‘on the edge of environmental catastrophe and if certain measures are not taken, it might disappear just like the Aral sea.’

    The impact of proposed Mongolian hydro projects could also be to threaten the Buryatian capital city, Ulan-Ude, in the event of an accident to one of three planned dams.

    Environmental activist Sergey Shapkhayev warned: ‘Potential damage from the third hydro power station which will be located on the Eg River (a Selenga tributary) could cause a huge catastrophe. Hydrological experts believe that this power station is the most dangerous of all.

    http://siberiantimes.com/ecology/casestudy/features/f232-extreme-warnings-issued-that-lake-baikal-could-drain-dry-like-the-aral-sea/

    Reply
    • – So much of what we see these days are linked to the export business $$$ just like USA coal to Asia, etc.

      – Siberian Times: “…a deputy of the Russian parliament, said: ‘We have unique scientific potential and expertise in construction, and that is why it is possible to transfer power from Siberia and develop new export agreements. ”

      – russia-now.com/en/50842/lake-baikal-may-disappear: “… reports that Moscow is planning to sell or even give water to China that have infuriated Russians in ways that recall Siberian river diversion ideas in the 1980s

      … the Russian energy ministry was unable to provide any reaction to this story because its specialists on this issue are currently in Mongolia, an indication of how serious this threat to Baikal is being taken and of how far the two sides are from reaching any agreement.”

      Reply
      • Mulga Mumblebrain

         /  May 26, 2016

        dt, that reads like agit-prop disinformation designed to drive a wedge between Russia and China, to you know who’s (their mutual enemy)advantage. To me at least.

        Reply
  162. The meat industry
    UN expert calls for tax on meat production

    People could be deterred from eating meat by increasing its price further up the supply chain, stemming rise in consumption and environmental damage
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/25/un-expert-calls-for-tax-on-meat-production

    Reply
    • – newscientist.com/article/2089867-treating-cows-with-antibiotics
      Treating cows with antibiotics doubles dung methane emissions

      Antibiotics given to cattle can have far-reaching effects in an ecosystem, changing the make-up of microbes in the guts of dung beetles and increasing methane emissions from faeces.

      Researchers have analysed dung and the ecosystem it supports from cattle given a course of the antibiotic tetracycline. Such antibiotics are commonly given to livestock to prevent diseases and stimulate growth, even though this can lead to the development of drug-resistant bacteria.

      The team found that the dung of treated cows produced nearly twice as much methane – an important greenhouse gas – as that of non-treated ones.

      -Dung beetles’ gut microbes are affected by antibiotics
      Cyril Ruoso/FLPA

      Reply
  163. Reply
  164. Colorado Bob

     /  May 25, 2016

    Current atmospheric models underestimate the dirtiness of Arctic air

    Black carbon aerosols–particles of carbon that rise into the atmosphere when biomass, agricultural waste, and fossil fuels are burned in an incomplete way–are important for understanding climate change, as they absorb sunlight, leading to higher atmospheric temperatures, and can also coat Arctic snow with a darker layer, reducing its reflectivity and leading to increased melting. Unfortunately, current simulation models, which combine global climate models with aerosol transport models, consistently underestimate the amount of these aerosols in the Arctic compared to actual measurements during the spring and winter seasons, making it difficult to accurately assess the impact of these substances on the climate.

    Link

    Reply
    • – And in the nearby tar sands we get this:

      Oil sands found to be a leading source of air pollution in North America

      A cloud of noxious particles brewing in the air above the Alberta oil sands is one of the most prolific sources of air pollution in North America, often exceeding the total emissions from Canada’s largest city, federal scientists have discovered.

      The finding marks the first time researchers have quantified the role of oil-sands operations in generating secondary organic aerosols, a poorly understood class of pollutants that have been linked to a range of adverse health effects.

      The aerosols are minute particles, roughly 1/10th the diameter of a human hair or less, that are created when chemical-laden vapours from the mining and processing of bitumen react with oxygen in the atmosphere and are transformed into solids that can drift on the wind for days.

      http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/oil-sands-found-to-be-a-leading-source-of-air-pollution-in-north-america/article30151841/

      Reply
  165. Genomik

     /  May 25, 2016

    GREAT VIDEO. Very uplifting video showing how quickly PV and EV will disrupt our current automobile industry. Using examples of how fast things like smartphones disrupted basic cell phones and the automobile disrupted horses he shows how quickly things will change for solar, battery, EV, and shared cars.

    He says something like the transportation costs of electricity in old school electrical grids means that in 10 years local solar will be cheaper than old school even if the big power plant on other side charges nothing!

    So much disruption will happen in next 5-10 years and it’s all great for cutting co2. It still might be too late to stop the climate from irreversible changes, but we can hope.

    I urge you to listen to this it seems very fact filled and positive. Heck if any of you invest it can inform you of longs and shorts. For example it might be good to short car companies that are not embracing EV for example.

    Reply
  166. Colorado Bob

     /  May 25, 2016

    New research confirms continued, unabated and large-scale amphibian declines
    Local action key to reversing losses

    Link

    Reply
  167. Cate

     /  May 25, 2016

    Sculpture by Isaac Cordal, entitled “Politicians discussing global warming.”

    Reply
    • Colorado Bob

       /  May 25, 2016

      Priceless

      Reply
      • Colorado Bob

         /  May 25, 2016

        Images, and art move people, think of the little girl running down the road in Vietnam after the napalm attack. We gave up napalm after that, Men had been using fire in war since it’s beginnings. But that little girl running because we dropped jellied gasoline on her changed us.

        Reply
      • Colorado Bob

         /  May 25, 2016

        Cate –

        I’m linking this as much as can. As an old failed artist , I know great work when I see it. This is a defining image of our times. Many thanks for it.
        People won’t respond to starving polar bears, or white coral on the Great Barrier Reef.

        But a bunch of jackasses in neck deep water still talking, …………… perfect.

        Reply
      • – If it was me, I’d have show their hair on fire too.

        Reply
      • Abel Adamski

         /  May 26, 2016

        I must admit Hy Brazil is the defining video

        Reply
  168. June

     /  May 25, 2016

    “Taking Five to Think Big on Global Warming”

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ross-gelbspan/taking-five-to-think-big_b_10108724.html

    This is an article by Ross Gelbspan outlining a binding global plan for tackling the thorny issues involved in getting all the countries of the world to cooperate in reducing carbon emissions. Ross has written two great books on global warming, “The Heat is On” and “Boiling Point”, and has a website http://www.heatisonline.org/main.cfm?

    Reply
  169. Reply
  170. Colorado Bob

     /  May 25, 2016

    You know when they found all that tar, and it is tar. They said , ok. Because the Saudis turned a valve and light sweet crude flowed on to the tankers. They didn’t pump oil. Their “lifting costs” were zero.

    This is golden chance for the Saudis to kill the tar sands.

    And they have never failed to kill anything that threatens them .

    Reply
  171. Reply
  172. Colorado Bob

     /  May 25, 2016

    I watched the oil game all my life, anything threatens them , they attack.

    “anything threatens them”.

    Reply
  173. Colorado Bob

     /  May 25, 2016

    I watched the oil game all my life.

    These are the richest, most powerful people the world has ever seem. And they’ve have been at it a long time. . Since JD Rockefeller sent his salesmen to China . They gave away free lamps because he drowning in kerosene.

    Reply
    • “drowning in kerosene.’ Then the kerosene became aviation fuel — and the sky is full of aircraft — Boeing, Douglas, et al.

      Reply
  1. Today in disaster resilience (23 May 2016) – Disaster Resilience News

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