worse than we thought – sea ice loss!

Meanwhile, sea ice in the Arctic reached a record low this year, covering just 1.59 million square miles and thus shattering the previous 2005 minimum of 2.05 million square miles. The observed rate of loss is faster than anything predicted, says senior research scientist Mark Serreze of the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colorado.
Scientific American, 26 Nov 2007

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

sounds more like the description of a tax collector

As we worry about the ability of some species to run from climate change and escape extinction, ticks, mosquitoes, kissing bugs, and the parasites they carry may thrive under climate change.

Where will these crawling and flying disease carriers move? And who will be at risk for what were once called tropical diseases?

A forest nymph brushing against a hiker doesn’t begin to drink blood immediately. She crawls across the skin, searching for a comfortable dinner spot.

She grips her prey with spindly legs and uses knife-like mouthparts to slice into human skin. She secretes cement around the wound, binding herself to her host, and then begins to imbibe.

Once attached, this offspring of a changing climate can’t be simply brushed off.

statnews.com, 1 Jul 2016

thanks to ddh

funding needed!

Reproductive efficiency has suffered a dramatic decrease since the mid-1980s despite rapid worldwide progress in genetics and management of high producing dairy herds.

Researchers from the University of Barcelona propose that summer heat stress is likely to be a major factor related to low fertility in high producing dairy herds, especially in countries with warm weather.

Further studies should try to establish the effect of global warming at the farm level. This problem is reflected with warm summers and even with peaks of temperatures in winter.

Science 2.0, 5 Sep 2007

catastrophe has come and gone

Climate change is real and urgent, and Australia must have emissions trading in place in 2010 or face a catastrophe.

That’s the message from the nation’s top climate change adviser Ross Garnaut, who is sticking to his guns on the need for drastic action to counter global warming. He said failing to act on climate change would end up decimating the economy and the environment.

“With unmitigated climate change, on the basis of the mainstream science, we won’t have much, if any, of the Great Barrier Reef, of Kakadu.”

The Age (Australia), 4 Jul 2008

watch your step

Scientists were baffled last July when they discovered three giant holes in the ground in the Yamal Peninsula in northern Siberia. Now, with the help of satellite imagery, researchers have located four additional craters–and they believe there may be dozens more in the region.

The leading theory is that the holes were created by gas explosions triggered by underground heat or by rising air temperatures associated with climate change, the Siberian Times reported last December.

Huffington Post, 23 Feb 2015

thanks to Andrew Mark Harding

worse than we thought – Climate sensitivity to CO2!

Climate change is likely to be worse than many computer models have projected, according to a new analysis. The work, published yesterday in Science, finds evidence that Earth’s climate is more sensitive to the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than some earlier studies had suggested.

“Temperatures are likely to go up to the high side of current projections, as is [atmospheric] water vapor,” said John Fasullo, a climate scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research. “To the extent those environmental impacts influence events like [Superstorm] Sandy, expect the impacts to be on the high side.”

Scientific American, 9 Nov 2012

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

bigger waves

………………………………….

Big waves are energetically costly for fish, and there are more big waves than ever. The good news is that fish might be able to adapt.

“There has been a lot of recent work in oceanography documenting the fact that waves are becoming more frequent and more intense due to climate change,” says Mr Dominique Roche, PhD candidate from the Jennions Lab at the Research School of Biology. “The habitats that fish live in are changing.”

Australian National University, Research School of Biology 3 Feb 2014

worse than we thought – ocean circulation!

Michael Mann: We do suspect that this ocean circulation pattern not only could slow down, there is evidence now… that it’s already happening and it’s happening faster than the models predicted it to.
Thom Hartmann: Which is bad news.
Michael Mann: Yeah.
Faster Than Expected, 13 Oct 2015

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

come hell or high ….

desert

Right now, the 3.6 million people living in Melbourne have more water than they need, with 71 billion litres set aside in half-full rivers and dams for whenever we feel like turning on a tap. But not for much longer.

By 2030, another 800,000 people are expected to squeeze into Melbourne’s sprawling suburbs. Quenching their thirst – not to mention keeping them clean – will take another 53 billion litres of water. So far the equation doesn’t look bad.

But then comes the big subtraction, climate change, which CSIRO scientists have forecast will make the city hotter and drier in the decades ahead. That means that unless we change the way we live, by 2030 Melbourne will be facing a 55 billion litre shortfall.

The Age (Australia), 21 Apr 2006 – screen copy held by this website

more insects

………………………………….

A rise in the Earth’s temperature could lead to an increase in the number of insects worldwide, with potentially dire consequences for humans, a new study suggests.

New research shows that insect species living in warmer areas are more likely to undergo rapid population growth because they have higher metabolic rates and reproduce more frequently. The consequences could be more serious than just a few extra bug bites each summer.

“If they’re crop species, we could count on needing to use more pesticides and it could be very costly,” said Melanie Frazier, a doctoral student at the University of Washington and lead author of the study.

Live Science, 4 Nov 2006

less insects

“If you want to know how organisms react to climate change, it is important to find out how insects react to climate change,” said Dr. Jessica Hellmann, conservation biologist at the University of Notre Dame, explaining that most of the multicellular living organisms in our world are insects.

Yet, currently these invertebrates have become the hidden sufferers of global warming. As cold blooded organisms, insects cannot regulate their own body temperatures, making them particularly sensitive to climate change.
The Epoch Times, 20 Sep 2009
………………………………….

see also – having it both ways

Yes, we have no ……

The world’s supply of bananas is under threat from plagues of bugs and fungal infections which could be disastrous if they continue to spread, researchers say. The government in Costa Rica, one of the biggest suppliers of the fruit, has already declared a “national emergency” over the state of its crop.

Magda Gonzalez, the director of the agriculture ministry’s State Phytosanitary Services (SFE), told The Tico Times last week that climate change had boosted insect populations in recent years, making plagues increasingly likely across the world. “I can tell you with near certainty that climate change is behind these pests,” she said.

The Independent, 16 Dec 2013

worse than we thought – heatwaves in Australia!

The government has been urged to better articulate the dangers of climate change after a report that shows the frequency of heatwaves in parts of Australia has already surpassed levels previously predicted for 2030.

The Climate Council report highlights that Adelaide, Melbourne and Canberra all experienced a higher average number of hot days between 2000 and 2009 than was expected to occur by 2030. Tim Flannery, of the Climate Council, told Guardian Australia that heatwaves were the “most dangerous natural hazards in Australia”.

“They kill hundreds of people and the fact they are accelerating beyond the predicted trends is a concern,” he said.

“Heatwaves are coming earlier, they are lasting longer and they are hotter. They build up for days and before you know it, elderly people, infants and the homeless are in danger.”

The Guardian, 18 Feb 2014

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

worse than we thought – glaciers in Greenland!

The study—written by James Hansen, NASA’s former lead climate scientist, and 16 co-authors, many of whom are considered among the top in their fields—concludes that glaciers in Greenland and Antarctica will melt 10 times faster than previous consensus estimates, resulting in sea level rise of at least 10 feet in as little as 50 years.

The implications are mindboggling: In the study’s likely scenario, New York City—and every other coastal city on the planet—may only have a few more decades of habitability left. That dire prediction, in Hansen’s view, requires “emergency cooperation among nations.”

The Slate, 20 Jul 2015

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

straight from the ……

small_horse

After they first appeared in the fossil record, horses got smaller as a result of a warming planet, says a study just published in Science.

“Horses started out small, about the size of a small dog like a miniature schnauzer,” said co-author Jonathan Bloch, associate curator of vertebrate paleontology at the Florida Museum of Natural History on the UF campus.

“What’s surprising is that after they first appeared, they then became even smaller and then dramatically increased in size, and that exactly corresponds to the global warming event, followed by cooling.”

“It had been known that mammals were small during that time and that it was warm, but we hadn’t understood that temperature specifically was driving the evolution of body size.”

Grist, 23 Feb 2012

worse than we thought – Arctic sea ice!

Summer Arctic sea ice shrank to its fourth lowest level on record this month, dispelling faint hopes of a recovery, federal scientists said.

The National Snow and Ice Data Center announced Tuesday that the Arctic hit its summer minimum last week with 1.7 million square miles of sea ice, down 240,000 square miles from 2014. That’s a difference the size of California, New York and Maryland combined.

That means there’s no recovery in Arctic sea ice, despite claims of some climate change doubters, said Stroeve and Pennsylvania State University climate scientist Michael Mann, who wasn’t part of the government measurement team.

“We remain on a trajectory that is actually ahead of model predictions,” Mann said. “Arctic sea ice is one of several aspects of climate change that his happening even faster than originally predicted.”

Chicago Tribune, 15 Sep 2015

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

Ban plants!

The surprising discovery that plants may be responsible for up to 30 per cent of the world’s methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, is no reason to stop planting forests, a scientist has warned.

A team led by Frank Keppler, of Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics in Germany, found that living plants emit 10 to 1000 times more of the gas than decaying matter. And plants increase their methane emissions when warmed by the sun, it was found.

Plants have long been seen as weapons against global warming because they absorb another greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide.

It’s a surprise, said David Etheridge of the CSIRO’s Marine and Atmospheric Research division. “You think you know everything.”

Sydney Morning Herald, 13 Jan 2006

jelly balls to the rescue!

Vast numbers of marine “jelly balls” now appearing off the Australian east coast could be part of the planet’s mechanism for combating global warming.

The jellyfish-like animals are known as salps and their main food is phytoplankton (marine algae) which absorbs the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide in the top level of the ocean. This in turn comes from the atmosphere.

Mark Baird of the CSIRO said salps were notoriously difficult for scientists to study in the laboratory and consequently little attention has been paid to their ecological role until recently.

Dr Baird was part of a CSIRO and University of NSW marine survey last month that found a massive abundance of salps in the waters around Sydney. They were up to 10 times what they were when first surveyed 70 years ago.

Brisbane Times, 17 Nov 2008

see also – action plan

a socially isolated cow

cow

CSIRO research shows methane is more than 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide in causing global warming.

Each year, cattle generate about 100 million tonnes of the gas, which is generated by micro-organisms in the cow’s stomach. NSW Agriculture’s research at Tocal Agricultural College showed one cow produced about 100 grams of methane a day, or about 10 to 15 per cent of the energy they digested, and that most was expelled from the cow’s mouth rather than its rear.

“Genetic variations enable some animals to better convert feed to body weight,” Dr Autin said. “More efficient feeding produces less methane.”

Newscastle Herald, 7 Jan 2006 – screen copy held by this website

worse than we thought – financial cost!

How much is climate change going to cost us? Estimates have varied greatly over the years, from the Stern Review’s worst-case scenario of around 20 percent of the global GDP, to economist William Nordhaus’s vastly smaller number.

A new study, however, suggests a much higher cost than many have estimated—largely, it turns out, because economists hadn’t been looking at the issue in sufficient detail.

The problem, argues a team of Princeton University researchers led by Francis Dennig, is that accounting for regional differences in discounting likely masks the effects of substantial within-region variation in income.

Pacific Standard, 8 Dec 2015

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

worse than we thought – carbon storage!

Climate Change Models Will Need Revision. The amount of greenhouse gasses stored in the area which the researchers examined, 117 sites across North America, is “roughly equivalent to one sixth of the entire carbon content in the atmosphere.”

Again, that is just for North America: European and Asian Arctic regions probably hold a similar amount of stored carbon. So what that means is basically that a lot more climate change causing gases will be released into the atmosphere as the arctic warms and the permafrost melts than we’ve accounted for before.

Treehugger, 26 Aug 2008

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

keep off the grass!

In Australia, where 11 million cattle range in Queensland alone, this call for livestock reform has been a whisper on the edges of the greenhouse debate. I became interested after reading a letter by animal rights activist Geoff Russell to climate-change campaigner Tim Flannery.

In his letter, Russell quotes climate scientist James Hansen, who says meat reduction is the second-most important thing one can do to combat climate change (the most important is to elect a government committed to action). Russell then quotes the CSIRO, who “have tested Australian cattle on grass and grain – those on grass produce about three times more methane”.

Could this be true? Could a fat corn-fed cow be better for the environment than one allowed to range over grass?

Sydney Morning Herald, 17 Feb 2009

worse than we thought – ocean warming!

People are already familiar with the idea of global warming, but new data shows that we might be underestimating just how fast global warming is taking place right now.

Paul Durack and his colleagues from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory have come to the conclusion that estimates of ocean warming for the southern hemisphere have been miscalculated; the actual number could actually more than double than originally thought.

This means that in total, the world’s oceans are actually around 24 to 58 percent warmer than thought.

GMA News online, 6 Oct 2014

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

worse than we thought – sea levels!

Anny Cazenave of France’s National Center for Space Studies told the meeting that improved satellite measurements show that sea levels are rising faster than had been expected.

Rising oceans can pose a threat to low level areas such as South Florida, New York and other coastal areas as the ocean warms and expands and as water is added from melting ice sheets.

And the rise is uneven, with the fastest rising areas at about 1 centimeter _ 0.39 inch _ per year in parts of the North Atlantic, western Pacific and the Southern Ocean surrounding Antarctica, she said.

Huffington Post, 17 Mar 2009

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

in search of the secetive chestnut rail

Stephen Garnett, a professor of tropical knowledge at Charles Darwin University believes global warming will herald stronger and more frequent cyclones and, as habitats change, life forms will fight for space or even existence.

Consider the chestnut rail, a secretive bird whose ginger body and green beak make it prettier than it sounds – a raucous “wack waka, wah-wah”, alternated with grunts – and once common on Marchinbar Island, about 640 kilometres north-east of Darwin.

Since Cyclone Monica swept through, in April last year, the chestnut rail has been nowhere to be seen on the island.

Sydney Morning Herald, 28 Nov 2007

flat as a …

pancakes

It may be a bit harder to drown your pancakes in maple syrup in the future, studies suggest.

According to a 2010 Cornell University study, “maple syrup production in the Northeast is expected to slightly decline by 2100, and the window for tapping trees will move earlier by about a month.”

Additionally, most maple syrup production south of Pennsylvania “will likely be lost by 2100 due to lack of freezing.”

Huffington Post, 11 Aug 2012 What Climate Change Just Might Ruin

worse than we thought – risk!

The most comprehensive modeling yet carried out on the likelihood of how much hotter the Earth’s climate will get in this century shows that without rapid and massive action, the problem will be about twice as severe as previously estimated six years ago – and could be even worse than that.

Study co-author Ronald Prinn, the co-director of the Joint Program and director of MIT’s Center for Global Change Science, says that, regarding global warming, it is important “to base our opinions and policies on the peer-reviewed science,” he says Without action, “there is significantly more risk than we previously estimated,” Prinn says. “This increases the urgency for significant policy action.”

MT News, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 19 May 2009

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”

…but can new wine be put in new bottles?

World wine producers face rising challenges from global warming and soaring fuel costs but any price increases will be bearable, the head of the International Organisation of Vine and Wine said yesterday.

More efficient producers, who find how to produce better wine even with rising costs, will be the winners, Frederico Castellucci said shortly after being re-elected director-general at the organistion’s congress, where 44 countries were represented.

Solutions being researched including lighter bottles and other packaging such as boxes, increased competition and cost-saving efforts could speed the trend to bigger plots, he said.

The Sun Herald (Australia), 22 Jun 2008 – screen copy held by this website

worse than we thought – pollution impact!

An independent climate change report has found pollution’s impact on global warming is worse than previously predicted. The University of Melbourne study was commissioned by The Climate Institute.

It found temperature rises and ice cap melting are occurring faster than the worst-case scenarios predicted by the United Nations. The Climate Institute’s John Connor says the predictions of dangerous temperature rises for Australia are alarming.

“A rise of three degrees above pre-industrial levels for Australia will be disastrous,” he said. “It’ll see increased droughts, wildfires affecting our capital cities and it will also put at risk the Greenland ice sheets and some of the Antarctic ice sheets which are the real biggies in terms of sea level rises if they slip into the oceans.”

yourdemocracy.net.au, 9 Oct 2007

see also new category – the tendency for news stories about climate change to be not only bad news but “worse than we thought”