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September 23, 2014
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Tag: Tim Radford


Record CO2 Levels Fuel Urgent Calls for Emissions Cuts

The alarming message from international scientists to political leaders meeting at Tuesday’s U.N. Climate Summit in New York is that record global CO2 emissions this year mean “delaying action is not an option.”

Posted on Sep 22, 2014 READ MORE



U.N. Population Growth Data Is Bad News for Climate

A sophisticated new analysis indicates an 80 percent probability that the planet’s population will continue to rise this century, with serious implications for food security, political stability—and climate change.

Posted on Sep 20, 2014 READ MORE



Warming Will Leave Drought-Hit California Reeling

Researchers in the U.S. warn that climate change could worsen California droughts by drastically reducing water flow from the Sierra Nevada mountains while simultaneously threatening the extinction of a rare species of fish.

Posted on Sep 19, 2014 READ MORE



Weather Patterns Show Climate Is Changing U.S.

Fiercer tornadoes, more prolonged periods of drought and loss of native fish species are some of the damaging impacts predicted for the U.S. as greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise.

Posted on Sep 12, 2014 READ MORE



Fresh Water Causes Antarctic Seas to Rise Faster

Researchers in the U.K. have established that billions of tonnes of fresh water from melting glaciers are causing Antarctic sea levels to rise much higher and faster than the global average.

Posted on Sep 8, 2014 READ MORE



Less Snow Won’t End Blizzard Hazard

New research predicts that while there will be less snow in a warming world, the sort of severe snowstorms that caused chaos in the U.S. this year will remain a serious hazard.

Posted on Sep 7, 2014 READ MORE



Sun Sheds Light on Arctic Carbon Puzzle

Scientists discover that, as the Arctic continues to warm, sunlight will be the major cause of CO2 escaping into the atmosphere from vegetation preserved in frozen soil.

Posted on Sep 5, 2014 READ MORE



Satellite Mapping Shows Ice Caps’ Faster Melt Rate

Scientists have been able to measure more accurately than ever the thickness of the world’s major ice caps—revealing that melting is causing the loss of 500 cubic kilometers of ice annually.

Posted on Sep 1, 2014 READ MORE



Food Security Faces Growing Pest Advance

Warmer temperatures and globalization are helping many pests that attack some of the world’s staple foods to extend their range with possibly devastating impacts, scientists say.

Posted on Aug 31, 2014 READ MORE



Europe’s Warming Raises Tropical Disease Risk

As greenhouse gases raise temperatures in Europe, British researchers warn that the risk of the arrival of mosquito-borne diseases that kill many thousands of people every year in tropical regions is increasing.

Posted on Aug 29, 2014 READ MORE



Pre-History Proof of Climate’s Seesaw Sensitivity

Computer simulations reaching back deep into the last Ice Age have enabled scientists to put a historic perspective on how even small variations in the climate system can lead to dramatic temperature change.

Posted on Aug 25, 2014 READ MORE



Atlantic Depths May Hold Key to Heat Hiatus

Researchers analyzing millions of oceanographic measurements believe they may finally have gotten to the bottom of the conundrum about why there is a slowdown in global warming despite greenhouse gas emissions rising.

Posted on Aug 23, 2014 READ MORE



Climate and Economy Fan Flames in Spain

The combined forces of climate, economic and social change are leaving Spain increasingly exposed to the damaging and costly effects of wildfires.

Posted on Aug 22, 2014 READ MORE



Human Factor Speeds Up Glacial Melting

Scientists simulating changes in mountain glaciers over the last century and half have established that rates of melting have increased greatly in recent years—and that humans are the main culprits.

Posted on Aug 18, 2014 READ MORE



High-Tech Quest for Arctic Sea Ice Answers

A sophisticated array of automatic sensors will allow scientists to conduct the longest ever monitoring program to determine the precise physics of summer sea ice melt in the Arctic.

Posted on Jul 20, 2014 READ MORE



New Clue to Antarctic Food-Web Puzzle

Researchers in the U.S. say a landmark census that shows one species of penguin is thriving while other populations are in rapid decline offers new insight into how climate change is affecting Antarctica.

Posted on Jul 18, 2014 READ MORE



Desert Dust Feeds Deep Ocean Life

Most of the iron found in the Atlantic Ocean is provided by dust from the Sahara Desert, two U.S. scientists have discovered.

Posted on Jul 14, 2014 READ MORE



Gene Machinery Helps Plants Handle CO2 Rise

The discovery by U.S. biologists of how plants respond to increasing levels of CO2 in the atmosphere could provide agricultural scientists with new tools to engineer crops that can deal with droughts and high temperatures.

Posted on Jul 10, 2014 READ MORE



Quick Fixes Won’t Solve CO2 Danger

New U.S. research supports evidence that cutting carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels is the only way to limit global warming in the long term.

Posted on Jul 6, 2014 READ MORE



Whalers’ Tales Shed New Light on Arctic Ice

A new study analyzing the log books of British whaling ships’ journeys more than 200 years ago has gathered vital data on the Arctic ice sheet before extensive fossil fuel use began to affect climate.

Posted on Jul 5, 2014 READ MORE



Tofu Offers Taste of Cheaper Solar Energy

British scientists have discovered that a chemical used in making tofu and gritting icy roads could have a huge impact on the renewable energy market by providing a cheaper, safer way to make solar panels.

Posted on Jun 30, 2014 READ MORE



May Days’ Heat Sets Up Record El Niño

High global temperatures last month made it one of the hottest Mays ever, and scientists believe it might have paved the way for a record-breaking El Niño weather phenomenon.

Posted on Jun 20, 2014 READ MORE



Underworld Threat to Melting Icecap

Scientists using radar images of Greenland’s glaciers have discovered a spectacular underground landscape of “skyscraper” ice blocks formed by the melt-and-freeze cycle that is accelerating the reduction of the icecap.

Posted on Jun 16, 2014 READ MORE



Brazil’s Winning Lead on Carbon Cuts

Winning the soccer World Cup may be Brazil’s current target, but new research indicates that it is also a world champion of CO2 emissions cuts by drastically reducing the amount of rain forest being felled.

Posted on Jun 14, 2014 READ MORE



Dark Shadows Fall on Melting Icecap

Dust blowing onto the Greenland icecap from warming areas of the Arctic is causing the ice to melt faster by reducing the whiteness that reflects light and keeps it cool.

Posted on Jun 13, 2014 READ MORE



Aircon Turns Up the City Heat

As cities get hotter in the changing climate, the increased use of air conditioners is worsening the problem—especially at night, U.S. researchers say.

Posted on Jun 9, 2014 READ MORE



Cutting Emissions Is ‘Perfect Option’

Limiting climate change simply by cutting the use of fossil fuels is a much better option than ambitious bioengineering projects such as trying to limit the effects of the sun, researchers have found.

Posted on Jun 6, 2014 READ MORE



Europe Faces Cereals Crop Crash

Europe’s wheat and barley yields could be heading for a 20 percent drop as a result of temperature rise and an increase in extreme weather.

Posted on Jun 2, 2014 READ MORE



How Nature Affects the Carbon Cycle

As global temperatures warm, scientists say that in both Australia and the Arctic natural processes are at work to help mitigate the increased heat.

Posted on Jun 1, 2014 READ MORE



Insects Get Light Relief From Warming

As European summers get warmer, research reveals that lighter-colored insects are thriving—while milder winters in the Southern Hemisphere are restricting the growth of some shrubs and trees.

Posted on May 31, 2014 READ MORE



Buried Carbon Causes Deep Concern

Deep beneath the Great Plains of America, scientists have discovered a vast buried store of organic carbon that poses a potentially serious danger to the climate.

Posted on May 30, 2014 READ MORE



El Niño Blows Hot and Cold

Analysis of historic data about the mysterious El Niño, which periodically unleashes devastating weather, reveals that it has a bad local side and an even worse global side—and another may be on its way.

Posted on May 26, 2014 READ MORE



Greenland Ice May Melt Even Faster

The vulnerability of Greenland’s glaciers to global warming is even greater than feared, according to radar and satellite data analysed by U.S. research scientists—and that’s bad news for rising sea levels.

Posted on May 25, 2014 READ MORE



Migrating Cyclones Pose New Threat

Coastal areas that would not expect to be hit by violent hurricanes or typhoons face a growing threat of devastation as scientists discover that tropical cyclones are moving further north and south.

Posted on May 23, 2014 READ MORE



No Way Back for West Antarctic Glaciers

Analysis of space satellite data reveals that the West Antarctic’s glaciers have passed the “point of no return” and will continue to melt inexorably as the Southern Hemisphere gets warmer.

Posted on May 22, 2014 READ MORE



Reefs Merit Protection Money

Restoring threatened reefs that protect about 200 million people in coastal communities would cost 20 times less than building artificial breakwaters to reduce the effect of pounding waves, scientists calculate.

Posted on May 19, 2014 READ MORE



Ozone Rise Will Choke U.S. Cities

Poor air quality and health problems are expected to become the summertime norm across the country as ground level ozone rises 70 percent.

Posted on May 18, 2014 READ MORE



Droughts May Slash U.S. Maize Gains

Scientists warn that high yields in America’s Corn Belt states could drop by up to 30 percent as crops become increasingly sensitive to droughts and hot, dry air in a warming climate.

Posted on May 15, 2014 READ MORE



Brazil Beef Tax Could Spare Forests

Scientists have come up with a prescription of taxes and incentives to address the Amazon rainforest’s health problems and cut greenhouse gases by encouraging Brazil’s cattle farmers to make more efficient use of pasture land.

Posted on May 11, 2014 READ MORE



Global Warmth Trend Hides Local Variants

Analysis of decades of data on land surface temperatures has shown researchers that the global average can mask distinct regional variations.

Posted on May 10, 2014 READ MORE



Corals Learn to Live in Hotter Water

Researchers are surprised by the speed at which some species of coral are adapting to life in warmer water.

Posted on May 4, 2014 READ MORE



Flat Denial Rejects ‘Very Likely’ Science

Mounting scientific evidence that natural causes cannot explain climate change continues to meet unyielding resistance from those who do not accept the facts.

Posted on Apr 28, 2014 READ MORE



Lapland’s Mystery Moths Puzzle Science

Warmer and wetter conditions are often bad news for wildlife. But moths in Finland’s Arctic region are bucking the trend—and no one knows why.

Posted on Apr 24, 2014 READ MORE



Western U.S. Faces Worsening Wildfires

Drought and warmth are expected to mark winters in the Western U.S., researchers say, while abnormally cold weather will make the East and Southeast unusually wintry.

Posted on Apr 21, 2014 READ MORE



Science Finds New Routes to Energy

Scientists in the U.S. have found new ways to make biofuel, increase crop yields and exploit carbon dioxide through novel applications of familiar materials.

Posted on Apr 17, 2014 READ MORE



Climate Costs ‘May Prove Much Higher’

A re-examination of the true social costs of greenhouse gas emissions suggests they may have been seriously under-estimated, researchers say.

Posted on Apr 16, 2014 READ MORE



Fish on Acid Lose Fear of Predators

Some fish species in increasingly acidic tropical seas are losing their sense of smell and becoming easier prey for predators.

Posted on Apr 15, 2014 READ MORE



Greenland’s Ice Cap Is Becoming Unstable

Greenland is losing ice at an accelerating rate. The development suggests the edges of the island’s ice cap may be unstable.

Posted on Apr 14, 2014 READ MORE



Early Springs Surprise Many Species

Several species are struggling to adapt to the increasingly early advent of spring, and some are finding it beyond them.

Posted on Apr 8, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Cools on States’ Climate Action

While Washington is doing more to address climate change, individual American states are scaling back their efforts—and apparently with public approval.

Posted on Apr 3, 2014 READ MORE


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