Study discovers why global warming will accelerate CO2 rise

Study discovers why global warming will accelerate CO2 rise

SOURCE: University of Reading DATE: November 28, 2017 SNIP: Global warming is likely to speed up as the Earth becomes increasingly more sensitive to atmospheric CO₂ concentrations, scientists from the University of Reading have warned. In a new study, published this week in the prestigious journal PNAS, the scientists explain that the influence of increasing levels of atmospheric CO2 on global warming will become more severe over time because the patterns of warming of the Earth’s surface will lead to reduced cloud cover in some sensitive regions and less heat being able to escape into space. The findings are supported by observations, suggesting that forecasts made by climate models evaluated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change are...
Fossil fuel burning set to hit record high in 2017, scientists warn

Fossil fuel burning set to hit record high in 2017, scientists warn

SOURCE: The Global Carbon Project, The Guardian, Associated Press, Earth System Science Data (PDF) DATE: November 13, 2017 SNIP: The burning of fossil fuels around the world is set to hit a record high in 2017, climate scientists have warned, following three years of flat growth that raised hopes that a peak in global emissions had been reached. The expected jump in the carbon emissions that drive global warming is a “giant leap backwards for humankind”, according to some scientists. However, other experts said they were not alarmed, saying fluctuations in emissions are to be expected and that big polluters such as China are acting to cut emissions. Global emissions need to reach their peak by 2020 and then start falling quickly in order to have a realistic chance of keeping global warming below the 2C danger limit, according to leading scientists. Whether the anticipated increase in CO2 emissions in 2017 is just a blip that is followed by a falling trend, or is the start of a worrying upward trend, remains to be seen. Estimates for 2017 put it at about 40.8 billion tons (37 billion metric tons). Sixty years ago , the world spewed only 9.2 billion tons (8.3 billion metric tons). “It’s a bit staggering,” said co-author Ralph Keeling, a Scripps Institution of Oceanography scientist, noting in an email that levels have increased fourfold since he was born in the 1950s. “We race headlong into the unknown.” The ability to monitor emissions quickly and accurately is of growing importance. The Paris agreement is based on voluntary cuts by nations, and without verification that pledges have been...
Global atmospheric CO2 levels hit record high

Global atmospheric CO2 levels hit record high

SOURCE: The Guardian DATE: October 30, 2017 SNIP: The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increased at record speed last year to hit a level not seen for more than three million years, the UN has warned. The new report has raised alarm among scientists and prompted calls for nations to consider more drastic emissions reductions at the upcoming climate negotiations in Bonn. This acceleration occurred despite a slowdown – and perhaps even a plateauing – of emissions because El Niño intensified droughts and weakened the ability of vegetation to absorb carbon dioxide. As the planet warms, El Niños are expected to become more frequent. The increase of 3.3 ppm is considerably higher than both the 2.3 ppm rise of the previous 12 months and the average annual increase over the past decade of 2.08ppm. It is also well above the previous big El Niño year of 1998, when the rise was 2.7 ppm. The study, which uses monitoring ships, aircraft and stations on the land to track emissions trends since 1750, said carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is now increasing 100 times faster than at the end of the last ice age due to population growth, intensive agriculture, deforestation and...
Another El Nino problem: More carbon dioxide in air

Another El Nino problem: More carbon dioxide in air

SOURCE: AP News DATE: October 13, 2017 SNIP: A new NASA satellite has found another thing to blame on El Nino: A recent record high increase of carbon dioxide in the air. The super-sized El Nino a couple of years ago led to an increase of 3 billion tons of carbon in the air, most from tropical land areas. The El Nino made it more difficult for plants to suck up man-made carbon emissions and sparked fires that released more carbon into the atmosphere. The effect was so large that it was the main factor in the biggest one-year jump in heat-trapping gas levels in modern record, NASA scientists...
Poison ivy on steroids: Another side of climate change

Poison ivy on steroids: Another side of climate change

SOURCE: Ottawa Citizen DATE: October 6, 2017 SNIP: An American forest scientist has identified a new and scary face of global warming for Ottawa residents: Not drought or pestilence, but bigger and badder poison ivy. Lee Frelich is a big name in the field of forecasting what climate change will do to forest species. He teaches at the University of Minnesota, and has been in the forest research business since the late 1970s. He knows Ontario’s forests too. And he says there’s firm evidence that poison ivy will thrive in our expected future climate. Climate change “will favour poison ivy quite dramatically,” he said in an interview. “Poison ivy is one of the few species that has a direct response to rising carbon dioxide...