Impacts

U.N. climate chief urges radical clean-up of oil, gas industry

U.N. climate chief urges radical clean-up of oil, gas industry

OSLO Thu Apr 3, 2014 7:49am EDT

Palau: Will fleeing home be the last resort as the climate changes?

KAROR, PALAU, 14 January 2014 (IRIN) - Salustiano Albert has lived in Palau, an archipelago in the western Pacific Ocean comprising over 500 islands, for more than three decades. Part of his family home, where three generations live, used to be flooded regularly by the tides, but in the past few years his entire house has been inundated.

Australia: Mass bat deaths in record setting Queensland heatwave

Grey-headed Flying Foxes: Source: Sundew/Flickr CC-by-2.0Grey-headed Flying Foxes: Source: Sundew/Flickr CC-by-2.0Flying Foxes are dropping to earth and dying in their thousands from heat exhaustion. Original story from Australia Indymedia

The extreme heat in Queensland from the 29 December to 5 January has taken a massive toll of flying fox colonies, warns a wildlife conservation organisation. It is estimated that perhaps hundreds of thousands of native flying foxes have died as a direct result of the record setting high temperatures in the heatwave event across Queensland and north western NSW.

Last year Australia suffered it's hottest year on record, with scientists claiming that extensive fractional risk attribution modelling of 2013 temperatures that this was clearly caused by human greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.

Australia: Sea surface temperatures unusually warm in 2013

Australia had elevated sea surface temperatures for 2013: Source: BOMAustralia had elevated sea surface temperatures for 2013: Source: BOMSea surface temperatures around Australia in 2013 were unusually warm reported the Australian Bureau of Meteorology in it's annual climate statement. Record ocean temperatures were recorded for January and February, with November the second-highest on record. This continues a long term trend for increasing sea surface temperatures around Australia and globally. Original article by Takver from Indymedia Australia.

Updates:

Water supply will struggle to meet demands of thirstier world in a warming world

Irrigation CanalIrrigation CanalBy Jacob Schewe, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

There are already many countries where the scarcity of water affects people’s lives. While water for drinking may be first to come to mind, as agriculture is the largest use of water worldwide water scarcity first and foremost is a threat to food supply. And as many industrial processes rely on water availability, it also hampers economic development.

In the simplest sense, water scarcity is supply falling short of demand. Demand for freshwater will increase in most regions of the world due to population growth. Between eight and ten billion people are expected to live on Earth in 2050, as opposed to six billion today. But as for supply, water resources will be affected by projected climate changes due to unabated greenhouse gas emissions, for instance through changes in the amount, pattern and timing of rainfall and evaporation.

2013 was Australia's hottest year, warm for much of the world say Bureau of Meteorology scientists

Australia sets new mean temperature record for 2013: Source: Australian Bureau of MeteorologyAustralia sets new mean temperature record for 2013: Source: Australian Bureau of MeteorologyBy Blair Trewin, Australian Bureau of Meteorology; David Jones, Australian Bureau of Meteorology; Karl Braganza, Australian Bureau of Meteorology; Neil Plummer, Australian Bureau of Meteorology, and Rob Smalley, Australian Bureau of Meteorology

The Bureau of Meteorology has confirmed 2013 as Australia’s hottest year since records began in 1910.

Average temperatures over the continent have been 1.2C above the 1961-1990 average, breaking the previous record set in 2005 by 0.17C. It was also the hottest year on record for South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory. The other states - Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania – recorded above-average temperatures that rank in their top four hottest years.

USA: Florida's mangroves migrating northwards

By Tim Radford - Climate News network - Original Story. Mangroves are colonising new areas in northern Florida, moving up the coast because the frequency of very frosty days is falling.

LONDON, 31 December - The mangroves of Florida are on the move. Mangrove forests in the north of the state have doubled in area in the last 28 years, thanks not to global warming as such, but because the number of sharply frosty days has dropped.

The discovery is in itself not a surprise – mangrove growth is limited by temperature – but once again it confirms a pattern of climate change and species migration in response to man-made global warming.

Amazon forest loss threatens five states

By Paul Brown - Climate News Network. Water, food supplies and energy production are all in jeopardy as the Amazon forest is felled for profit, campaigners say - and the damage is spreading beyond Amazonia itself.

LONDON, 29 December - The continued destruction of the Amazon to exploit its resources for mining, agriculture and hydro-power is threatening the future of the South American continent, according to a report by campaigning groups using the latest scientific data.

Five countries - Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru - share the Amazon, and for all of them the forest area occupies more than 40% of their territory. All face threats to their water supply, energy production, food and health.

In addition, the report says, because of the over-exploitation of the region rainfall will fall by 20% over a heavily-populated area far to the south of Amazonia known as the La Plata basin, covering parts of Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Drought will worsen some day somewhere

By Tim Radford - Climate News Network. An international research team says many more people will go short of water as the world warms. But who will be affected, and where, remains uncertain.

LONDON, 28 December - Droughts by the end of this century somewhere in the world will be 20% more frequent. But the catch is that nobody right now can predict with any certainty which places will feel the effects soonest, or more frequently.

Thirty research teams from 12 countries report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that unless greenhouse gas emissions are reduced on a global scale, an extra 40% more people are likely to experience real water scarcity.

Loss of Arctic sea ice affecting temperate zones

By Tim Radford. Weather extremes in temperate countries may be the consequence of the melting of Arctic snow and ice, according to Chinese and American scientists.

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