Climate

Carbon cuts a must to halt warming : scientists
December 13, 2007 06:17 PM - Reuters

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - There already is enough carbon in Earth's atmosphere to ensure that sea levels will rise several feet (meters) in coming decades and that summertime ice will vanish from the North Pole, scientists warned on Thursday.

California scientists create new standard for cleaner transportation fuels
December 13, 2007 04:32 PM - University of California Newswire

Davis, California - University of California experts today released their much-anticipated blueprint for fighting global warming by reducing the amount of carbon emitted when transportation fuels are used in California.  This "Low Carbon Fuel Standard," designed to stimulate improvements in transportation-fuel technologies, is expected to become the foundation for similar initiatives in other states, as well as nationally and internationally.

Clarity in muddy debate over mud
December 13, 2007 03:20 PM - Indiana University Bloomington Newswire

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Geologists have long thought muds will only settle when waters are quiet, but new research by Indiana University Bloomington and Massachusetts Institute of Technology geologists shows muds will accumulate even when currents move swiftly. Their findings appear in this week's Science.

This may seem a trifling matter at first, but understanding the deposition of mud could significantly impact a number of public and private endeavors, from harbor and canal engineering to oil reservoir management and fossil fuel prospecting.

Acid seas huge threat to coral reefs: study
December 13, 2007 02:15 PM - By Jim Loney, Reuters

MIAMI (Reuters) - In less than 50 years, oceans may be too acidic for coral reefs to grow because of carbon emissions from the burning of fossil fuels by humans, according to research released on Thursday.

Without insulating ice, Arctic waters warm 5 C
December 13, 2007 01:34 PM - Sandra Hines, University of Washington

Seattle, Washington - Record-breaking amounts of ice-free water have deprived the Arctic of more of its natural "sunscreen" than ever in recent summers. The effect is so pronounced that sea surface temperatures rose to 5 C above average in one place this year, a high never before observed, says the oceanographer who has compiled the first-ever look at average sea surface temperatures for the region.

Asian desert dust found over western United States
December 13, 2007 01:14 PM - Vince Stricherz, University of Washington Newswire

Seattle, Washington - It has been a decade since University of Washington scientists first pinpointed specific instances of air pollution, including Gobi Desert dust, traversing the Pacific Ocean and adding to the mix of atmospheric pollution already present along the West Coast of North America.

Now a UW researcher is finding that dust from the Gobi and Taklimakan deserts in China and Mongolia is routinely present in the air over the western United States during spring months. "We are interested in Asian dust that comes across the Pacific because particles can have an impact on health, as well as on visibility," said Emily Fischer, a UW doctoral student in atmospheric sciences.

All 11 hottest years were in last 13: UK Met Office
December 13, 2007 12:55 PM - Reuters

The top eight hottest years since global records began are all this century, except the hottest of all, 1998, when the mean global temperature was 0.52 degrees Celsius above the long-term average for 1961-1990.

Fund targets emissions cuts in peatlands conservation
December 13, 2007 12:54 PM - Catherine Hornby, Reuters

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Dutch company BioX Group and environment body Wetlands International launched a fund at a U.N climate meeting in Bali this week that aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions by investing in restoration of peatlands.

Namibia's poor 'will be hit hard' by climate change
December 13, 2007 12:50 PM - Carol Campbell, SciDevNet

Namibia, Africa - Climate change is expected to dramatically alter the lifestyles of poor people in Namibia, say the authors of a study. Their findings were published by the UK-based International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) this month (December).

Namibia is economically dependent on natural resources. Up to 30 per cent of its gross domestic product (GDP) is estimated to be reliant on the environment. Climate change could increase temperatures by 2–6 degrees Celsius by 2100, and rainfall is expected to be lower and more variable.

2007 among top 7 warmest years: WMO
December 13, 2007 10:17 AM - Reuters

NUSA DUA, Indonesia (Reuters) - This year will be among the seven warmest on record, with extreme events including a precipitous thaw of Arctic sea ice, U.N. data showed on Thursday on the sidelines of a U.N. climate conference.

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