Food Demand and Climate Straining Soils
August 30, 2007 05:10 PM - Reuters, Alister Doyle
World food demand will surge this century with a leap in population, highlighting a need to protect soils under strain from climate change, experts said on Thursday. About 150 scientists and government experts will meet in Iceland from August 31-September 4 to try to work out how to safeguard soils from over-use and desertification when more food is needed and some farmers are shifting land to biofuels.
Rich Countries Deadlocked Over 2020 Climate Goals
August 30, 2007 04:55 PM - Reuters
Industrial nations were deadlocked on Thursday about whether to set stringent 2020 goals for cutting greenhouse gases at a first U.N. session about long-term climate targets, delegates said. A draft text at the Vienna meeting said rich countries should recognize a need for cuts of between 25 and 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2020 to avert the worst effects of climate change. Russia, Japan, Canada, New Zealand and Switzerland objected that such goals would be too demanding after a first period of the U.N. Kyoto Protocol, the main plan for fighting global warming, ends in 2012, delegates said.
Tropical Depression Could Form In Atlantic
August 30, 2007 12:55 PM - Reuters
NEW YORK - A tropical wave in the central Atlantic Ocean was a little better-defined early Thursday and could become the sixth tropical depression of the season in the next day or two, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said in its morning advisory. A tropical depression is a tropical cyclone in which the maximum sustained wind speed is 38 mph or less.
NASA Study Predicts More Severe Storms With Global Warming
August 30, 2007 12:10 PM - NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
NASA scientists have developed a new climate model that indicates that the most violent severe storms and tornadoes may become more common as Earth’s climate warms.
China Warns: Rising Seas Will "Engulf" Tract Of Pearl River Delta
August 30, 2007 12:08 PM - Reuters
BEIJING - A huge swathe of China's booming Pearl River Delta will be "engulfed" by rising sea water by the middle of the century because of global warming, state media said on Thursday, quoting weather officials. Some 1,153 square km (445 square miles) of coastal land would be flooded by 2050, with the bustling cities of Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province, Zhuhai and Foshan the worst affected, the China Daily said, quoting the provincial water authority.
New U.S. Test: CO2 Could Make Grasslands 'Unusable'
August 30, 2007 10:26 AM - Maryke Steffens, SciDevNet
Increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels could change the nature of grasslands and decrease their usefulness as grazing pastures, say researchers. The study was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences this week (27 August). If carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere continue to rise, important grazing areas in parts of Africa, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Mongolia, and southern and South East Asia could be under threat, according to lead author Jack Morgan, a plant physiologist from the US Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service.
Study: Experts’ Forecasts Sometimes Fall Short
August 30, 2007 07:55 AM - Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences
A study about predicting the outcome of actual conflicts found that the forecasts of experts who use their unaided judgment are little better than those of novices, according to a new study in a publication of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences. When presented with actual crises, such as a disguised version of a 1970s border dispute between Iraq and Syria and an unfolding dispute between football players and management, experts were able to forecast the decisions the parties made in only 32% of the cases, little better than the 29% scored by undergraduate students. Chance guesses at the outcomes would be right 28% of the time.
Sea to "Engulf" Tract of China's Pearl River Delta
August 30, 2007 07:20 AM - Reuters
A huge swathe of China's booming Pearl River Delta will be "engulfed" by rising sea water by the middle of the century because of global warming, state media said on Thursday, quoting weather officials.
Mankind to blame for warming but can slow damage
August 29, 2007 08:57 AM - Alister Doyle - Reuters
Mankind is to blame for climate change but governments still have time to slow accelerating damage at moderate cost if they act quickly, a draft U.N. report shows. Underlining the need for speed, it says a European Union goal of holding temperature rises to a maximum 2 Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times is almost out of reach. The 21-page study, due for release in November, lays out possible responses to global warming but cautions that some impacts are already inevitable, such as a gradual rise in sea levels that is set to last for centuries.
Mankind to Blame for Warming but Can Slow Damage, UN Says
August 29, 2007 08:34 AM - Alister Doyle, Reuters
Mankind is to blame for climate change but governments still have time to slow accelerating damage at moderate cost if they act quickly, a draft U.N. report shows. Underlining the need for speed, it says a European Union goal of holding temperature rises to a maximum 2 Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times is almost out of reach.