• Clean air could kill the Amazon, researchers say

    LONDON (Reuters) - Cleaner air due to reduced coal burning could help destroy the Amazon this century, according to a finding published on Wednesday that highlights the complex challenges of global climate change. The study in the journal Nature identified a link between reduced sulphur dioxide emissions from coal burning and increased sea surface temperatures in the tropical North Atlantic that boosts the drought risk in the Amazon rainforest. >> Read the Full Article
  • Seed dispersal in mauritius: dead as a dodo?

    Walking through the last rainforests on the volcanic island of Mauritius, located some 800 km east of Madagascar, one is surrounded by ghosts. Since human colonisation in the 17th century, the island has lost most of its unique animals. The litany includes the famous flightless dodo, giant tortoises, parrots, pigeons, fruitbats, and giant lizards. It is comparatively easy to notice the los­­s of a species, but much more difficult to realise how many interactions have been lost as a result. >> Read the Full Article
  • Unmanned Aircraft to Study Southern California Smog and its Consequences

    "These monthly UAV flights will provide unprecedented data for evaluating how long range transport of pollutants including ozone, soot and other particulates from the northwest United States, Canada, east Asia and Mexico mix with local pollution and influence our air quality and regional climate including the early melting of snow packs," said Ramanathan. >> Read the Full Article
  • Climate change could hit tropical wildlife hardest

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Polar bears may have it relatively easy. It's the tropical creatures that could really struggle if the climate warms even a few degrees in places that are already hot, scientists reported on Monday. That doesn't mean polar bears and other wildlife in the polar regions won't feel the impact of climate change. They probably will, because that is where the warming is expected to be most extreme, as much as 18 degrees F (10 degrees C) by the end of this century. >> Read the Full Article
  • Water looms as “The Next Oil,” warns MIT Sloan professor

    With U.S. gasoline prices edging toward the recently unimaginable price of $4 a gallon, consumers are beginning to drive less and energy efficiency is again a hot topic. But the pain caused by high oil prices is nothing like what looms as an even more basic and essential natural commodity – water -- faces dwindling supplies and growing demand. As essential as it is taken for granted, water is The Next Oil. >> Read the Full Article
  • Australia seen needing years of rain to end drought

    SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australia needs several years of above average rain to end a drought that has devastated crops in three of the last six years, according to the latest report by the Bureau of Meterology. The bureau said in its monthly drought statement on Monday that despite recent heavy rains over eastern Australia's main cropping lands, the drought was far from over, and had intensified in the outback. >> Read the Full Article
  • Global warming could starve oceans of oxygen: study

    Global warming could gradually starve parts of the tropical oceans of oxygen, damaging fisheries and coastal economies, a study showed on Thursday. Areas of the eastern Atlantic and Pacific Oceans with low amounts of dissolved oxygen have expanded in the past 50 years, apparently in line with rising temperatures, according to the scientists based in Germany and the United States. >> Read the Full Article
  • A hard look at hardwood consumption

    Many people enjoy using tropical hardwoods as garden furniture and parquet floors, but few consumers make the link with global warming. But the link is there, because some products are made from timber from areas like the Amazon and Southeast Asia that contain vast quantities of trees that absorb carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas, but where the overall number of trees is diminishing under pressure from unscrupulous loggers. >> Read the Full Article
  • Climate modelers see modern echo in '30s Dust Bowl

    NEW YORK April 30, 2008 – Climate scientists using computer models to simulate the 1930s Dust Bowl on the U.S Great Plains have found that dust raised by farmers probably amplified and spread a natural drop in rainfall, turning an ordinary drying cycle into an agricultural collapse. The researcher say the study raises concern that current pressures on farmland from population growth and climate change could worsen current food crises by leading to similar events in other regions. >> Read the Full Article
  • Arctic sea ice forecast: another record low in 2008

    Arctic sea ice, sometimes billed as Earth's air conditioner for its moderating effects on world climate, will probably shrink to a record low level this year, scientists predicted on Wednesday. In releasing the forecast, climate researcher Sheldon Drobot of the University of Colorado at Boulder called the changes in Arctic sea ice "one of the more compelling and obvious signs of climate change." >> Read the Full Article