Climate Change News
By Allie Bidwell – U.S. News – December 16, 2013
Although water scarcity is already a problem in many countries today due to factors like population growth, the effects of global warming could put millions more people at risk of absolute water scarcity, according to a new study from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. The study, published Monday in a special issue of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that water resources will be affected by changes in rainfall and evaporation due to climate change, putting 40 percent more people at risk of absolute water scarcity. For full story, click here.
By Victoria Woollaston – Daily Mail – December 16, 2013
Earth's poles are drifting and climate change is to blame, claim scientists.The planet's rotation has always wobbled slightly, and over time this movement has caused the North Pole to shift very slightly over time. But researchers now believe global warming could be drastically increasing this shift. For full story, click here.
By Laurie Ristino and Allison Gabala – Environmental Protection – December 16, 2013
The Farm Bill is the United States’ primary food and agriculture legislation. The breadth of its policies make the Farm Bill the primary vehicle influencing whether agricultural lands will mitigate against or contribute to climate change. Will the Farm Bill, already a year past its scheduled renewal, finally pass? If it does pass, will Congress protect critical conservation programs that both reduce contributions to climate change and protect American farmlands from future climate impacts? As it stands, the current Farm Bill proposals reduce mandatory funding for conservation programs by billions of dollars, while also providing increased resources for crop insurance. As a policy signal, one might think the U.S. government has turned a blind eye to agriculture’s role in climate change mitigation, and has shifted its resources toward protecting the profit margins of commodity producers in the face of extreme weather. Agriculture and climate change are inexorably linked. Agriculture is a primary source of methane and nitrous oxide emissions, two prominent greenhouse gasses. Changes in climate will affect crop and livestock yields, resulting in increased costs for agricultural commodities and decreased farm incomes, influencing where and how we produce food. At the same time, agriculture can also remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by storing carbon in soil and vegetation. For full story, click here.
By Catherine Griffin – Science World Report – December 8, 2013
As our climate changes, geoengineering is becoming an option that seems more and more attractive. But is this process really an option? Scientists have discovered that reducing the amount of sunlight reaching the planet's surface through this technique may not undo climate change after all and may instead have unwanted effects on Earth's rainfall patterns. For full article, click here.
By Seth Borenstein – The Republic – December 3, 2013
Hard-to-predict sudden changes to Earth's environment are more worrisome than climate change's bigger but more gradual impacts, a panel of scientists advising the federal government concluded Tuesday. The 200-page report by the National Academy of Sciences looked at warming problems that can occur in years instead of centuries. The report repeatedly warns of potential "tipping points" where the climate passes thresholds, beyond which "major and rapid changes occur." And some of these quick changes are happening now, said study chairman James White of the University of Colorado. For full story, click here.
By Nina Chestney – Chicago Tribune – December 3, 2013
An internationally agreed target to limit rises in global average temperatures to within 2 degrees Celsius is around double the threshold that would avoid catastrophic climate change, a study by 18 eminent scientists said. Governments decided in 2009 that such temperature increases needed to be no more than 2 degrees C (3.6 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels to avoid effects such as more extreme weather, higher sea levels and ocean acidification. They aim to agree by 2015 on a global deal to cut the greenhouse gas emissions blamed for climate change, but the reductions will not come into force until after 2020. For full story, click here.
By Helena Wright – The Guardian – November 27, 2013
Following Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, there have been increasing calls for more financial investment to prevent climate change. Scientists warn that climate-related disasters such as the Philippines typhoon will become more frequent and intense in a warmer world. For full story, click here.
By Elizabeth McCarthy – Medill Reports – November 26, 2013
The recent off-season tornadoes that claimed 15 counties as disaster areas may become more commonplace in Illinois as the effects of climate change alter weather patterns in the state, experts warn. “Now most of our tornadoes happen in the springtime and early summer. But we might see more and more of them year round,” said Jim Angel, the Illinois state climatologist. For full story, click here.
Van Ness Feldman – October 23, 2013
On October 15, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear challenges to a determination by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or the Agency) that, under the Clean Air Act, increases in emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) from new and modified major stationary sources triggers a requirement for those sources to obtain Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) permits. In 2012, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia (D.C. Circuit) upheld this EPA determination inCoalition for Responsible Regulation v. EPA, 684 F.3d 102. The Supreme Court has consolidated review of six separate challenges as Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA, and will hear one hour of oral argument in its October Term. For full story, click here.