“The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) revised its May 9 reading at the Mauna Loa observatory in Hawaii, saying it remained fractions of a point below the level of 400 ppm, at 399.89.”
The measurement stayed just under the 400 ppm mark! Do we breath a sigh of relief? Did we dodge a bullet? I mean, for the last 800,000 years we have never broken the 300 ppm level, so I am not sure that the revised measurement really makes me feel all that much better…
So I for one am horrified at recent news of atmospheric CO2-e concentration reaching 400+ppm… Why? Climate Change is a serious problem. Not because it can harm the environment (though it will, and that does pain me) but because of the wicked uncertain predicaments we face. The bigger issue with uncertainty is the threat it poses to national security- and even more, global human stability (i.e., peace).
And for those of you (how!?) still on the fence about whether climate change is real, is caused by CO2-e, is man-made or not, etc. This video is awesome! It uses no climate models (something anti-climate change folks use in their debate to say it’s all guess-work) and it’s not funded by or produced by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (again, often sited as spinning fallacies and using scare-tactics claiming it’s all for the sake of folks like Al Gore to get rich or whatever…). This is based on historical, peer-reviewed, science. Science. Not speculation. Not feelings or emotions. Not guess-work. Science.
We have reached a new record. For the first time in 800,000 years the atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide have reach 400 parts per million. For 1000s of years, the atmosphere has remained under 300 ppm of carbon dioxide. We were around 315 ppm in 1960. The rate of growth continues to grow.
The Moraine Valley library has several themed blogs, which anyone can find them on its homepage. Of particular interest to me lately is the Film Blog series posted by Moraine Valley Librarian, Sarah Ando. Sarah has been reviewing several films on food, carbon & climate change. Check it out!
Or if you’re interested in personal liberty and freedoms of expression, Librarian, Troy Swanson has a really interesting piece on Bassem Youssef of Egypt and his fight for free speech.
Librarian Jen Kolan wrote about “a breakthrough in hydrogen fuel production” and its potential impact on how we might fuel our vehicles in the near future. Jen also directs readers to more books and resources that can be found in the Library to learn more on the topic.
I share all this to highlight the Library, the great resources within (including the Librarians!) and to also show how integrated sustainability topics are in our current events, in research and in the Moraine Valley culture. Check out the blog to learn more or peruse the Center for Sustainability website to find out what Moraine Valley is addressing to ensure a sustainable today and tomorrow.
So there you have it. NY State just listed climate change as a real threat to the value of the State’s bonds. This is alongside other risks like unresolved litigation and potential cuts in federal spending! Here’s a clip from the Environmental Leader article about this:
“The decision by Gov. Andrew Cuomo Administration follows Hurricane Sandy, which caused more than $40 billion in damage in the state after it made landfall last year, according to Bloomberg News. New York may be the first US state to warn investors of the risk caused by climate change, such as rising sea levels, flooding and erosion, the news agency says.”
It goes to reason that other states will soon follow NY’s lead. Of course, there are a lot of concerns with increased hurricanes and sea-level rise, so coastal states are sure to consider this. But, climate change affects us in the middle, too, with increased droughts and mega-snow storms. Perhaps Illinois will be next?
“Observant people who’ve driven through Canada their entire lives may have noticed a shift in their natural surroundings. That is, it’s greener: A huge portion of the country, roughly equal to the area of the entire United States, is sprouting thick, luscious new coats of trees and bushland.”
This PBS Newshour piece highlights evidence of warming and its impact. As our area is in a drought, this is something that reaches into our lives as well.
For Winter Sports Industry, Decreasing Snowfall Sends Business Downhill
SUMMARY: While winter storms have blasted parts of the Midwest and Northeast, a lack of steady and deep snow — less accumulation and faster melt — has had serious effects for the ski industry. Hari Sreenivasan reports on how winter sports businesses are navigating the season as part of the Coping with Climate Change series.
There has been great movement in the climate change discussion in response to President Obama’s State of the Union Address. In fact, VT Senator Sanders & CA Senator Boxer toook the President’s charge to act on climate change and announced plans to introduce a new bill.
The bill would end fossil fuel subsidies, invest in job-creating climate solutions like energy retrofits, and pass a stiff price on carbon, 60% of the profits of which would be rebated, per capita, to ever legal U.S. resident.
“The legislation that Senator Boxer and I are introducing today with the support of some of the leading environmental organizations in the country can actually address the crisis and does what has to be done to protect the planet,” said Senator Sanders at an event in the Senate office building. “It can reverse greenhouse gas emissions in a significant way. It can create millions of jobs as we transform our energy system away from fossil fuel and into energy efficiency and such sustainable energies as wind, solar, geothermal and biomass.”
Read the full article here. What’s your reaction to this?
Thousands of people from across the nation are either in D.C. or on their way there now by the bus loads. They are planning to arrange a rally on Sunday to show their support of proactive climate legislation and their disapproval of the Keystone Pipeline. Then, in major cities throughout the States are also hosting satellite rallies to show support in solidarity.
Could be a really interesting year for climate change policy!!
Heat, Flood or Icy Cold, Extreme Weather Rages Worldwide: The growing incidence and intensity of extreme weather events is a sign that climate change is not just about rising temperatures.
This article highlights 2013 weather anomolies only 10 days (at the time of post) into the New Year; it is really quite alarming. Read the full post here.
“China is enduring its coldest winter in nearly 30 years. Brazil is in the grip of a dreadful heat spell. Eastern Russia is so freezing — minus 50 degrees Fahrenheit, and counting — that the traffic lights recently stopped working in the city of Yakutsk.”
Extreme is the new normal.
“Each year we have extreme weather, but it’s unusual to have so many extreme events around the world at once,” said Omar Baddour, chief of the data management applications division at the World Meteorological Association, in Geneva. “…— it’s already a big year in terms of extreme weather calamity.”