Showing posts with the label Climate crisis

In pictures: South America's 'lithium fields' reveal the dark side of our electric future

Image A lithium leach-field in South America. Demand for lithium-ion batteries is unprecedented - but is  mining the chemical harmful to the environment?  Story here.

El Niño is back. Here's what it means for Canada

CBC NEWS Milder winter likely ahead, and more severe weather too, expert says.  

The final warning on climate change.(IPCC Video)


Arctic rainfall predicted to increase faster than expected

Kayaking in the Canadian Arctic. Photo credit -  Kerry Raymond Nature Communications The amount of rainfall in the Arctic may increase at a faster rate than previously thought, according to a modelling study published in  Nature Communications . The research suggests that total rainfall will supersede snowfall in the Arctic decades earlier than previously thought, and could have various climatic, ecosystem and socio-economic impacts. The Arctic is known to be warming faster than most other parts of the world, leading to substantial environmental changes in this region. Research suggests that there will be more rainfall than snowfall in the Arctic at some stage of the 21st century, but it is not yet clear when this shift will occur. Michelle McCrystall and colleagues used the latest projections from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP6) to assess the changes in the Arctic water cycle by the year 2100. The authors found that precipitation, such as rainfall and snowfall, is p

Climate accountability legislation a historic moment for Canada

PEMBINA INSTITUTE A power pylon wrecked by severe weather. A Manitoba Hydro photo.   Pembina Institute reacts to the passage of Bill C-12, key to delivering on climate targets. Story here.

World May Already Have Hit Arctic 'Tipping Point'; Scientist.

Common Dreams In summer, some polar bears do not make the transition from their winter residence on the Svalbard islands to the dense drift and pack ice of the high arctic, where they would find a plethora of prey. This is due to global climate change which causes the ice around the islands to melt much earlier than previously. The bears need to adapt from their proper food to a diet of detritus, small animals, bird eggs and carcasses of marine animals. Very often they suffer starvation and are doomed to die. The number of these starving animals is sadly increasing. A Wickimedia Commons photo. 'Urgent' action is needed, atmospheric scientist Markus Rex said.  Story here.

After Big Oil's very bad week, the message for Alberta is clear.

Policy Options   Oil pipe sits on a railway siding in SW Manitoba. A PinP photo. If Alberta’s policy-makers don’t plan for a managed fossil fuel decline, financial and other institutions will make the decision for them.   Story here.

Serious declines in oxygen levels are recorded in the world's temperate lakes.

Nature Clear Lake, Manitoba, CA. A PinP photo. Widespread, long-term declines in temperate lake oxygen levels have been reported in Nature this week. This trend, calculated for nearly 400 lakes within an 80-year period, may be linked to warming temperatures and decreasing water clarity. The declines could threaten essential lake ecosystems. The concentration of dissolved oxygen in aquatic systems can affect the balance of nutrients, biodiversity, the quality of drinking water and greenhouse gas emissions. While oxygen loss in oceans has been documented, the changes in dissolved oxygen concentrations in lakes are less well understood, in part owing to a lack of long-term and large-scale studies. Kevin Rose and authors measured temperature and dissolved oxygen levels for almost 400 lakes (mostly in Europe and the United States) between 1941 and 2017. Declines in dissolved oxygen are up to nine times greater than those observed in the oceans.  Increased water temperatures are associat

The Fate of the Canadian Rockies May Rest on This Decision

The Tyee                                 Bighorn country, eastern slopes, AB. Photo by Aerin Jacob Approving the Grassy Mountain Coal Project will surely spell nothing less than the industrialization of Alberta’s sensitive eastern slopes.  Story here.

Sea level rise is rapid and unstoppable unless Paris Agreement targets met

Nature Aggressive efforts to limit global warming will sharply reduce future sea-level rise,  suggests a paper published in Nature.  Icebergs in Sermilik Fjord, SE Greenland Credit: Donald Slater A second paper, also published in Nature, indicates that warming of 3 °C could cause sea level to increase by 0.5 cm every year by 2100 as a result of melting Antarctic land ice. The findings provide further insight into the impact of melting land ice on global sea-level rises. This animation shows the rate at which the ice thickness is changing in meters per year (more red/yellow means faster thinning and thus faster ice loss) as the Antarctic Ice Sheet responds to changes in the atmosphere and ocean due to one potential climate scenario. This simulation, using the BISICLES ice sheet model, represents one of hundreds of such simulations used for this work to characterize ice sheet response to changes in the climate. Credit: Daniel Martin and Courtney Shafer. Since 1993, land ice has contribu

Evidence of Antarctic glacier's tipping point confirmed

Science Daily The Pine Island ice shelf - Antarctica. Photo credit - NASA ice. Researchers have confirmed for the first time that Pine Island Glacier in West Antarctica could cross tipping points, leading to a rapid and irreversible retreat which would have significant consequences for global sea level. Story here.

Climate change means even parts of Canada will need to prepare for stronger hurricanes, report suggests

CBC News Researchers say governments need to begin adapting now to the new reality. Story here.

Nothing quite like blubber: Polar bears have few options as global heating makes seal-hunting more difficult.

Journal of Experimental Biology   "Polar bear with seal kill, Baffin Island" by vtluvbug79 As Arctic sea ice disappears, polar bears will lose access to their preferred prey – highly caloric seals. The authors say that, on land, a polar bear would need to eat about 1.5 caribou, 37 Arctic char, 74 snow geese, 216 snow goose eggs, or 3 million crowberries to get the digestible energy they now get from the blubber of one adult ringed seal.  Read the full study here. READ another version of this story: Here. Can polar bears and narwhals cling on as the ice shrinks?

U.N. blueprint on climate emergencies reminds us of man's legacy of deadly pollution and destruction of wildlife.

EcoWatch Ducks swim through an "algal soup" - a stream in Manitoba Canada probably  over-fertilized  by livestock and human waste. A PinP photo. The head of the world body sounds the alarm on what he calls humanity's "senseless and suicidal war on nature." Details here.

Climate change will alter the position of the Earth's tropical rain belt. Researchers.

PHYS ORG Pixabay Public Domain Future climate change will cause a regionally uneven shifting of the tropical rain belt—a narrow band of heavy precipitation near the equator. This development may threaten food security for billions of people.  Story here.

Is lightning striking the Arctic more than ever before?

Nature A photo Team detects a huge increase and says it could be due to climate change, but others can’t confirm the findings. Story here.

Weather disasters in 2020 boosted by climate change: report

PHYS ORG US Firefighter Clay Stephen helps fight Australian bushfires in Tambo Complex near Victoria. Photo by BLM Idaho. The ten costliest weather disasters worldwide this year saw insured damages worth $150 billion, topping the figure for 2019 and reflecting a long-term impact of global warming, according to a report today. Story here.

The Big Banks’ Green Bafflegab

The Tyee Profit, profit, profit. Look behind their pro-climate ads and do what they do. Follow the money. Story here. RELATED: How ethical are ethical funds?

As giant ice shelves collapse amid global warming in the Arctic, experts call for more protection for the "Last Ice Area" (LIA). The vast communities of plants and animals living there could be lost, they warn, before we even get to understand them!

     by Larry Powell                                   The vast Milne Ice Shelf broke up this summer. Animals found  living within its ice cavity (red box),  are shown on the right.  Photo credits: Left: Joseph Mascaro, Planet Labs Inc.  Right: Water and Ice Laboratory, Carleton University. Using tools which included video taken by a robot submarine, a Canadian research team recently discovered an amazing array of plants and animals, living in the hear t of Milne, the very ice shelf which broke apart just this summer north of Ellesmere Island (above), losing almost half of its mass. Dr. Derek Mueller, Professor of Geography and Environment Science at Ottawa's Carleton University, is a team member who's worked in the area for decades. In an email to PinP, he can barely disguise his excitement over what they found. "There are really neat microbial mats (communities of micro-organisms including cyanobacteria, green algae, diatoms, heterotrophic bacteria, and viruses) that li

Ending greenhouse gas emissions may not stop global warming

Nature (With minor editing by PinP) One of several steel power pylons toppled in an historic wind, snow and ice storm which swept through eastern Manitoba about a year ago. It left thousands without power in what was described as the worst power outage in the history of Manitoba Hydro. Damages are expected to exceed 100 million dollars. A Manitoba Hydro photo.  Even if human-induced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions can be reduced to zero, global temperatures may continue to rise for centuries afterwards, according to a simulation of the global climate  published in Scientific Reports. Jorgen Randers and Ulrich Goluke modelled the effect of different greenhouse gas emission reductions on changes in the global climate from 1850 to 2500. They also created projections of global temperature and sea level rises. What do they show? Under conditions where manmade greenhouse gas emissions peak during the 2030s, then decline to zero by 2100, global temperatures will be 3°C warmer and sea levels 3