Climate change in the news
Black smoke billowing out, dark skies, hurricanes, floods, these are the images presented in the news that stick in my mind from climate change bulletins. Paris is the focus for international climate change discussions this week and next with a timely opportunity for all the countries involved to come away with a positive forward looking outcome.
The extent that humans are responsible for global warming and the difficult politics of controlling carbon emissions is not within my scope of expertise. I take the consensus of climate scientists and trust the data that tells you that our planet is warming too quickly. My next logical step is to say this must have consequences.
Trying to understand where these consequences come from led to the title of my ebook “A Wet Look At Climate Change” free to download from BookBoon.com.
Climate climate and moisture
The November 2015 issue of the National Geographic magazine shown above is entirely dedicated to climate change. In place of some of longer articles this issue has sections broken into subsections of a double page with a main picture and lots of facts placed around. One of these most relevant to me is titled “Warming Water”. Why relevant? Because they have one of the facts headed up as “More Moisture”. A warmer atmosphere means warmer air and that means more moisture in the air to drive and change our weather. That relationship between air and moisture effects our everyday lives and we will may be forced to change our behaviour to adapt. I highly recommended getting a hold of a copy of this issue of National Geographic if you at all interested in the climate surrounding you and what impact climate change will have. With so many topics and facts this should be essential reading for school students.
Average temperatures misleading?
Fairly recently I finished Brian Clegg’s book ‘Dice World’. Brian in this book and his other books in typical humorous fashion points to the dangers of improper use of statistics. Having an average global warming temperature rise limit by a set date as a target is great as we all need goals to move forward. When a 2 degrees centigrade rise is mention that doesn’t sound much does it? After all, your house temperature changes much more than that over a day. Scaling this up to the size of our planet’s atmosphere turns out to be an enormous amount of energy. But for me in my head that little temperature rise still doesn’t ring alarm bells. What about an 8.3°C rise! Is that more shocking? Well that’s what has happened in the Arctic from 1960 to 2014, a fact lost when only thinking about the average temperature increase.
The Arctic thawing faster with climate change
Earlier this week I tweeted a link to a video “The Big Thaw” a talk by James Balog, a National Geographic photographer, who shows us a massive “calving” event in May 2008 of the Ilulissat glacier in Greenland. From about 3.30 minutes into his talk you see a great big chunk of ice collapsing into the sea, the calving event. To give an understanding of the scale James shows the chunk of ice is two Golden Gate bridges wide and the amount ice is equivalent to three thousand times the size of the Capitol Building in Washington D.C. Dumping of vast quantity of ice that will melt to fresh water and dilute the sea must have consequences.
Local climate looking wet today
Before I sat down to write this blog it was not raining and I went into my garden to measure the rainfall since yesterday morning. I do this every day when at home and this morning there was 10mm that had fallen overnight. During writing this blog the skies darkened, I’m’ siting at a large window but need a light on to type, the rain started and got heavier and heavier. I have just braved the rain and in that short time there has been another 23mm and it’s still raining hard. Well over an inch of rain since sometime during the night and my garden is now flooding. That’s climate change, that’s the consequence, that’s the reality!
Welcome to my world of moisture!
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