Headlines

How Hydrogen Can Save America
By Peter Schwartz and Doug Randall
Wired Magazine, Issue 11.04, April 2003

The cost of oil dependence has never been so clear. What had long been largely an environmental issue has suddenly become a deadly serious strategic concern. Oil is an indulgence we can no longer afford, not just because it will run out or turn the planet into a sauna, but because it inexorably leads to global conflict. Enough. What we need is a massive, Apollo—scale effort to unlock the potential of hydrogen, a virtually unlimited source of power. The technology is at a tipping point. Terrorism provides political urgency. Consumers are ready for an alternative. From Detroit to Dallas, even the oil establishment is primed for change. We put a man on the moon in a decade; we can achieve energy independence just as fast. Here's how.



An Icy Riddle as Big as Greenland
New York Times, June 8, 2004
By ANDREW C. REVKIN

SWISS CAMP, Greenland Ice Cap—This vaulting heap of ice and the swirling seas nearby have emerged as vital pieces of an urgent puzzle posed by global warming. Can the continuing slow increase in worldwide temperatures touch off abrupt climate upheavals?

Experts have reported a series of observations in recent months that show that the ice and the waters here are in a state of profound flux. If the trends persist, they could mean higher sea levels and widespread coastal flooding. There is also a small chance that the changes could lead to a sharp cooling in parts of the Northern Hemisphere.



U.N. Says 2003 3rd Hottest Year on Record
By Jonathon Fowler
Dec 16, 3:30 PM (ET)

GENEVA (AP)—"The rhythm of temperature increases is accelerating," said WMO deputy secretary-general Michel Jarraud. This summer, much of Europe was struck by a prolonged heat wave, with temperatures exceeding 104 degrees. The hot weather was blamed for the deaths of thousands, most in France, and devastating forest fires in several countries. It also accelerated the melting of Alpine glaciers, the WMO said.

India and Pakistan also were hit by a deadly heat wave in May and June, when 1,500 people died as temperatures soared above 122 degrees Fahrenheit. The western United States continued to suffer from drought, and wildfires in California burned nearly 75,000 acres of land in October.



Climate Collapse: The Pentagon's Weather Nightmare
The climate could change radically, and fast. That would be the mother of all national security issues.
By David Stipp


Global warming may be bad news for future generations, but let's face it, most of us spend as little time worrying about it as we did about al Qaeda before 9/11. Like the terrorists, though, the seemingly remote climate risk may hit home sooner and harder than we ever imagined. In fact, the prospect has become so real that the Pentagon's strategic planners are grappling with it.



Global Warming Researchers Speak Out
By Andrew E. Dessler
Ken Minschwaner
New York Times,March 23, 2004

EDITORIAL DESK
To the Editor: Your March 18 news article "Study Disputes Idea on Global Warming" gives the impression that our research goes against the consensus scientific view that global warming is a serious concern. While our research does suggest that climate models are somewhat overestimating 21st—century warming, our work does not argue against the seriousness of the problem.
The predicted global warming over the 21st century is so large (up to 11 degrees Fahrenheit), and the potential effects so serious, that slight overestimates of this warming make little difference—just as reducing the size of a firing squad from 10 shooters to nine makes little difference to the person being executed. Our research should provide no comfort to those arguing against policies to combat global warming.



Global climate monitoring system in the works
Associated Press, Apr. 23 2004

TOKYO—Nations are near agreement on the blueprint of a global climate monitoring system that would help forecast environmental threats such as rising sea levels or drought, but negotiating the details won't be easy, U.S. officials said Friday.

Officials from 47 nations and more than two dozen international organizations are meeting in Tokyo this week to decide what the climate watch system should look like, who will run it and how open it should be. They are expected to announce on Sunday a plan for the next decade through 2015.



Warm Climate's Effects Striking in West
By ANGIE WAGNER—Associated Pressン May 1, 2004

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP)—Just outside this mountain town, where the acres of ponderosa pine turn into a Christmas green blur, Tom Whitham eyes the weary, struggling forest.Death is everywhere. Their limbs bare and bark brittle, the trees quickly turn this forest into an aching reminder of the devastation of drought and a massive bark beetle infestation.
Whitham pulls his pickup truck over and gestures to the dead trees—75 percent in this area alone.

Forget talk of global warming and speculation of what it might do in 50 years, or 100. Here and across the West, climate change already is happening. Temperatures are warmer, ocean levels are rising, the snowpack is dwindling and melting earlier, flowers bloom earlier, mountain glaciers are disappearing and a six—year drought is killing trees by the millions.



Scientists sense urgency to find future energy sources
The Associated Press, 28 October, 1998

On the eve of global warming negotiations, scientists from several Western nations are clamoring for a crash program to develop clean energy that would match the Manhattan Project and the Apollo mission to the moon on the scale of urgency.

Writing in Thursday's issue of the journal Nature, scientists from North America and Europe predicted that global warming will soon become the environmental equivalent of the Cold War as the world's increasing reliance on fossil fuels releases more carbon dioxide and other heat—trapping pollutants into the atmosphere.


World Bank Pledges Hikes in Renewable-Energy Investments
BONN, Germany, June 3, 2004

The World Bank Group has committed to an average growth rate of 20% per year over the next five years in its annual financial commitments for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.



Coral Reefs & Global Climate Change

Climate change expected to further degrade coral reef systems
Pew Center on Global Climate Change

Washington, DC—Coral reefs have the highest biodiversity of any marine ecosystem, providing important ecosystem services and direct economic benefits to the large and growing human populations in low—latitude coastal zones. One recent estimate valued the annual net economic benefits of the world's coral reefs at $30 billion. But human activities including development in coastal areas, over—fishing, and pollution have contributed to a global loss approaching 25 percent of these valuable ecosystems. Global climate change is expected to further contribute to coral reef degradation in the decades ahead.



Plan to Junk Oil, Add Jobs : New Coalition Pushes Renewables
By Tom Abate
San Francisco Chronicle April 14, 2004

Using renewable sources to meet new energy needs would create three times as many jobs as relying on fossil fuels, UC Berkeley researchers said in a study issued Tuesday.



A Race to a Clean Energy Future
by Ben Canyon Gass
Published on Thursday, February 26, 2004 by the Daily Camera, Boulder, Colorado

I have not felt much hope for the future. My generation has been labeled apathetic, but that is because we see what our "leaders" are doing to this county and it has appeared hopeless to stop. With growing gaps between rich and poor, our nation's people are out of work, our children are sick from man—made pollutants in the air, and we are viewed by the rest of the world to be a greedy resource—consuming corporate beast.



Global Warming Enflames Canada 's frozen North
by Andrew Adamson, November 15, 2000

Canada 's most unforgiving and extreme environment is proving to be no match for global warming. The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) released a public service documentary to television stations across the country this week. In it, the environmental agency says the slow and subtle increase in average global air temperatures is leading to catastrophic changes in the landscape of Canada 's arctic north.



Lake level fuels climate concern
by Alex Kirby, Oct. 28, 2002

The water level in a remote central Asian lake has risen markedly since 1998, suggesting that global warming is now a reality. Scientists here say they believe the rise is linked to climatic changes. They think the rise could affect the strategic balance of resources in the region.
Scientists here say they believe the rise is linked to climatic changes.
They think the rise could affect the strategic balance of resources in the region.



Himalayan warming may trigger floods
by Alex Kirby, April 16, 2002

Scientists say more than 40 Himalayan lakes could soon overflow, imperilling tens of thousands of people. They say the lakes are filling up because rising temperatures are melting the surrounding glaciers and snowfields that feed them.
They say the lakes are filling up because rising temperatures are melting the surrounding glaciers and snowfields that feed them.



Highest mean temperature ever measured
By Jonathan Tisdall
First published October 02, 2002

The mean temperature for Norway from January to September this year is 2.2C above normal. It is the highest measured reading since the Meteorological Institute began its records in 1866.
From May to September the west country was 2.4 degrees above the norm while Trondelag was fully 2.8 C over seasonal averages.



European space watch on climate
By Tim Radford
Wednesday August 28, 2002
The Guardian

European space scientists were preparing last night to launch the latest in flying thermometers—an instrument to take the temperature of the planet.
A two—ton Meteosat second generation satellite, known as MSG, was scheduled to have taken off just before midnight aboard an Ariane 5 rocket from Kourou in French Guiana . It will sit in geostationary orbit 22,000 miles above the Gulf of Guinea, the point where the Equator and the Greenwich meridian intersect.



FOREIGN DESK | November 3, 2002, Sunday

Climate Talks Shift Focus to How to Deal With Changes
By ANDREW C. REVKIN (NYT)

The global climate is changing in big ways, probably because of human actions, and it is time to focus on adapting to the impacts instead of just fighting to limit the warming. that, in a nutshell, was the idea that dominated the latest round of international climate talks, which ended on Friday in New Delhi .
While many scientists have long held this view, it was a striking departure for the policy makers at the talks— the industry lobbysts, environmental activists and governmentofficials. For more than a decade, their single focus had been the fight over whether to cut smokestack and tailpipe emissions of carbon dioxide and other heat—trapping grrenhouse gases.



Travel Advisory: Corresondent's Report; Global Warming an Issue For National Parks
By John H. Cushman Jr.
New York Times

When President Theodore Roosevelt established the world's first national park at Yellowstone, the idea was that with careful stewardship, nature's unspoiled expanses could be preserved forever. Nowadays scientists understand these ecosystems as giant circles of change, their evolution driven by the forces of nature but also by the actions of people.



Scientists warn of climate devastation
February 19, 2001

Web posted at: 4:58 AM EST GENEVA, Switzerland—The full extent of the potentially devastating effects of global warming has been spelled out in a U.N. report. Climate change could wipe out tropical islands and Alpine skiing retreats, while melting ice caps could unleash changes that would continue for centuries, according to the report published Monday. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change saidpoor countries would bear the brunt of the devastating changes.



Bush covers up climate research
White House officials play down its own scientists' evidence of global warming
By Paul Harris, New York
Sunday September 21, 2003 The Observer

White House officials have undermined their own government scientists' research into climate change to play down the impact of global warming, an investigation by The Observer can reveal. The disclosure will anger environment campaigners who claim that efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions are being sabotaged because of President George W. Bush's links to the oil industry. Emails and internal government documents obtained by The Observer show that officials have sought to edit or remove research warning that the problem is serious. They have enlisted the help of conservative lobby groups funded by the oil industry to attack US government scientists if they produce work seen as accepting too readily that pollution is an issue.



Water Year 2003 from Oct. 1, 2002 through Sept. 30, 2003
December 2002: Ten degrees above normal.

Precipitation low with little snow on ground. Reservoirs were stable or falling toward spring targets.
Minnesota North
This was the eighth warmest December on record at Grand Rapids. Temperatures were 10 degrees above normal, with two daily records tied and one exceeded.ン The year was 1.7 degrees warmer than normal and about 2 inches drier. Fifteen of the past twenty years have been warmer than normal. Normal precipitation, in the form of snow is 11.3 inches and only 5.3 were received in the month.ン Frost penetration has been relatively slight.ン Reservoirs continued to decline slowly toward spring drawdown levels with losses slower than normal, perhaps reflecting the paucity of moisture on the ground. Large runoff potential is not present.



Global Tragedy of the Commons at COP 6
by John Hickman & Sarah Bartlett, Berry College

There may never have been a larger collection of national free riders found at any multinational negotiation than at COP 6, the Sixth Session of the Parties to the Climate Control Convention held November 13—24, 2000 in the Dutch city of The Hague . The 160 nations represented at the conference missed the opportunity to make the kind of decisions which might save the people of this planet from serious grief. Their failure to reach agreement means that the billions who inhabit this planet will have to wait for the kind of concerted action by governments which would moderate and eventually reverse the effects of global warming. Unless action is taken, the world can expect severe flooding of low—lying coastal areas because of increasingly violent storms and rising sea levels, and the disruption of agriculture and ecosystems across continents which will result in famine, migration, and species loss. What makes their collective failure interesting, aside from its incalculable future cost, is that it appears to have been motivated by the rational pursuit of national interests.



We Must Err on Side of Global Warming Caution
by Meir Carasso
Published on sunday, May 20, 2001 in the Boulder Daily Camera

For years the tobacco industry, in opposing regulation of any kind, has repeatedly used one argument. In essence, it said: There is no conclusive scientific proof of a connection between smoking tobacco and lung cancer. Therefore, since the government cannot produce incontrovertible scientific evidence for health claims, there should be no regulation. Since then, disclosures of the industry's own proprietary documents provided ample evidence of cause and effect relationships between smoking tobacco and cancer.



The Warming Commons
by Jonathan Wallace

President Bush's decision last week not to set limits on carbon dioxide emissions torpedoes the Kyoto treaty on global warming. The president does not deny that global warming is occurring, or that it is induced by human actions. He simply is unwilling to do anything about it. (The fact that this is also a violation of a significant campaign promise is not auspicious.)
It is a big step forward that a scientific consensus now exists on global warming. Until a few years ago, right wing think tanks were still publishing white papers that said it was a figment of the imagination, or had natural causes unrelated to human—caused emissions. At the time, the human capacity for denial seemed immense. Anyone who lived in the early sixties remembers snow falling many times a winter and staying on the ground for weeks. Now it doesn't. Global warming seemed intuitively correct and Occam's Razor suggested that humans were causing it, rather than some abstruse set of unrelated causes.



Beyond fossil fuels
An interview with Professor Martin Hoffert

Why do we need to look beyond fossil fuels?
Even if there were no greenhouse effect, all of the fossil fuels will be depleted within a few hundred years. If humankind is going to have a future on this planet, at least a high—technology future, with a significant population of several billions of humans continuing to inhabit the Earth, it is absolutely inevitable that we'll have to find another energy source.



Technologies for a Greenhouse Planet
By Martin I. Hoffert
Department of physics, New York University, New York, NY 10003

Forty years ago Roger Revelle and Hans Suess whimsically dubbed the then—hypothetical fossil fuel greenhouse a "grand geophysical experiment" (Revelle and Suess, 1957). Perhaps it was less evident then than now that this particular genie might not be so easy to put back in the bottle. as the century and millennium draw to a close, there is little reason for governments seeking to implement the United Nations framework Convention on Climate Change to ignore relevant research. We know a lot more now.



A Modest Proposal to Stop Global Warming
By Ross Gelbspan
Sierra Club Productions

While evidence continues to mount that humans are heating the globe, the world's nations squabble over a complex fix too timid to solve the problem.
But we can stop global warming—by calling an end to the Carbon Age.
The United States is constantly warning against the danger posed by "rogue states" like Iraq or North Korea . But last November we behaved very much like an outlaw nation ourselves by unilaterally scuttling climate talks at The Hague, Netherlands . More than half of the world's industrial nations declared their willingness to cut their consumption of fossil fuels to forestall global warming, but when the United States would commit to nothing more than planting a few trees and buying up cheap pollution allowances from poor countries, the talks collapsed.



Global Warming's Bottom Line
—Six principles for Reporting on Global Warming—
Prepared by the Montana Environmental Information Center for the Transboundary Working Group of the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative, First Annual Crown of the Continent Transboundary Media Tour, September 7—9, 2001

Well into the Vietnam War, most Saigon correspondents and their editors were painfully slow in grasping what a few determined, thoughtful investigators among their peers had already recognized: That the United States was losing and could not win the war. Should there have been any surprise then that the public whom they were charged to enlighten remained even more uninformed? And that such a public could hardly be expected to summon the political energy to push elected officials to radically alter Vietnam policy? This maddening lag was a prime contributor to the agonizingly delayed American withdrawal. many people paid for this with their lives. Global Warming deliberations in the United State are similarly befogged. This paper will attempt to marry scientific conclusions with realistic policy options in order to form a basis for collective action. I believe that the following six principles should guide thinking and reporting on global warming.



Apollo 2
Solar Energy Meets the New Global Challenge
R. B. Swenson
Ecosystems Inc., P.O. Box 7080, Santa Cruz, CA 95061, USA
—ABSTRACT—

Humanity faces imminent and serious global oil shortages.[1] It is urgent that the solar energy community respond aggressively to fulfill its central role in the transition from a transitory fossil—fuel economy to a sustainable solar future. The intention here is to explain and quantify the oil shortfall, to validate the renewable option, and to calculate the rate at which the capacity of the renewable energy industry must accelerate to counteract the predictable oil deficit.



Address at Rice University on the Nation's Space Effort
President John F. Kennedy
Houston, Texas
September 12, 1962



The great Climate Flip-flop
By William H. Calvin
The Atlantic Online

"Climate change" is popularly understood to mean greenhouse warming, which, it is predicted, will cause flooding, severe windstorms, and killer heat waves. But warming could lead, paradoxically, to drastic cooling—a catastrophe that could threaten the survival of civilization .

One of the most shocking scientific realizations of all time has slowly been dawning on us: the earth's climate does great flip—flops every few thousand years, and with breathtaking speed.



A climatological nightmare?
Review: 'The Coming Global Superstorm'—By Art Bell and Whitley Strieber
CNN—December 28, 1999

(CNN)—From El Niメo to the African droughts, to the shrinking of the polar ice caps, Art Bell and Whitley Strieber identify the warning signs to those willing to see. They point out that the Earth's regulatory system is like a rubber band: you can stretch it just so far before it snaps back—with a vengeance.



The Greenhouse Connection
By W. H. Auden
The Atlantic Online, January 1998

Of this much we're sure: global climate flip—flops have frequently happened in the past, and they're likely to happen again. It's also clear that sufficient global warming could trigger an abrupt cooling in at least two ways—by increasing high—latitude rainfall or by melting Greenland's ice, both of which could put enough fresh water into the ocean surface to suppress flushing.

Further investigation might lead to revisions in such mechanistic explanations, but the result of adding fresh water to the ocean surface is pretty standard physics. In almost four decades of subsequent research Henry Stommel's theory has only been enhanced, not seriously challenged.



Triggering Abrupt Climate Change: Can Global Warming Cause an 'Ice Age'?
By Robert Gagosian

Over the past two decades, we have heard about greenhouse gases and the idea that our planet is gradually warming. I'd like to throw a curveball into that thinking—specifically the "gradually warming" part.

This new thinking is little known and scarcely appreciated by policymakers and world and business leaders—and even by the wider community of natural and social scientists. But evidence from several sources has amassed and coalesced over the past 10 to 15 years. It points to a completely different—almost counterintuitive—scenario.

Global warming could actually lead to a big chill in some parts of the world. If the atmosphere continues to warm, it could soon trigger a dramatic and abrupt cooling throughout the North Atlantic region—where, not incidentally, some 60 percent of the world's economy is based.



The Heat Before the Cold
By Terrence Joyce
Published in the New York Times
April 18, 2002

This week's unexpected heat wave across much of the Northeast and Midwest, couple with recent reports about the surprisingly fast collapse of an Antarctic ice shelf the size of Rhode Island, has heightened fears of long—term rise in temperatures brought about by global warming. But this fear may be misguided. In fact, paradoxically, global warming could actually bring colder temperatures to some highly populated areas like Eastern North America and Western Europe.

Here's what might happen: In the North Atlantic, a 10—foot layer of fresh water—some of which may be coming from melting ice in the Arctic—has been accumulating and lowering the salinity of the ocean to depths of more than a mile for the past 30 years. Fresh water in the ocean may not sound cataclysmic, but it can upset the ocean currents that are the key to our planet's climate control system.



Sudden Ice Age or World Drought Possible, Study Says
By Robert C. Cowen
The Christian Science Monitor
January 2, 2002

If you're concerned about forecasts of long—term global warming, you might be worried about the wrong thing.

The United States National Academy of Sciences warns that sudden, unexpected climate change—on a scale that could cause widespread drought or plunge Earth into a deep freeze—poses a more immediate danger.

The evidence? Embedded in ancient tree rings and ice cores are signs that quick, drastic change is a fundamental characteristic of Earth's climate. These data show that the climate can switch abruptly from one mode—such as an ice age—to another, such as a milder interglacial period, climatologists say.



Containing Climate Change: a Global Challenge
Commencement Address at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University
Kofi Annan, the Secretary—General of the United Nations
Medford, Massachussetts, 20 May 2001

I haven't been here very long; indeed, I've been here shorter than you [Dean Stephen W. Bosworth] have. But based on what I have seen here, you're off to a flying start. Congratulations. You are trained to lead, to serve and to administer, and you've done a great job with this weather.



Extreme Weather-Climate Events
By Prof Bidur P. Upadhyay
The Kathmandu Post
August 18, 2002

In popular terms, weather is what we experience on a day—to—day basis. Climate means the average weather and its long—term availability over a particular period or over a month, season, year or several years. But this climate is a resource that provides the necessities of life. Throughout the ages, human being has adapted to this resource by arranging shelter, food production, energy provision and lifestyle in harmony with climates and environmental conditions in general. Our needs and productivity are, thus, linked in subtle ways to the climate and the seasons. Because of this, every species on the planet is biologically adapted to the local climate as part of its environment. However, extreme weather events can cause damage and destruction to housing and public infrastructure, leaving communities unprotected from weather with food and water shortages, and with loss of their livelihood.



Warmer Winters Threaten Polar Bears
AFP
November 4, 2002

Nov. 4—Polar bears that roam the Hudson Bay area in the great Canadian North are impatiently waiting for ice to form, and as the winter shortens year by year their lives are becoming increasingly threatened.

"Over the last 20 years, the ice breaks an average of two weeks earlier," said Michael Goodyear, director of the Churchill Northern Studies Center.



Global Warming: the Worst Case
By Jeremy Leggett
The Bulletin—1992

As recently as two years ago, it looked as if world leaders would soon agree on a far—sighted course of action to insure cutbacks in the production of "greenhouse" gases, to make certain that future generations would not suffer from excessive global warming.

Many of us, in fact, thought the ceremonial signing of a global warming treaty would be the centerpiece of the U.N.—sponsored "Earth Summit," which convenes this month in Rio de Janeiro. However, as I write this in late April, it looks very unlikely that a meaningful treaty will be agreed on.

Political and economic issues that lie beyond the scope of this article help explain why a global warming treaty has yet to be negotiated. But there is also the matter of scientific uncertainty. Although the world's scientists share a broad consensus that the human—enhanced "greenhouse effect" will lead to potentially dangerous global warming, profound uncertainty remains as to the exact response of the climate system to an atmosphere overloaded with greenhouse gases, most of them long—lived.



Impact of Global Warming on U.S. Agriculture Larger and more Negative than Expected, say UC Berkeley Resource Experts
By Patricia McBroom
August 7, 2001

Moreover, the impact is unambiguously negative. There is little chance that a significant rise in global temperature could benefit U.S. agriculture, reported the UC Berkeley scientists at the annual meeting in Chicago of the American Agricultural Economic Association.

They estimate that a five degree temperature rise —projected to occur in the next 30-50 years at current rates of carbon dioxide accumulation in the atmosphere—could result in $15 billion to $30 billion in annual damage to American crops.



Global Warming Threatens Tourism
By Alex Kirby
BBC Online Network
August 29, 1999

A report commissoned by the World Wide Fund for Nature (UK) says heat waves, droughts, rising sea levels, flash floods, forest fires and disease "could turn profitable tourist destinations into holiday horror stories".

WWF asked the climatic research unit at the university of East Anglia to analyse the potential impact of a changing climate on 10 top destinations. They are the Maldives, the European Alps, the eastern Mediterranean, southern Spain, Scotland, the European lakes, South and east Africa, Australia, Florida and Brazil.



Antartic Ice Crumbling Rapidly
By Alex Kirby
BBC Online Network
April 8, 1999

Two ice shelves on the Antarctic peninsula are crumbling far faster than anyone had predicted. The shelves, Larsen B on the eastern side of the peninsula and Wilkins on the southwest, have together lost nearly 3,000 sq km in the last year. The British and US scientists who made the discovery say the two shelves are in "full retreat". They are based at the British Antarctic Survey in Cambridge, UK and the National Snow and Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder in the US.

Despite plans to publish their findings in a scientific journal, the researchers have decided to release them now because of their alarm at what they found.



This Summer Warmest since 1930s
Nation's climate center confirms what many felt
Associated Press
September 13, 2002

WASHINGTON, Sept. 13—Confronted by parched lawns and withered fields, few Americans will be surprised to learn that the summer of 2002 was hotter and drier than normal. For the record, the National Climatic Data Center reported Friday that June through August was the warmest summer since the 1930s and drought affected about half thecountry.The average temperature for the 48 contiguous states this summer was 73.9 degrees.

That's 1.8 degrees warmer than normal and the third hottest on record. The warmest was 1936, followed by 1934.



Earth Enters the Big Thaw
By Alex Kirby
BBC News
March 7, 2000

Around the world, ice sheets and glaciers are melting at a rate unprecedented since record—keeping began.

The Worldwatch Institute, based in Washington DC, has compiled reports from across the globe, which show that th melting accelerated during the 1990s—the warmest decade on record.

The Institute says glaciers and other ice features are especially sensitive to temperature shifts, and that "scientistssuspect the enhanced melting is among the first observable signs of human—induced global warming".



Forecast: Heat Wave
By J. F. O. McAllister
October 13, 1997

(TIME, October 13)—Leave it to Bill Clinton to find the special language of his audience. "Welcome to the White House on a cool, overcast day, about 60[degrees]," he greeted radio and TV meteorologists brought in for briefings on global warming last week. He said he was auditioning for his retirement job and thought he was qualified for theirs: "I'm used to delivering bad news." They laughed, but Clinton is worried that he's about to unleash a tornado of bad news that no one will find funny. In the next few weeks, he must decide the U.S. position on an international treaty thatwould lower carbon—dioxide emissions in the atmosphere to reduce the threat of global warming. The economic and environmental stakes are enormous, and every option has powerful enemies.



Exotic Antarctic Species Face Climate Wipeout
By Jeremy Lovell
September 9, 2002

Leicester, England—Thousands of the world's most exotic species of sea animals, from spiders the size of dinner plates to giant woodlice, face extinction if Antarctic sea temperatures rise as predicted, a scientist said on Monday.

"If the models are correct, we are likely to lose large populations of scallops, giant isopods, bivalve molluscs and giant sea spiders among others," scientist Lloyd Peck of the British Antarctic Survey told reporters.

"So far we have looked at 11 species and the answer has come up the same each time. At a temperature rise of two to three degrees, they asphyxiate," he said at the British Association for the Advancement of Science annual festival.



Adjusting Attitudes on Energy to Keep Our Favorite Things
By Claudia Dreifus
The New York Times
August 20, 2002

Dr. Daniel B. Botkin, 64, a professor of biology at the University of California at Santa Barbara and the president of the Center for the Study of the Environment there, is one of the world's leading environmental researchers and has done much to popularize the concept of using yet maintaining the world's natural resources.

"Discordant Harmonies: A New Ecology for the 21st Century," his 1990 book, published by the Oxford University Press, is considered by many ecologists to be the classic text of the movement.



Warming World on Thin Ice
Rapidly melting glaciers threaten death to millions by making huge areas uninhabitable
By Joanna Walters
June 9, 2002

Ian McNaught—Davis has spent a long time in the mountains. Stocky and affable, the president of mountaineering's international association, the UIAA, is not easily fazed. But when he hiked into the glaciers surrounding the world's highest mountains on a UIAA mission funded by the United Nations Environment Programme, he was profoundly shocked.

For generations of explorers, environmentalists and local people, these cold Himalayan valleys, with glaciers that stretch for miles, seemed to symbolise a kind of cold, brutal permanence.

After hiking through zero visibility and atrocious weather for five days, McNaught—Davis emerged into a sherpa village surrounded by breathtaking scenery. There he was confronted with a shocking truth: the glaciers on Everest were melting alarmingly quickly.



World's Weather Hotter than Ever
By Paul Brown
April 26, 2002

The world was warmer in the first three months of this year than at any time in the past 1,000 years, it was revealed yesterday, as scientists released reports predicting British weather would get rapidly warmer and more unstable.

Rising sea levels and storm surges threaten the south—east of England, the latest research shows. It was disclosed that work had already started on how to replace the Thames barrier and strengthen 100 miles of sea defences around the Thames estuary, where the sea level could rise by 86cm (3ft) by 2080.



Living on the Edge
By Mark Maslin
May 9, 2002

In March, the Larsen B ice shelf disintegrated, sending 500 million billion tonnes of ice into the ocean around Antarctica. This is a stark warning: global warming is starting to melt the world's ice sheets. What we do not know, however, is the rate at which the Antarctic and Arctic are melting, or how the fresh water released will affect the circulation of the deep ocean.

It seems we are standing on a knife edge. On one side is the prospect of change in the north Atlantic deep water, heralding severe winters in Europe. And on the other, even worse changes in the Antarctic bottom water could cause a two metre rise in global sea level.



Global Cliamte Shift feeds spreading Deserts

NEW YORK, New York, June 17, 2002 (ENS)—Over the next 20 years some 60 million people in northern Africa are expected to leave the Sahelian region if desertification there is not halted, United Nations Secretary—General Kofi Annan said today. June 17 is the day set aside each year by the UN as World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, twin problems that must be solved if world hunger is to be relieved, Annan said.



Ten Leaders Implore Bush to cut Greenhouse Gases

WASHINGTON, DC, April 3, 2001 (ENS)—Ten of the world's most prominent citizens are urging President George W. Bush to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas produced by the United States. They may not be elected officials, but they can claim much of the world's attention and the political pressure it may generate for their hope of reversing global warming.

In a letter published in the April 9, 2001 issue of "Time" magazine, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and Mikhail Gorbachev, the last president of the USSR and general secretary of the Communist Party, are among those warning Bush that "the situation is becoming urgent."



Governments Recognize Stunning Scale of Climate Impacts
WWF Press Release
February 19, 2001

Gland, Switzerland—For the first time, governments have accepted the stunning scale of climate change impacts and stated with "high confidence" that recent changes in the world's climate have had "discernible" impacts on physical and biological systems. WWF, the conservation organization believes that they must now take the logical next step and respond by urgently finalizing the Kyoto Protocol and adopting tougher measures to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide, the main global warming gas.



Global Warming Fills Glacial Lakes to Bursting

GENEVA, Switzerland, April 18, 2002 (ENS)—At least 44 glacial lakes high in the Himalayas are filling so rapidly they could burst their banks in as little as five years, an international team of scientists has found.

Scientists with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), and their colleagues from Nepal and Bhutan, are warning that the lakes could overflow, sending millions of gallons of deadly floodwaters swirling down valleys, putting at risk tens of thousands of lives.



Discovering the Globe
By Paul Samson
March 8, 1996

It could be argued that the truly "global" age arrived with the first photographic image of the Earth, taken by satellite in 1965. For the first time in history, the physical globe of the planet could be viewed as a whole with the human eye. The effects on society's thinking have been profound, yet they are riddled with paradox. On the one hand, we are awed by human ingenuity and technology —the apparent control we exercise over the entire planet— yet on the other, we are reminded of our world's finiteness and vulnerability. Which view is correct? The answer, of course, is neither. In order to paint a truly global view, we need to accept an inherent sense of contradiction.



Climate Change Will Become a Security Issue
From CNN, February 2, 2002

NEW YORK (Reuters) —Scientists at this week's World Economic Forum have predicted a grim future replete with unprecedented biological threats, global warming and the possible takeover of humans by robots. "Extreme pessimism seems to me to be the only rational stance," said Sir Martin Rees, Britain's Astronomer Royal, at a session devoted to the future threats and opportunities presented by scientific advances.



Frequently Asked Questions
By Jon Palfreman

The suggestion that humans are changing the climate tends to evoke two main responses. One reaction is deeply skeptical: "How could humans be a significant player in an epic cosmic scheme in which the Earth's climate varies enormously between frozen ice ages, much cooler than today, and periods like the Cretaceous when the average temperature was perhaps 20 degrees hotter than today?" The other common response is sympathetic: "Of course the climate is changing: just look at how warm last winter was. Anyone can see it's changing!"Climate change is a highly complex subject, spanning several technical disciplines—from meteorology to climate modelling, from economics to paleoclimatology. It's also highly politicized and contentious. To help the average citizen navigate this debate, here are some frequently asked questions.



The Nation's Other, Slower Burn
Wildfires Are a Symptom of a Bigger Problem: Drought
By William Booth
Washington Post, July 3, 2002
LOS ANGELES—From east to west, the countryside is as brown as toast. The rich loam of the Great Plains is crazed with cracks. In South Texas, they're saying it's as hot as a skillet on a stove in hell.

Stressed—out scrub jays in the Arizona pinyon forests have abandoned their young. Razorback suckers are stalled at the shuttered fish ladders along the Gunnison River in Colorado, dying for snow that never fell.

The California Poppy Reserve closed early for lack of blooms. The Kansas corn is pitiful. The Montana cows were sold. New Mexico river rafters have no river left to raft, and at the marinas around Lake Mead, they've had to move the docks a quarter—mile to reach the water's ever—retreating edge.

While the wildfires roaring across a dozen western states have received most of the attention, the conflagrations are only a symptom of a more insidious and lingering natural phenomenon: The nation is in deep drought.



Positions Papers of UCS: Global Warming
Union of Concerned Scientists

Scientists have concluded that the earth's surface is warming and that human activities are contributing to global warming by pumping large quantities of heat—trapping gases into the atmosphere.

Significant increases in the average temperature of the earth's surface will endanger human health, increase the intensity of extreme weather events such as storms, floods, and droughts, and damage fragile ecosystems.



Climate Change Program
Redefining Progress

Climate change is a life and death issue for the poor and people of color—and a serious issue for all Americans.

Studies show that people of color and low—income communities will suffer the most from the impacts of uncontrolled climate change and the resulting serious social, health, economic, and cultural effects. Choosing the wrong climate policies will also prove dangerous to these groups. People can be protected from both harms if policymakers decide to charge polluters and then return the bulk of the revenue to these groups of people, while using the rest to ease the transition to a clean energy economy.

Redefining Progress has two major efforts underway that advocate for adequate greenhouse gas reductions and fair climate policies that protect vulnerable communities. These programs are: Fair and Low—Cost Climate Protection and Climate Change and Environmental Justice.



Alaska Glaciers Melting More Rapidly
By Eric Pianin
The Washington Post
July 19, 2002

Alaska's glaciers are melting at more than twice the rate previously thought because of warming temperatures, dramatically altering the majestic contours of the state and driving up sea levels, according to a new study. Scientists using highly precise airborne laser measurements of 67 Alaskan glaciers from the mid—1950s to the mid—1990s discovered that the glaciers are melting an average of six feet a year—and in some cases a few hundred feet—and that the rate has accelerated in the past seven or eight years. As one measure of the severity of the problem, the researchers calculated that the glaciers are generating nearly twice the annual meltage of the Greenland Ice Sheet, which is the largest ice mass in the Northern Hemisphere and second only to the Antarctic. That would mean the Alaskan melt is adding about two—tenths of a millimeter a year to sea levels—a seemingly small rise that nevertheless could eventually have long—term implications for flooding on Pacific islands and along coastal areas, the researchers concluded.



Study Links Warming to Epidemics
Science: The survey lists species hit by outbreaks and suggests that humans are also in peril.
By Usha Lee McFarling
June 21, 2002

A wide—ranging survey of world ecosystems shows that warmer temperatures have sparked a host of epidemics in plants and animals, suggesting that global warming could ravage the planet's ecology and accelerate disease in a number of species—including our own.

...The most contentious aspect of the debate has been the effect of warming on human epidemics, which are far more difficult to dissect because they involve a range of factors such as sanitation and vaccination.



Antarctica
Warnings from the ice: the conventional wisdom is that climate change will be graduate and moderate. But what if it is sudden and extreme? A frozen wilderness may hold the answer.
By Eugene Linden/McMurdo Sound
April 14, 1997

Through blind physics, the Antarctic can confer on a dead seal the splendor of an Arthurian burial rite. A corpse will become frozen beneath some floating ice, then rise slowly to the top as ice forms below and evaporates above. Once on the surface, the body insulates the underlying ice from the sun, causing it to form a pedestal as the surrounding ice recedes. Eventually, the ice breaks up, and the seal, mummified by the dry, cold climate, drifts out to sea. As layers of warm and cold air bend light and play tricks on the eye, it can appear that the seal is standing as it sails off toward its Avalon.



U.N.: Asian Smog Threatens Millions
Reuters, August 11, 2002
LONDON, Aug. 11—A two—mile thick cloud of pollution shrouding southern Asia is threatening the lives of millions of people in the region and could have an impact much further afield, according to a United Nations—sponsored study.THE WORLD BODY said the cloud, a toxic cocktail of ash, acids, aerosols and other particles, was damaging agriculture and changing rainfall patterns across the region which stretches from Afghanistan to Sri Lanka.

The lives of millions of people were at risk from drought and flooding as rainfall patterns were radically altered, with dire implications for economic growth and health.



Persistent U.S. Drought Worsens
Lack of Rainfall Hurts Corn, Soybean and Wheat Crops
MSNBC, August 14, 2002

WASHINGTON, Aug. 14—Persistent and worsening drought has spread to nearly half the contiguous United States, the government reported Wednesday. The National Climatic Data Center said that as of the end of July, 49 percent of the 48 contiguous states were affected by moderate to extreme drought.

AREAS OF EXTREME drought stretched from the Southwest to Montana and Nebraska and from Georgia to Virginia, the center reported. The greatest area of drought coverage to date occurred in July 1934, when moderate to extreme drought covered 80 percent of the contiguous United States.



Solving the Amazon's Climate Riddle
River Basin Played Big Rolein in Ancient Warming, Scientists Say
By Ginger Pinholster
December 21, 2000
Dec. 21, 2000—The Amazon River carves a 3,900—mile path through South America, from the cold Peruvian Andes to the tropical Atlantic coast. Its basin covers 2.3 million square miles, draining more fresh water than any other system in the world. That yawning basin is also yielding new information about the role of the tropics in global climate change.

The ancientンAmazon'sンflow appears to explain a mysterious, 10,000—year—old increase in ice—trapped methane, a greenhouse gas 20 times more efficient than carbon dioxide in global warming power, say Mark A. Maslin and Stephen J. Burns of the Environmental Chance Research Center at the University College—London.



As the Earth Warms, Will Companies Pay?
By Amy Cortese
The New York Times
August 18, 2002

Global warming has been on the agenda of environmental activists for years. But it is also becoming a green issue of another kind—discussed not only in terms of melting ice caps and endangered species, but as a problem that can cost corporations and their investors billions of dollars.

With their confidence shaken in corporate bookkeeping and the market's omniscience, investors are starting to look for other possible "off balance sheet" land mines, including the hidden risks that could be associated with global climate change.

A scientific consensus has formed that greenhouse gases—carbon dioxide and other heat—trapping emissions released by automobiles, power plants and industrial factories—are causing the average temperature to increase, setting off environmental reactions ranging from rising water levels to droughts.



Up, DOWN, In and OUT in Beverly Hills: Rats
By Charlie LeDuff
The New York Times
September 17, 2002

Beverly Hills, California, Sept. 12—"Beverly Hills is a nice place to be a rat" Ray Honda explained, admiring the cool, verdant landscape of the moneyed class, with its fruit trees, bird feeders, swimming pools and dog—food bowls. "It's a very good address". Mr. Honda, a Los Angeles County health inspector whose speech and demeanor bring Peter Lorre to mind, was quick to append, "the four legged—kind," adding: "More rats than people, probably. And when they get really bed you can smell them."



A Climate of Despair
By Jeffrey Kluger
April 2, 2001

The ambassadors from the 15—nation European Union got more than they bargained for when they invited National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice to lunch two weeks ago. The gathering, a regular ritual in Washington, was held at the Swedish ambassador's residence, and as often happens, a representative of the White House was invited. This time Rice agreed to attend—good news for the Europeans, who had something they wanted to discuss.



Earth Will Get Hotter Than Feared
By John Vidal
The Guardian Weekly
February 11, 2000

Leading climate scientists now agree that human pollution, mainly from fossil fuels, has added substantially to global warming in the past 50 years and that the Earth is likely to get far hotter than previously predicted.

A summary of the 1,000—page final draft of research by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change—a United Nations—sponsored group made up of the world's leading atmosphere scientists—has been sent to governments. It is expected to add urgency to this month's talks on global climate change in The Hague.

The report suggests that the upper range of warming over the next century could be far higher than estimated in 1995. Its worst—case scenario envisages the average global temperature rising by 6C (11F) above the 1990 level. Average temperatures today are 5C (9F) higher than they were at the end of the last ice age. Five years ago the panel predicted that average temperatures would, at worst, rise by 3C (6.3F).



Combined Effort
By Emma Young
April 06, 2001

The UN's top climatologists have robustly rejected US President George Bush's claim that scientists are divided over whether global warming is real.

They insist that scientists who doubt that human activity is causing climate change are in a tiny minority.

John Houghton, co—chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, says that no more than 10 of at least 3000 international climate scientists reject the idea that emissions of greenhouse gases are raising global temperatures. ン



Climate Change: an Agenda for Global Collective Action
By Joseph E. Aldy, Peter R. Orszag and Joseph E. stiglitz
Prepared for the conference on "The Timing of Climate Change Politics"
Pew Center on Global Cliamte Change
October 2001

Over the past decade, and especially over the past few years, climate change has emerged as one of the most important issues facing the international community. The reasons are almost obvious: We share a common planet; we lack a viable alternative living space should we destroy the atmosphere of this common planet; concentrations of so—called greenhouse gases have increased markedly during the past century; and the scientific evidence suggests that continued increases in greenhouse gas concentrations are likely to have significant effects on the climate and thereby other aspects of the earth's ecology.

A global consensus now exists that climate change represents a significant potential threat to the world's well—being. But there is disagreement about how and when to address that threat....



The Global Warming Dropout
By Eileen Claussen
The New York Times
June 7, 2002

In its business—as—usual approach to climate change, the Bush administration is increasingly out of step not only with other industrialized powers, but also with the growing support in this country for action to prevent global warming. The administration's oddly two—sided report last week to the United Nations brings the White House into the scientific mainstream on the subject—acknowledging that human activity is probably the cause of global warming and that America itself faces serious consequences—but at the same time lays out a strategy ensuring that American emissions of greenhouse gases will continue rising sharply for at least a decade.



Climate Change Impacts on the United States
The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change
Overview: Key Findings
By the National Assessment Synthesis Team, US Global Change Research Program
Published in 2000
1. Increased warming

Assuming continued growth in world greenhouse gas emissions, the primary climate models used in this Assessment project that temperatures in the US will rise 5—9ェ (3—5イ) on average in the next 100 years. A wider range of outcomes is possible.



Climate Change Impacts on the United States
The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change
Overview: Impacts of Climate Change
By the National Assessment Synthesis Team, US Global Change Research Program
Published in 2000



Climate Change Impacts on the United States
The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change
Overview: Summary. Climate Change and Our Nation
By the National Assessment Synthesis Team, US Global Change Research Program
Published in 2000

Long—term observations confirm that our climate is now changing at a rapid rate. Over the 20th century, the average annual US temperature has risen by almost 1ェ (0.6イ) and precipitation has increased nationally by 5 to 10%, mostly due to increases in heavy downpours. These trends are most apparent over the past few decades. The science indicates that the warming in the 21st century will be significantly larger than in the 20th century. Scenarios examined in this Assessment, which assume no major interventions to reduce continued growth of world greenhouse gas emissions, indicate that temperatures in the US will rise by about 5—9ェ (3—5イ) on average in the next 100 years, which is more than the projected global increase. This rise is very likely to be associated with more extreme precipitation and faster evaporation of water, leading to greater frequency of both very wet and very dry conditions.



Climate Change Impacts on the United States
The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change
Overview: About this Document

By the National Assessment Synthesis Team, US Global Change Research Program—Published in 2000

The National Assessment of the Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change is a landmark in the major ongoing effort to understand what climate change means for the US. Climate science is developing rapidly and scientists are increasingly able to project some changes at the regional scale, identifying regional vulnerabilities, and assessing potential regional impacts. Science increasingly indicates that the Earth's climate has changed in the past and continues to change, and that even greater climate change is very likely in the 21st century. This Assessment has begun a national process of research, analysis, and dialogue about the coming changes in climate, their impacts, and what Americans can do to adapt to an uncertain and continuously changing climate. This Assessment is built on a solid foundation of science conducted as part of the United States Global Change Research Program (USGCRP).ン



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