Tag: Climate

Climate Change Could Make Yellowstone’s Famous Geyser Less Faithful | Smart News

Yellowstone National Park’s famous Old Faithful geyser is famously reliable, firing a jet of scalding water and steam high into the air some 17 times a day at 60 to 110-minute intervals.

But new research suggests that 800 years ago a severe drought caused this geyser, which was once somewhat hyperbolically known as “Eternity’s Timepiece,” to stop erupting altogether for many decades, reports Colin Barras for Science. When taken with climate model predictions of increasingly severe droughts, the findings could mean that America’s most dependable geyser will erupt less often or stop completely in the future.

Researchers arrived at the new findings, published last week in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, by studying 13 chunks of petrified wood found on Old Faithful’s mound. Trees can’t survive the geyser’s blasts of super-heated, alkaline water, so finding trees growing on Old Faithful’s mound is a sign that its regularly scheduled

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Scientists return from Arctic with wealth of climate data

BERLIN (AP) — An icebreaker carrying scientists on a year-long international effort to study the high Arctic has returned to its home port in Germany carrying a wealth of data that will help researchers better predict climate change in the decades to come.

The RV Polarstern arrived Monday in the North Sea port of Bremerhaven, from where she set off more than a year ago prepared for bitter cold and polar bear encounters — but not for the pandemic lockdowns that almost scuttled the mission half-way through.

“We basically achieved everything we set out to do,” the expedition’s leader, Markus Rex, told The Associated Press by satellite phone as it left the polar circle last week. “We conducted measurements for a whole year with just a short break.”

The ship had to break away from its position in the far north for three weeks in May to pick up supplies

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“We must act now” on climate

“Science tells us, every day with more precision, that urgent action is needed—and I am not dramatizing, this is what science says—if we are to keep the hope of avoiding radical and catastrophic climate change,” he told an audience today at the launch event for TED Countdown, a new global initiative to accelerate climate action. “And for this, we must act now. This is a scientific fact.”

The pope, who recently published a new encyclical arguing for social unity, believes that we need to start with education about environmental problems based on science. We need to ensure that everyone has access to clean water and sustainably produced food. And we need to transition to clean, renewable energy, with a focus on meeting the needs of the poor and people who have to move to new jobs in the energy sector.

Businesses also need to consider their impact on both the

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Without nuclear power, the world’s climate challenge will get a whole lot harder

The Covid-19 crisis not only delivered an unprecedented shock to the world economy. It also underscored the scale of the climate challenge we face: Even in the current deep recession, global carbon emissions remain unsustainable.



a sunset in the background: White steam billows from the Cattenom nuclear power plant, at sunset in Cattenom, eastern France, on June 2, 2020. - Cattenom is the ninth largest nuclear power station in the world. (Photo by SEBASTIEN BERDA / AFP) (Photo by SEBASTIEN BERDA/AFP via Getty Images)


© Sebastien Berda/AFP/Getty Images
White steam billows from the Cattenom nuclear power plant, at sunset in Cattenom, eastern France, on June 2, 2020. – Cattenom is the ninth largest nuclear power station in the world. (Photo by SEBASTIEN BERDA / AFP) (Photo by SEBASTIEN BERDA/AFP via Getty Images)

If the world is to meet energy security and climate goals, clean energy must be at the core of post-Covid-19 economic recovery efforts. Strong growth in wind and solar energy and in the use of electric cars gives us grounds for hope, as does the promise of emerging technologies like hydrogen and carbon capture. But the scale of the challenge means we cannot afford to exclude any

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Study shows how climate impacts food webs, poses socioeconomic threat in Eastern Africa

Study shows how climate impacts food webs, poses socioeconomic threat in Eastern Africa
The research team spent 12 days on Lake Tanganyika collecting core samples from the lake’s floor. They chartered a Congolese merchant vessel, seen here, and adapted it for their research project. Credit: Michael McGlue, University of Kentucky

A new study is sounding the alarm on the impact climate change could have on one of the world’s most vulnerable regions.


Michael McGlue, Pioneer Natural Resources Professor of Stratigraphy in the University of Kentucky Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, and his team conducted the study at Lake Tanganyika—a major African fishery. The results, which published today in Science Advances, show how certain changes in climate may place the fishery at risk, potentially diminishing food resources for millions of people in this area of eastern Africa.

“Lake Tanganyika’s fish are a critically important resource for impoverished people from four nations (Tanzania, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Burundi and Zambia) and resilience

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Amazon Ramps Up Delivery Business With Rivian Electric Vehicles To Reach Climate Goals

As Amazon (AMZN) continues the expansion of its delivery fleet, the online retailer has revealed its electric delivery van developed in partnership with Rivian.

The all-electric vans have begun to arrive just a year after Amazon made a commitment to be net-zero carbon by 2040. The company has plans to take delivery of 100,000 electric vans from Rivian by 2030, with 10,000 expected to be on the roads by 2022.

The Rivian vans were developed to “enhance the driver experience and optimize safety” with a customized configuration that comes in three different models. The vans feature sensor detection, highway and traffic assist features, larger windshield, exterior cameras with digital display, Alexa integration, stronger door design, interior “dancefloor” for added space, multiple tail lights, and three levels of shelving to store packages.

“When we set out to create our first customized electric delivery vehicle with Rivian, we knew that it needed

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Climate Veterans And Inventors Team Up To Launch New Tools To Cool The Earth With Reflection

SEATTLE, Oct. 6, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — A diverse team of inventors, climate scientists, and policy experts today launched Reflective Earth (www.ReflectiveEarth.org), a new organization devoted to slowing global warming quickly by reflecting more of the sun’s energy back to space. Reflective Earth (RE) is already collaborating on three continents to build and test new technologies that could immediately improve the Earth’s heat balance and reduce the severity of catastrophic climate events.

RE is the brainchild of Seattle-based entrepreneur-inventor Jeff Haley, who, in 2019 identified the need to take a unified approach to exploring the single fastest way to cool the planet: “Reflectivity, often referred to by scientists as ‘albedo’, can be mobilized far more quickly than changes in the fossil fuel system to reduce global warming,” he said, adding that RE is technology-agnostic. “We are working anywhere we can, from rooftops in West Africa to the heights

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Who’s driving whom? Climate and carbon cycle in perpetual interaction

Who is driving whom? Climate and carbon cycle in perpetual interaction
The research vessel JOIDES Resolution in Fremantle (Australia) the morning before the ship sailed on Expedition 356. The results are based on samples taken from this drilling vessel as part of the International Ocean Discovery Program IODP. Credit: William Crawford, IODP JRSO

Man-made global heating has long been presented as a relatively simple chain of cause and effect: humans disrupt the carbon cycle by burning fossil fuels, thereby increase the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, which in turn leads to higher temperatures around the globe. “However, it becomes increasingly clear that this is not the end of the story. Forest fires become more frequent all over the world, release additional CO2 into the atmosphere, and further reinforce the global warming that enhanced forest fire risk in the first place. This is a textbook example of what climate scientists call a positive feedback mechanism,” stresses David De Vleeschouwer,

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Asbestos could be a powerful weapon against climate change (you read that right)

On a scorching day this August, Caleb Woodall wielded his shovel like a spear, stabbing it into the hardened crust of an asbestos-filled pit near Coalinga, California.

Woodall, a graduate student at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts, was digging out samples from an asbestos mine that’s been shuttered since 1980, a Superfund site on the highest peak in the state’s Diablo Range. He extracted pounds of the material from several locations across San Benito Mountain, shoveled them into Ziploc bags, and shipped them to a pair of labs for analysis.

He and his colleagues are trying to determine the makeup and structure of the materials pulled from the pits, and to answer two critical questions: How much carbon dioxide do they contain—and how much more could they store?

The vast surface area of certain types of fibrous asbestos, a class of carcinogenic compounds once heavily used in heat-resistant building materials,

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This climate activist says he was silenced on Twitter

A Ugandan environmental activist was suspended from Twitter in the midst of a high-profile campaign — a suspension he believes is connected to his opponents in the country’s government and industries linked to deforestation. Twitter won’t say what caused the account to be frozen, but environmental groups worry it’s part of a broader trend of powerful stakeholders exploiting Twitter’s moderation system to silence climate activists.

The suspension happened on the night of September 12th, after 22-year-old Nyombi Morris had just finished a television appearance about the preservation of the Bugoma Forest. The morning after the interview, he woke up to find his account was frozen without explanation. He says he contacted Twitter’s Help Center at least five times during the weeks his account was suspended but couldn’t figure out what had triggered the freeze, and began to suspect the suspension could be connected to his advocacy. Another Ugandan activist with

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