Climate Change Could Increase Armed Conflicts By 50 Percent Worldwide. A new study finds that across cultures, time and space, we consistently see more conflict as temperatures rise and rainfall becomes more erratic. Image via Flickr user expertinfantry Climate change isn’t just affecting the natural world. Researchers have long understood that rising levels of greenhouse gas emissions will also have cascading ramifications on the dynamics of human society, whether by forcing refugees to flee from newly flood-prone areas or arid regions, by causing spikes in the prices of food crops, or by reducing the productivity of livelihoods based on fishing or grazing in certain regions.
Recently, studies and journalistic investigations have focused on one particularly chilling potential social consequence of climate change: an increased frequency of armed conflicts around the world. But what characteristics of these climate changes—heat and erratic rainfall—cause people or institutions to become violent? Of course, there are a few caveats to the finding. Miami, the great world city, is drowning while the powers that be look away | World news | The Observer.
A drive through the sticky Florida heat into Alton Road in Miami Beach can be an unexpectedly awkward business. Most of the boulevard, which runs north through the heart of the resort's most opulent palm-fringed real estate, has been reduced to a single lane that is hemmed in by bollards, road-closed signs, diggers, trucks, workmen, stacks of giant concrete cylinders and mounds of grey, foul-smelling earth.
It is an unedifying experience but an illuminating one – for this once glamorous thoroughfare, a few blocks from Miami Beach's art deco waterfront and its white beaches, has taken on an unexpected role. It now lies on the front line of America's battle against climate change and the rise in sea levels that it has triggered. "Climate change is no longer viewed as a future threat round here," says atmosphere expert Professor Ben Kirtman, of Miami University. "It is something that we are having to deal with today.
" The effect is calamitous. It a devastating scenario. World Breaks Monthly Heat Record 2 Times in a Row. WASHINGTON — The globe is on a hot streak, setting a heat record in June. That's after the world broke a record in May. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced Monday that last month's average global temperature was 61.2 degrees, which is 1.3 degrees higher than the 20th century average. It beat 2010's old record by one-twentieth of a degree. While one-twentieth of a degree doesn't sound like much, in temperature records it's like winning a horse race by several lengths, said NOAA climate monitoring chief Derek Arndt. And that's only part of it. "We are living in the era of the climate system," Arndt said. Arndt said both the June and May records were driven by unusually hot oceans, especially the Pacific and Indian oceans.
Heat records in June broke on every continent but Antarctica, especially in New Zealand, northern South America, Greenland, central Africa and southern Asia. The United States had only its 33rd hottest June. Online: New Evidence: Climate Change Is Disrupting U.S. Military Operations. Funny, the headline says it IS disrupting operations, yet the article says the military is identifying POTENTIAL phenomena that COULD disrupt operations. That's pretty goddamn misleading, if you ask me. Why can't climate change articles just be honest instead of coercive? "The combination of thawing permafrost, decreasing sea ice, and rising sea level on the Alaskan coast have led to an increase in coastal erosion at several Air Force radar early warning and communication installations. According to installation officials, this erosion has damaged roads, utility infrastructure, seawalls, and runways…..As a result, only small planes or helicopters are able to land in this location, as opposed to larger planes that could land on the runway when it is fully functional.
" "Officials at an installation in the Pacific told us that in 2008 they experienced 43 straight days of rain that resulted in mud slides and flooding that damaged base infrastructure, including base housing. " Another Hurricane, Another Scary New Record. Will 2014 Be the Hottest Year on Record? We're hearing more and more about our pending global El Niño. NOAA now says the odds are 70 percent that we'll have an El Niño event develop by this summer, and even higher after that. Other experts put the odds higher still. What's more, the ocean and atmosphere have recently been behaving in a rather El Niño-like manner: Record-breaking Hurricane Amanda recently formed in the northeastern Pacific basin, which tends to be a very active hurricane region in El Niño years. El Niño, if it develops, will upend everybody's weather—but it may also have another impact: Driving up global temperatures.
El Niño, after all, is a global weather phenomenon whose most notable characteristic is the presence of extra-warm surface water in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific ocean. This tends to unlock greater average global temperatures, notes Joseph Romm of Climate Progress. That's bad news for climate skeptics. Insurer's Message: Prepare for Climate Change or Get Sued. To insurance companies, there’s no doubt that climate change is here: They are beginning to file lawsuits against small towns and cities who they say haven’t prepared for the floods and storms that will cost the companies billions in payments.
Earlier this week, the U.S. arm of a major global insurance company backed away from an unprecedented lawsuit against Chicago and its suburbs for failing to prepare for heavy rains and associated flooding it claimed were fueled by global warming. While legal experts said the case was a longshot, its withdrawal didn't alter the message it contained for governments: prepare now for climate change or pay the price. After several days of ground-saturating rain last April, an early-morning train of intense storm cells passed over the greater Chicago area and overwhelmed the region's stormwater and sewage systems. Water gushed out of sewer inlets and backed up into basements.
More lawsuits to come? 'Power and influence' In Norfolk, evidence of climate change is in the streets at high tide. “We don’t like being the poster child for climate change,” said the Rev. Jennifer Slade, who added that the building, with its carved-wood sanctuary and soaring flood-insurance rates, would soon be on the market for the first time in four decades. “I don’t know many churches that have to put the tide chart on their Web site” so people know whether they can get to church. On May 6, the Obama administration released the third National Climate Assessment, and President Obama proclaimed climate change no longer a theory; its effects, he said, are already here.
This came as no surprise in Norfolk, where normal tides have risen 11/2 feet over the past century and the sea is rising faster than anywhere else on the East Coast. The more urgent question is what to do about it — and how to pay for it. Obama has ordered every agency to start planning for climate change, but administration officials acknowledge that the process is in its infancy. Norfolk exists because of the sea. 'Climate Change Is Here': Australia Experiences Hottest Two Years Ever Recorded. By Emily Atkin "‘Climate Change Is Here’: Australia Experiences Hottest Two Years Ever Recorded" A spectator at the Australian Open tennis championship pours water over himself to cool down as play was suspended when organizers implemented the Extreme Heat policy on Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014.
CREDIT: AP Photo/Joshua Baker The last two years in Australia have been the hottest ever recorded, and there’s no sign that the heat wave is going to stop any time soon, a report released Sunday showed. According to data compiled by Australia’s biggest crowd-funding campaign, the independent Climate Council, the period from May 2012 to April 2014 was the hottest 24-month period ever recorded in Australia. Next month, when the two-year period spans from June 2012 to May 2014, those above-average temperatures are expected to be even greater, the report said. The group that released the report used to be called the Climate Commission, and was an independent arm of the Australian government. 2013 was sixth warmest year on record, UN says | Environment.
2013 was the sixth warmest year since records began more than 160 years ago, tying with 2007, the UN's weather agency said on Wednesday. The World Metereological Organisation analysed the three main global records of surface temperatures, from the UK's Met Office and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA in the US, and said last year was 0.5C above the 1961-1990 average. 2010 was the warmest year on record, and 13 of the 14 warmest years on record have occurred in the 21st century.
Some parts of the globe were exceptionally hot in 2013, however – Australia experienced its warmest year ever. Michel Jarraud, secretary general of the WMO, said: “The global temperature for the year 2013 is consistent with the long term warming trend. The rate of warming is not uniform but the underlying trend is undeniable. Given the record amounts of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere, global temperatures will continue to rise for generations to come. " Al Gore: 'extreme weather has made people wake up to climate change' | Environment. Extreme weather events including typhoon Haiyan and superstorm Sandy are proving a "gamechanger" for public awareness of the threat posed by climate change, Al Gore said on Friday.
The former US vice-president, speaking to delegates at the World Economic Forum in Davos, said: "I think that these extreme weather events which are now a hundred times more common than 30 years ago are really waking people's awareness all over the world [on climate change], and I think that is a gamechanger. It comes about, of course, because we continue to put 90 million tonnes of global warming pollution into the atmosphere every day, as if it's an open sewer.
" But he said the falling price of solar and wind power gave hope for efforts to tackle climate change. "There's a second gamechanger, that is that the cost down-curve for photovoltaic electricity and, to a lesser extent, wind. In 13 countries, the price of solar is cheaper than or equal to the [electricity] grid average price. " Climate change described visually. Natural disasters? | World news. At least since Noah, and likely long before, we've stared in horror at catastrophe and tried to suss out deeper meaning – it was but weeks ago that the Tokyo governor, Shintaro Ishihara, declared that the earthquake/tsunami/ reactor tripleheader was "divine punishment" for excess consumerism. This line of reasoning usually fails to persuade these days (why are Las Vegas and Dubai unscathed by anything except the housing meltdown?) But it's persistent. We need some explanation for why our stable world is suddenly cracked in half or under water. Still, over time we've become less superstitious, since science can explain these cataclysms.
Angry gods or plate tectonics? Which is odd, because the physical world is moving in the other direction. The Holocene – the 10,000 years through which we have just come – was by all accounts a period of calm and stability on Earth. In a sense Ishihara was correct when he decried "selfish greed". That changes the valence of catastrophe. Japan earthquake. The World Bank - Climate Change - Climate Change Report Warns of Dramatically Warmer World This Century. CIA Says Global-Warming Intelligence Is ‘Classified’ | Threat Level. Two years ago, the Central Intelligence Agency announced it was creating a center to analyze the geopolitical ramifications of “phenomena such as desertification, rising sea levels, population shifts and heightened competition for natural resources.” But whatever work the Center on Climate Change and National Security has done remains secret. In response to National Security Archive scholar Jeffrey Richelson‘s Freedom of Information Act request, the CIA said all of its work is “classified.”
“We completed a thorough search for records responsive to your request and located material that we determined is currently and properly classified and must be denied in its entirety,” (.pdf) Susan Viscuso, the agency’s information and privacy coordinator, wrote Richelson. Richelson, in a Thursday telephone interview from Los Angeles, said the CIA has not released anything about its climate change research, other than its initial press release announcing the center’s founding. Climate change: The heat is on. 10 Signs Climate Change Is Already Happening. Are we falling off the climate precipice?
I grew up planning for my future, wondering which college I would attend, what to study, and later on, where to work, which articles to write, what my next book might be, how to pay a mortgage, and which mountaineering trip I might like to take next. Now, I wonder about the future of our planet. During a recent visit with my eight-year-old niece and 10- and 12-year-old nephews, I stopped myself from asking them what they wanted to do when they grew up, or any of the future-oriented questions I used to ask myself. I did so because the reality of their generation may be that questions like where they will work could be replaced by: Where will they get their fresh water?
What food will be available? And what parts of their country and the rest of the world will still be habitable? The reason, of course, is climate change — and just how bad it might be came home to me in the summer of 2010. The route had changed dramatically enough to stun me. “We’ve never been here as a species”