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RealClimate: Recent global warming trends: significant or paused or what?

RealClimate: Recent global warming trends: significant or paused or what?
Guest commentary from Drew Shindell There has been a lot of discussion of my recent paper in Nature Climate Change (Shindell, 2014). That study addressed a puzzle, namely that recent studies using the observed changes in Earth’s surface temperature suggested climate sensitivity is likely towards the lower end of the estimated range. However, studies evaluating model performance on key observed processes and paleoclimate evidence suggest that the higher end of sensitivity is more likely, partially conflicting with the studies based on the recent transient observed warming. The new study shows that climate sensitivity to historical changes in the abundance of aerosol particles in the atmosphere is larger than the sensitivity to CO2, primarily because the aerosols are largely located near industrialized areas in the Northern Hemisphere middle and high latitudes where they trigger more rapid land responses and strong snow & ice feedbacks.

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Evidence The Earth's climate has changed throughout history. Just in the last 650,000 years there have been seven cycles of glacial advance and retreat, with the abrupt end of the last ice age about 7,000 years ago marking the beginning of the modern climate era — and of human civilization. Most of these climate changes are attributed to very small variations in Earth’s orbit that change the amount of solar energy our planet receives. Scientific evidence for warming of the climate system is unequivocal.

Australian Academy of Science - Science Policy The science of climate change: questions and answers An updated edition of The science of climate change: questions and answers will be released in mid-2014. This publication aims to address confusion created by contradictory information in the public domain. It sets out to explain the current situation in climate science, including where there is consensus in the scientific community and where uncertainties exist. Traffic Records NHTSA works to ensure that complete, accurate, and timely traffic safety data are collected, analyzed, and made available for decision-making at the national, state, and local levels. Analyzing reliable and accurate traffic records data is central to identifying traffic safety problems and designing effective countermeasures to reduce injuries and deaths caused by crashes. NHTSA promotes a comprehensive, systematic approach to assessing the performance of traffic records systems, and works with a several partners in the public and private sector, including national non-profit organizations, to achieve this vision and mission. NHTSA’s National Driver Register and Traffic Records Division provides coordinated guidance, outreach, best-practices, and training and technical assistance designed to improve the timeliness, accuracy, completeness, uniformity, integration, and accessibility of state crash, driver, vehicle, roadway, citation and adjudication, and injury surveillance databases.

Pharyngula Probably not. But the New York Times reports: A review of studies has found that the health benefits of infant male circumcision vastly outweigh the risks involved in the procedure. Actually, it doesn’t. Mass Extinction Underway Human beings are currently causing the greatest mass extinction of species since the extinction of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago. If present trends continue one half of all species of life on earth will be extinct in less than 100 years, as a result of habitat destruction, pollution, invasive species, and climate change. (For details see links below.)

Two degrees: Will we avoid dangerous climate change? 09 Dec 2014, 11:30Simon Evans Limiting warming to no more than two degrees has become the internationally accepted target for climate policy, as we saw in the first blog of our series of pieces looking at the two degrees limit. Scientists think the risks of climate change increase as temperatures rise. 10 Books You Should Read Before College We asked some of our favorite entrepreneurs, creators, and thinkers to share the books that influenced their own educations. Want to shape your own learning experience in and out of the classroom? Here are the books you should read before going to college. Influence by Robert Cialdini

Mutated butterflies found near Fukushima By Staffon August 14, 2012 at 9:35 AM A mutated adult pale grass blue (Zizeeria maha) butterfly from Fukushima. (Photo: Handout)

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