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Beneath the Arctic, a Sleeping Climate Giant Stirs - weather.com Deadly Carbon Being Released?

Beneath the Arctic, a Sleeping Climate Giant Stirs - weather.com Deadly Carbon Being Released? | Environment | Scoop.it
Vast reserves of methane and carbon dioxide have been found in Arctic permafrost by a team of NASA scientists, a discovery that foreshadows a big uptick in the release of greenhouse gases if the planet's warming continues on its current course.

 

Rapidly rising temperatures already have had an "amazing and potentially troubling" impact in the Arctic, a group of scientists reported in June after a year-long mission to study how global warming is changing the vast ice- and permafrost-covered region that surrounds the North Pole.

The NASA-sponsored mission, called CARVE -- an acronym for "Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment" -- uses a specially-outfitted plane that flies low and slow above the pristine wilderness of Alaska's North Slope and the Yukon River Valley, allowing it to measure the interaction ofgreenhouse gases between Earth's surface and the atmosphere.

After its first three flights for 2013 (of a planned seven) concluded in June, the study already had its members re-thinking how quickly the Arctic's permafrost is melting and what that might mean for the carbon stored deep in its frozen soil and sediments.

"Permafrost soils are warming even faster than Arctic air temperatures -- as much as 2.7 to 4.5 degrees Fahrenheit in just the past 30 years," the mission's principal investigator, Charles Miller of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said in an interview.

 

"As heat from Earth's surface penetrates into permafrost, it threatens to mobilize these organic carbon reservoirs and release them into the atmosphere as carbon dioxide and methane, upsetting the Arctic's carbon balance and greatly exacerbating global warming," he added.

What has these scientists alarmed isn't just current levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, whichreached an all-time high of 400 ppm in May, breaking through a threshold long considered the benchmark for "a new danger zone."

Melting permafrost potentially poses a much greater danger because it could release massive amounts of methane into the atmosphere. Methane is much more potent as a heat-trapping greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, with more than 20 times the global warming potential of CO2 over a 100-year period.................

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Climate change is happening too quickly for species to adapt

Climate change is happening too quickly for species to adapt | Environment | Scoop.it
A study has shown that the speed of evolutionary change is far outstripped by the rate of global warming, meaning many creatures will face extinction, writes Robin McKie
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Anna Phillips's curator insight, July 15, 2013 2:41 AM

Adaptation is a slow process. Migration on the other hand is a little more obvious and can happen more quickly. The trouble then is though adapting to their new habitat and establishing a population. 

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Air pollution 'kills more than 2 million people every year'

Air pollution 'kills more than 2 million people every year' | Environment | Scoop.it
Climate change only partly to blame, say scientists, as sooty particles and ozone account for most deaths
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China coal policy 'cut lifespans'

China coal policy 'cut lifespans' | Environment | Scoop.it
China's policy of giving free coal for heating to residents in the north has contributed to shaving 5.5 years off life expectancy, a study says.
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Hurricanes Likely to Get Stronger & More Frequent: Study | Climate Central

Hurricanes Likely to Get Stronger & More Frequent: Study | Climate Central | Environment | Scoop.it
Contrary to other research, a new study found that hurricanes may become both stronger and more common as the world warms.
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How Trees Save at Least One Life Each Year in Major Cities

How Trees Save at Least One Life Each Year in Major Cities | Environment | Scoop.it
In urbanity, trees mop up aerosolized baddies like dust and smog.
DestinationFeed's insight:

Now is the best time for us to plant trees.

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Are You Ready for Even More Katrinas and Sandys?

Are You Ready for Even More Katrinas and Sandys? | Environment | Scoop.it
Climate change is supersizing heatwaves, droughts, wildfires, floods, tornadoes, rainstorms and blizzards.
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An Inconvenient Truth: News

An Inconvenient Truth: News | Environment | Scoop.it
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If only the people seriously act on it 7years ago... the results would have a significant effect in our lives now

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Iceland's fin whales are endangered. Stop this bloody cull

Iceland's fin whales are endangered. Stop this bloody cull | Environment | Scoop.it
Philip Hoare: We know so little about fin whales. The resumption of whaling shows the global market prevailing over common sense
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BBC Radio 4 - Shared Planet, Can We Save It All?

BBC Radio 4 - Shared Planet, Can We Save It All? | Environment | Scoop.it
With so many species and habitats under threat, how do we decide what to conserve?
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On the trail of the large tortoiseshell, the UK's most elusive butterfly

On the trail of the large tortoiseshell, the UK's most elusive butterfly | Environment | Scoop.it
There have been fleeting sightings of the insect since 1950, but no one can be sure it really exists in Britain's countryside
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25 Tips For Helping Wild Bird Conservation

25 Tips For Helping Wild Bird Conservation | Environment | Scoop.it
Use these 25 conservation tips to benefit birds.
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Despite threats to habitat, new photos provide hope for endangered Javan ... - Forests Blog, Center for International Forestry Research (blog)

Despite threats to habitat, new photos provide hope for endangered Javan ... - Forests Blog, Center for International Forestry Research (blog) | Environment | Scoop.it
Despite threats to habitat, new photos provide hope for endangered Javan ...
Forests Blog, Center for International Forestry Research (blog)
“Beautiful, isn't he?

Via Maria Nunzia @Varvera
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Heat Wave Brings Sauna-Like Conditions To U.S. Northeast

Heat Wave Brings Sauna-Like Conditions To U.S. Northeast | Environment | Scoop.it
By T.G. Branfalt Jr. ALBANY, N.Y., July 16 (Reuters) - The northeastern United States sweltered on Tuesday in a scorching summer heat wave, complete with stagnant, sticky air and no winds for relief, forecasters said.

 

Even in a summer already filled with stretches of very hot weather, this week will be stubbornly brutal, with no relief in sight until the weekend brings thunderstorms to the region, they said.

"Plain and simple, this week may feel the worst of any week for this summer in the Northeast," said Accuweather.com meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.

"The I-95 region will be a virtual sauna bath," he said.

The thunderstorms predicted for Friday and Saturday are likely to be severe, forecasters warned.

The National Weather Service issued heat advisories for dozens of northeastern cities and surrounding areas in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, upstate New York and Long Island.

A heat advisory is issued if the heat index - a measure of how hot it feels when relative humidity is factored in with air temperature - reaches 100 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit (38 to 40 degrees Centigrade), it said.

"It feels like I am in Florida again, the way that the humidity mixes with the heat," said musician Brad Hester, 26, sitting shirtless on his porch in Albany. "We're getting a tropical kind of consistency."

The NWS warned of the dangers of heat-related illnesses, asking area residents to be on the lookout for signs of fatigue, sunstroke, muscle cramps and heat exhaustion.

Through Friday, places such as Baltimore, Washington, Hartford, Connecticut, and Philadelphia can expect temperatures in the high 90s F (mid 30s C).

"A lack of a breeze in the humid conditions at night will make it very rough in urban areas without air conditioning or a fan," Sosnowski said.

Locals used their imaginations to stay cool.

In Brooklyn, New York, sound designer Jamie McElhinney, 37, said riding his skateboard creates a welcome breeze for his long beard.

"I try to aerate my beard and move around a lot," he said. "That and just going from shaded spot to shaded spot, kind of like a fish swimming upstream - going from rock to rock to rock."

In Albany, Walmart worker Jay Sebastiano, 31, recommended "air-conditioner and beer," while Price Chopper employee Ally Cunniff, 24, said: "I stay inside in front of the A.C. and waste my days on the Internet."...

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A More Acidic Ocean May Wipe Out Antarctic Krill

A More Acidic Ocean May Wipe Out Antarctic Krill | Environment | Scoop.it
A new study published Sunday in Nature Climate Change finds that ocean acidification could cause the Southern Ocean Antarctic krill population to crash by 2300,
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7 billion people and you: What's your number?

7 billion people and you: What's your number? | Environment | Scoop.it
The world's population is expected to hit seven billion in the next few weeks. How do you fit in? Use our app to find out.
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Floods Wipe Away Entire Hillsides In China, 31 Dead So Far

Floods Wipe Away Entire Hillsides In China, 31 Dead So Far | Environment | Scoop.it
BEIJING -- Floodwaters surging through Himalayan foothills in western China have swept bridges, houses and hillsides into roiling brown torrents, leaving at least 31 people dead and 166 missing Thursday, as heavy rains buffeted many parts of the...
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Are 'Champion Trees' a Climate Change Silver Bullet?

Veteran journalist Jim Robbins discusses the fate of the world's trees and his new book, 'The Man Who Planted Trees'.
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Africa Will Starve and Asia Will Drown in 30 Years Due to Climate Change: Report

Africa Will Starve and Asia Will Drown in 30 Years Due to Climate Change: Report | Environment | Scoop.it
The World Bank paints an incredibly bleak picture of the effects of global warming on the most vulnerable regions of the planet.
DestinationFeed's insight:

Are we letting this to happen before our own eyes? What's your stake? Or we just simply ignore this. Anyways, it's not happening yet in my backyard. Or we can choose to make a stand and take ACTION.

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Still True, Still Inconvenient: What We’ve Learned Since 2006

Still True, Still Inconvenient: What We’ve Learned Since 2006 | Environment | Scoop.it
Seven years after Al Gore's pivotal film opened our eyes to climate change, what do we know about this accelerating threat?
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Mint Scent Boosts the Brain, Improves Problem Solving and Memory

Mint Scent Boosts the Brain, Improves Problem Solving and Memory | Environment | Scoop.it

Researchers found that the scent of peppermint can improve cognitive functions including reasoning, problem solving, attention span, and even memory.

For their research, the participants of this particular study chewed peppermint, cinnamon or cherry flavored gums. Flavorless gum and no gum was offered to control groups. All three flavored gums, including peppermint, increased working memory and visual-motor response.

In another aspect of the research, odors were looked at. Both peppermint and cinnamon scents were shown to improve memory test scores.
These studies are interesting in that they don’t require you to ingest anything at all. Even if you don’t like the taste of mint, you can enjoy the benefits simply with the scent. Whether you purchase peppermint essential oils or grow the mint plant itself, try inhaling some of it before an important report is due or when you need a particularly great amount of focus.


Via Bert Guevara
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Trash to cash: Norway leads the way in turning waste into energy

Trash to cash: Norway leads the way in turning waste into energy | Environment | Scoop.it
UK cities pay to send rubbish to Norwegian incinerators, but green campaigners warn of dangers
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Great Barrier Reef on the brink as politicians bicker

Great Barrier Reef on the brink as politicians bicker | Environment | Scoop.it
Environment minister Tony Burke says the government has done its best to stop downgrading of UN heritage status
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Could the world's biggest marine sanctuary be declared in the Antarctic?

Could the world's biggest marine sanctuary be declared in the Antarctic? | Environment | Scoop.it
Graham Readfearn: Proposals will go before a commission next month to help protect thousands of species in Antarctic waters

Via Kathy Dowsett
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Recovery of Hawaiian green sea turtles still short of historic levels

Recovery of Hawaiian green sea turtles still short of historic levels | Environment | Scoop.it
Hawaiian green sea turtle populations have increased in recent years, but their numbers still fall far short of historic levels. A new report suggests that calls to lift protection for this species may be premature.

Via Kathy Dowsett
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