[GWSG] More storms; FEMA cd. help?; earth bubble; Andes melt; 100% renewable; Mulkey in India; slr issues; correction

Tilley, Al atilley at unf.edu
Sat Apr 13 11:23:49 EDT 2013

1.  A 2007 study anticipates more thunderstorms and tornadoes in the southeast toward the end of the century.  http://www.theatlanticcities.com/neighborhoods/2013/04/climate-change-southeastern-us-could-mean-endless-severe-thunderstorms/5229/

2.  The Coastal Barrier Resources Act of 1982 bars any federal subsidy (such as FEMA flood insurance and reimbursement for storm damage) for the development of sensitive undeveloped coastal land.  By expanding the lands covered by the act and providing for the termination of subsidies after one incident we could greatly aid adaptation to sea level rise.  http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/09/science/earth/rebuilding-our-shores-increasing-the-risks.html?_r=2&

3.  Whose Air Do We Share?, from the PBS blog It’s Okay to be Smart by way of Grist, illustrates how limited the atmosphere is, and how pervasive are any additions to it.  http://grist.org/climate-energy/how-to-explain-the-atmosphere-with-a-soccer-ball/?utm_campaign=daily&utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter

4.  In the last 30 years the heating Pacific has driven a recession of 1/3-1/2 among the Andes’ tropical glaciers, which supply much of the region’s drinking water.  http://wwwp.dailyclimate.org/tdc-newsroom/2013/04/andes-ice-melt

5.  In 2012, 46% of the new energy generation in the US came from renewables.  Last month that was 100%, and, for the first quarter of this year, 82%. http://www.sustainablebusiness.com/index.cfm/go/news.display/id/24766

6.  In an 8 minute speech to the World Sustainable Development Forum in India Stephen Mulkey remarks, among other matters, on the inclusion of management science as one of the three cores of a sustainability curriculum and evaluates a sustainability economy as an adaptation comparable to the development of flight in birds.  “Hi Al - This might be of interest to your readers.  It is about changing higher education.  I delivered this talk in India at the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit a couple months ago.  I was there at the invitation of R.K. Pachauri, who somehow found out about what we are doing at Unity College and invited me to present at a plenary session.  There is a lot of interest in how to transform education to meet the challenges of this century, and in many ways, India is ahead of us.”    http://sustainabilitymonitor.wordpress.com/2013/04/12/a-call-to-change-higher-education-to-address-the-sustainability-challenges-of-this-century/

7.  In the last two years the global sea level rise had tripled to 10.1 mm/year.  It is likely to be a speed bump, occasioned by an imbalance in the water cycle which has dumped an unusual amount of water on the land temporarily.  http://www.skepticalscience.com/Earth-Encounters-Giant-Speed-Bump-on-the-Road-to-Higher-Sea-Level.html  Local variations in sea level rise can be significant.  The finding last fall that the sea level rise along the upper east coast of the US is 3-4 times the global average has not been well explained.  http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2012/06/120625-sea-level-rise-east-coast-us-science-nature-climate-change/   Our Regional Council Institute, serving the 7 counties of NE Florida, is meeting with local governments at their invitation to open a conversation on vulnerability to sea level rise.  The St. Johns River Water Management District has completed a projection study (conservatively, 14 cm by 2030) and the Guana Tolomato Matanzas Estuarine Research Reserve is holding meetings with St. Augustine groups on the impact of sea level rise in the Matanzas Basin.  These are the first public discussions of sea level rise in this region.  The topic is likely to be of ever greater concern to us.

8.  Patrick Parenteau noticed that I misrepresented the recent Supreme Court ruling in my last email: “Al, the Supreme Court case dealt with nitrogen dioxide emissions not GHG’s. Still has an impact on coal plants and other sources of on top of many other rules EPA has issued in last few years. The law is finally catching up with all of the externalities of dirty energy facilities.“  Nitrogen dioxide is a health hazard but only a weak greenhouse gas (and incidentally one in this ruling), as opposed to nitrous oxide, a strong greenhouse gas.
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