[GWSG] Heating ocean; 6th Extinction; skewed review; Ivanpah; old CA droughts; natural gassy; resilience vs. adaptation

Tilley, Al atilley at unf.edu
Sat Feb 15 11:58:35 EST 2014

1.  An acceleration of equatorial trade winds transferred heat to the deep ocean and led to the slowed surface warming of the past few years.  The situation is temporary.  http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/feb/09/global-warming-pause-trade-winds-pacific-ocean-study

2.  Al Gore reviews Elizabeth Kolbert’s The Sixth Extinction.  http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/16/books/review/the-sixth-extinction-by-elizabeth-kolbert.html?emc=edit_tnt_20140210&tntemail0=y&_r=0

3.  The Sierra Club and Friends of the Earth have charged that the US State Department hired a firm with fossil fuel industry ties to write the environmental review of the Keystone XL pipeline.  http://ecowatch.com/2014/02/12/new-evidence-state-department-keystone-xl-environmental-review/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=new-evidence-state-department-keystone-xl-environmental-review

4.  Ivanpah, at 392 megawatts the world’s largest solar thermal plant, uses as much water as two holes on a nearby golf course.  http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/02/13/3289361/worlds-largest-solar-plant/  More on Ivanpah, including cost, construction, and the non-issue of fried birds (traceable to the Wall Street Journal).  http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/Ivanpah-Worlds-Biggest-Solar-Power-Tower-Project-Goes-Online?utm_source=Daily&utm_medium=Headline&utm_campaign=GTMDaily

5.  The current drought in CA has instructive precedents in the last few thousand years.  http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/02/140214-drought-california-prehistory-science-climate-san-francisco-2/

6.  A review of over 200 studies shows that the EPA has greatly underestimated methane leakage from natural gas production and has understated methane emissions generally.    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140213142225.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sciencedaily+%28Latest+Science+News+--+ScienceDaily%29  I have considered the futility of natural gas as a desirable transition fuel settled for a couple of years but thought to run this confirming story from a current Science article, which is receiving wide notice.  The study confuses things by concluding that natural gas is still better than coal on the scale of 100 years.  Because methane (which is over 90% of natural gas) is around 100 times worse than CO2 in the short term, and because short term heating of the Arctic is a major concern, it matters little whether natural gas is competitive with even dirtier fuels in the medium term or, for that matter, worse than diesel fuel in the short term.  We simply have no business relying on any fossil fuel this late in the process of climate disruption.  The Science article:  http://www.sciencemag.org/content/343/6172/733.summary?rss=1

7.  The current flooding in England suggests that it is time to abandon a concept of adaptation which preserves current social and economic norms.  We should instead be working for resilience under extreme conditions.  http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/james-blog/2329080/its-time-to-talk-about-climate-resilience
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