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Category Archives: Climate Change

Atmospheric changes through 2012 as shown by iteratively homogenized radiosonde temperature and wind data

Atmospheric changes through 2012 as shown by iteratively homogenized radiosonde temperature and wind data (IUKv2) Steven C Sherwood and Nidhi Nishant 2015 Environ. Res. Lett. 10 054007

“We present an updated version of the radiosonde dataset homogenized by Iterative Universal Kriging (IUKv2), now extended through February 2013, following the method used in the original version (Sherwood et al 2008 Robust tropospheric warming revealed by iteratively homogenized radiosonde data J. Clim. 21 5336–52). This method, in effect, performs a multiple linear regression of the data onto a structural model that includes both natural variability, trends, and time-changing instrument biases, thereby avoiding estimation biases inherent in traditional homogenization methods. One modification now enables homogenized winds to be provided for the first time. This, and several other small modifications made to the original method sometimes affect results at individual stations, but do not strongly affect broad-scale temperature trends. Temperature trends in the updated data show three noteworthy features. First, tropical warming is equally strong over both the 1959–2012 and 1979–2012 periods, increasing smoothly and almost moist-adiabatically from the surface (where it is roughly 0.14 K/decade) to 300 hPa (where it is about 0.25 K/decade over both periods), a pattern very close to that in climate model predictions. This contradicts suggestions that atmospheric warming has slowed in recent decades or that it has not kept up with that at the surface. Second, as shown in previous studies, tropospheric warming does not reach quite as high in the tropics and subtropics as predicted in typical models. Third, cooling has slackened in the stratosphere such that linear trends since 1979 are about half as strong as reported earlier for shorter periods. Wind trends over the period 1979–2012 confirm a strengthening, lifting and poleward shift of both subtropical westerly jets; the Northern one shows more displacement and the southern more intensification, but these details appear sensitive to the time period analysed. There is also a trend toward more easterly winds in the middle and upper troposphere of the deep tropics.”

Oceanic and atmospheric forcing of Larsen C Ice-Shelf thinning

Citation: Holland, P. R., Brisbourne, A., Corr, H. F. J., McGrath, D., Purdon, K., Paden, J., Fricker, H. A., Paolo, F. S., and Fleming, A. H.: Oceanic and atmospheric forcing of Larsen C Ice-Shelf thinning, The Cryosphere, 9, 1005-1024, doi:10.5194/tc-9-1005-2015, 2015. “The catastrophic collapses of Larsen A and B ice shelves on the eastern Antarctic Peninsula have caused their tributary glaciers to accelerate, contributing to sea-level rise and freshening theContinue Reading

NASA – Cloudy Earth

NASA Earth Observatory – “Decades of satellite observations and astronaut photographs show that clouds dominate space-based views of Earth. One study based on nearly a decade of satellite data estimated that about 67 percent of Earth’s surface is typically covered by clouds. This is especially the case over the oceans, where other research shows lessContinue Reading

NOAA Trends in Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide – All Time High

“The graph shows recent monthly mean carbon dioxide globally averaged over marine surface sites. The Global Monitoring Division of NOAA/Earth System Research Laboratory has measured carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases for several decades at a globally distributed network of air sampling sites [Conway, 1994]. A global average is constructed by first fitting a smoothedContinue Reading

U.S. Climate Change Policy

Directorate-General for Internal Policies (EU)  – U.S. Climate Change Policy – April 2015 “This document reviews and updates the previous 2013 report providing an overview of the climate change policy in the United States. Starting with the emissions trend it then make some general remarks about policy making in the U.S. before entering into concreteContinue Reading

A New Federal Guide to Infrastructure Planning and Design

“Today, the White House is convening the nation’s leading thinkers on infrastructure planning and design to highlight how projects like new roads and transit lines can be designed to foster economic opportunity and increase resilience to the impacts of climate change. To help communities seeking to expand their pipelines of well-designed projects, the Administration isContinue Reading

Climate change could eventually claim a sixth of the world’s species

Sid Perkins – Science: “Up to one-sixth of the species on Earth could disappear if climate change remains on its current course, according to a new analysis of more than 100 smaller studies. “All the studies are in pretty good agreement: The more warming we have, the more species we’ll lose,” says Dov Sax, aContinue Reading

NIST Releases Draft Community Resilience Planning Guide for Public Review

“The U.S. Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) today issued a draft guide to help communities plan for and act to keep windstorms, floods, earthquakes, sea-level rise, industrial mishaps and other hazards from inflicting disastrous consequences. NIST is requesting public feedback on the draft Community Resilience Planning Guide for Buildings and Infrastructure,Continue Reading

Study on Pollution: Long-Term Exposure to Fine Particulate Matter

Long-Term Exposure to Fine Particulate Matter, Residential Proximity to Major Roads and Measures of Brain Structure – Elissa H. Wilker, Sarah R. Preis, Alexa S. Beiser, Philip A. Wolf, Rhoda Au, Itai Kloog, Wenyuan Li, Joel Schwartz, Petros Koutrakis, Charles DeCarli, Sudha Seshadri, and Murray A. Mittleman. Stroke, 2015 DOI: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.114.008348 “Background and Purpose—Long-term exposure toContinue Reading

Why understanding the legally disruptive nature of climate change matters

Liz Fisher, Eloise Scotford, and Emily Barritt:  “It is now commonly recognized by governments that climate change is an issue that must be addressed. The 21st Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to be held in Paris in December 2015 is the most high profile example of this, butContinue Reading

The Quadrennial Energy Review

Transforming U.S. Energy Infrastructures in a Time of Rapid Change: The First Installment of the Quadrennial Energy Review “On January 9, 2014, President Obama issued a Presidential Memorandum directing the administration to conduct a Quadrennial Energy Review (QER). As described in the President’s Climate Action Plan,this first-ever review focuses on energy infrastructure and identifies the threats, risks, and opportunitiesContinue Reading

Earth Day – April 22 2015

Every day, every year, should be Earth Day, not just one designated day each year. Earth Day, April 22 – On the first Earth Day in 1970, 22 million Americans celebrated clean air, land, and water.