The Week: Most Recent Climate Change:Climate Change recent posts.en-usWed, 13 Feb 2013 15:23:00 -0500http://theweek.com Recent Climate Change:Climate Change from THE WEEKWed, 13 Feb 2013 15:23:00 -0500Is the hole in the ozone closing?<img src="" /></P><p>Since the 1980s, a hole in the ozone layer has loomed over Antarctica for three months of every year. During these months, the concentration of the ozone decreases, and harmful ultraviolet light, which causes sunburn and skin cancer, seeps through to the Earth's surface. Environmentalists have long looked to the ozone hole as evidence of man's negative impact on the atmosphere, but recent findings may ease their minds: Measurements indicate the hole in the ozone layer is the smallest it has been in 10 years, and could be completely gone within a few decades.</p><p>So why is it shrinking? The hole was...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/jessica-hullinger" ><span class="byline">Jessica Hullinger</span></a>Wed, 13 Feb 2013 15:23:00 -0500Why the Great Lakes are shrinking<img src="" /></P><p>The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced this week that two of America's Great Lakes, Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, are at their lowest water levels since recording began in 1918. The lakes were 29 inches below their long-term average, and down 17 inches since this time last year. "We're in an extreme situation," the Corps' Keith&nbsp;Kompoltowicz&nbsp;told&nbsp;<em>USA Today</em>.&nbsp;</p><p>The causes are threefold:</p><p>* Below-normal levels of rain and snowfall</p><p>* Record-high temperatures</p><p>* Dredging (the process of deepening navigational channels by removing layers of the bottom sediments)</p><p>Why should we...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/jessica-hullinger" ><span class="byline">Jessica Hullinger</span></a>Thu, 07 Feb 2013 11:00:00 -0500Working less, vacationing more: The key to slowing global warming?<img src="" /></P><p>Could working less be the key to slowing global warming? You betcha, says one liberal think tank, the Center for Economic Policy and Research, positing that less time spent commuting and working would significantly reduce carbon emissions globally. According to researchers, trimming the 40-hour workweek to something "more European" &mdash; which emphasizes more time off and more vacations &mdash; could prevent half of the expected global warming that is not already locked in by 2100.</p><p>Economist David Rosnick&nbsp;writes that&nbsp;"the relationship between [shorter work and lower emissions] is complex...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/chris-gayomali" ><span class="byline">Chris Gayomali</span></a>Wed, 06 Feb 2013 16:55:00 -0500America's hottest year ever: By the numbers<img src="" /></P><p>You weren't imagining it: 2012 was a scorcher &mdash; and the hottest year on record in the continental United States, according to official numbers released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Here's a numerical look at the record-setting year:&nbsp;</p><p class="p2"><strong>55.3<br /></strong>Average temperature, in degrees Fahrenheit, across the continental U.S. in 2012. That's a full degree Fahrenheit higher than the previous record set in 1998, and is 3.3 degrees above the 20th century average. &nbsp;</p><p class="p2"><strong>34,008<br /></strong>Daily high records set at weather stations across the country in 2012</p><p class="p2"><strong>100&nbsp;<br /></strong>Percent of the...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/chris-gayomali" ><span class="byline">Chris Gayomali</span></a>Thu, 10 Jan 2013 10:03:00 -0500WATCH: An iceberg the size of a mountain cleaves itself apart<img src="" /></P><p><iframe width="600" height="397" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p><p class="p1">Two young filmmakers camped out in the freezing cold for weeks to capture this thunderous, rare shot of a massive 4.6-cubic-mile glacier in Greenland crumbling apart. This brief clip of the largest glacier calving ever caught on camera is just a small segment in the recently debuted documentary <em>Chasing Ice</em>, which is dedicated to chronicling the perhaps-irreversible impact of climate change on glaciers (and sea levels) around the world. Filmmaker James Balog says watching the roaring landscape shift&nbsp;is like watching "Manhattan breaking apart in front of your eyes." Seeing is believing, says...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/chris-gayomali" ><span class="byline">Chris Gayomali</span></a>Wed, 12 Dec 2012 14:17:00 -0500The frighteningly rapid die-off of the world's oldest trees<img src="" /></P><p>If you've never been to California to see its giant redwoods, you should probably go soon. It might be only a matter of time before they're all gone. Research released Friday indicates that the world's oldest trees are dying at an alarming rate. "It is a very, very disturbing trend," says lead researcher William&nbsp;Laurance of James Cook University.&nbsp;"We are talking about the loss of the biggest living organisms on the planet, of the largest flowering plants on the planet, of organisms that play a key role in regulating and enriching our world."&nbsp;</p><p class="p1">For the study, researchers examined...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/jessica-hullinger" ><span class="byline">Jessica Hullinger</span></a>Fri, 07 Dec 2012 11:20:00 -0500Why it's probably too late to roll back global warming<img src="" /></P><p class="p1">Two degrees Celsius. According to scientists, that's the rise in global temperature, measured against pre-industrial times, that could spark some of the most catastrophic effects of global warming. Preventing the two-degree bump has been the goal of every international treaty designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including a new one currently being hammered out at a United Nations summit in Doha, Qatar. But a new study published by the journal <em>Nature Climate Change</em> shows that it's <strong>incredibly unlikely that global warming can be limited to two degrees</strong>. According to the study, the world in...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/ryu-spaeth" ><span class="byline">Ryu Spaeth</span></a>Wed, 05 Dec 2012 14:12:00 -0500Did global warming stop 16 years ago?<img src="" /></P><p>The British government's meteorological service recently released new figures on global temperatures that prompted the <em>Daily Mail</em>, a conservative British tabloid, to declare: "Global warming stopped 16 years ago." The bold headline rekindled the often bitter debate over climate change, and what world leaders should do about it. Have climate scientists changed their minds about what's happening to Earth's temperatures, and how pollution affects those temperatures? Here, a brief guide:<br /><br /><strong>What is the big news here?</strong><br />According to the <em>Daily Mail</em>, the U.K.'s Met Office released new data showing that there...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffMon, 15 Oct 2012 12:22:00 -0400How China is trying to capitalize on global warming: A guide<img src="" /></P><p>First, the bad news: Sea ice in the Arctic shrank to its smallest area on record this past summer, and the much-faster-than-expected rate of seasonal disappearance of Arctic ice will likely wreak havoc on weather in the Northern Hemisphere. The good news, says Hamilton Nolan at <em>Gawker</em>, is that while this manmade "'global disaster' with 'terrible' implications" could destroy us all, "a lot of people could make a lot of ca$$$h" first. Indeed, the financial benefits of the vanishing ice &mdash; new access to oil, minerals, and shipping routes &mdash; aren't lost on the world's superpowers. But unlike...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffThu, 20 Sep 2012 10:10:00 -0400How July was the hottest month in history: By the numbers<img src="" /></P><p>If you can't remember a hotter month than the one you just sweated through, there's a reason. Federal scientists say July was the hottest month ever recorded in the United States. Just how satanically scorching was it? Go crouch beside the A/C and scan these stats: <br /><br /><strong>77.6</strong><br />Average July temperature, in degrees Fahrenheit, in the lower 48 states<br /><br /><strong>77.4</strong><br />Average temperature in the previous record month, July, 1936, which cursed Americans during the devastating Dust Bowl summer<br /><br /><strong>118</strong><br />Years the U.S. government has been keeping nationwide temperature records<br /><br /><strong>3.3</strong><br />Degrees by which this July beat the 20th century average...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffWed, 08 Aug 2012 14:21:00 -0400Are extremely hot summers becoming the norm?<img src="" /></P><p>Scorching heat got you down? Better get used to it. A new NASA study reveals a "stunning increase" in the frequency of extremely hot summers over the past six decades. And even more sweltering days are on the horizon. Here's what you should know:</p><p><strong>What happened in the study?</strong><br />Analyzing yearly temperature data going back to the early 1950s, climatologists determined that the sheer likelihood of having a hotter-than-average summer is only getting higher. "Back in the 1950s, temperatures on any given summer day were as likely to be near average as they were to be unseasonably high or low," says Janet...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffTue, 07 Aug 2012 09:12:00 -0400Why doesn't Generation X care about climate change?<img src="" /></P><p>Over the past several years, the U.S. has seen temperatures soar during the summer months, and several Obama administration officials have linked recent severe weather patterns to climate change. The perceived effects of global warming are clearly worrying to many Americans. And yet, a new survey suggests that Generation X &mdash; generally Americans born between 1961 and 1981 &mdash; is growing increasingly unconcerned about climate change. Here, a guide to the survey:</p><p><strong>Who is Generation X?</strong><br />They're the Americans who "grew up with MTV, Nirvana, and the dot-com bubble," says <em>The Atlantic</em>. These individuals...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffThu, 19 Jul 2012 07:24:00 -0400The Colorado wildfires: Is this what global warming looks like?<img src="" /></P><p class="p1">"Horrendous wildfires. Oppressive heat waves. Devastating droughts. Flooding from giant deluges. And a powerful freak wind storm called a derecho," says Seth Borenstein for&nbsp;<em>The Associated Press</em>. These are the kinds of extreme weather conditions that have assailed swathes of the country in recent weeks, from the raging wildfires in Colorado to a devastating East Coast thunderstorm &mdash; the derecho &mdash; that killed 20 people and left millions without power. The deadly weather is hardly a surprise to scientists who have long predicted that climate change would lead to precisely these types...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffTue, 03 Jul 2012 15:15:00 -0400Exposed: The terrifying harassment faced by climate change scientists<img src="" /></P><p>In a sprawling new story in <em>Popular Science</em>, Tom Clynes takes an in-depth look at the seedy but influential range of people who take it upon themselves to make life a living hell for climate-change researchers. Here, five key takeaways:</p><p><strong>1. Harassment is routine</strong><br />Climate-change deniers often threaten scientists in attempts to distract them from their research &mdash; and the harassment goes beyond nasty emails. One climate modeler describes finding "a dead rat on his doorstep" with "a yellow Hummer speeding away." Last year in Australia, several scientists were ushered to a safer facility when opponents...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffMon, 25 Jun 2012 08:00:00 -0400Heartland's ballsy attack on climate-change theory: The fallout<img src="" /></P><p>The conservative Heartland Institute was going for shock value when it mounted a digital billboard in Chicago that combined a mug shot of the Unabomber, Ted Kaczynski, with the message: "I still believe in Global Warming. Do you?" (See the full image below.) After the group faced a fiercer backlash than expected, however, it promptly took down the sign and canceled plans for similar ads. Here's what you should know:<br /><br /><strong>What was the point of this billboard?</strong><br />The Heartland Institute was trying to be "deliberately provocative," the institute's president, Joseph Bast, said in a statement, "to turn the tables...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffMon, 07 May 2012 14:43:00 -0400Do wind farms actually cause climate change?<img src="" /></P><p>Here's a curveball on climate change: New research published in the journal <em>Nature Climate Change</em> suggests that large wind farms might have a warming effect on the local climate. Many countries are rapidly expanding their capacity to generate electricity using wind-driven turbines as they try to cut emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases created by the burning of fossil fuels. But are wind farms contributing to the very problem they're supposed to help solve? Here, a brief guide:&nbsp; <br /><br /><strong>How much do wind farms heat up the air?</strong><br />Researchers at the State University of New York at Albany...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffMon, 30 Apr 2012 14:00:00 -0400