Climate Change This Week: Vital Food Crops Threatened, Going Organic Solar, and More!

Today, the Earth got a little hotter, and a little more crowded.

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Saving BUB, Beautiful Unique Biodiversity, as in this leaping mangrove mudskipper, is another reason to preserve carbon storing forests of all kinds, including mangroves. Source pinterest

Forests: the cheapest way to store carbon

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Saving a Very Special Forest that is a nursery for all sorts of commercial seafood species, mangroves protect coasts from storm erosion, and store carbon.

OO Kenya: Protecting Mangroves, Fishermen Net Cash – And More FishFelling mangrove trees to make boats has been a long tradition, but traditions are shifting, as communities become aware of a new benefit from keeping the trees standing: cash payments for carbon storage.

OO Brazil Pledges To Cut Carbon, But Government Policies Say Otherwisepushing for new laws that will increase deforestation, and carbon emissions.

When we harm forests, we harm ourselves.

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HOT NEWS

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OO As Trump Denies Climate Change, Scientists Fear Earth Will Heat Dangerously past the 2-degree red line of rising global temperatures that could create far more catastrophes for mankind. Many scientists have voiced their concern in a new statement.

OO During Hottest Year Ever,
The World Passes 400 ppm CO2 Climate Changing Threshold
– making dramatic action all the more urgent.

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GOOD CLEAN NEWS

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Source frenchseams.com

OO Paris Climate Accord To Take Effect; Obama Hails ‘Historic Day’ – the accord will start on November 4, 2016. But…

“Even if we meet every target, we will only get to part of where we need to go,”President Obama said. [But] “This agreement will help delay or avoid some of the worse consequences of climate change and will help other nations ratchet down their emissions over time.”

Now the hard work begins.

OO California Enacts 4 New Laws To Promote Clean Energy Storage

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OO Germany: Company Raises $90 Million To Develop Roll-To-Roll Organic Solar Cells betting that organic solar cells will finally reach economical mass production.

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HURRICANE MATTHEW – MOST MEDIA FAIL AGAIN…

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The Human Face of Hurricane Matthew – Homeless Valerie walks along a flooded street in Savannah, GA, as Matthew plowed up the east coast, flooding towns and gouging out roads. Almost no mainstream media are noting how climate change helped build Matthew. Credit Stephen B. Morton at AP photo

OO Amid Media Blackout Over
Climate Change Links to Hurricane Matthew,
Top Scientist Speaks Out
– Michael Mann offered several climate change related insights on Hurricane Matthew:

  • Oceans are warming under climate change and that extra heat intensifies hurricanes;
  • Hurricane Matthew shows how:
  • It intensified far more quickly than any other storm in modern history;
  • It did so in the hottest water in the Caribbean – where total heat
  • Resided to an unprecedented depth of hot water;
  • Ocean surface temperatures there are at near-record highs;
  • The sheer depth of hot water is very deep.
  • All that heat fueled the hurricane’s growth and power.

Related Headlines:

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And The Storm Raged On – as Hurricane Matthew pounded Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas. Credit Luis Rodriguez at weather.com

OO Hurricane Matthew Clobbers The U.S. After Devastating Caribbean

OO Haiti Death Toll Nears 900 In Hurricane Matthew’s Wake

OO Hurricane Matthew Swamps Carolinas With Over A Foot Of Rain, Flash Flooding

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DAMNING DAMS

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Not So Clean Energy Credit Damnation Collection

OO Greenhouse Gases From Dam Reservoirs Fuel Climate Change – says a new study by university and EPA researchers.

Large dams:

  • Account for 1+ % of the world’s carbon emissions
  • From the resulting reservoirs
  • containing drowned, decomposing plants, which emit methane.
  • Fertilizer runoff into reservoirs also up nutrients;
  • The more nutrients present, the more biological production of methane.
  • Despite this, dams are a major source of low-carbon energy
  • And better than fossil fuels.
  • MEH: climate change could change that, as droughts dry up hydropower.
Related Headline:

OO Scientists Confirm A Key New Source Of Greenhouse Gases – dammed reservoirs may be contributing as much as a billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions per year, mostly as methane.

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FIXING CLIMATE CHANGE

@@ A Simple And Smart Way To Fix Climate Change given by Dan Miller in 2014 at a Ted talk suggests a way to profit as we tackle climate change, by finally charging those who sell and use fossil fuels – and distributing the revenues back to all of us.

The strategy is sure to speed transition to clean renewable energy. What’s not to like? Check it out!

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SOCIAL REPERCUSSIONS

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OO National Wildlife Federation: Global Warming Is Accelerating

>> KILLING OUR FOOD SUPPLIES

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Bye-Bye Pasta? Source jennsfoodjourney.blogspot.com

OO Pace Of Climate Change Too Hot For Essential Crops – that is, cereal crops such as wheat (think pasta), rice, as well as rye, barley, oats, and many other plants which we need to survive, a new study shows. Takeaways:

  • People get nearly half their calories from grass products.
  • Climate change is happening 3,000 – 20,000 times faster than most grass species – including our crops – can adapt.

“Climate change is outpacing our ability to adapt food production,” study co-author Andrew Challinor says. “In some areas, urgent action is required.”

Related Headline:

OO Climate Change Posing Threat To Staple Foods

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Hot ‘n Healthy chilies may finally disappear in many places under rising heat.Source http://www.grammashomeremedies.com

OO The Next Great Extinction? Chilies As climate change threatens to make growing chiles tougher than ever.

OO Coffee Could Be Extinct By 2080 Due To Climate Change destroying areas suitable for growing beans.

>> KILLING OUR WATER SUPPLIES

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Which Shall Live? Workers inspecting a cabbage field at Siena Farms in Massachusetts. Farm managers held daily discussions about which crops to water and which to let die.
Credit Ian Thomas Jansen-Lonnquist for the New York Times

OO Scenes From New England’s Drought:
Dry Wells, Dead Fish And Ailing Farms
– as the region struggles to cope with a dry spell that climatologists say is not expected to abate before the end of the year.

OO Bangladesh: Sea Level Rise, Intense Cyclones
Destroying Water Supplies
– turning the drinking water saline along the coast.

OO California: Timber Company Tells Town, Go Find Your Own Water after it gains access to water vital to a local town.

>> KILLING OUR HOMES

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She Cries Among The Ruins Wrought By Hurricane Matthew in Cuba. Source http://www.miamiherald.com

OO 2+ Million US Americans Urged To Flee Super Hurricane Matthew as it threatens their homes.

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OO As Drought Grips Iran,
Farmers Lament Loss Of A Way Of Life
– Environmental mismanagement, water overuse, the pressures of population growth and a government more concerned with security and economic challenges have worsened Iran’s agricultural problems.

OO Extreme Storm Blackouts South Australia – one of the worst in 50 years knocks out high voltage lines.

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SPEAKING OUT

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@@ Climate Change At The Movies: Leonardo Dicaprio Stars as an eco-warrior in climate battle. President Obama and the Pope also feature in documentary, Before the Flood. Alarming. Uplifting. We have changed climate, but we can change our future. Check out the trailer here ! In theaters starting October 21st.

OO Trudeau Government Criticized After Approving “Carbon Bomb” In the form of a new Canadian liquefied natural gas project, which critics label a major conflict between its environmental commitments and economic interests.

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GOOD IDEAS

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OO America’s Climate Plan Needs To Ramp Up if the US govt wants to keep a key promise under a United Nations pact, new research from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory shows.

OO Creating A Managed Decline Of Fossil Fuels

OO Massachusetts Poised To Join California Among Clean Energy Elite via an unprecedented string of policy developments, embracing core elements of a transformational blueprint for how carbon-free electricity flows from power producers and utilities to consumers.

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OO Looking To The Earth Itself As A Climate Solution – Agriculture is beginning to consider soil’s ability to capture and store carbon, a potential climate-saver long overlooked.

OO Offshore Wind Farms See Promise In Platforms That Float to enable wind turbines to move into deeper waters farther from the coast.

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NATURAL REPERCUSSIONS

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Climate Change Forecast: Warmer Winters West, Colder Winters East – this map will be looking like this more frequently in the winter.

OO Global Warming Trend Warms The U.S. West, Leaves East Shivering a new study says. Takeaways:

  • Warm and dry US western winters, paired with frigid eastern conditions in the East, has become more frequent since 1980.
  • this trend reflects the influence of global warming on the Northern Hemisphere’s atmosphere, data show.
  • It will continue for decades but level off after 2100, as the East becomes too warm for extreme winter conditions.
  • This pattern has been costly, including
  • a multi-year drought in California
  • economically disruptive snowstorms in the Northeast.

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Waves Will Run Deadly Red more often in the future, as warming oceans favor toxic red algal blooms. Photo Source robertscribbler.com

OO The Pacific Blob Caused An ‘Unprecedented’ Toxic Algal Bloom —
And There’s More To Come
as oceans continue to warm, a new study shows.

Species On the Move

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Credit Andrew Reding at flickr, modified

OO Subtropical Caspian Terns Nest 1,000 Miles Further North Now – In Alaska

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FOSSIL FUEL FOLLIES

@@ VIDEO: America’s Super Polluters —- bad for people’s health, bad for the planet — are strikingly concentrated among a small number of industrial facilities like those in southwest Indiana, reveals a new nine-month Center for Public Integrity investigation.

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OO How The West Was Lost: Ranchers Devastated By Fossil Fuel Boom – Wyoming has reaped billions of dollars from oil drilling and coal mining, but ranchers are losing their water, land, and livelihoods.

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CLIMATE, OR CLUELESS LEADERSHIP: YOU DECIDE

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Credit Nate Beeler at the Columbus Dispatch, modified

OO Trump Picks Top Skeptic To Lead EPA Transition in yet another way to broadcast his ignorance of how to keep this world safe.

OO ‘Trump’s Promises Are Empty’: Energy Experts Lay Waste To ProposalsFrom making coal great again to ‘cancelling’ the Paris accord, industry analysts say his ideas are farfetched and his talk of climate change as a ‘hoax’ is dangerous.

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Kinder or Gentler Than Trump? Don’t Be Fooled. Mike Pence’s record is that of an unpopular governor who tried to impose his own ideologically based ideas on his constituents.

OO Trump Mate: Mike Pence’s Kinder, Gentler Climate Change Denial – Climate change isn’t a hoax! It’s just that we can’t and shouldn’t do anything about it. Gee, thanks for the inspiration, Mike.

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Ignore the Evil Wizard Behind Me Hillary Clinton could well be saying about Donald Trump, seen to be lurking in the background during the second debate.Credit Rick Wilking at Reuters

OO Clean Power Plan Crystallizes The Difference Between The Presidential Candidates

Donald Trump has:

  • cast his lot with coal;
  • would roll back environmental provisions.

Hillary Clinton strongly favors investment in new technologies and sustainable fuels.

The reality?

  • Current economic trends have trumped the Clean Power Plan –
  • that is, utilities have long since started ditching coal-fired power plants
  • and building combined-cycle natural gas plants,
  • or buying renewable energy from other developers.

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ELECTION YEAR:

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If You Don’t Vote For Climate Action, You Can Forget The Rest – in a climate-changing world of famine, drought, rising seas, giant storms and heat waves, there will be no security in jobs, health, wealth, or national safety. There will be chaos ensuing from increasing crises and disasters. Vote.

OO Global Warming Policies We Set Today Will Determine The Next 10,000 Years – of global warming, a new study shows — and whether our civilization survives or not: history shows that harmful climate change has destroyed civilizations before.

This time, it could be worldwide. Let’s keep “The Hunger Games“ in the realm of fiction.

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If we do not grow sustainably,
Our children will die inhumanely.

@@ Myth vs Truth: The Huge Value of Contraception is an incisive, heartfelt recognition of the value of contraception by Sarah Brown, CEO, The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy

Unintended Pregnancy Costs US Taxpayers:

Unintended Pregnancies Cost US Taxypayers Nearly $11 Billion Yearly
the Guttmacher Institute

Teen Childbearing Alone Cost US Taxpayers $9+ Billion In 2010
And the costs of raising a child usually ensures decades, if not a life, of poverty for its mother.
US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

WHAT YOU CAN DO

Help prevent unintended pregnancies in your community:
publicize where women can access affordable contraception.

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They can go here to find locations:

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And there are many more actions you can do, right here.

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SOLAR KEEPS RISING

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OO California Republicans Are 5 Times More Likely To Own Solar Than Democrats – away from the national stage, the political divide on clean energy is not as wide as it appears.

OO New York City: Solar Power Booming – compare: 186 solar residential projects in 2011 across all boroughs, to 5,300+ so far in 2016, say state officials, with another 1,900 in the pipeline.

The solar boom has been prompted by a 70 % drop in installation costs in recent years, along with the streamlining of government approvals and incentives.

Once solar panels are up and running, monthly energy bills can fall by as much as 85 %.

OO Solar On The Steppe: Ukraine Embraces Renewables Revolution – in part to declare energy independence from an ever more threatening Russia.

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Check it out here, right now!

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WHY WE SHOULD ACT NOW: RISING RISKS

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Daily Climate Change: Global Map of Unusual Temperatures, Oct 11, 2016

How unusual has the weather been? No one event is “caused” by climate change, but global warming, which is predicted to increase unusual, extreme weather, is having a daily effect on weather, worldwide.

Looking above at recent temperature anomalies, much of the US and the waters surrounding it are experiencing warmer than normal temperatures: the eastern Pacific warm spot continues and so does the drought in California. Meanwhile, record hot Caribbean waters help forge a powerful and destructive Hurricane Matthew.

Much of the areas surrounding the North Pole are experiencing much warmer than normal temperatures – not good news for our Arctic thermal shield of ice. Hotter than usual temperatures continue to dominate human habitats.

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There is, of course, much more news on the consequences and solutions to climate change. To get it, check out this annotated resource list I’ve compiled, “Climate Change News Resources,” at WordPress.com here. For more information on the science of climate change, its consequences and solutions you can view my annotated list of online information resources here.

To help you understand just what science does and does NOT do, check thisout!

Every day is Earth Day, folks, as I was reminded by this butterfly on a lily I photographed one spring. Making the U.S. a global clean energy leader will ensure a heck of a lot more jobs, and a clean, safe future. If you’d like to join the increasing numbers of people who want to TELL Congress that they will vote for clean energy candidates you can do so here. It’s our way of letting Congress know there’s a strong clean energy voting bloc out there. For more detailed summaries of the above and other climate change items, audio podcasts and textsare freely available.

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For more on Climate Change, check out my weekly columns at the HuffingtonPost, Climate Change This Week

 

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About melharte

Mel (Mary Ellen) Harte is a biologist (PhD) and climate change educator. She co-authored the free online book, COOL THE EARTH, SAVE THE ECONOMY, available at www.CoolTheEarth.US, and writes the CLIMATE CHANGE THIS WEEK column at the HuffingtonPost. Living summers in the alpine Rockies, she is on the frontlines of watching what climate change can do. Her diagnostic digital photographs of wildflowers have appeared in numerous publications.
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