CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 14, 2013 |
Finally, some good news about the effects of climate change. It may have triggered a growth spurt in two of California's iconic tree species: coast redwoods and giant sequoias. Since the 1970s, some coast redwoods have grown at the fastest rate ever, according to scientists who studied corings from trees more than 1,000 years old. "That's a wonderful, happy surprise for us," said Emily Burns, science director at the Save the Redwoods League, which is collaborating on a long-term study with university researchers on the effect of climate change on redwoods, the world's tallest trees, and giant sequoias, the largest living things by total mass.
August 13, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - A decade after a vast power outage shut down the Northeast, the electricity grid remains "highly vulnerable" to blackouts because of extreme weather fueled by climate change, a report by the White House and the Energy Department concludes. The Aug. 14, 2003, blackout occurred when an alarm failed in an Ohio utility control room, leading to a cascade of blackouts that affected 50 million people from Michigan to Massachusetts. More recent power outages have been caused by severe weather, such as storms in the East and wildfires in the West.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 10, 2013 |
California is feeling the effects of climate change far and wide, as heat-trapping greenhouse gases reduce spring runoff from the Sierra Nevada, make the waters of Monterey Bay more acidic and shorten winter chill periods required to grow fruit and nuts in the Central Valley, a new report says. Though past studies have offered grim projections of a warming planet, the report released Thursday by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment took an inventory of three dozen shifts that are already happening.
August 8, 2013 |
California is feeling the effects of climate change far and wide as heat-trapping greenhouse gases reduce spring runoff from the Sierra Nevada, make the waters of Monterey Bay more acidic and shorten winter chill periods required to grow fruit and nuts in the Central Valley, a new report says. Though past studies have offered grim projections of a warming planet, the report released Thursday by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment takes an inventory of three dozen shifts that are already happening.
August 8, 2013 |
Forests in Earth's northern latitudes have been thickened by migrating plant species and younger growth, driving a stronger gyration in the amount of carbon that cycles between land and the atmosphere each year, a new study suggests. The net rise in seasonal exchange of carbon between land and air cannot be explained solely by increased burning of fossil fuels, more wildfire or changes in the way the ocean cycles carbon, according to the study published online Thursday in Science.
August 7, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - California billionaire and clean energy philanthropist Thomas Steyer is spending $400,000 on television ads critical of Virginia Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli, the latest effort by the former hedge-fund-manager-turned-environmental activist to inject climate change into statewide elections. Steyer's donation through his political action fund, NextGen Climate Action, helped widen distribution of a League of Conservation Voters ad against Cuccinelli from northern Virginia to Norfolk, Richmond and Charlottesville, starting Wednesday night.
August 7, 2013 |
The news is mixed for Lake Tahoe: Drier years and less precipitation mean less runoff and improved water clarity, but that same long-term warming trend will drive up water temperatures and lower water levels. Those are among the conclusions found in a report "Tahoe: State of the Lake Report 2013," released Wednesday by the Tahoe Environmental Research Center at UC Davis. Clarity of the lake improved in 2012 for the second straight year, to 75.3 feet, an improvement of 6.4 feet.
August 4, 2013
Re "Violence linked to climate change," Aug. 2 Who needs data when we have the truthiness of Raymond Chandler's beautiful writing from his novel "Red Wind": "There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands' necks.
August 2, 2013 |
For years archaeologists and New Mexico tour guides talked about the mysterious, sudden “disappearance” of the Anasazi Indians, the people who built magnificent cliff dwellings in the Southwestern United States. That kind of talk irritated modern tribes such as the Hopi and Zuni no end; they knew the Anasazi never disappeared but were in fact their ancestors. But the ancient people did suddenly abandon these ancient sites, and archaeologists now believe the trigger for this was climate change, specifically the Great Drought, from about 1276 to 1279.
August 1, 2013 |
Long before scientists began to study global warming, author Raymond Chandler described the violent effects of dry, "oven-hot" Santa Ana winds gusting through the city of Los Angeles. "Every booze party ends in a fight," he wrote in his 1938 story "Red Wind. " "Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husband's necks. Anything can happen. " While social commentators have long suggested that extreme heat can unleash the beast in man, formal study of the so-called heat hypothesis - the theory that high temperatures fuel aggressive and violent behavior - is relatively new. Using examples as disparate as road rage, ancient wars and Major League Baseball, scientists have taken early steps to quantify the potential influence of climate warming on human conflict.